EasternGraphics GmbH

Dear Readers,

Finding the perfect solution for our customers – that’s the goal of professional interior design. But for planners and interior designers, achieving that goal means facing a wide range of challenges. It also means finding the right furnishings for implementing concepts and visualizing planning sessions. 

It is against this backdrop that the dominant theme of this newsletter is a solution for making configurable CAD symbols available in a variety of file formats. The newsletter will also tell you everything you need to know about the new features of pCon.planner 7.1 and how the new version simplifies the tasks of presenting custom-made products and making them a reality. Finally, this edition will conclude with news from EasternGraphics’ subsidiaries.

We hope you enjoy reading this edition!

Your EasternGraphics team

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The wide world of CAD programs: how do you make CAD models available to architects?

There are many different reasons for using CAD programs and 3D applications, ranging from detailed planning to the ability to visualize design proposals realistically. And the number of different CAD programs that architects, interior designers, planners and 3D artists use is nearly as large. The search for the right CAD model for a given application can quickly become a challenge.

Using OFML for a variety of CAD systems. pCon web technology helps you support architects and interior designers, efficiently providing them with CAD data. pCon.configurator Online offers a centralized platform for making CAD models available  24 hours a day, seven days a week, all over the world and for a variety of CAD systems. And the variety of formats is constantly expanding, especially with respect to BIM and collaborative work.

Web-based pCon technology allows you to provide architects and planners with a variety of CAD models in a substantial number of formats.

Integrate web services into your website. Integrating our web services into your website or online catalog allows your users to access CAD models, which they can then ultimately use for planning and designing. In other words, if architects go looking for an office chair for an order and they find the chair on your website, they can configure the desired product however they want and download the CAD model in the format they need. By clicking a button, architects can then assemble the final model from individual components – legs, cushion and backrest – and save it for their CAD program so that they can work with it using their own data and in their own familiar CAD environment.

For you that means less time spent creating and maintaining data, and that pays off long term, reducing the effort you have to invest in providing CAD models.

Create CAD models for the various programs that architects use. Click on the image to go to our test catalog and see for yourself!
Your advantages at a glance. pCon.configurator Online helps you provide and maintain 3D models:
  • Host and manage a central web service
  • Provide OFML data for a variety of CAD systems
  • Configure products uniformly, regardless of the CAD system
Would you like more information about offering a variety of CAD formats? Are you interested in collaborating in this area? We look forward to hearing from you.
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Revit plug-in

In any discussion about the various file formats available for CAD applications, it’s not long before conversation turns to Revit. And Revit is becoming increasingly important for international furniture manufacturers as well – especially in conjunction with Building Information Modeling (BIM). Anyone wanting to stay afloat in this industry has to provide the right CAD data.

In its efforts to provide CAD models for a variety of different applications (see above), EasternGraphics is currently working on a solution that will support native, configurable Revit CAD symbols. The initial results of this work are expected to be available in the second half of the year. 

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pCon.planner: Version 7.1 release

Late last year, pCon.planner was given a completely new user interface and many new features – but optimization of the planning tool didn’t stop there. With the release of version 7.1 in a few weeks, pCon.planner users will be provided with even more new and helpful features. 

Construction tools for customized products. As announced late last year in the newsletter, pCon.planner PRO now comes with construction features for generating complex objects, opening up the door to designing customized products in 3D. Users can model and combine multiple objects with a number of operations, including Subtract, which can take two objects and use them for modeling recessed areas, needed for example to create cable conduits in a tabletop. The Intersect function reveals areas that more than one object have in common, while Merge fuses multiple items into a single object. The Follow Me tool allows users to extrude two-dimensional surfaces along a defined path, an operation that can be used for designing features such as base moldings. Thanks to these tools, users can design customized products and visualize them for customers, as illustrated in the photo below.

The new pCon.planner 7.1 comes with new construction tools which allow you to generate even complex objects, such as the fireplace you can see in the picture.

New feature for the Snapshot tool. The functionality of the Snapshot tool has been expanded as well. As always, product images can be created from a number of different perspectives, and then sent to the product list and the pCon.basket. But now, however, a new Snapshot tool feature allows customers to take their own images from an external file – such as a high-resolution product photo – and link them to the product. Users can also apply their own Render Styles to give product images a personal touch. 

