3DXplorer Quick User Guide Now Available

Our Quick User Guide is now available for download.  This PDF document is designed to help attendees and presenters get quickly up to speed navigating through virtual meetings and conferences authored with 3DXplorer v5.

The User Guide is divided into three parts:

  1. Avatar Guide: This section covers creating and customizing an avatar.
  2. Meeting Attendee & Visitor Guide: This section covers basic navigation and chat.
  3. Presenter Guide: This section includes presentation techniques such as sharing the desktop with attendees and delivering power-point presentations or demonstrations.

The User Guide also contains troubleshooting tips. This handy resource ensures that both presenters and attendees will participate in successful and productive virtual meetings.

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3DXplorer Powers Online Aviation Expo

onlineexpo2

Indiana based FBO Academy, the training institute for the aviation service industry is using 3DXplorer’s cutting-edge 3D technology to power its Virtual Online Aviation Expo. The expo is a permanent virtual hall dedicated to Fixed Base Operator (FBO) professionals in the aviation industry.

The Online Aviation Expo utilizes 3DXplorer to create a virtual 3D space that allows vendors and visitors to interact with each another. Participants can view products and displays from a variety of vendors from the comfort of their home or office computers using standard web browsers—without the use of any plug-ins.

Attendees can move through the virtual expo space using 3D avatars that can communicate with each other with live text chat or with audio via Skype.

Vendors are able to reach thousands of potential customers and clients, eliminating the cost usually associated with trade shows, such as travel, food, and lodging.

Since the Online Aviation Expo is open 24 hours a day, 365 days a year, it isn’t limited by time constraints. Attendees can visit anytime—at their leisure.


Visitors and those interested in exhibiting can view the site while the virtual expo space is being created.

3DXplorer V4.01.03 now available

A new release of 3DXplorer is available that adds Java 5 support in addition to Java 6.

Java 5 support has been available for some time, however, it required publishing your 3D space using a special pre-release version of the 3DXplorer online studio.

Now you simply use the default “LastRelease” in the Version pulldown menu on the Project Management web page as shown in the screen shot below.

3DXplorer Project Management Page - Choosing LastRelease Version

3DXplorer Project Management Page - Choosing LastRelease Version

Most Macs and Linux systems require Java 5 support so this should provide a consistent experience on all supported platforms.

In general, there is nothing one should need to do to ensure their worlds support the latest version, unless one was explicitly creating 3D spaces in an older version and now wants to update them to the latest version.  In this case, you will need to update the applet HTML on the page where you have imbedded your 3D space. 

To do this, simply select LastRelease from the Version pulldown menu  on the Project Management page as shown in the image above, and then regenerate the HTML by clicking on the small HTML icon in the column labeled Applet code.  Then just update the old HTML by cutting and pasting the new HTML into the page on which your 3D space is imbedded.

The new release also adds support for keyframe animation imported via COLLADA, as well as providing a new feature in the online studio enabling rotation animation of 3D objects, such as a rotating banner or product in a showroom.

The new release also includes some code optimization and addresses some outstanding defects, so overall stability and performance should be enhanced as well.

Check it out and let us know what you think.

The Altadyn Team

3DXplorer Webinars: Using 3DXplorer – A Hands-On Technical Overview

Through the rest of September Altadyn is hosting a series of webinars on 3DXplorer covering both business and technical topics.

To learn more and register click here.
(http://www.3dxplorer.com/i.php?p=static/3DX_Webinars)

An overview of the technical-focused webinar is provided below:

Using 3DXplorer: A Hands-On Technical Overview

This Webinar will provide a hands-on technical overview of 3DXplorer.

Topics covered include creating 3D scenes using the online studio, adding and importing 3D objects and scenes, enabling avatars, as well as publishing and imbedding your scene in a Web site.

