Traditionally an Autodesk reseller with roots in the Boston area, Microdesk has grown to offices nationwide and plans its own future as a supplier of services. It is positioning itself as an enabler of some of the most advanced technology available — from Autodesk and others.
Microdesk will flies a camera-equipped UAV to create a 3D model of a building complex
Part of it is survival. Microdesk sees the writing on the wall. Software is going to the cloud. It was a theme hammered home at Autodesk University, as Autodesk speaker after speaker spoke of online applications, such as Autodesk's 360 series. I am hard pressed to remember mention of the software suites, those with Revit for AEC and Inventor for product design, that have long been the revenue mainstay of Autodesk resellers. More and more, vendors are selling directly to end users. Resellers are getting cut out of the picture.
With licensing revenue diminishing, Microdesk is banking on the need for its services. Microdesk offers services for a firm's current needs. It recently helped staff up for a large project in New York, putting a dozen Revit-trained operators immediately at the service of a firm that had no time to recruit and train on its own. It is also investing in the technologies that may have the greatest payoffs — technologies such as virtual reality, 3D scanning, aerial photography and photogrammetry.
Microdesk is an established provider of cutting-edge, large-scale model creation. Able to fly UAVs (drones) with cameras, it can quickly and cheaply (compared to old-school LIDAR scans from piloted aircraft) create the contextual model for your next office building.
At Autodesk University, Microdesk was showing the Oculus Rift virtual reality headset. Put it on and see yourself immersed in a Revit model. You thought it was just for gamers, but Microdesk has made it useful for professionals. You can see a design come to life, see what is overhead, see sight lines, see what a building might look like as you walk up to it, walk inside, look up to see the skylights . . . you won't want to take it off and face that you had been living a lie, fooling yourself into thinking you were working in 3D. What were you thinking . . . how can a 2D monitor even pretend to show 3D?
Laura Guzman, COO of Microdesk, admits virtual reality may be a bit ahead of the game for most architects, but she's smart enough to show it as proof that Microdesk is established in future technology and will be there for them when they are ready.
For more information
- See Microdesk website www.microdesk.com
- Microdesk Shows 3D AEC, BIM Scanning Service at New San Francisco Office - The CAD Insider, Oct 2, 2014