Infraworks 360 Initial Thoughts

I’m having a lot of fun with my 30 day trial of Infraworks 360. Being in the arch end of the design world, I never paid much attention to Infraworks Naught, but our friends at Autodesk have been pushing the 360 end of it hard, specifically Model Builder.

“Pushing”. We’ll come back to that in a second.

The Model Builder is easy to get started and get your initial data downloaded. Amazingly easy, actually. I found the importing of AutoCrap and Sketchup models to be a little confusing when trying to place (be sure to tell Infraworks what type of thing your thing it is), and my Revit test model didn’t even load up properly.

But so far, the slickness of the software has impressed me. I might need to get a few copies. And that’s where the fun comes in.

Our Suite subscription allows us to have a handful of Infraworks licenses (sidenote: Infraworks is surprisingly hard to type, and really hard to say). This is NOT Infraworks 360, which is what you need to have the Model Builder awesomeness. Bear with me here. My Infraworks licenses are networked, so I have a nice pool of available seats and can maximize usage, and can leverage expenses and all that business jargon crap. Infraworks 360 requires you to upgrade an Autodesk 360 account to be able to access it, which limits who can use it and totally makes me shrug and say “wha?” BEYOND THAT, the use of 360 is going to require Cloud Credits (don’t get me started on Cloud Credits), but Autodesk can’t tell me how many yet.

Yeah. The pusher. They are going to get us hooked and then tell us how much it costs for the sweet sweet GIS and satellite and infrastructure candy.

So, I am EXTREMELY cautious about buying even a single seat of Infraworks 360. Even if that is not a huge investment, who knows if it will be prohibitively costly to use the portions we want to use. My suggestions: dump the extra license fee for 360. I know how much I spend on my Ultimate Suites. You can have Showcase back. Gimme Infraworks 360, or at least Model Builder. On top of that, let me know how many cloud credits I am going to have to spend. I REALLY want to share this new technology with everyone, but I am REALLY nervous to do so right now.

So, yeah, get the 30 day trial and use the Model Builder, but watch out for when the pusher comes to you with the bill.