Agenda (Times shown are US Pacific Time):9:00 am Introduction
9:05 am How to create a world using the 3DX library
9:20 am Importing objects and scenes
9:30 am Enabling avatars and other scene attributes
9:40 am Q/A 

To learn more and register click here.
(http://www.3dxplorer.com/i.php?p=static/3DX_Webinars)

Space is limited so please return to reserve your spot.

3DXplorer Business-Focused Webinars: Leveraging Web 3.0 and 3DXplorer to Increase Your Web Design Business

Through the rest of September Altadyn is hosting a series of webinars on 3DXplorer covering both business and technical topics.

To learn more and register click here.
(http://www.3dxplorer.com/i.php?p=static/3DX_Webinars)

An overview of the business-focused webinar is provided below:

Leveraging Web 3.0 and 3DXplorer to Increase Your Web Design Business

This business-focused webinar will explore web3D and its relationship to Web 3.0, both what it is and why you should be interested. An exciting new concept, “Meet in 3D,” will also be discussed that envisions 3D web sites becoming a new standard navigation component, on par with the commonly-used links on the main navigation bar of web sites such as Home, Products, Company, Contact Us, etc., allowing businesses to add immersive 3D experiences for interacting with web visitors who until now have largely remained anonymous.

Key target customers and industries that can benefit from web 3D include:
 * Retailers/Malls
 * Home builders
 * Corporate Collaboration
 * Museums
 * Tourism/Chambers of Commerce
 * eLearning,including:
     – Schools
     – Tutoring
     – Libraries
     – Workplace training

Agenda (Times shown are US Pacific Time):

9:00 am Introduction
9:05 am What is “Meet in 3D” and how is it related to Web 3.0
9:10 am Business Opportunities and Target Markets
9:20 am 3DXplorer Promotional Bundles and Partner Opportunities
9:30 am Q/A

To learn more and register click here.
(http://www.3dxplorer.com/i.php?p=static/3DX_Webinars)

3DXplorer V4 Live – Multiuser 3D worlds with Avatars and User-Generated Content!

Well the big news this month is that 3DXplorer V4 has been released and is live at www.3dxplorer.com.

With V4 now any 3D world can now be “avatar enabled” allowing multiple visitors to explore and interact in real-time with avatars on any computer and browser.  So 3DXplorer is now multiuser, one of the remaining key features we have been working hard to get out the door.

Virtual Benaroya Hall with Avatars

Virtual Benaroya Hall with Avatars

Visitors are now able to define their “universal avatar” once and enter any virtual world, 3D web site or casual game with the same avatar or personality.

AVW Headquarters with Avatar

AVW Headquarters with Avatar

An integrated avatar configurator allows visitors to choose their avatar’s sex, face, hair, clothes and accessories such as hats or glasses.

3DXplorer Avatar Configurator

3DXplorer Avatar Configurator

Avatars support a variety of animated actions, moods and interactions with other avatars, including walking, running, head shakes for yes and no, handshakes, hugs, laughing, yawning, dancing and more. Text chat along with integrated Skype calling is also supported.

 

In addition to choosing to enable avatars, you can limit the number of avatars that may enter a world, as well as protecting worlds with a password. New avatars can be created with a free avatar creation kit that includes guidelines for new avatars, as well as 3ds Max models of standard avatar skeletons.

You can check out the 3DXplorer V4 demonstration video here.

Examples of 3D virtual worlds created in 3DXplorer that are avatar-enabled can be visited at the following links: 

Seattle’s Benaroya Hall

Association of Virtual Worlds

Avalonn Picasso museum

Note that the first is the virtual Benaroya Hall mentioned in a previous blog post, and the second is the virtual Headquarters of the Association of Virtual Worlds whose Executive Director Dave Elchoness had the following to say:

“3DXplorer V4 just took a giant leap forward with its multiuser environment and support for live, custom avatars.  Now any web site can include an interactive 3D world, like a corporate web site staffed by company greeters who can answer questions or show off realistic 3D products, and all you do is click a link. It’s because of this accessibility that the Association of Virtual Worlds selected 3Dxplorer V4 for its virtual headquarters.” 

