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M3D

Co-operative architectural design in a 3D environment

Multidisciplinary architectural design often requires the co-operation of people located at different sites. Inter-team communication is often imperfect, and this can result in design mistakes. The cost of rectifying errors during construction can be very expensive and design agencies have been seeking a method of preventing such errors at an earlier stage in the project.

Improving communication within multidisciplinary architectural design is the goal of the M3D project. The project has developed a design tool that is not dependent upon any proprietary computer-aided design (CAD) system. This tool provides the means to visualise three-dimensional (3D) geometry by allowing 3D geometry from different sources to be automatically combined into one 3D virtual environment. Thus, each member of the design team can contribute to the design at any time in the process.

The M3D environment offers a virtual room in which designers and engineers can work simultaneously on the same 3D virtual model of a building design. They can use their own preferred tool to design locally since the M3D technology acts as the bridge between different systems. The environment includes management tools to control design changes and video and audio conferencing to support communication. Network-based distributed communications, based on Internet Protocol, supports both interaction between users as well as more conventional single-user applications such as accessing information in a central database.

The demonstration presents the M3D prototype system for co-operative architectural design. It shows how users can load a design scene, modify its properties and save the result. Support for co-operation and editing will be illustrated.

Contact Yuhua LUO, University of Balearic Islands
tel +34.971 173 208
fax +34.971 173 003
email dmilyu0@clust.uib.es
website www.m3d.org

 
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