Bon Jovi & Autodesk – The Spectacular Business!

OK, I know we need to continue with the Measuring Spaces in AutoCAD series, right? 🙂

However, I was working at an amazing event with Autodesk a week or so ago called WorldSkills 2011, which is basically the Olympics for vocational skills. I was one of the CAD Experts on the Autodesk booth and it was just so much fun to teach and advise kids from primary school age upwards about Autodesk and Autodesk products. I showed one seven year old how to draw toilets and another secondary school kid how to design a missile launch station in preparation for his video game authoring career! Trust me, the Autodesk Educational Community is alive and thriving!

I learnt loads of new things too! The guys from VEX with their tennis-ball-collecting robot (designed in Autodesk Inventor) led me to the Autodesk Digital STEAM syllabus for secondary education. Just superb and ideal for getting kids involved and engaged! Go, Linda!

The kids also loved the Xbox Kinect hooked up to Motion Builder (3DS Max) and making the elf warrior dance! Jamie, inspired choice and loved Mudbox also!

One question kept popping up though. When I booted up AutoCAD, every kid I showed it to asked, “What is that thing on the startup [splash] screen?”

Well, you all know my love of music and some of you know that I will wax lyrical about Bon Jovi, one of my all-time favourite rock bands. You can imagine the surprise on these kids faces when I tell them it is the Bon Jovi stage set from their last world tour (The Circle Tour). The “wow” factor!

As soon as I tell them this, a large number of them immediately “connected” and decided they wanted to design things like that when they were older! It was a great icebreaker and worked so well to get their interest. They engaged and it was a pleasure to watch.

So, I have decided to dig deeper and look in to this more. Shaan Hurley [Autodesk] mentioned to me a while back that Tait Towers, Inc were designing the Bon Jovi set using AutoCAD and 3DS Max and after WorldSkills, I wanted to know more!

Tait Towers, Inc, as they say in the Autodesk Success Story video, are in the “spectacular business”. They are always designing the next best thing and the Jovi stage was no exception. I saw Bon Jovi at the O2 in London in June 2010 and the stage set was nothing short of amazing. The rear of the stage holds massive video screens controlled by large robotic arms which, at one point, fold down in to a staircase for Jon Bon Jovi to climb and wave at the audience. Just way cool and as a singer/songwriter myself, to have a set like that would be sublime!

So, I am not going to bore you to tears with Bon Jovi’s discography or which chord is which in Wanted Dead Or Alive or You Give Love A Bad Name. Just check out the links below to find out more. I found the whole project fascinating. Not just on a musical level either. The way Tait Towers, Inc design is clever and also makes the construction of the set quick and easy….exactly what you need when you are Bon Jovi and trucking around 16 trucks that hold your stage from one stadium to another!

Autodesk and Bon Jovi, who’d have thought it, eh? Rockin’!

Autodesk Success Story – Tait Towers, Inc (Click on Tait Towers video)

Autodesk Success Story – Tait Towers, Inc (PDF)

Cadalyst article about Tait Towers, Inc (March 2011, by David Cohn)

WorldSkills 2011 – The Vocational Olympics (BBC News)

Happy CADD’ing!

Shaun

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