All you have to do to create your own avatar is to sign up at www.3DXplorer.com  in the upper left “Get a 3D Avatar” section.  Also, if you already have a 3DXplorer world, sign in to the “Build Your Own 3D World” section at the upper right, and edit your world to enable avatars.  And of course, to create a new 3D world, just sign up for free.

This brings up a question I have gotten from time to time.  Why have two logins?  Well, while many businesses or individuals will do both – create avatars and 3D worlds – it won’t always be the case.  In fact, we believe it will be commonplace for many users to simply want to create an avatar to visit existing 3D worlds without having to set up an account to allow them to create their own worlds. It is similar tro the difference between an end user and a developer.  Of course, it’s easy to do both, we just wanted it to be drop dead simple to create an avatar with minimal information required from the user.  To create an avatar, all you need to do is pick a name for your avatar and choose a password.  No other info is required, although there are fields for optional information like an email address so we can send you updates and announcements , Skype ID for integrated Skype calls and so on. 

3DXplorer V4 also extends support for user-generated content using commonly available design and modeling tools by adding the ability to import 3D data in the popular COLLADA format. Modeling tools supporting COLLADA include Maya, 3ds Max, LightWave 3D, Softimage|XSI; Houdini; MeshLab, SketchUp, Blender and others. COLLADA is also Google Earth’s native format, and it’s supported by Google SketchUp and the Google 3D Warehouse providing access to a huge amount of existing 3D models such as buildings, furniture, vehicles, etc.

For instance, here is an example I quickly did myself, and if I can do it anyone can.  I downloaded a model of the Sydney Opera House that was modeled in SketchUp and uploaded to the 3D Warehouse here.

I then was able to import that into 3DXplorer using the online studio:

Sydney Opera House Imported into 3DXplorer with COLLADA

Sydney Opera House Imported into 3DXplorer with COLLADA

And now here I am in 3DXplorer with the newly imported opera House, checking it out from the front and from the side (note that you can click on the thumbnails to get large views):

Opera House in 3DXplorer

Opera House in 3DXplorer

And here I am inside the Opera House looking out at the front:

Opera House From Inside

Opera House From Inside

Now granted for the inside view one needs to model the inside, but you get the idea. Now check this out; here I am in the Opera House with my avatar meeting with another avatar:

Opera House with Avatars

Opera House with Avatars

Hey why not visit it yourself. It’s here: 3DXplorer Sydney Opera House Virtual World. (don’t be surprised; I have disabled the collision detection for a quick exploration there.)

Now I did all this in less than an hour.  I found the SketchUp model, imported it into 3DXplorer, imbedded it in our web site and visited it with avatar and interacted with others — and I am not technical whiz.  Imagine that hundreds of thousands of models of buildings, structures, and so on, real, from the past or complete imaginary, modeled in SketchUp, Revit, AutoCAD, 3ds Max, Maya, whatever, with new ones being created every day that are accessible to anyone on the web with a persistent universal avatar by just clicking a link.  And better, they can be visited by multiple people at a time that can interact, chat, talk via Skype and so on.  This is cool.

COLLADA support extends 3DXplorer’s ability to import 3D data in industry standard formats, including the 3DS format supported by Autodesk’s 3ds Max, along with a variety of other applications such as AutoCAD, Revit, Rhino, and many others. An API is also provided enabling custom development of 3D web applications including casual games, collaborative tools, CAD/PLM environments, online meetings, product configurators, eLearning, and many others.

In the words of Nate Randall, Founder of RCE Universe: “This is revolutionary. 3DXplorer lets you create your own world, your own city, your own room, your own items all of which are now easily accessible by everyone who has access to a computer and the Internet. And now with V4 it’s fully multiuser with your own avatars…without a download, and it’s seamless!”

I couldn’t have said it better myself.

You can read the full press release here which includes a number of great quotes from industry analysts and experts.

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