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Is the 'Nomad' app still alive and does anyone use it?


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I tried this app out a bit, maybe 2 or 3 years ago, as a way of showing 3d models to people on an ipad or phone. It was sort of ok-ish but not great.

 

Then didn't use it again.

 

I tried it just now, to see if it's got any better. Put a VW2021 project onto cloud services, and then tried out viewing it on my mobile and on an ipad

 

Android app (recent, relatively high spec phone, latest version of android) - it sort-of loaded part of the model, which I could orbit around. Trying to activate saved views was erratic and I couldn't get it to show the whole model. It crashed the phone several times.

 

Ipad (admittedly quite an old ipad) - no luck at all really, black screen with no model visible at all.

 

So at first glance it looks a bit like it's another Vectorworks thing that was launched, hasn't been updated for some time, maybe never will be and is now not much use to anyone.

 

Am I wrong?

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Same here, I give up very quickly because I don't have time to figure out why it doesn't just work. And the expectation I have of mobile apps is that they *just work*.

 

The default view is always either blank or some irrelevant design layer. And I have Saved Views that work perfectly fine in VW but usually don't work in Nomad. And in once instance where they do work for some reason I have to pan the whole model into view each time I activate them. It doesn't understand that I don't want to look at a blank screen.

Edited by Christiaan
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Just catching up on the forum posts after a while, was happy to see you’re all still hanging out in here. 

 

Actually, we still do use the Nomad app. Students can show self designed interiors and furniture during their presentations. Would like to see more examples of it, though...

 

What would happen if a piece of furniture like a big cozy couch is ‘hidden’ in a classroom (geo locations, anyone...?) where students have to find it through Nomad & redraw the model? Or have visitors of an exhibition scan a qr code and see the AR model in front of them? 
 

We have plans to do exactly that! I’d like to hear any best practices here that may improve our use of the Nomad app for our students even more.

 

Cheers, JB

Edited by Jan-Burger TROOST
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  • Vectorworks, Inc Employee

Hi Everyone,

 

Nomad is an app that is regularly being released with new features and fixes. 3D model viewing is one of its first features, and while we have been improving and adding new features into it, it has reached a point where it needs to be entirely reengineered in order to achieve good performance for big models and complex geometry, and to resolve many usability issues as pointed out here. We are actively working on this reengineering, but don't have an official date when it may be released. Stay tuned!

 

Best regards,

Iskra Nikolova

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On another thread people mentioned some much better apps that do the same thing. 

One was sketchfab and I tried that - it was very very good indeed

 

Often when these things are re-engineered we beta testers get no input as to what is important in the re-engineering.

Is there any chance that we can have some input?

 

In my mind the Nomad viewer should be as close as possible to the likes of Twinmotion or Enscape in terms of ease of walking around and changing Sun etc. and of course the rendering should be as good as is possible on a mobile device! Off the top of my head here are some of the features I would like:

 

  • Saved views (including the associated clip cubes, class and layer settings etc)
  • Easy navigation
  • Collision detection
  • Automatically opening doors??!!
  • Adjustment of Sun position via time of day
  • Clip cubes

I am sure there are more ideas that others will add...

 

By the way - automatically opening doors inside of Vectorworks when in the walkthrough tool would be very cool don't you think? Especially if that could be transferred to Twinmotion on export!!

 

Hope this is helpful and really look forward to Nomad becoming world class rather than sadly lacking!!

 

 

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  • Vectorworks, Inc Employee
1 hour ago, thecadman said:

Is there any chance that we can have some input?

I am noting everything you mentioned, so it will be considered. We will also make sure to share early Betas, so you can check it in the early stages and provide more feedback at that point. 

 

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I downloaded it when I first switched over.

I guess I was expecting something like the 'AutoCAD for Android' level of app.

I loaded a couple of files and... was very disappointed.

 

Haven't opened it since.

 

With AutoCAD I actually took notes in the field on my phone. 

Plus quickly checking dimensions or details without having to pull out an ArchD sheet on a windy day.

A mobile app is very handy with landscape design where there isn't a desk to set your laptop down!

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5 hours ago, thecadman said:

On another thread people mentioned some much better apps that do the same thing. 

One was sketchfab and I tried that - it was very very good indeed

 

 

 

Maybe I should look into this... any other suggestions?

 

@inikolova I appreciate you responding to the thread.

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@hollister design Studio  I’m with you on the necessity of a nice mobile solution for the field.

In my ideal world Vectorworks will run on the iPad Pro at some point and Nomad moves on.

 

I’ve used Bluebeam on the iPad for referencing plans and had it on the Mac until they abandoned it 😞

 

Tablets have so much potential in our industry when apps are made to support our work.

I sketch, edit photos, write proposals, fly a drone, edit video, and edit my plant database with one.

if only I could interact with my vectorworks in meaningful way...

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8 hours ago, jeff prince said:

@hollister design Studio  I’m with you on the necessity of a nice mobile solution for the field.

In my ideal world Vectorworks will run on the iPad Pro at some point and Nomad moves on.

 

I'm not convinced by this idea, but I could imagine it happening the other way round. That Nomad becomes more and more capable and available on desktop OS. 

Edited by Christiaan
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Nomad was/is meant to be used as an extension to the program. Interaction could/should be improved, agreed. But unless we’d have VW as a web app or virtual machine, it’s too heavy to run on mobile. For now… 😇

Edited by Jan-Burger TROOST
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There is also Vectorworks' "web view" which you can do in a browser, to view a model stored on cloud services, but it's also just not good enough. I think I once tried sharing a model with clients that way, but they found it too hard to navigate around. The navigation is awkward but it also makes the model look fairly ugly, and not how it looks when I view it in OpenGL in Vectorworks.

 

While I'm on a run of complaining about things I might say that the walkthrough animations tool in Vectorworks is also very poor. It doesn't make creating a walkthrough an easy and quick thing to do.

 

The result of all this is that the way I tend to share the 3d model with clients etc (other than a live screenshare) is just to do a screen recording of me navigating manually through the model. That can result in a bit of a wobbly walkthrough, but it's the least bad out of a choice of bad options.

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13 minutes ago, line-weight said:

There is also Vectorworks' "web view" which you can do in a browser, to view a model

The 3D model view was the one I was thinking of particularly rather than the 2D sheet view in Nomad and in a web browser on a desktop machine.

 

There are different requirements for the 2D sheet view compared to the 3D model view...

Perhaps we can chime in with suggestions for both? 

Would that help @inikolova ?

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10 minutes ago, thecadman said:

The 3D model view was the one I was thinking of particularly rather than the 2D sheet view in Nomad and in a web browser on a desktop machine.

 

There are different requirements for the 2D sheet view compared to the 3D model view...

Perhaps we can chime in with suggestions for both? 

Would that help @inikolova ?

 

There is a 3d view in the Nomad app, and there is also a 3d "web view" that you can view in a browser.

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15 hours ago, jeff prince said:

Tablets have so much potential in our industry when apps are made to support our work.

I bought a Surface Book for just that reason.

 

In the office I have a extremely capable laptop with a 1tb drive and a Quadro graphics card.

In the field I just take the screen with me and I have a tablet with full VW loaded and all my files...

 

Unfortunately VW has less than good touchscreen input.

...actually it seems VW has negative good touchscreen input!

I'm sure that until Apple decides to make touch screen as standard usage VW will never even look into it... maybe as ipads get more professional.

 

Would be so nice if there was two finger pan and three finger flyover etc!

 

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