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Architosh Staff (info@architosh.com)
10 June 2004
 

Architects Respond Favorably to Apple's New Power Mac G5 Lineup

Apple's announcement of all new dual processor Power Mac G5 workstations have really gotten many architects excited about their technology again. At the center of this excitement is a convergence of interests and patterns of change in the architectural industry that fit well with Apple's new Power Macs. The profession as a whole is seriously entering into its second great technology transformation with the growing adoption of BIM (building information modeling) over CADD (computer-aided drafting and design). While this transformation from CAD to BIM will likely take about a decade—following the pattern of the last transformation from pencil and paper to CAD—what is different today is the growing sophistication of architects over information technology choices and requirements. Today architects are increasingly interested in harnessing more powerful systems but only if they pay for their extra costs in productivity enhancements.

Productivity At A Bargain

David Caruso, Director of Information Technology + Graphic Design, at Flansburgh Associates, Inc., a leading Boston-based architectural practice, felt enthusiastic about Apple's new Power Mac lineup. "Since we are really watching our budget right now, it's good to see that the dual processor machines can still be inexpensive". Admitting that even the base model could be a little too powerful as a general 2D CAD workstation, David added that it was easily a wise investment for his firm. Flansburgh Associates is a very large, enterprise-level practice focused on a variety of work including educational architecture. The firm is one of the largest VectorWorks-based architectural offices in the world and one of the largest firms in Boston.

"3D modeling and rendering is only going to get more popular at FAI because of the advances in VectorWorks 11's 3D technology," said David. "We will want these dual processor G5 machines as our 3D CAD and rendering workstations. At $2,000, they're a bargain."

Apple's Innovation Inspires with Cool Technology - Literally

Pete Evans AIA, an architect and university lecturer in the department of architecture at Iowa State University said Apple's latest Power Mac G5 machines show that the company continues to lead and "inspire the industry and enables new possibilities for architecture and design."

"Another leading-edge design tool", says Pete. "This is the machine that can run anything AEC can throw at it. The dual 2.5Ghz model and OS X will be able to run any 3D visualization and AEC production software faster than anything on the planet." Pete was particularly impressed with the liquid cooling system in the dual 2.5Ghz model. So was David Caruso at Flansburgh Associates, which sees more architects going mobile and needing the power and strength of a powerful workstation in the field.

"As for the PowerBooks, I'm getting a bit more demand from the architects for mobility," says David. "As we're expanding our reach to markets outside of Massachusetts, our architects enjoy having a PowerBook with them for client presentations and working out design issues at home or on the road. The liquid cooling system of the new Power Mac G5 excites me because it will likely have to be an essential feature in the future of Apple's PowerBook line. We will then be able to continue to enhance our firm's mobile technology options."

Final Thoughts

Apple's leading hardware technologies continue to come out at a rapid pace. Just yesterday the company announced AirPort Express, an extremely affordable streaming music solution for iTunes users on both Windows and Macintosh. The new Power Mac G5 machines demonstrate Apple's willingness to push ahead with alternative cooling methods, enabling the company to push forward with the benefits of dual processor systems. While last year Apple introduced the benefits of 64-bit computing to the masses with the first wave of Power Mac G5's, this year the company is bringing advanced cooling, and a complete dual processor architecture down to a very affordable price level. Expect Steve Jobs to showcase new Mac OS X technologies that take advantage of these new hardware features at the Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference this June.

Tiger, the name of the next Mac OS X update, will likely have more code optimized for both the 64-bit nature of the G5 and Apple's multiple-processor machines. Already, Apple's professional video products have begun harnessing the full power of the new Power Macs, as do many scientific applications used in medicine and biotechnology. Expect even more professional 3D and engineering CAD software to follow suit.

Related News

Apple Releases New Power Mac G5 Line Up Ahead of Schedule

Mac 3D News: Strata 3D CX, EIAS 5.5 for Mac OS X and Amapi News


 

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