Love Legos? You’ll love this. Virtual Lego teaches you how to build castles in the sky...or more precisely, Lego models on your PC. Do it to test out a real-world design in advance. Or build structures with more Lego parts than you own...more parts than you can afford...more parts than exist. There’s a complete suite of software for PC-based Lego building. It’s LDraw. It’s free. And Virtual Lego is its official guidebook.
You’ll start with the simplest Lego models, as you get to know MLCad, the editing tool at the heart of virtual Lego construction. The authors show how to navigate the LDraw parts library (which now includes nearly 2,000 different official Lego parts, but no clones).
Next, you’ll get back into building. The authors walk you through building a simple Lego car, then introduce complex models that contain “submodels.” This makes it easier to move whole chunks of your model -- and it also helps you create super-realistic models where the connecting studs aren’t always on top.
The authors show how to use “minifigs” (those miniature Lego people); as well as springs, rubber belts, tubing, wires, and so forth (great for that tank you’ve wanted to build). There’s coverage of creating high-quality 3D images of your LDraw models, viewing models on the Web, and generating printed instructions for building your models in the “real” world.
The entire LDraw suite is on the accompanying CD-ROM, along with several models to get you started. Very cool. Bill Camarda
Bill Camarda is a consultant, writer, and web/multimedia content developer. His 15 books include Special Edition Using Word 2000 and Upgrading & Fixing Networks for Dummies, Second Edition.