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AIA: formZ makers announce Bonzai 3D release

auto-des-sys, Inc. is preparing to take a bite out of Google’s SketchUp market share as it launches version 1.0 for its new Bonzai 3D.


autodes-sys, Inc, has formally announced its new Bonzai 3D at the National AIA Convention & Exhibition in San Francisco this week. This formal first release sees the legendary formZ modeling and rendering software developer go head-to-head with Google’s popular SketchUp 3D modeling application.

Bonzai 3D promises to take conceptual 3D modeling to a new level by combining the immediacy and ease-of-use of conceptual modeling–popularized by SketchUp–and combine it with serious “modeling head-room” for the architect or designer. Bonzai 3D contains a very robust geometry engine (the same engine that lies at the heart of its much more expensive formZ program). It is combined with a rich array of file format support enabling Bonzai 3D to interoperate with multiple CAD and 3D software packages, including Google’s SketchUp. It supports more than 20 file formats and is directly compatible with its big sister application formZ

What Makes Bonzai 3D Hot

There are several aspects that make Bonzai 3D a hot application. Firstly, Bonzia 3D looks familiar to anyone who has seen or used SketchUp, utilizing a similar paradigm in user-interface design, marked by simplicity and directness (no more buried tool icons).

Secondly, Bonzai 3D utilizes the same industrial-strength modeling technologies found in formZ, yet advanced and improved with the latest technologies. Thirdly, these powerful functions, like the rich set of Boolean operations, are accessed by a new user-interface (UI) paradigm that will challenge SketchUp on ease-of-use. 

Additionally, auto-des-sys, Inc., has gone very far in the direction of ease-of-use by embedding video tutorials directly into the application. The company is clearly taking a lead with this approach, marked by users’ desires to get up to speed with new software faster and master application capabilities without expensive third-party training or instructional materials. In many ways this approach shadows the award-winning video instruction included in Graphisoft’s ArchiCAD BIM product. 

Bonzai 3D will support all of these features (partial list):

  • Fluid, powerful, smart user interface
  • Smart 3D drawing
  • All the classic 3D modeling tools
  • Real time Booleans
  • NURBS and curved surfaces
  • Dynamic Graphic Editing
  • Advanced OpenGL rendering
  • Sculpting Editing Tools
  • Graphic Texture Mapping and Editing
  • Extensive Texture and Object Library
  • Google Earth and SketchUp Compatibility
  • Embedded video tutorials

Bonzai 3D will retail for 500.USD. Architects at the AIA show can pick up the new application for a show special price of 299.USD. To learn more visit auto-des-sys, Inc. here. 

Architosh will report more on Bonzai 3D in the days ahead.

Reader Comments

  1. Posted by:
    May 16, 2009 01:41 pm EDT

    AutoDesSys says they developed Bonsai to go head to head with SketchUp, but from my first hour’s experience with the beta Bonzai, I’m convinced that it makes SketchUp obsolete! Bonsai is what I’ve been looking for, an on-target middle ground between the low end pseudo-cad apps that abound, and the high end apps$$$ that I would like to say I own but I now lament the time wasted in the frustrating struggle to learn. For those of you who understand, Bonsai “is Mac.” Mac’s intuitive UI has always attracted the creative because it doesn’t get between the creator and their work, and this is what I find with Bonsai. Now if the developers of Bonsai can lead the FormZ hacks out of their mire, they’ll sew up the market with an unbeatable twin-pair of applications.

  2. Well these are certainly strong views on how well you see Bonzai 3D in the market. Our very latest reports have an indepth talk/view of Bonzai 3D based on a very good question-driven demo of the application. There are several aspects to Bonzai that make it superior to any other modeling application in its market and price range.

    As for the formZ issues. I believe we mentioned in one of our reports on Bonzai that formZ version 7.0 will inherit some of the new features in Bonzai. Essentially formZ will get reinvented via the lessons learned in Bonzai and this will greatly improve that application over time–which is already a urber-power house of a modeler.

Comments are closed.


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