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Google sells 3D modeling application SketchUp
by Staff Writers
San Francisco (AFP) April 26, 2012

Google on Thursday confirmed that it has sold 3D computer modeling program SketchUp as the Internet titan continues streamlining its product line with co-founder Larry Page at the helm.

SketchUp technology and members of the team will join Trimble, a California company specializing in making business or government workers more productive in jobs such as surveying, construction, mapping, fleet management and public safety.

The companies did not disclose financial terms of the deal, which was expected to close by the middle of this year.

"In Trimble, we found a partner that will grow SketchUp in a way that best supports the SketchUp team and our users," said Google vice president of engineering Brian McClendon.

SketchUp boasts millions of users ranging from architects to engineers and designers that used the program for 3D modeling.

Under the terms of the deal, Trimble will partner with Google to run SketchUp 3D Warehouse, an online repository where users of the program can share, store, and collaborate on models.

As of Thursday, there were nearly two million user-made models in the warehouse.

"SketchUp and the corresponding 3D Warehouse provide an important element of our long term strategy by enhancing the integration of our field presence with the wider enterprise," said Trimble vice president Bryn Fosburgh.

Google bought SketchUp in 2006. The Colorado-based startup launched its first version of the application six years earlier.

"We plan to continue making our tools for the building professions as innovative, intuitive and, dare I say, fun to use as we always have," SketchUp product manager John Bacus said in a blog post.

"If you're one of the many, many people who use SketchUp for something else -- from education to woodworking, geo-modeling to movie-making -- rest assured that there will be a SketchUp for you, too."

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TED blends animation with education at new website
San Francisco (AFP) April 25, 2012
The non-profit group behind the thought-provoking TED conferences on Wednesday launched a website devoted to video lessons cleverly crafted to captivate students. A beta version of TED-Ed website went live at ed.ted.com with an open invitation to teachers to use video clips from its nascent library or Google-owned YouTube for assignments. TED curator Chris Anderson introduced the website ... read more

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