go to contents of current issue contents.jpg - 1911 Bytes FloorPlan PLUS 3D

home When confronted with a task it is human nature to first try to use the tools you are familiar with or were first introduced to.

I have never used a graphics package previous to FloorPlan PLUS 3D (FP3). I wanted to use a drafting product so that I could quickly produce two dimensional line drawings for a floor plan of a house and make changes readily. It was recommended that I see if FP3 satisfied my requirements.

Installation Installation of the four programs on the FP3 CD was straight forward except that the two key *.exe files and corresponding icons of the main product FP3 were omitted from the 'Program group'.

This required a bit of fiddling to remedy the situation. An indication on the size of the files to be loaded onto the hard drive and an un-install function would be a useful features. This was only offered for one of the four programs on this disk.

Getting Started Once successfully loaded, and being familiar with the Windows environment, I found this package to be intuitive, logical and have a high degree of ease particularly when guiding oneself through FP3 basic functions.

I have been exposed to numerous Windows products with countless applications, particularly over the past 5 years in both work and home situation with PC's. With little or no training I produced an output of good quality with little time investment.

Using FloorPlan Plus 3D I was pleasantly surprised to see the ease and speed in which the program was able to produce a 3D image of a plan.

I found little need to refer to the manuals or help screens until learning more complex tasks such as drawing of the roof.

My expectation of FP3 was to be able to draw straight line house planes very easily, but as one becomes familiar with this package it allows a wider range of applications such as re-designing office floor plans in a work environment

Since being exposed to FP3 I have subsequently experienced Autocad and Corel Draw. These packages are brilliant for what they offer but you need to be a rocket scientist to fully utilise the functions contained within the respective packages. FP3 on the other hand is comparatively simplified with similar attributes as the two mentioned above, but FP3 is far easier to interpret operations and teach yourself.

A very useful feature of FP3 is the library of pre-stored objects. These fittings offers the user both a two dimensional and revolving three dimensional objects. This feature of the package helps the user's brain to visualise a plan in three dimensions 3D. This is often difficult for some people to do.

Using these objects in conjuction with your design and viewing it in three dimensions, offers a high degree of reality particularly when walking through your computerised conception of your plan. The ability to manipulate these fittings increases the flexibility of this feature. Some additional landscaping objects would also be useful.

This program offers the user an opportunity to fiddle with various ideas and collect their thoughts prior to seeking professional architectural advice. This product may be aimed at owner builders, drafts people, graphic design students, art students, office managers, office planners, home owners thinking of extending there existing premises or people with a degree of creativity to design their own house. Other products for specific applications may be better for professionals such as architects, but for builders, drafts people and students it is more than adequate.

A practical application is in a work situation where the inevitable restructuring occurs. This often involves a change of management and the inevitable re-location to new areas. This package can be used to develop a range of options within defined criteria within specified limits.

A small glitch in the 3D view and walk through mode is the navigation buttons. It is unclear that the keyboard may also be used instead of mouse and toolbar. I also had problems following the roof editor function.

Documentation Documentation seems fine, but although the on-line support is quite powerful, I had trouble navigating through the search and find options.

Reviewed by: Phillip Wierzbowski

Product Name: F l o o r P l a n P l u s 3 D
Publisher: I M S I
Version / Release: V e r s i o n 3.0
Language: E n g l i s h
Operating System: W i n d o w s 3.1.1
Rec. Retail Price: $ ?????
Release Media: CD and 3.5" diskettes
System Requirements: Windows 3.11 system. CD drive optional, but recommended

tested with: 4 8 6 D X, 1 6 mb, 5 0 0 mb HDD, 8 spin Compact Disc

Target Audience (for kids, give age): Owner builders

Drafts people

Graphic Design Students

Art Students

Office Managers

Office Planners

Home Owners

Ease of Use
Value for Money
? ? ?
Satisfies Functional Expectation X
Continuing Interest X
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ISSN 1328-8008
Published in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia
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Filed: 2-June-1997 : Last updated: 2-June-1997: Last compiled: 31-Mar-2010
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