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# CAD format for earth model?

I'd like to start playing around with some geometric models in Sage. Does anyone have any preference for CAD formats? Any one format easier to load into Sage than another?

Googling turned up these first two hits:

It might make sense to decide on a CAD format now so that we can load in a model of the earth later. In the meantime, we can start playing around with something simple like a single tetrahedron.

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What choices are there? I mean, what kind of data formats are used for CAD models?

Comment Source:What choices are there? I mean, what kind of data formats are used for CAD models?
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Not sure. Was hoping someone working in the field may know. Nathan? Miguel?

The first link makes me wonder if we should do something related to Google Earth.

The second link has a pull-down many with several different CAD formats. I'm not familiar with any of them.

Comment Source:Not sure. Was hoping someone working in the field may know. Nathan? Miguel? The first link makes me wonder if we should do something related to Google Earth. The second link has a pull-down many with several different CAD formats. I'm not familiar with any of them.
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edited March 2011

Current GCMs have files that contain information about topography, if I had to guess then I'd say that the file formats are most probably idiosyncratic. It is a dream of mine to have a GCM that loads the topographical data from a service like google earth in a standardized format (XML + a specific XSD, for example), maybe loading weather data, too, have it initialize itself with these data, and have an earth simulation that is fed with the output of the model. Would be a piece of cake for google, or Microsoft, or a dedicated open source community, or... if the model itself is easily integrated. Like something implemented in Java, for example.

Comment Source:Current GCMs have files that contain information about topography, if I had to guess then I'd say that the file formats are most probably idiosyncratic. It is a dream of mine to have a GCM that loads the topographical data from a service like google earth in a standardized format (XML + a specific XSD, for example), maybe loading weather data, too, have it initialize itself with these data, and have an earth simulation that is fed with the output of the model. Would be a piece of cake for google, or Microsoft, or a dedicated open source community, or... if the model itself is easily integrated. Like something implemented in Java, for example.