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VDS: Day 1 Keynote—Highlights From The Talks

Architosh captures some key moments during the Day 1 Keynote at the 2017 Vectorworks Design Summit.


Let’s get right to it. The Day 1 keynote by Dr. Biplab Sarkar wasn’t so much a keynote by Vectorworks’ leader but rather an introduction and finish that bracketed several engaging short-ish presentations by some of the company’s most notable users and firms.

Let’s skip the talks for a moment (we get to them below) to focus on the ending segment of the overall talk where Dr. Sarkar spoke about the future of Vectorworks. He ran through several items the company is working on that are quite exciting.

Future of Vectorwork—Apple ARKit and More

The first item was technology that enables the user to take multiple pictures of an object from all kinds of angles and then send those pictures up to the Vectorworks Cloud which processes them into a 3D mesh model. One example shown was a complex relief sculpture, a practical element of which would be to take such a sculpture from historic structures and arrive at the 3D model via this method. I see historic preservationist architects loving this technology because it makes the impossible possible.

01 – Dr. Biplab Sarkar opens the Day 1 keynote address in Baltimore, 2017 (image: Architosh. All rights reserved.)

Dr. Sarkar also announced that the company is working with Apple’s ARkit (augmented reality software toolkit) for their Nomad mobile application. This has huge promise and Dr. Sarkar later stated in a private conversation that he sees AR becoming one of the next big things in AEC software overshadowing VR before it even reaches its apex moment.

Another future technology is using machine learning algorithms to automatically colorize images, a sort of “coloring solution” if you will. And another future endeavor is the application of complex artistic rendering styles based on famous artists and their representational works.

02 – During Dr. Sarkar’s keynote he ran through the company’s Vectorworks market share and leading industries and markets. Japan is Vectorworks’ strongest market, followed by the US, Germany, UK, and then Switzerland. (image: Architosh. All rights reserved.)

But perhaps the most meaningful future peak was that Vectorworks and Bluebeam are partnering to integrate Vectorworks with Bluebeam Studio. This will greatly aid architects working in the CA phase of construction.

Notable Moments From The Guest Keynote Speakers

Marc Pancera, Head of BIM, IttenBrenchbühl, spoke first and noted that their firm has done 2,700 projects over 90 years from multiple offices all over Switzerland. This has required incredible teamwork, he said. One interesting item he mentioned had to do with two of the newest projects.

03 – Marc Pancera of IB of Switzerland discussing IFC and the BIM process at one of Europe’s largest architecture firms. (image: Architosh. All rights reserved.)

He emphasized that both Scott HQ and GLASI Quartier (see image 03) are truly BIM projects from the ground up and are fully IFC projects. On the second and perhaps more challenging project, GLASI Quartier, not one but several multi-story buildings are actually consisting of integrated IFC models from two architectures firms, with the second firm using Vectorworks’ sister company’s product ArchiCAD. This type of use is the very essence of the Open BIM philosophy as an operational collaboration model.

04 – Paul Betty-Pownall of bpr Architects in the UK, talking about his firm’s trajectory from 2D CAD to 3D BIM using Vectorworks. (image: Architosh. All rights reserved)

Paul Beaty-Pownall, Managing Director, bpr Architects Ltd of the UK, said several interesting things in his talk. One of those was that SketchUp was impacting the migration to Vectorworks BIM. Noting that IT personnel lack the authority, traditionally, within firms to keep staff from using in-house software the mandate from the top within his firm to eliminate SketchUp contributed greatly to speed up the process to BIM with Vectorworks at bpr.

There are several things that could be said about this tidbit of info, having both negative and positive aspects about tools, how staff think and work in firms, and a philosophy of how practices ought to work. More on that later…

Remco Teunissen, Owner, RTN Showsupport, is a Vectorworks Spotlight user and gave a supercharged talk about the positives of Vectorworks in the entertainment performance industry.

Adam Greenspan, Design Partner, PWP, a large landscape architecture firm, gave a smooth flowing presentation of his firm’s superbly beautiful work. A project on the seafront in Sydney, Australia was quite remarkable in its design approach, and an equally stunning new transit-oriented project in San Francisco was equally amazing.

Users may be interested in learning more about some of these companies. Architosh encourages you to click on the links above.


(disclosure: Vectorworks, Inc., paid for travel and hotel and all meals during this event. See our ethics policy page, link in the footer.)



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