Geo Week News

March 31, 2015

Autodesk Relaunches ReCap

Aaron Morris Headshot

Dr. Aaron Morris presents Autodesk’s new reality capture portfolio.

Autodesk has been making news recently following the introduction of their REAL conference, an all-inclusive 3D capture and modeling show featuring everything from 3D printers to biology. It seems that the process of putting this together has changed Autodesk, who has relaunched their reality capture portfolio at SPAR 2015.

“Since we launched ReCap, which is for reality capture, Autodesk as a whole has come to realize that it’s more than just capture,” said Dr. Aaron Morris, Product Manager for Reality Capture at Autodesk. “We’re now into all all things that are reality computing–so not just capture, but what you’re doing with the digital representation in software, and how you take that digital representation and put it back into the world.”

As a result Autodesk has revamped ReCap, both to enhance its reality capture functionality and to make it more useful in reality computing workflows. They’ve also given the product a new name–ReCap Pro is now ReCap 360 Ultimate.

Improved Automatic Registration
The biggest update to the reality capture functionality, Morris tells me, is a new automatic registration tool in the premium version of ReCap. Though Autodesk has long offered a simplified workflow for stitching scans together, the update simplifies that workflow about as much as possible. “You can hand the software a directory full of scans and let it do its work. We think that is going to be really nice for people who are in the field collecting scans and want to know that they’ve got the best dataset possible by the time they leave.”

ReCAP 360
Autodesk has also worked to update the reality computing facet of their software. Morris explains that the goal is to make that captured data more directly useful to everyone who might need it.

First, Morris tells me, within ReCap, Autodesk has updated all the measurement tools. “So not only can you click on a few points and get a distance,” Morris says, “but we’ve got some intelligent snapping so it recognizes certain geometry like planes and cylinders and is able to take intelligent measurements from those locations.”

The program includes new, more powerful annotation tools that allow you to highlight a particular object or area of interest, and even add content to that highlighted area to share with someone. “For example, if you have a piece of equipment that you want removed, you can highlight it in a scan, so you can add photographs so somebody who is taking it apart has an example to show them what to do, and you can do it all inside the scan context.”

Almost as an aside, Morris said, “I should also add that we have a much more powerful tool for doing view states.”

He told me that anything a person does to a dataset, “anything at all,” can be shared. Then, with a new search utility, those annotations and markings can be searched. Want to know where the fire escapes are? The fire hydrants? Anything else that has been annotated? Anyone “can go in and find those, can zoom right to them. You can know how many of an object there are, where they are.”

During his SPAR International 2015 Pre-con presentation, Aaron noted that if you are looking at the data set while someone else makes an update, you will see those changes immediately. 

In parallel with new names, Autodesk is including a significant price drop for ReCap’s premium version. On top of the updates, Morris hopes that the changes made in ReCap will carry over to the rest of the Autodesk portfolio. Morris believes customers will respond well to everything Autodesk has planned.

“I think it’s going to be favorable,” he said.

Stop by Autodesk’s booth for more information. 

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