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At Siggraph 2009, Autodesk has announced the Connection Extension for Autodesk 3DS Max Design 2010 modelling, animation and rendering software.

It is claimed that the release will make it easier and more cost-effective to turn design data into accurate, realistic visualisations.

New levels of interoperability – based on intelligent data workflows – between 3DS Max Design and CAD software allows architects, designers and visualisation specialists to minimise rework through existing design data.

The Connection Extension for 3DS Max Design 2010 helps improve interoperability with several products commonly used by architecture, engineering, construction and manufacturing design professionals.

The addition of high-fidelity CAD data translators for SAT and SKP file formats, along with a rewritten OpenEXR translator; delivers a number of benefits such as the importing and exporting of SAT files for moving solids-based design data between 3DS Max Design and Autodesk Revit Architecture, Autodeskinventor Professional, the Alias range of products and third-party CAD products Solidworks, Rhino and FormZ.

It also allows more efficient, accurate importing of files from Google Sketchup sketching software and support for reading the thousands of 3D objects in Google’s 3D Warehouse.

Importing and exporting of multi-layer OpenEXR files with advanced options for transferring extra elements to support workflows with compositing applications helps to reduce the number of iterations required to achieve the final result.

The Connection Extension for 3DS Max Design 2010 also provides smarter, more effective workflows that help users to deal with complex scenes through: more optimal display and rendering of imported solid and Nurbs-based bodies; procedural and resolution-independent workflows enabled by the ‘body’ entity for artifact-free cutaways and reveals; along with finer control over rendering performance versus quality.

An improved materials workflow allows individual layers from an OpenEXR file to be used in a material.

Layers, groups, components, materials, cameras and even the daylight system can be extracted from a Sketchup file and efficiently mapped to the corresponding 3DS Max Design system.

The Connection Extensions for Autodesk 3DS Max Design 2010 and Autodesk 3DS Max 2010 are expected to be available for download to Autodesk subscription customers in August 2009.

The Connection Extension is not sold separately.

Autodesk products are used by 9 million professionals in 185 countries to save time and money, gain competitive advantage, and change the way ideas are brought to life.

Building Information Modelling

Autodesk building information modelling (BIM) software solutions facilitate a new way of working that involves the creation and use of co-ordinated, consistent information–enabling faster decision-making, better documentation and the ability to predict performance before ground is ever broken.

Sustainable by Design

As a global 2D and 3D design software leader, Autodesk believes in the importance of driving sustainable design awareness and adoption. We provide technology, education, and support for programs that inform and promote innovations addressing current and future sustainable design challenges.

We are committed to partnering with the private and public sector, industry leaders, educators, and environmentally focused organizations to create a forum to initiate sustainable design dialogue and increase awareness among the global community. It is our hope that through these collective efforts and Autodesk’s technology, we will help architects, engineers, and designers create a more sustainable world.

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