Coding Your First SketchUp Extension

Coding Your First SketchUp Extension

In this (beginner!) video tutorial I give a very basic overview of the process needed to create a SketchUp extension from scratch and then distributing it as an RBZ file. Admittedly, this isn't completely from scratch since I am starting with a template file that you can simply download from this site, but the result is a very basic yet fully-functional SketchUp extension. Want to learn more about Ruby scripting? This video does not cover much of Ruby scripting, but you can read up on that topic in Chapter 7 of my book. Tutorial Video https://youtu.be/fDV92tkzTh0 Links Extension template files - You can download those from my website here. SketchUp Ruby API - SketchUp's official API reference. ...
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Make your life easy: Load SketchUp extensions from a cloud folder with a small Ruby script

Make your life easy: Load SketchUp extensions from a cloud folder with a small Ruby script

Are you using SketchUp Pro on multiple computers? As I mention in Chapter 2, it may make sense to leverage one of the many cloud storage services (that you may already be using) like Dropbox, OneDrive, GDrive, etc. to make your life easier by synchronizing those. In essence, using the approach presented here, you can off-load extensions that you want to have available on both machines onto a shared drive, and then you load them back from the respective computers using the script shown below. Tutorial Video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mI6FvENlIno Tutorial Steps Step 1: Designate a folder on your cloud drive First, designate a folder on your cloud-synchronized drive as the Plugins folder. As you can see in my example below, I am using OneDrive (at C:/Users/<username>/OneDrive/SketchUp/Plugins), but you can use any other service, too (e.g. for Dropbox on Windows it would likely be C:/Users/<username>/Dropbox/). Of course, for this to work you need to have a cloud-synchronized local folder, not just an online folder. And that folder...
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GPT-3.5-Turbo vs. GPT-4 with the SketchUp OpenAI Explorer extension

GPT-3.5-Turbo vs. GPT-4 with the SketchUp OpenAI Explorer extension

Now that version 2.1 of the SketchUp OpenAI Explorer extension is available, it is easier to test the AI's capabilities when using the most recent GPT-4 model. In this post, I will be comparing side-by-side the gpt-3.5-turbo and the gpt-4 models with a few common examples. If you want to give this a try, too, make sure you have access to the gpt-4 model and then simply replace the model name in my SketchUp extension's settings dialog. The extension page on my other website features a longer list of successful prompts than what I am able to cover here. Feel free to give those a try, too. Example1: Draw a Box For this example, I asked the AI to draw a 2' (i.e. "two foot") box. I wanted to test not only whether the box would get drawn correctly, but also if the foot tick mark would be interpreted correctly as the foot unit. The images below show what I got with that...
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Just Released: Third Edition of “Architectural Design with SketchUp”

Just Released: Third Edition of “Architectural Design with SketchUp”

I am very excited to be announcing the release of the third edition of my book “Architectural Design with SketchUp”! You can as of now find this new edition on Amazon, Wiley and everywhere else where books are sold. It is available as full-color paperback and e-book editions. Since the publication of the second edition in 2015, many changes have happened to SketchUp and in the larger realm of architectural software: Trimble introduced a web version of SketchUp as well as an iPad version that has proven very popular. Real-time rendering options have increased in availability, and point cloud modeling is now often used on renovation projects. Beyond that, many new extensions have been published, others have gone away or have been replaced with built-in functionality, and their underlying Ruby engine has received new and updated capabilities. All of these changes made an update to the second edition necessary, which led to me thoroughly editing and rewriting the entire text. I updated screenshots...
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Yes, you can use OpenAI’s GPT AI to Create Geometry in SketchUp

Yes, you can use OpenAI’s GPT AI to Create Geometry in SketchUp

AI can create a box from a text prompt and even show a completion message Just like everyone else these days I have been trying out OpenAI's ChatGPT and Microsoft's Bing (which now also uses the same AI - artificial intelligence - engine). One of my lines of exploration (beyond "what does this thing know about me?") was the question whether it can auto-generate SketchUp Ruby code with AI. And - as it turns out - it can do that. Albeit with some caveats. As a start, you can go to ChatGPT and (after signing up) ask a reasonably specific question like "Which Ruby code would draw a box in SketchUp?". That would spit out somewhat appropriate code that you can just paste into e.g. the Ruby Code Editor. Apparently the SketchUp API is part of its knowledge base and generating SketchUp-specific Ruby code is thus well within its grasp. You could even refine the query with a comment like "Isn't there...
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