New standard library. The standard library for pCon.planner PRO has been updated and modern models have been added. Users can now take entire rooms from the EGR-OnlinePlanner – complete with neutral furnishings – load them into pCon.planner PRO and then replace them with OFML data specific to a given manufacturer. 

Planning wall objects. When planning a room, noting the positions of cable jacks, power outlets and light switches is important. pCon.planner now allows you to place objects just like these on walls. Some standardized wall objects can be downloaded directly from the Wall Objects section of the pCon.catalog. Users can also convert any 3D object they like into a wall object. Wall objects are firmly attached to the corresponding wall and stick to it like magnets – even if you move or edit the wall. 

In pCon.planner 7.1 you can download cable jacks, power outlets and light switches from the Wall Objects catalog or convert any 3D object into a wall object.

Displaying surfaces realistically. The pCon.planner Material Editor lets you edit walls, floors and objects, displaying their surfaces with colors or textures such as a wood grain. In order to make the surface look three-dimensional, however, users can assign shading using so-called Normal Maps. Starting with this version, however, you can now create even more realistic renderings by modifying and scaling Normal Map values separately from the texture. This means that you can create a realistic-looking image of a surface such as the relief of a section of wall plaster. 

As you can see, development of pCon.planner is going full speed ahead. If you want to stay up to date, feel free to go to our blog to learn the latest about pCon and the planning tool and to view video tutorials with step-by-step explanations of planning processes. The pCon.planner Help Center also provides extensive descriptions of individual features and answers to frequently asked questions. And if you need training on pCon.planner, we offer individual seminars to show you how to use the 3D room planner.

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An art project and an exhibition: “The world is a village”

Over the past 20 years, EasternGraphics has grown from a startup in central Germany to an international firm with operations at 7 sites throughout Europe. 

Last year we took this development a step further by expanding our headquarters in Ilmenau, adding new office and meeting space. The new facilities are intended to reflect our close ties to our subsidiaries and the company’s decided international outlook. Art students of the local high school “Am Lindenberg” explored what that would look like.

The art project lasted several months and resulted in 25 paintings, all of which used landmarks and unique features of EasternGraphics’ sites as their subjects. The Kulturfabrik cultural center in Langewiesen near Ilmenau hosted a preview exhibition of the collection in late January, which was open to the public and to EasternGraphics employees. One hundred fifty people came to the evening’s event, which, in addition to the paintings, also included a cultural program designed by the students. The work of the advanced art students was exhibited at the Langewiesen Kulturfabrik for six weeks before it was relocated to its new home in the EasternGraphics building.

You are more than welcome to take an opportunity to see the young artists’ work.

Volker Blankenberg, Managing Director of EasternGraphics, was enthusiastic about the artists’ work: “The paintings fit perfectly into the rooms and I am sure that the representatives of our subsidiaries will like them as well.”
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EasternGraphics – new markets, new address

Now that OFML and pCon have been well-established on the European mainland for several years, interest from the United Kingdom and Ireland has grown markedly over the past several months. In response, EasternGraphics will be expanding its presence in both countries. Support for the new markets will be provided by EasternGraphics in Eindhoven, Netherlands. 

Due to a growing number of customers and employees, our Dutch colleagues have had to expand their space as well. In need of sufficient space for training facilities, conference rooms and new work areas, the team ultimately found what it was looking for in the center of the Dutch city of Eindhoven, which has become one of Europe’s prominent high-tech and design regions in recent years. EasternGraphics moved into its new, spacious offices on April 7 of this year, and can be contacted at the following address:

     Tel.: +31 40 7200650
Meerenakkerweg 1a
     Fax: +31 40 7200659
5652 AR Eindhoven

EasternGraphics‘ new office in the high-tech region of Eindhoven.
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Salone del Mobile 2015

The doors of this year’s Salone Internazionale del Mobile will be open in Milan April 14.-19. This leading international trade show for furniture and interior design is a must for designers, manufacturers and retailers all over the world – an unparalleled platform for presenting new creations and ideas. This year, EasternGraphics will provide an exclusive presentation to demonstrate the new features of pCon.planner 7.1.

Come visit us at pavilion 22, booth B29-C20. We look forward to seeing you!

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