Wednesday, September 22, 2010

"Andrew Nathanson Goes Google"

"Andrew Nathanson Goes Google." That's the name of the article about my trip to 3D Basecamp that appeared on Tuesday in Connecticut College's The College Voice, the student newspaper.

There's even a drawn picture, which I was NOT expecting in the least!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Google's take on Basecamp

Just recently, Google SketchUp posted their video of the conference, as well as a video of the keynote presentation given by John Bacus of Google SketchUp. Finally, they also posted a photo album.

Below, embedded, is the event overview video. I can be seen coming into focus at 1:28-1:29.


Friday, September 10, 2010


One and all,
Here are (finally!) my photos from Google SketchUp 3D Basecamp 2010 in Boulder, CO!

Click here!
The photos are also, for the time being, scrolling as a slideshow at the top of this blog.



Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Connecticut College Posts Article

Hi there! I still owe an update about Friday from the trip to Google. In the mean time, however, Connecticut College has posted an article about my trip to 3D Basecamp. Check it out!

For the time being, you can see my picture on the homepage of the website (below.) And yes, the photo is from two years ago, at 3D Basecamp 2008.

Tweets from #3DBC

In reverse order, from newest to oldest

And back to New York. A great #3dbc trip! (@ LaGuardia Airport (LGA) ✈ w/ 33 others)
7:55 PM Sep 3rd via foursquare from Laguardia Airport, New York

Love love love love walking on these. #3dbc #kinda
2:28 PM Sep 3rd via TweetDeck from Denver International Airport, Denver

Last stop on the #3dbc adventure (@ Denver International Airport (DEN) ✈ w/ 49 others)
2:11 PM Sep 3rd via foursquare from Denver International Airport, Denver

Last checkin of #3dbc before the airport. What an awesome #sketchup #3dbasecamp !! (@ Google)
11:37 AM Sep 3rd via foursquare from Google, Boulder

Also just met the folks who created the Augmented Reality SketchUp plugin. So cool! #3dbc
10:42 AM Sep 3rd via TweetDeck from Whittier, Boulder

Just spent a session learning about 3d printing with a company that makes nice size color models for $400 or less in many cases! #3dbc
10:42 AM Sep 3rd via TweetDeck from Whittier, Boulder

Final day of #sketchup #3dbasecamp #3dbc (@ The Dairy Center For The Arts)
8:42 AM Sep 3rd via foursquare from Dairy Center for The Arts, Boulder

Currently sitting in a massage chair at Google #3dbc. Best company ever. I love my life.
9:27 PM Sep 2nd via TweetDeck from Whittier, Boulder

#3dbc party!
7:34 PM Sep 2nd via TweetDeck from Whittier, Boulder

Check out the #3dbc party!
7:12 PM Sep 2nd via TweetDeck from Whittier, Boulder

On the roof deck with hundreds of SketchUp people! #3dbc #3dbasecamp (@ Google)
6:44 PM Sep 2nd via foursquare from Google, Boulder

Just followed @ConnCollege convocation on twitter from Google's Boulder offices!
4:04 PM Sep 2nd via TweetDeck from Whittier, Boulder

#3dbc day 2 (@ The Dairy Center For The Arts)
10:29 AM Sep 2nd via foursquare from Dairy Center for The Arts, Boulder

After a scary technological glitch, namely my laptop not turning on, problem solved and I'm off to day 2 of #3dbc
8:41 AM Sep 2nd via TweetDeck from Whittier, Boulder

Back for mingling with #3dbc folks (@ Baker St. Pub & Grill)
10:55 PM Sep 1st via foursquare from Whittier, Boulder

#3dbc at dinner having great sketchup discussions with 11 other sketchupers
7:46 PM Sep 1st via TweetDeck from here

With a #3dbc crew (@ Baker St. Pub & Grill)
5:30 PM Sep 1st via foursquare from Whittier, Boulder

#3dbc podium! (attempt 2)
4:37 PM Sep 1st via TweetDeck from Whittier, Boulder

#3dbc awesomeness (@ Google)
4:13 PM Sep 1st via foursquare from Google, Boulder

#3dbc podium! Keynote about to start
12:50 PM Sep 1st via TweetDeck from Whittier, Boulder #3dbc wahoo!
12:02 PM Sep 1st via TweetDeck from Whittier, Boulder

