Blender with Sketchup Navigation

For those unfamiliar with Sketchup, the navigation system works by ray casting under the mouse cursor and using the intersection point with geometry as the view target. So if you were to zoom, it zooms and centres on the point on the face under the mouse. If you rotate the view, it rotates around the point on the face under the mouse.

Currently Blender uses a traditional approach of there being an invisible target point that you rotate/zoom/pan around, or fly mode if you want to pretend you’re in a plane. It also has the numpad period key to zoom to currently selected objects bounds. But when working on large scenes it can sometimes be a hindrance. Case in point, I’m modelling a 2km site and focusing on a noise wall, I go to pan along the wall and my view jumps 500m down the road. Why? Because my invisible view target is a kilometre away, not a few metres. The wall is too long to use the zoom selected; fly mode isn’t what I want; so I have to rotate the view around, zoom, pan, rotate, zoom, etc and eventually I’ll end up where I want the invisible point.

Does this exist and am I missing one of Blender’s hidden features? Or is there an addon that enables Sketchup-like navigation? Anyone else share my thoughts?

In File -> User Preferences -> Interfaces
You have a “Zoom to Mouse Position” and “Auto Depth” options that maybe can help.

Wow, it was really that easy. And not even that hidden. And I thought I’d arrived at Blender enlightenment but it appears I still have some ways to go. Thanks Sanctuary.

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