3D Scanning Thursday - the next step?

(Bart) #1

We've been running 3D Scanning Thursday for over a year now. It's always been a fun moment during the week to go out and find something to capture for my entry, and hundreds of people have participated.

I believe the group of participants has now matured to the point that I'd like to try something new: how would you like to run this challenge yourself, as the Sketchfab community? You could post a weekly topic here on the forum, tap new members that you think would be interested in participating and choose your own winners.

Of course, I'd still be on board for any support you need, and I'd still provide a weekly prize - for now the $25 3D Hubs voucher, but maybe the group can think of other interesting partners to work with? I'm happy to reach out to them an help you get their support.

For me, this would mean freeing my hands to develop some other activities, challenges and contests.

What do you think? Who's up for the challenge?

3D Scanning Thursday 50: 50!
(Dtmcnamara) #2

My 2 cents would be to have a longer period to create. Instead of doing weekly challenges maybe monthly? I dont know about others, but I have personally wanted to enter a specific weeks challenge but the processing time for some photogrammetry work is 500+ hours and by then the competition is way over.

(Bart) #3

500+ hours?! Sheesh, that sounds like you're working with a serious number of photographs smile

(Dtmcnamara) #4

Generally its 2000+ at 32MP, which isnt bad, but I usually build the point clound with a overly shapened version of the pictures and then build the texture map with a more natural photo, so im really processing 2000 pictures two times.

(Tauricity) #5

It's an interesting idea, and I really wish I could help, but I'm over extended as it is. I can barely even participate in 3dst, which i feel bad about and I miss doing it.

I think the rules work well as is, so the only thoughts I have are:
-Time periods: A 2-week period for scanning might be something to consider, with a reminder or two during it. But honestly, and this is how I am, if I can't get around to scanning it in one week, I'm probably not going to do it in 2.
-You might change up the prize to something a 3d scanning person would really, really want. 3d printing doesn't do much for me. I scan things so I don't have to have a physical copy of it. Honestly, I scan things often so I can throw them away, not have to clutter my house but still have the memory (lots of kids' projects get scanned...) .

As a 3d scanner I'd fall all over myself to make time if the prize were a copy of Agisoft photoscan or a year of Sketchfab pro. I know they're pricey, certainly more than $25 but what about giving people a few weeks for something bigger? A full scene, maybe with multiple 3d scanned objects combined into one scene. Rather than just one object or place scanned, multiple scans into a creative scene.

Other prize thoughts:
-A month subscription to Recap 360
-A quality tripod
-A circular polarizing filter

(Andy lewis) #6

On the whole I feel the same as you, @tauricity. It makes me sad not to join in but we only have so much time.

A single week to produce a scan is quite a short time but I like the idea of #3DST. Maybe we could launch a new comp every week but make them each last a month?

A good point about incentive too. Not sure what I'd do with a circular polarising filter but I'd move mountains for a license for a good photogrammetry package, a video card, a Scanify or an Einscan scanner. All of these are high-value prizes but I'm sure their makers could be persuaded to part with one if they think it'll stimulate sales.

Other prize ideas:

Matter and Form turntable laser scanner
Occipital Structure sensor
A gaming laptop
DAVID Structured light scanner
A visit to the British Museum to see what they're doing in 3D scanning
A day of training in some useful software, like Meshlab, for instance.
One full week of social media exposure through Sketchfab

Yeah. I know most of those prizes seem unrealistic but if no one asks the question, it will never happen. I could ask Drew at Matter and Form and, who knows, he might be up for it!



(Philnolan3d) #7

Holy cow! Normally my scans use 50-60 photos and are done in a couple hours start to finish.

(Philnolan3d) #8

I agree, I often don't have time to enter the weekly contests.A year of Sketchfab Pro is easy enough to get for free, I've done it like 3 or 4 times over at this point I think. Just share your link on social media. If the prize stayed with printing I'd suggest getting back with Shapeways. I trust their quality and I already have some models on their I'd like to get printed.

(Ben Kreunen) #9

I've entered for the fun of it rather than the prizes, but as others have said a single week is often difficult to find the time just to shoot let alone process. Finding someone/ a group of people to run it could be challenging. I'm doing a lot of photogrammetry at the moment but it's possible that other areas of my work will take priority and see me drop off for a long period.

(Bart) #10

Good point. The 3D Hubs vouchers fit in to our partnership, but I've never received a picture from anyone showing they actually printed something :smile:

I should be able to get Autodesk, Agisoft or others to sponsor us, and I'd be happy to set aside a budget for 'physical' prizes as well.

@andylewis Happy to think about more expensive prizes as well, although maybe those would fit better into a longer running contest with a larger reach. I really like the BM visit idea and training session - maybe we could explore those ideas a bit further?

