3D motion controller

I've got on loan a 3D Connexion Space Traveller (£125 + VAT in the UK) and I love it! I've not used one of these devices before, but I find it completely intuitive.

It also has some extra cool features like a toggle for controlling the position of a component, rather than for manipulating the display. e.g. add a component into an assembly, and use this function to orient the component into its correct approximate position, before applying mates.

Just thought I'd let you all know.....:-)

John H

Reply to
John H
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Welcome to the club. If you like that one, you should then try the SpacePilot. It has the same controller as that one, but it has a whole set of buttons and a display that shows you what you have programmed on each one. There's more I could tell you, but you can get more info on their web site.

WT

Reply to
Wayne Tiffany

But how much does that one cost???

John

Reply to
John H

Ahh, the catch - I presume a fair bit more than the small one. Last I heard, a special price might get you into the $400 range or so, but I haven't really been checking. Check with your local user group too see if they have any special offer from 3DConnexion.

WT

Reply to
Wayne Tiffany

I bought a Spaceball 5000 last year, and paid =A3275stg incl carriage. Very happy with it. One of the best ways to speed up drawing I'd say, but I also use it with Office and if drawings come in as .pdfs, then it's handy for zooming, panning, and rotating.

Reply to
Donegalforever

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I signed up for their news letter about 2 years ago, never received anything. They seemed to be way behind schedule to release this thing even back then they were taking "Pre-orders" for a product that was in development. I gave up on them about that time. That notice on their site (the same after 2 years) about "Initial supported applications include:" still doesn't include SolidWorks.

I would be a little bit wary, hopeful someone else in this group will have something better to say about them. It would be good to have some competition to Connexion, even if just to grow the market.

Checkout their web history

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John Layne
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Reply to
John Layne

Yes, they are having a bit of time getting their drivers working well. The company actually used Solid Edge to design the Astroid. They have Solid Edge API gurus (not UGS employees, just SE users), helping them write the drivers, so the focus has been on improving usability with SE. They also support UG/NX, Pro/E, and a couple others, but SW is not on the short list. Neither are any MS Office apps or Adobe apps for that matter. Then again, considering the basic function of 3D motion works in most CAD packages, it is still a bargain compared to a 3DConexion controller and may be worth investing in to have that functionality while the drivers get developed. If you are a SW API guru, you may want to contact Spatial Freedom and offer your services to help develop a SW driver. The company seems very open to input from users.

--Scott

Reply to
swizzle

Well...considering that there alot more Swx users than SE users, they should hire someone to put together a driver quick.....or everyone will have purchased spaceballs.

Dos the basic driver still work with Swx....for basic rotate, zoom, panning? I'd could care less about programming buttons to Swx commands at this point. Hell, I forget to use the buttons on my Spaceball 5000 at work.

Anyway...I'd like this for home...and the $150 price is right.....if it works well.

swizzle wrote:

Reply to
Jason

I'm not positive because I don't have a current license of SW with access to an Astroid. All I know is the details about SE, the tech papers on supported apps, and that I use Alibre Design at home and it works there - the basic pan, zoom, rotate functions, that is. I'm guessing it would work with SW in that limited fashion. For $150, it's worth the try.

--Scott

Well...considering that there alot more Swx users than SE users, they should hire someone to put together a driver quick.....or everyone will have purchased spaceballs.

Dos the basic driver still work with Swx....for basic rotate, zoom, panning? I'd could care less about programming buttons to Swx commands at this point. Hell, I forget to use the buttons on my Spaceball 5000 at work.

Anyway...I'd like this for home...and the $150 price is right.....if it works well.

Reply to
swizzle

It's probably worth emailing them directly for an answer, as my spacemouse doesn't work that well with unsupported applications.

John Layne

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Reply to
John Layne

Scott, how does it work with SE compared to a Spaceball. Supposedly, the Astriod has some newer technology so I was wondering if you could tell the difference...provided that you have ever used a spaceball.

