LAS VEGAS, NV (Autodesk University) - Bruce Harfield wanted to show me his Project Explorer for Civil 3D, but as luck would have it, his laptop was on the fritz. So I promised to take a look at ProjectExplore on my own after the show. At least it was a chance to meet Bruce, who attained some measure of fame in the Autodesk 3rd party sphere for selling his previous company (Dyanmite VSP) to Autodesk*. And who doesn't like to listen to a British accent?
Bruce, a registered civil engineer in the UK, is back on his own with 3AM but seems to never have strayed from Civil3D and his civil engineering brethren. 3AM, a authorized Autodesk developer, has built what he refers to as the "ultimate Civil 3D companion.
Built to work alongside an open Civil3D window, ProjectExplore works lik a ttour guide as you drive through your model. It seems to be peeking over your shoulder and offering you details and insight, which may not be apparent to the newcomer. It's as if ProjectExplorer has lived in your model since it was made, but really it establishes a live link with the model and is able to generate reports and views in real time. Views include alignment profiles, sample lines, assemblies and pipe networks.
Or so it would seem from the literature on the website. I will await a closer look as soon as Mr Harfield gets his computer straightened out. And as soon as it becomes available. PE says it will be "available soon" and you must contact 3AM to get the price. Don't you wish companies didn't do that?
* Autodesk Acquires Dynamite VSP and Dynamite SIM Visualization, Jan 2010. Autodesk renamed the product Autodesk Civil View.