Blogging live from Portland Oregon USA...
A single dimensional player cannot achieve greatness on the PGA tour, so Tiger Woods honed every aspect of his game tobecome the leader in his game.
Adesk Mfg Solns is a lot like Tiger Woods. Being a multi-dim soln makes adesk the leader in the industry. Bob Merlo vp marketing of mfg soln div
At FIRST tomorrow, we will apparently see a robot designed to play basketball.
For the 5th year in the row, Inventor is the top selling MCAD product. Mechanical is the #1 2D mech software. Outselling PTC, CATIA, etc.
Autodesk Intent is a newly-acquired product for engineer order application, mass customization, design more new products.
- - -
This is the first time there it is one year between releases, instead of every six months as before. Made 4 acquisitions last year.
Mech division made US$475 million last year, up 25% from the previous year. This means Buzz Kross is nearly half-way to his dream of making his Mechanical Division a $1-billion a year business. Three million mfg’ing customers, in both 2D and 3D.
Nearest competitor grew 23%.
Not just 3D: 2D is still a vital market, and customers are happy with it, so Adesk will help them with better 2D products.
Adesk has 9 R&D centers, investment has tripled since 2002, last year over US$80 million on R&D. The development philosophy is 24/6 – excluding Sundays, says Buzz Kross. “We really believe in this 24/6.”
- - -
Trying to make Inventor work for AutoCAD customers, to make it the best choice for AutoCAD users – recognizing the attack from SolidWorks.
Autodesk is focused on
– Artist / Industrial Design
– Design Engineers
– Tooling/Manufacturing Engineers
– Procurement/Logistics specialists
65% of customer use Windows as their PDM system. So the plan is to simplify design to manufacturing. Showing a colorful chart of the data flow around a company.
- - -
Autodesk says they have the solution for all these connections:
1. Connection between sales, customers, and product designers.
2. Between mechanical engineers, electrical engineers, analysts, and product designers.
3. Director of engineering and Vault.
4. Manufacturing and something else, but the slide went by too fast.
5. Production planner, purchasing agent, external partners and suppliers.
Competitors have only point solutions, unlike Autodesk.
- - -
Buzz is giving some customer stories, which I tend not to find particularly interesting. Of the 20-odd press here, only three of us are busy typing on our notebook computers -- Martyn Day from England, David Cohn from USA, and me from Canada.
- - -
Another way to look at reduced design time: it’s not so much a reduction in cost as an increase in profit, because the product gets to market sooner, and thus starts selling (and making $$$) sooner.
(BTW, Autodesk may well make US$2 billion this year, blowing away #2 and #3.)
Andrew Anagnost now talking – senior director of design product management. When he joined, Autodesk was seen as the company that offered the cheap stuff. He says he thinks that some of us journalists still think that. Fine, tell us what we think! He’s not sure that everyone appreciates that Autodesk has moving from a has-been to the best in the market.
This is apparently all build up towards Inventor 11 description.
What’s new in data management?
– improve standards compliance
– search anywhere for anything
– build a complete product BOM [bills of material]
- - -
– better integration with Inventor. First CAD vendor with round-tripping: data moving between electrical and mechanical and return on the harness design. More in the future.
– shorter new user ramp-up.
– point-to-point wiring. Point to point wiring meant for transportation vehicles, like busses and airplanes.
– hydraulic systems and P&ID [piping and instrumentation design].
- - -
What’s New in Inventor 11
– Unlimited assembly size. A new capacity meter shows the user when memory limits are being reached, so unload parts you no longer need. Also load the parts only as needed – sounds like the new CoCreate. “Hence,” says Andew, “Where’s Ralph? Hence the blurring of lines [between high-end and mid-level MCAD].”
– multiple product variations from a single assembly.
– the capability of Solid Dynamics (simulation software) is built-into Inventor.
– Enhanced surface and sketch tools, particularly for designing plastic parts.
– Advanced fillet control for cast and molded parts.
– Sculpt tool to combine surfaces.
– Enhanced import tools to import large data sets that even are corrupted. Claimed to be the best STEP importer in the industry.
– AEC exchange – to share Inventor models with architects and building contractors. For example, an air chiller placed into a building plan.
- - -
Speaking of vision…
At its height, MDT [mechanical desktop] sold more seats than any product on the market today. Andrew says it was a raging success.
How to solve engineering problems. Meaning the calculations that need to be done before the machine can be designed.
The emphasis of the last five years has been for CAD vendors to recreate Pro/Engineer. Autodesk’s vision is to place design into CAD – at some point in the future. “Getting the geometry out of the face of the engineer.”
Start with a symbolic representation of a product, and then enter the requirements to test, simulate, and validate the design. Use the software’s intelligence to generate the 3D geometry for a virtual prototype – automated geometry creation, not the CAD designer concentrating on geometry.
Attention competitors! You know now Autodesk’s future plans for its software direction in MCAD.
- - -
Some of functional design will make it into Inventor in big chunks, and other times more subtly. Examples today: frame generator, tube and pipe design, cable and harness design, simulation, design and accelerators.
Cable and harness design, for instance, has no geometry – it’s all a design problem.
The focus is on (1) figure out the function first, (2) drive geometry from the design, and then (3) add simulation to the design.
Editor Ray Kuland is asking about the claim that the new search function can even read data from TIFF (raster) files. How’s this possible? The iFilter form Microsoft does on-the-fly OCR [optical character recognition] to read “text” in the image.
Another editor asks, There is a lot of stuff here. Is it easy for the CAD operator to learn? “I’m sure you are going to say Yes,” he adds. It’s not that it’s easier to use, but Autodesk is making sure that it’s the way a CAD operator would do it anyhow.
With 0.5 million Inventor customers, Buzz Kross expect another 2.5 million AutoCAD customers to convert to 3D – 80% to go. His claim that everyone should use 3D is challenged: what about electrical?
Editor Bill Fane asks, “I see a hole in manufacturing: What about CNC and CAM?” Autodesk has a partner program for that, so it sounds like Autodesk doesn’t intend to go into, but Kross admits that five years ago he said he wouldn’t get into wire harnessing or FEA. “I’ve got other problems to solve first. I wouldn’t like Dassault buying ANSYS” – the third-party FEA used by Inventor. “We want to do the virtual prototype.”
Martyn Day asks, "What about mold design?" Autodsk customers are asking for it, and that's all Kross will say about it.
David Cohn asks, "Are you now on an annual release cycle?" Yes. And Inventor has not missed a ship date in three years. "We have reached the stage of computer science, instead of computer theology."
... and th-th-that's all, folks, from the Aspen Creek room of the 5th Avenue Suits Hotel in Portland.