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Does anyone know any software that can draw 3D geometry like figures usually seen in computer graphics papers and articles (example)? I know it can be done in Inskcape or Illustrator but I'm not sure they're the only choices.

Here's some further examples:

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thanks, but it's not quite what i'm looking for. i don't want modeling software, but something that can draw 3d shapes (e.g sphere, hemisphere, cone, etc) and probably can show intersections, tangent line, etc) –  ilovekonoka Apr 3 '10 at 10:29
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@Matrix - You should put your comment as an answer. I would have voted it up. –  Nifle Apr 3 '10 at 12:17
    
any particular platform? linux, windows, osx? –  quack quixote Apr 3 '10 at 12:23
    
@Nifle I've deleted the comment and added it as an answer instead (sometimes get confused on what should be comment versus answer) –  Matrix Mole Apr 3 '10 at 12:35
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closed as off topic by KronoS, Tog, Journeyman Geek, Mokubai, techie007 May 29 '13 at 17:27

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6 Answers

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A very powerful tool is sketch 3D, it is based on latex and the tikz package. You can find an introduction here. These are some example images:

cone thing pir

Some time ago I made some quick 3D and 2D illustrations using sketchup. It can do a decent job if you are drawing simple shapes.

enter image description here

enter image description here

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Thanks a lot. I will definitely look into Sketch 3D. –  ilovekonoka Apr 19 '10 at 12:08
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Sounds like you may be looking for matlab or maple alternative (both of which I believe have heavy costs associated with them), is that correct?

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If that is the case you could use Scilab, Freemat, R, or LaTeXDraw, and do your paper layout in LaTeX. –  spowers Apr 3 '10 at 13:04
    
Thanks but somehow i feel those tools are overkill/unsuitable for my case. I've edited my question and uploaded some more figures as examples of what i'm trying to draw. –  ilovekonoka Apr 3 '10 at 14:03
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Processing can be used to programmatically create 3D images (and animations). If you have Java installed, you can view the 3D examples here. These examples, with source code, are included with the Processing download, which is free and cross-platform.

Cubic Grid example Cubes within Cubes example

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Yes Processing is very powerful, but I'm looking for something easier to use (learning a new language just to draw some figures is a bit overkill I think). Thanks for the suggestion though. –  ilovekonoka Apr 3 '10 at 19:36
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Have you tried ArchiCAD? - http://www.graphisoft.com/products/archicad/

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It costs just $4,250.00. That seems the right tool for the right job! –  mrucci Apr 10 '10 at 15:01
    
haha, you're right. I apologize. Just came to mind; I've used it in school...good luck though! –  studiohack Apr 10 '10 at 15:08
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Comes to mind FreeCAD, Qcad(there's a windows build) free version , VectorEngineer (the free version), cadstd lite (I think was so called)... I can't put links here, at least, not several (yet). But probably are easy to find with Google.

Anyway, those above, if you want to go further of what the free versions (are free, not trial) offer, are in the rank of 30 to 50$, no huge deal...

But I don't know if any will exactly fit your needs. (I've done and sort of teached technical drawing, I think I know what you need, but..)

There was some effort in making a module/plugin for Blender, to use it for cad purposes, dunno how is that now...

Who knows! Even Google's Sketchup may be helpful in part of the proccess...

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I would go with Blender. It has a decently steep learning curve but it can do great things once you get to know it. Oh and its free.

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