#3dbc legit!
11:00 AM Sep 1st via TweetDeck from Whittier, Boulder

11:00 AM Sep 1st via TweetDeck from Whittier, Boulder

Officially here! #3dbc (@ The Dairy Center For The Arts)
10:59 AM Sep 1st via foursquare from Dairy Center for The Arts, Boulder And I'm Here at @google SketchUp's #3dbc !!!
9:52 AM Sep 1st via TweetDeck from Whittier, Boulder

#3dbc Uncrustables on the plane, as great as they are, don't count as dinner. (@ Baker St. Pub & Grill)
10:36 PM Aug 31st via foursquare from Whittier, Boulder

#3dbc and I've finally arrived! (@ Best western golden buff)
10:18 PM Aug 31st via foursquare from Whittier, Boulder

#3dbc awaits but I'm on the SuperShuttle right now and we've stopped for gas (@ Conoco Gas)
9:50 PM Aug 31st via foursquare from Boulder, CO

And touchdown #3dbc (@ Denver International Airport (DEN) ✈ w/ 25 others)
7:50 PM Aug 31st via foursquare from Denver International Airport, Denver

#3dbc (@ LaGuardia Airport (LGA) ✈ w/ 17 others)
4:01 PM Aug 31st via foursquare from Laguardia Airport, New York

Fun fact: I joined twitter in June '08 for Google SketchUp 3D Basecamp 2008... I just didn't use it. #3dbc
11:22 AM Aug 31st via web

As I head to Boulder for SketchUp's 3D Basecamp today, I've turned on FourSquare for Twitter! See my blog too: #3dbc
10:47 AM Aug 31st via web

Heading to Boulder, Colorado for SketchUp's 3D Basecamp...tomorrow! Check out! I'll be tweeting, using #3DBC too!
1:01 AM Aug 30th via TweetDeck from Harrison, NY

Friday, September 3, 2010

3D Basecamp Day 2 Recap

Alright I owe you an update. It's Friday, 3D Basecamp has ended, and I sit here in Denver International Airport writing this on my iPad. I'll do my best to summarize the awesomeness that was yesterday, day 2 of Basecamp.

Yesterday was the longest of the three days, the only full day. We got going with Breakfast at the Dairy Center at 8, then went into the main lecture room to begin the Unconference part of Basecamp. 

After an introduction, anyone who wanted to was given the chance to take a post it note, write a conference session idea, then come to the front of the room and speak about it for a moment. What was scheduled for an hour really took nearly an hours and a half because of the great, fascinating ideas that came about. Post it notes were placed on a whiteboard with time slots marked out, and the Google staff had the challenge of placing the sessions into different slots. An unplanned bonus was using the last slot, instead of having unconference sessions, but have an all-group idea generation binge for SketchUp version 9. Version 8 was released on Wednesday, at the Basecamp keynote address. I'll come back to that, though

Throughout the day, I attended 5 unconference sessions over the four time slots. They ranged from someone in particular showing their tips/tricks/application of SketchUp to open, roundtable discussions.

I felt it appropriate to attend the education discussion proposed and unofficially moderated by Diego Matho of the Boston Architectural College, a friend since 3D Basecamp 2008. Discussion included the preconceived notion that "SketchUp is simple and easy," when in reality it takes practice...and how that can be a turn off for users who expect to come to a single class then expect to meet their Friday deadline. We also discussed what initial stumbling blocks teachers encounter with their students during the early days of SketchUp exploration. I believe I was again the youngest at the conference. At least, is timely, I didn't need a chaperone. To my knowledge, there was only one other student, a 22 year old from England who I happened to be at dinner with on Wednesday. 

During the second session, there were three events I wanted to go to (the inherent problem with conferences) so I told myself I'd go to two. I went to one, got hooked, and stayed. The topic was SketchUp use in the film industry designing sets, but also with a discussion of SketchUp's [seemingly lacking] camera views for professional cinematographer. There had been a windows plugin, Film &Stage, but it wss found to have bugs before the [I believe it was] SU7 release, so it was pulled and has yet to be fixed. After seeing some of the creative and tedious work-arounds created by the professionals, I can understand their frustration.

