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Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Installing the Google Earth Extension for AutoCAD-based products

Yeah, let's keep adding more vertical product features into AutoCAD.  Then the laggards will never have reason to switch to Revit.  They'll eventually lose every project to Revit firms, you'll have less competition, will make more money, spend more on training, double your productivity, then only need half the Revit licenses you currently have.  Meanwhile, those AutoCAD firms will go out of business and all of their seats will be lost forever.

I'm not sure who wins and loses in this scenario, but I've come to a level of peace with firms sticking with AutoCAD since there's so much more business in working with BIM contractors.  Don't ever move to Revit, Mr. AutoCAD architect.  You're right and I was wrong.  2D is all you ever need.

Oh, almost forgot, here's another vertical feature given away for free to the 2D year olds.

Installing the Google Earth Extension for AutoCAD-based products
BIM It is Alive in the Lab
Recall that the Google Earth Extension for AutoCAD-based products allows you to publish your 3D models from AutoCAD-based products directly into the Google Earth application, import a Google Earth image into AutoCAD, drape a Google Earth image onto a 3D mesh in AutoCAD, and attach time span information to your model. Over the years every once in a while a user has had trouble installing the Google Earth Extension for AutoCAD. So I thought I would go through the steps.
  1. Make sure you have a compatible version of AutoCAD.
    When I say compatible version of AutoCAD, I specifically mean:
    AutoCAD 2011 Family
    • AutoCAD 2011 (32-bit and 64-bit)
    • AutoCAD Architecture 2011 (32-bit and 64-bit)
    • AutoCAD Civil 3D 2011 (32-bit and 64-bit)
    • AutoCAD Map 3D 2011 (32-bit and 64-bit)
    AutoCAD 2007-2010 Family
    • AutoCAD 2007-2010 (32-bit only)
    • AutoCAD Architecture 2007-2010 (32-bit only)
    • AutoCAD Civil 3D 2007-2010 (32-bit only)
    • AutoCAD Map 3D 2008-2010 (32-bit only)
    One of the key points here is that the 2011 family is the first one where 64-bit is supported.
  2. Make sure you have the compatibel version fo Google Earth.
    The Google Earth Extension is compatible with Google Earth 5.x. It is not compatible with Google Earth 6.
  3. Get the installers from the Labs web site.
    1. Navigate to http://labs.autodesk.com.
    2. Click on Sign-In to login with your Autodesk Single Sign-on user name and password.
    3. Navigate to http://labs.autodesk.com/utilities/google_earth_extension_beta/.
    4. Click on Download Now.
    5. Understand that installing the technology preview means that you will need to accept an end user license agreement and click on DOWNLOAD.
    6. Save PublishDWGtoGE_32_64.zip to your computer.
    You now have all of the installers for the various versions of AutoCAD.
  4. Run the installer that matches your version of AutoCAD.
    1. I happen to have AutoCAD 2011 on a 64-bit machine running Windows 7.
    2. As such, I select the C:\Users\sheppas\Documents\PublishDWGtoGE_32_64.zip\PublishDWGtoGE\2011\64-bit folder.
    3. I drag and drop DwgPublishToGEX64Installer.msi to my My Documents folder.
    4. In My Documents folder, I double click on the msi file to run the installer and follow the on-screen instructions. Even though I am the only one who uses my laptop, I install the technology preview so that it is available to all users of this computer.
    If you repeat these steps as appropriate for your system, you now have the technology preview installed.
  5. If you are having problems, check that your install went well.
    The following commands should work from the command line.
    • GETIME
    The following files should be in your AutoCAD folder:
    One of the wish list items was to make the technology preview compatible with the ribbon interface.
Taking it step by step is alive in the lab.

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