Geo Week News

September 2, 2020

Thangs 3D Model Search Engine launches with more than a million searchable objects, aims to be a 3D Google

Thangs Platform Image 2

Lauded as a “powerful geometric search engine,” Thangs is a newly-launched platform designed help designers, engineers and others working with 3D parts have quicker access to the models and shape files that they need. The search engine boasts a backing of geometric deep-learning, and launches with more than one million 3D models at launched (with more coming in the following months).

Thangs is the product of Physna, Inc., a software company specializing in geometric deep-learning technology. Their software bridges the gap between the physical world and digital code, codifying the 3D world through a deeper understanding of the physical properties of real-world objects and the relationships between them.

Engineers, industrial designers and 3D-printing enthusiasts understand the massive challenges of working with 3D data. The most important aspects of their work must be done manually, and the lack of efficient and intuitive tools often makes them far less productive than software developers. For example, there is no central search engine like Google for the world of 3D models, making the process of finding files a painstaking and time-consuming process. There’s also no GitHub for the world of 3D models, making version control a complex manual chore and collaboration more difficult than it should be.

Thangs aims to fix that. It brings industry-leading search and collaboration capabilities to the world of 3D data, giving hardware developers access to the same vital resources that have long been available to software developers. What Google has done in indexing 2D data such as text and images, Thangs is doing for physical objects and 3D models. Thangs allows users to find parts based on their (potential) relationship to other parts. For instance, simply by uploading a 3D model, a Thangs user can find where that part could be used, or what parts are available from suppliers that fit that model as components.

Thangs finds 3D models quickly, identifies them accurately, understands the relationships between models and components and makes your own 3D models smarter. In addition to its powerful search capabilities, Thangs introduces collaboration tools that 3D model creators have long been waiting for, such as automated version control and easy collaboration on team projects.

Currently, users can search for models to see how they are related. Thangs’ geometric search engine allows users to find models with a wide range of search terms based on the object’s physical properties, measurements and features. Thangs also identifies similarities and differences between 3D models, recognizes how parts fit within complex assemblies and makes accurate predictions about each object’s function, cost, materials, performance, compliance and more.

The ability to find compatible parts with Thangs allows creators to go from design phase without wasting time on the search process. Thangs analyzes each 3D model’s physical properties and shows how it relates to other 3D models online, including parts that fit within its assembly and partial designs. It can even make predictions that reveal related part suppliers.

In addition to the search engine. Thangs will serve as a kind of community tool for sharing and collaboration. Shared folders automate version control and bring clarity to complex collaborations. Thangs users can comment on 3D models, “like” models to save them to their profile and receive notifications when other users interact with their own designs.

The Power of Thangs: Physna’s Geometric Deep-Learning Engine

Thangs is powered by Physna’s industry-leading geometric deep-learning engine, which comprehends the “physical DNA” of objects in ways that have never been possible before. By understanding the physical structure of 3D models across a variety of file types, Thangs reveals in-depth information included within 3D designs, including complex assemblies and parts within parts.

“Thangs is Physna’s first open product, but it uses some of the same powerful technology at the core of our enterprise offerings,” said Paul Powers, CEO of Physna.

“Our enterprise product is widely recognized as the technological leader in 3D search and analysis, and we’re democratizing some of its capabilities through Thangs. This product is built to be powerful enough for a leading aerospace CAD engineer, yet simple enough for literally anyone to use. Reality is three-dimensional, and it’s time for the digital age to be as well. Thangs gives everyone not only access to 3D data, but utility from it as well using some of the most cutting-edge technology available today.”

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