Following lunch, i straddled two sessions during the 3rd block: a [quite technical] discussion of Dynamic Components, and a discussion relating to Building Maker. Not much to report from these sessions, really. I had kind of burnt out and needed a break this point so much of what was said went over my head and was, in some aspects, too technical for me to understand.  

Following a break in the hall during which I hung out with Aidan, SketchUp Evangelist,  I went to an interesting session lead by a professional theater set designer from France who uses SketchUp models to design her sets. We were showed sets from Dracula, A Midsummers Nights Dream, and others. Quite interesting  to a stage manager AND SketchUper. 

Then came time for the unplanned idea roundtable for SU9. During the day, people had the opportunity to propose ideas on a whiteboard, then during the session of nearly all 250 attendees, those who wrote ideas had the chance to further explain them. Aidan write them all on a notetaking application projected on the screen, then ideas most desired were determined by loudest applause. Sounds 5th grade, but it amazingly worked because everyone knew their applause meant real potential. Depending on the applause, Aidan changed the size of the test of that given idea. Some ideas decreased from 12 pt font, but some gained great support, growing quite large in size.

There was one moment when Aidan went online to Google to find the Basecamp website. Basecamp 2008 was the first link, THIS BLOG was the second link, and Basecamp 2010 was the third link. I was terrified in those moments that he was going to click on my blog. I love putting stuff up here but was not prepared see it on the screen in front of 250 of the most hardcore SketchUp users.  

Now to the party. After an hours break, we were invited to Google's Boulder offices, only a block away from the Dairy Center... With significantly less security and formality than in 2008 at Mountain View, we felt welcomed as guests and were invited to look around the offices, play rockband and pool and foosball, as well as enjoy the delicious dinner on the second flood deck of the offices. With massage chairs scattered around the office, I found one at the end of a quiet hallway. After two 7 minute massages, I felt quite revived. All this SketchUp talk, plus meeting tons of people, makes you quite exhausted. I went to bed following the party. The hotel was only a three minute walk away. 

More later about Friday. 


Thursday, September 2, 2010

3D Basecamp Day 1 Recap

Ok, time for an update. We’re half way through day 2, the “unconference day,” but let me spend this blog post updating you loyal readers on Tuesday night and Wednesday.

After an uneventful flight to Denver and a SuperShuttle ride to the Best Western here in Boulder, I finally arrived on Tuesday night. At about 10PM local time (so, midnight at home,) I checked into my room and began a search for dinner… Uncrustables on the plane were great, but not sufficient. I found a pub next door to the hotel, then returned to my room for the night.

I woke up Wednesday morning at about 8:20 here. Check-in and brunch began, technically, at 10, but I took some time to walk all the way down Pearl Street, the same street the Google Boulder offices are located on. About 4 miles away, I came across the pedestrian plaza and “downtown” area.

After I returned to Google, actually the Dairy Center for the Arts—a performance and conference space two doors away from the Google office where most of the conference is being held—I checked in and got an awesome backpack and shirt. And most importantly, a nametag.

After an hour and a half of talking to old SketchUpers and meeting new ones, we filed into the [beautifully “basecamp” themed] hall for the Keynote. SketchUp 8 was announced with three major upgrades and advancements, including greater access and connection to and with Google Maps/terrain/Google Earth, the introduction of “solid” objects with cubic measurements of volume and Boolean tools for cutting intersections between solids, and advancements in LayOut.

Following the Keynote, a surprise 10th birthday celebration for SketchUp with cake and Google-colored cupcakes. Photos coming soon. Also, bamboo USB memory pens with SketchUp 8 trials pre-loaded.

After returning to the hotel for a few moments, I was back to the Dairy Center as groups of likeminded users (education/everything, Ruby Scripters, Supermodelers, SketchUp Sages, BetaTesters, etc) went to dinner in groups. I retuned with a group of 11 other SketchUpers to the same pub as the prior night. After dinner, I gave SketchUp 8 a spin with another user here, before heading to bed.

That’s all for now!