This is a guest post by Cédric Pinson. If you want to guest post on this blog, just contact us.
We recently launched Sketchfab.com, an open platform to publish 3D models online in real-time without plugin, using standard technologies: WebGL and HTML5. It’s like Youtube, but for 3D files. We think 3D models deserve more than screenshots or showreel videos. Sketchfab was created to enable 3D artists to show their work online in 3 clicks, either on Sketchfab.com, or by embedding the Sketchfab viewer on their own website.
Sketchfab supports more then 20 native 3D formats (including .obj, .dae, .blend, .stl, .ply, .wrl…), as well as normal maps, specular, diffuse, texture, lights, transparency… Here is a little video demo:
If you want to upload your 3D models directly from within your software, you can use our exporters. So far there are 3 of them: one for Blender (in native blender format), one for 3ds Max (obj format), and one for SketchUp (Collada format). We should soon release one for Maya and SolidWorks as well. You can download them directly here. You just need to get your API key from your dashboard to be able to use them. It will add a “Sketchfab upload” button on your software interface, let you edit title, captions, tags, and automatically make a thumbnail.
The Sketchfab viewer can be embedded on any webpage, and you can customize several options directly on it, simply by editing the embed code you find on the bottom nav bar of the viewer on Sketchfab. The main options are autostart, autospin and controls. You’ll find more detailed explanations here.
There are two ways to observe and manipulate your models: orbit, known as turntable, or like in a first person shooter.
Orbit lets you navigate around a center point.
First Person lets you navigate as if you were walking in the scene:
You can join Sketchfab for free, you will be able to upload up to 10 models of 50 MB each. If this is not enough, you can also upgrade to Sketchfab PRO.
About the Author: Cédric Pinson
I’ve been working for 12 years in the real-time 3D industry, for video game companies (Nemosoft, Mekensleep) and as a freelancer. I’m the maintainer of the open source project OpenSceneGraph. I started working on Sketchfab 18 months ago with the arrival of WebGL. You can find more info on my personal website: cedricpinson.com.