Then two events happened:
- Firstly, an Autodesk law suit resulted in DS SolidWorks changing the name to 2DEditor.
- Secondly, an ITC law suit rendered the future viability of CADopia in doubt. (CADopia has provided DWGEditor to DS SolidWorks.)
So the company cast about for a replacement. Product manager Aaron Kelly told me that they considered 2D DWG editors from around the world, including some you would never think of. Here are a few I can think of:
ARES - independently developed by Graebert of Germany; available for Windows now, Linux and Mac later.
Bricscad - independently developed by Bricsys of Belgium; available for Windows now, Linux and Mac later.
CADopia - based in IntelliCAD; for Windows only; currently tangled in legal difficulties with the ITC.
ZWCAD - based in IntelliCAD; developed by ZWSOFT of China.
My guess is that Graebert won, because (1) the company is experienced in OEM'ing its software; and (2) its software is not based on IntelliCAD. I am fairly certain that the delayed release of IntelliCAD 7 was a negative preventing Dassault from considering any variant based on IntelliCAD.
The replacement is named DraftSight. It goes into public beta today, and can be downloaded from www.draftsight.com. It is free, unless you want technical support from Dassault and/or access to the APIs. To prevent "sales" of the free DraftSight cannibalizing those of ARES Commander Edition, DraftSight is 2D-only.
More details on DraftSight in tomorrow's upFront.eZine.
This must be the first salvo from the newly unshackled Dassault Systemes, free from the marketing restraints of IBM. It remains to be seen how aggressive Dassault will get in the coming weeks and months with its mind-share campaigns.
I expect they have the two most vulnerable CAD players in the market in their cross hairs. The perennial favourite PTC and the new-to-the-club Autodesk. With the CATIA-SolidWorks product combination and deep financial pockets, they surely have the wherewithal to go after both simultaneously.
The timing of the release of this DraftSight means they have been planning this for some time now. Although Solidworks' fingerprints are all over this idea, I wonder how much of a role the new ex-IBM group played in this decision to become aggressive. This also suggests that Autodesk is the first target of Dassault's counter-insurgency ops. This should be fun to watch.
Posted by: Greg Findley | Jun 22, 2010 at 07:02 AM