People started explaining design as “the rendering of intent“, which breaks the design process into two activities, having the team arriving at the same intentions and having their intentions presented in the desired way. However, the importance of intentionality in the first phase is often overlooked as people running hastily to the rendering or execution phase which usually kills more time and energy.

“Designers are spending too much time on duplicated works like drawing up the sketches, building 3D model of their plans and communicating with fellow designers,” said Weisen Chen, founder of designer software startup Vidahouse.

As a veteran interior designer who has worked in the industry for more than two decades, the entrepreneur believes these precious times could be saved and used for what design is really about – the ideas.

To this initiative, Weisen founded Vidahouse with associate Jimmy Zhuang, who feels the pain and share the same dream in revolutionizing interior design process. After two year of development, Vidahouse is officially launched last week in Shanghai.

In many ways, Vidahouse is to visualize the imaginations of designers as they evolve through the development for speeding up concept approvals and identify problems. After scanning a 2D floor plan, even if it’s a hand sketch, the software will complete the 3D modeling automatically within a few seconds which usually takes hours to do in the past. Users can select materials, furniture, styles and products from cloud database to test out their desired effects.

Other interesting features include functions to show your design under different lighting effects and generate photorealistic screenshots for design scheme comparison.

On top of showing your ideas in real-time, Vidahouse allows users to find, add, share or shop for furniture ideas in 360 degree virtual reality showrooms.

Hampered communication among designers and their clients is another problem Vidahouse aims to solve through visualized and interactive communication. Users can add their friends, clients, fellow designers or suppliers to join the virtual room for giving comments and adjusting current design in real time. An accompanying app is at your disposal to facilitate cross-platform operation.

Apart from facilitating the design process, Vidahouse wants to go a step further to inspire designers with their design DNA sharing platform. Enabled by AI technology, Vidahouse extracts the design elements that can be easily applied into plans for various design styles and spaces.

However, you do need a high-spec computer to run the software due to the large amount of calculations, the company’s co-founder Jimmy stated, and the preferred computer specs are Intel i7 CPU, 32G and 4K screen.

“It was a hard decision to make two years ago at the very beginning of Vidahouse…but we chose the future. The specs we required are becoming mainstream now in the year one for VR technology,” Jimmy said.

Good services never come cheap, but Vidahouse still tries to make it accessible for users who want to take a peek at the new tech. The company offers a 6-month free trial period for earlier adopters.

Starting from China, Vidahouse also sets eyes in overseas market. “We have already launched a few academic partnership projects in Europe and the U.S. The next thing on our agenda is to cooperate with designers and design firms in these markets. Furthermore, this is also a move to bridge the gap between domestic and foreign designer communities.” Jimmy said.

Jimmy Zhuang (Right), Weisen Chen (Middle)

Credit: 123RF Stock Photo

Emma Lee

Emma Lee is Shanghai-based tech writer, covering startups and tech happenings in China and Asia in general. We are looking for stories related to tech and China. Reach her at lixin@technode.com.