True enough. I see the same thing with the Unity Community Art Challenge - some people have already gathered up to 5 years of Sketchfab PRO. It's not much of an incentive for them anymore :smile:

Good point. Happy to add Shapeways back into the mix, they're probably happy to sponsor us too.

Yeah I guess most people are pretty busy. However, once we've set up a format, found some good prizes and we have 2 or 3 people who are willing to take the lead it may not be too much work I think?

(Andy lewis) #11

I guess that, when we're talking about hardware prizes, I've got the Gadget Show in the back of my mind. It's a TV show here in the UK. Check out their prize list for just one episode...


...and this is all for just one prize winner. I mean, it all arrives in a truck!!

Now, not that I expect Sketchfab to have the reach of a TV show but it does go to show that manufacturers are willing to part with their products for contest prizes. Surely, the self-proclaimed YouTube of 3D would be able to find one or two manufacturers who see the value in their product's exposure to this audience.

I'm not going to press the point, but I think it it's not something we should dismiss without trying. After all, it only takes one manufacturer to say yes and we can use that when we discuss it with others. For instance, Samsung obviously see value in using the Sketchfab platform....



Community Calendar - all upcoming activities
(Jonathansty) #12

I've participated in some 3DT's. I would also make it longer than 1 week. 1 week is too short to find something interesting and actually scan and generate it. The week with as subject: "50" . I know it was the 50st 3DT but I found that I really couldn't find anything involving this subject. Maybe have a monthly vote for interesting topics? Or a topic suggestion thread?
Concerning the price, I have no idea. Personally I don't need a price but it's always the extra push for scanning wink

(Berriers) #13

I would echo the not as often suggestions. A week is too short and in the past I've only entered because I had something in the pipe that just happened to already fit.

(Gerrit Schulze) #14

I am with others here:

  • prices are not the motivation to take part
  • time period could be longer
  • I only would take part if I have some scan in the pipeline or one is ready
  • I need to reuse the 3d model afterwards somehow. Scanning just for the fun of it, unfortunately, is not possible anymore

A bigger contest would be more interesting, since it gives the chance of more complex object / object sets.


(Chaitanyak) #15

hmm.. i didn't realise that the time frame was such a constraint, but then I guess this is why i hardly ever bother with serious entries for 3dst.. I just do a few single photo shots and submit the best.. With the longer time frame I guess I'd give it more effort.. load up a series of pics and do a better scan.

However one issue with a longer timeframe is that its a bit of a wait to see entries and see some community activity.. however I think if we have 2 contests running parallel and at staggered dates..
3dst X is from Jul 2nd-16th
3dst Y is from Jul 9th-23rd

that way we get to see more scans.. and people can either take part in both or either one depending on their schedule and workload. Each contestant gets 2 weeks to work.. and fit it into their schedule.
The rest of us observers get to see fun stuff happening once a week.. and get motivated to take part.

..does this make sense to anyone? or did i bring up a non issue. smile

(Chaitanyak) #16

Prizes could be:

winners of each individual 3dst.. get a "silver" grade prize

we can have a community vote on people who have submitted to both 3dst X and Y .. and the winner gets a "gold" grade prize.

(Steren) #17

I did not find time to read the previous messages.

I would recommend to gather participants behind good causes, instead of individual challenges, scan:
- public buildings
- modern art
- historical pieces from museums
- animals
- plants
make sure they are well tagged and described, potentially add location data, potentially and add these as links to wikipedia

(Alie Nmantis) #18

My "demotivation" was that I could never achieve cool resoults, because I have only free tolls.

Maybe from time to time a software/hardware challenge? Like - only 123D + phone? And next time only paid software + dangerous photo camera.

Also would like 2 weeks + reminder.

(Bart) #19

I like the idea, but would we would keep launching a new topic each week? I think it would work yes,

Cool idea, we could also tie that in to the Cultural Map project.

(Luis Rodriguez) #20


Nice concept talks here. I let you know my understanding about "Scanning Thursday", and actually about 3D scanning in general:

Two opposite things merge here, in my opinion. One of them is actually capturing the scan, getting the raw data... That is what the title suggests, a fresh capture every Thursday. A different thing is editing the model to fit "finished" standards. You will agree with me that the first is more instant -taking pictures and capturing space-. Then there is machine process that is time consuming, but once is started it is just a matter of keeping an eye on it- There is SaS also. And then, post processing the model, an activity that it is really human time consuming, apart from a quite a nice dose of knowledge an experience. Maybe noticing this issue would be interesting... I do not know.

Anyway nice thing I hope I get more chance to participate more often!