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Washington, DC
Laser Scanning Madness In Washington DC

By TJ McCueThursday, September 11, 2014
Architecture, BIM

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Recently, there was an internal Autodesk campaign and Jessica Brill won the contest. That earned Jess a free trip to Washington DC and a few days to hang out with the 3DRV. Jess is a social media manager on the AEC team, so buildings and architecture are her world.

When we started brainstorming about what we might work on together while she was here in DC for the 3DRV stop, she suggested the National Building Museum. I said “sure.” It is an elegant building, as you can see in the photos.

What we didn’t know was the building is surrounded by all sorts of other, shall we say, buildings that prefer their borders to be secure. On our third scan position, we found ourselves next to the FBI building with armed agents moving all about. As I set up the Faro Focus laser scanner, I heard fast footsteps behind me. As I turned around, an FBI agent was quickly approaching me. “Oh no,” I thought. At the same moment, his car alarm beeped, he said, “good day, mind if I squeeze past you and your tripod.” I breathed a sigh of relief.

The security gate team at another scan position was looking at us suspiciously, so I walked over to explain that we were taking a 3D laser scan of the building. After a number of questions, they seemed satisfied with my answers and relaxed.

At our last scan position, a security guard from another building walked up to the scanner and stared closely at it. I left our spot in the shade to walk out and explain what we were doing. He, too, seemed satisfied at my explanation that we were taking a series of 3D laser scans that create an image like Google Streetview.

Jess got a good taste of a “Day in the Life of the #3DRV” and was a lot of fun to have on the trip. We snapped a few photos of her with the RV. Naturally, pointing out BIM. Thanks for scanning the National Building Museum with me on the hottest day of the year, Jess!

Follow along at! #3DRV

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