As you know we had our first student rep meeting for ARCH1101 just before the break. These are the notes I took from the meeting and some of my responses; they are in no particular order of importance.
Leave comments in the section below if you'd like further clarification or have comments.
1. Some students have been having trouble with 3d Warehouse, is there an alternative place to upload our models?
Yes, from now on you can use any file sharing service you like as long as you can put a link to your model on your blog. Please don't go overboard with file sizes though.
This video tutorial shows you one way to reduce file sizes of your SketchUp model:
Also, you should be careful when creating geometry of your own. The image below shows a series of circles. When you first click on the circle tool you can type a number and it appears in the Measurement window at the bottom left. The default for a circle is 22, so if you type 12 that's going to reduce the amount of segments and, as a consequence, the number of faces in your model. Sometimes you can't tell the different but the file size of your model will be much smaller as a result.
2. Mac's vs PC's ... its an age old argument, so rather than get into that all I'll say is that all of our software in the faculty runs on PC; so if you partition your machine so it can run Windows as well as the Mac OS then make sure you have plenty of memory on the Windows side.
3. Where can students get a copy of Lumion to download which doesn't have the watermarks all over the rendered images?
Go to one of the BE computer labs and navigate to the ARCH1101 Resources folder on the course folders drive, here:
In there you'll see a folder called Lumion 8. Copy that whole folder to your hard drive or memory stick. Copy that to your own machine and double click the exe component to start the installation. It took a while to download onto my machine and a few minutes to install so you'll need to be patient.
Make sure you don't shut your machine down without quitting Lumion so it can release the license for other students to use!
4. Are students really able to use iPad's, phones or other digital drawing instruments such as Wacom tablets instead of notebooks?
Yes, absolutely. I'd like to see more of this.
5. Can students use Rhino or other 3d modelling software instead of Sketchup?
No. We're trying to keep the playing field level.
6. Why is there so much repetition (in the drawings, for example)?
The short answer is because Iterative Design works. The slightly longer answer is in the TED talk below. If you relate this to the study of architecture you might see it as an explanation for why, sometimes, the design work produced by first year students in this class is better than that designed by students in final year. It's an excellent presentation, well worth watching.
7. Where can students get additional help?
One student rep mentioned that he found the tutorials at https://academy.archistar.ai/ very helpful. Many of the computational design students do these tutorials and assessments as a part of their courses. UNSW has a subscription: I just asked Tim from there how you can access the tutorials and he said "Anyone with a UNSW email can login using any of the login buttons (generally top right). Alternately you can direct students to https:\\academy.archistar.ai\enrol "
I've also used Lynda.com which has fantastic tutorials for all sorts of subjects (it helped me out incredibly with tutorials on Motionbuilder). UNSW has a subscription to Lynda as well: https://www.it.unsw.edu.au/catalogue/lynda.html
I think that's everything, but let me know below if I've missed anything.