zmarties writes "Having recently bought the company and 3d design product SketchUp, Google has now taken the next step of releasing a free personal version of the SketchUp software. Currently available for Windows XP, with a Mac version 'coming soon', the program allows for simple drag and drop design of 3d models - which amongst other uses can then be displayed in Google Earth. The pro version remains available for commercial use, with lots more features. Google are also introducing 3D Warehouse, designed as a repository for 3d models created in the program. The models can be viewed in Google Earth via a network link, so you can see geolocated models as you browse the world, rather than having to explicitly download them. Google has pre-populated the warehouse with a number of models which range from complete complex buildings, such as the Taj Mahal, through to individual design elements such as traffic lights and furniture."
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