John Hilton, emailed me back and said that the Solidworks driver was delayed but is now in set to be released end of June. According to the website, this is the same guy who invented the spaceball so that sounds like a positive.

swizzle wrote:

Reply to
Jason

Coincidentally, there is a discussion going on right now in the SE newsgroup (the private ones hosted by UGS) about additional functionality of the Astroid with MS Apps and Adobe apps. John Hilton, i.e. the Spatial Freedom President and CEO and ex-Spaceball designer, posted this message. "In speaking with a lot of people regarding their use of their SpaceWhatever

invariably the non-CAD features are hardly ever used. If the feedback for non-CAD functionality is louder than other priorities we can do non-CAD stuff sooner than later. The Astroid's scroll-hat will have Microsoft Windows 2D scroll functionality in the future. "I designed the Astroid using Solid Edge and as a user I was very frustrated

with the Spaceball - especially since I was the inventor and knew what it could do! The reasons the Spaceball interface didn't do what I wanted is some history that I won't go into. The Astroid interface is designed by me,

a mechanical engineer, for mechanical engineers. Most of my design time is spent repetitively zooming into a model, editing/creating features, spinning

the model to get a better view, then zooming out and panning/zooming to somewhere else on the model. This is object control. When I'm sketching a profile or working with a 2D drawing the pan/zoom control mode is what I want for quick interaction. Then, when I'm reviewing the model to check things out camera control is what I want. That's it! All the other pieces of

the interface revolve around these three modes. Sure there are a zillion other things you can do with a nifty new input device but as a user I'm far

more interested in the real meat of the interface that helps me do my job. "Our focus is on delivering a totally clean spatial user interface. Since we

don't own the Solid Edge source code it takes a lot of time and effort to do

this. I'm thrilled with result so far. The Solid Edge API is really well designed and has allowed us to do some great things. It still takes a lot of

time and effort - just ask Jason Newell. "We're interested to hear from our users in this newsgroup. I think an Astroid helps you get far more out of your investment in Solid Edge - but of

course people would expect me to say that. John Hilton Spatial Freedom"

Scott, how does it work with SE compared to a Spaceball. Supposedly, the Astriod has some newer technology so I was wondering if you could tell the difference...provided that you have ever used a spaceball.

John Hilton, emailed me back and said that the Solidworks driver was delayed but is now in set to be released end of June. According to the website, this is the same guy who invented the spaceball so that sounds like a positive.

Reply to
swizzle

I have a Spaceball 4000 FLX currently. The ball of the Astroid is harder than the rubber on the Spaceball. At first, it didn't feel very nice, but after a day of use I got used to it and it felt better than the Spaceball. Also, it doesn't collect dust and finger oils as quickly as the Spaceball, so it stays much cleaner. The overall unit is lighter than the Spaceball (spaceball has some lead weights or something in the base.) At first, it felt like I was going to through this thing all over my desk, but quickly got used to the lighter touch. Even with a very sensitive setting on the Spaceball, I get hand fatigue after cranking on it 8+ hours a day; not so with the Astroid. I'm really looking forward to the scroll hat on the Astroid becoming effective. I think it will work really well for games! I would really like to see the display of the spacepilot be incorporated into the Astroid. The biggest reason I don't utilize the buttons more on the spaceball is because I can't remember what they do from app to app. I've often thought of buying a Spacepilot just for that reason, but I don't have the $$$ right now. I'd rather get another dozen Astroids.

Scott, how does it work with SE compared to a Spaceball. Supposedly, the Astriod has some newer technology so I was wondering if you could tell the difference...provided that you have ever used a spaceball.

John Hilton, emailed me back and said that the Solidworks driver was delayed but is now in set to be released end of June. According to the website, this is the same guy who invented the spaceball so that sounds like a positive.

Reply to
swizzle

So, how is it for playing Oblivion? Flight Sim?, Chessmaster? Fable?

Reply to
Diego

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