Friday, August 28, 2009

SketchUp Island Adventures #3: Aerilius

Late one evening as I was coming back from an unsuccessful coconut hunt I noticed a raging fire at my camp site! I could smell aromas of delicious Sauerbraten mingling with Spätzle; and as I approached I noticed a strange guest - as ragged and stranded as I - seated on a stump by the light of the fire and holding a stemmed glass filled with sparkling pink water. I had to know who this man was and what was in his glass! Luckily he invited me to sit down and share the meal he had made.

Hello, Fellow Islander. Who are you?

In the 3D-modeling world, I am known as Aerilius. I study chemistry in Kaiserslautern in southwest Germany. I am involved in modeling famous buildings and attractions in my region, the Palatinate, mainly for touristic reasons.

Since we can't find our way off SketchUp Island, let's look into the future... all the way to the Year 3000. Where do you think geo-modeling is headed?

Although we have been modeling for some years now, there are still 1 - 2 billion unmodeled buildings on earth. So we always chose to model a selection of the best and most famous ones. Geo-modeling gives the possibility to choose historic buildings, museums, also shops and companies and make them outstanding in a "barren land" in Google Earth. While Google advances with automatic techniques, our new goals could be improving the level of detail. I could think of "interactive" museums or historic ruins where visitors can also go inside and inform themselves. Google already mentioned something about info bubbles with rich media content.

This Sauerbraten is the best. While I stuff my face... Why don't you talk to yourself for a while?

What brought me to 3D-modeling at all? As a child, I always was a creator and I was fascinated by 3D animations in TV documentaries. Once I found the free program Blender, but I got clobbered over the head with hundreds of unlabeled buttons. So now, Sketchup is for me something like continuing LEGO with simple tools and undreamed-of possibilities. I like retrieving ancient worlds back to reality. Moreover it combines photography, 2D computer art and architecture.

Margaret Thatcher and Helmut Kohl once sat to a state dinner, not knowing what to say to each other. Finally Ms. Thatcher raised her glass and said, "To your HEALTH Herr Chancellor!" Mr. Kohl then raised his and said "Prime Minister, to your DUNKLES!" So... Dunkles oder helles?

That's a good question. I like to answer "Schorle." That is a refreshment made of white or rosé wine and sparkling water. Because I live in a winegrowing area. But when I am out in the wild, in the rest of Germany, I prefer helles.

Excellent choice, Aerilius. Thanks for joining me in this conversation and for explaining the sparkling pink water in your glass. Have any to spare?

Read the fourth SketchUp Island Adventure here: TANG 3D