Our Official Training Videos have been responsible for teaching literally millions of people to use SketchUp. Concepts of SketchUp, the first video in the old series, has been viewed over 7 million times. Collectively, people have spent something like 40 years watching that video. That’s a lot of popcorn.
As popular as they were, our old videos were getting a little long in the tooth; they showed SketchUp 6. We decided that they should be remade, so we locked Tyson in a closet with a computer and a pile of army rations. It worked—our new training videos are not only current, they’re gorgeous. With Tyson’s scripts and visuals (and Alex’s melodious narration), getting started with SketchUp has never been easier. Here they are, in order:
One more thing: We didn’t stop at the videos. We gave the whole SketchUpVideo YouTube Channel a facelift. With helpful navigation menus in the upper-left corner, a new masthead and a big, blue Download button right at the top, SketchUp’s home on the world’s biggest video sharing site is now a whole lot lovelier. Pop on over when you get a chance.
If you’re into such noble pursuits as geo-modeling or photo-realistic rendering, there’s a good chance that you spend a ridiculous amount of time hunting for photo-textures online. Flickr and other photo sharing sites are goldmines for content, but who has time to compile a folder of bookmarks that point to the best ones?
Our friend John Pacyga, apparently. He’s just posted a long list of his favorite texture sources — for both SketchUp and Photoshop. Some are free, some have Creative Commons licenses, and some cost money, but all are worth browsing. Set aside some time, though; this kind of thing is addictive.
If you’ve found a seamless texture (one that can repeat attractively when you paint it on a surface), here’s how you load it into SketchUp:
Instructions for Windows:
Instructions for Mac:
I found the rock texture in the screenshots above on lee.ponzu’s Flickr Textures set. Want to make your own seamless texture images? These tutorials on YouTube are a good place to start.
In May we announced Google Wallet—an app that makes your phone your wallet—with Citi, MasterCard, Sprint and First Data. With Google Wallet, you can tap, pay and save using your phone and near field communication (NFC).
We’ve been testing it extensively, and today we’re releasing the first version of the app to Sprint. That means we’re beginning to roll out Google Wallet to all Sprint Nexus S 4G phones through an over-the-air update—just look for the “Wallet” app. Here’s a demo of Google Wallet in action:
Google Wallet enables you to pay with your Citi MasterCard credit card and the Google Prepaid Card, which can be funded with any of your existing plastic credit cards. As a thanks to early adopters, we’re adding a $10 free bonus to the Google Prepaid Card if you set it up in Google Wallet before the end of the year.
When we announced Google Wallet, we pledged a commitment to an open commerce ecosystem. We appreciate Citi and MasterCard for being our launch partners. And today, Visa, Discover and American Express have made available their NFC specifications that could enable their cards to be added to future versions of Google Wallet.
Our goal is to make it possible for you to add all of your payment cards to Google Wallet, so you can say goodbye to even the biggest traditional wallets. In fact, we’ve got a video of our first customer, someone who is ready to replace his famously over-stuffed wallet. We hope Google Wallet gives him “serenity now.”
This is still just the beginning and while we’re excited about this first step, we look forward to bringing Google Wallet to more phones in the future. You can learn more about Google Wallet at google.com/wallet.
You could call our friends at Igloo Studios “multi-taskers”. While they mainly concentrate on creating products and plugins for designers and architects, they also have a podcast, a SketchUp training program and a popular book.
Their latest project is a virtual tour of the U.S. Green Building Council’s headquarters in Washington, D.C. (Note: you’ll need the Google Earth plugin installed to view).
This project is cool for lots of reasons. For starters, USGBC’s 75,000-square-foot facility is loaded with efficient and innovative green features that have earned the building a LEED Platinum rating. Professionals regularly tour the USGBC for real-world examples of successful green practices.
However, not everyone has the luxury of being able to visit Washington DC, so Igloo Studios built this one-of-a-kind Google Earth tour of the building. Using a custom instance of the Google Earth plugin and building product catalogs from the 3D Warehouse, Igloo was able to create a tour of both the exterior and interior of the building!
As you navigate through the 3D building, you’ll notice it’s jam-packed with other goodies like a guided audio tour, photos and embedded videos. You can even click on the building’s materials and products to learn more about the green tech used in its construction.Once you finish the tour, you can launch a test that will earn you the same continuing education credits that you would get for taking the live tour.
And the coolest feature of all: if you find a building product during the tour that might be useful in one of your projects, you can download it directly into your SketchUp design!
Learn about building materials and then bring them into your model
If you’re interested in learning more about how your products or buildings can be visualized in this way.