"About Maciej Fijalowski of VR Sketch"

Subhra Bera: Editor

Maciej Fijalkowski is the one member among the founders of the VR Sketch in SketchUp, he and his team is working on developing VR with SketchUp to make it more accessible.

Maciej Fijalkowski is the surfer, programmer and climbing gym designer about the current state of VR industry and the one behind the VR Sketch extension. He is basically from Łódź, Poland but now living at Cape Town Area, South Africa. He went to Warsaw for study; he always wanted to go and study abroad but couldn’t afford so he started to explore more as a traveler. He also worked at the University of Warsaw at the Center for Mathematical and Computational Modeling; while working there and being a student he got into Google Summer of Code and became interested in Pypy.

Later his company has introduced a new concept into the Sketch Up word with VR Sketch which enables the creation, manipulation and presentation of models in a fully immersive virtual reality environment.

A little about VR Sketch: It is an extension for SketchUp which gives anyone the ability to create, edit and view their models in Virtual Reality. It also gives designers the ability to communicate space that clearly allows them well informed decisions to make with instant feedback. VR Sketch is a small but a dynamic company which plans to revolutionize the thinking of people about the way of design and faster design. The landscape of hardware abilities will only improve and everyone can see more and more design work done in VR. Sketch will keep iterating quickly to deliver cutting edge solutions for more years.

Inspiration behind VR Sketch: As per his words, during the process of designing and creating a new rock climbing gym, he purchased a VR headset as a help in visualizing projects. Though SktechUp is a very easy to learn but it can be difficult while mapping of 2D screens to 3D space. So they thought to make something which will help to solve this problem and thus they started the company in April 2018. Maciej is now living in Cape Town with his co-founder, Duncan Fraser who is an architect and travels often.

Projects: The team has handled many things together in past but from a long time they only focused on a project called Pypy which is an open source software for a faster way to run Python code. VR Sketch is their first venture into architecture and design which has introduced to the through SketchUp 3D Basecamp with greater diversity in those attending versus the Python conferences. VR Sketch needs less of any skills which a trained architect must have and helps architects to work more easily on the 3D models.

VR Sketch works with all the high-end hardware like HTC Vive, Oculus Rift those with touch controllers and some mixed reality headsets. They have been working on more major headsets which will be function by Oculus Quest. The team has focused on doing things well for the higher-end devices and consider the availability of any design tool to be a main consideration.

Industry trends to follow for future app development: According to them, much of 3D design will move into the VR space and everyone will see huge iterations in hardware design. Headsets will be lighter and more affordable and controllers will be less clumsy. Software side will also be upgraded with major changes; this huge evolution and interconnection between hardware and software in the VR industry will create many more opportunities for them. Now they are working on a cloud-enabled collaboration which help users in working on a model with distant team members simultaneously and keep a full version control.

Dream Project: He is really interested in urban design and with an unlimited budget, he would be involved in developing a “Chartered City” as theorized by Paul Romer, where it is possible to play with new ideas every time.


About Maciej Fijalowski of VR Sketch