Posted by Kevin Matthews on December 03, 1998 at 23:20:52:
In Reply to: "Freehand" Models posted by gary veasy on December 03, 1998 at 21:54:35:
I think this is a really good topic!
Before I go any farther, though, I want to make a comment about how the discussion might proceed. If we can talk about these things somewhat abstractly, like, "how would the capabilities of a squiggle tool fit into a 3D modeling application?" then I can participate haipply from time to time, as I would like to. But when the discussion goes into specific product future questions, like "could we add a squiggle tool to DesignWorkshop", then you can certainly go there, but I will have to bow out. Because of the business committment and competitive dimensions, I can't discuss those product issues. Specific concepts and tools, yes, specific features for my specific product, no, I can't go there.
On the other hand, I also love questions of "how can we do it with DesignWorkshop" in the here and now. In this regard, I suggest that someone who has Wild Tools, with its squiggling, should try it on a DesignWorkshop modeling window Hidden Line drawing which has been imported into PowerCADD. Seems like it should squiggle fine, depending on the limitations of what geometries the squiggler can handle.
Back to the concepts, I really don't believe in the often-cited idea that soft drawings are needed to keep ideas from being too locked in. For one thing, I think this is much more in the minds of architects than in the minds of clients. And to the extent that it is in the minds of clients, it is often that they really don't understand the soft drawings -- which is a damn poor way to approach client communications.
I point to the fact that no decent (or indecent, for that matter) architect will have any trouble critiquing a finished building -- and what is more "hard-line" than the real thing? Building up and breaking down design ideas is a mental discipline, which can be applied to models as well as drawings, and to hard drawings as well as soft ones. Just like it can be applied to real buildings.
There are some really, really good reasons that soft drawings are that way -- but I think they have to do with the design _process_, not with the design result - not even with the intermediate result of a schematic presentation.