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Jan 20, 2011


Andy Reilly

Hi, there are some good questions in this list and certainly from a CATIA/ENOVIA perspective these are the points that a sales force will be able to answer when an On the Cloud product will be on the market or people are in the WW beta program quite soon.

I am sure that people will appreciate that some of the points are out of the control of the PLM provider but most of the key points are absolutly at the heart of the service that we are implementing.

Will the On the Cloud solution be the answer for all users? I am sure the answer is no but the value and flexibility it brings to many scenarios can not be ignored either.

I look forward to sharing the more formal answers with you when the services are announced.


Andy Reilly

Dassault Systemes.

Dave Ault

This is part of what gripes me so much about this whole cloud thing. I don't understand how anyone can promise a service and say I will love it, whatever it is because we still don't know, and then in the same breath say that how reliably it will be able to work at the customers end is beyond their control. Do you not see the disconnect here between words and reality?

A first real good step towards influencing people to like what you propose to offer would be to start speaking honestly and openly about what it is you want us to buy into and just stop with all the damage control and PR babble. Fiction wins elections but facts win customers.

Mike Ray

I think the concern is the assumption is that it is all or nothing. This is not the case. You will be able to work off the cloud and then plug in as desired. You will be able to have a LAN cloud or a hosted cloud on the internet. DS has committed development until at least 2015 and support until 2030 of its V5 product.

Eventhough Facebook has come along, it doesn't mean we have stopped using email and chat, but it has completely changed the way we interact digitally. This is the idea of moving product development to the cloud. To extend the capabilities not throw out existing ones.

Like all things new and old there are challenges and to me the biggest with the cloud that is now apparent is the concern of security. I am sure this issue will be adressed in many forms, either through compensation, new third party encryption software solutions, etc.

The reality is that Product Development is heading to the cloud, but it does not mean you have move there. Some people don't have facebook accounts. There are even a few that don't have email accounts. If the market is there someone will find a way to exploit it. So there is very little need to be concern on this shift to the cloud because you will not have to go, but it will also limit the opportunities and advancement has to offer.

Dave Ault

Some companies product development and developers may be heading to the cloud but the real question for the Dassault guys is will the users follow? At this time even in postings about SW and the cloud for instance on the SW forums it is running about 4 [ https://forum.solidworks.com/message/201431#201431 ] to 1 against this whole cloud thing. Employees of Dassault, resellers and VAR's love it because they have to and users despise it because they see nothing of benefit to them.

Do you have any actual knowledge of Dassaults intents or policies here you can publically reveal or are you sworn to corporate secrecy?

R. Paul Waddington

Dave your questions raise many issues competent vendor management should have long ago assessed and be able to answer fully an truthfully but: the truth is these guys simply don’t know or are being strongly advised to remain firmly non-committal for fear of action which will be taken at a latter date for the non delivery/compliance to their promises.

Much of what I have done – raising licencing/contractual issues - provides a clear indication of CAD vendor managements stance in relation to answering questions in relation to the issues surrounding the Cloud.

In particular I point to your 36th questions: “Will I be able to audit your process to see if it meets my required level of security, or do I just have to take your word on this?”

Experience suggests I believe I can answer this question; and the answer is a resounding NO you will not be auditing the vendor or their ‘suppliers’. YES ‘trust us’ is the CAD vendors (stupidly naive) expectation!

We already know CAD vendors are removing data from customers’ computers and we also know those same vendors do NOT allow their customers to see what data, the CAD vendor, is removing from the customers’ business systems. In one case, when a CAD vendor was asked directly, to allow the opportunity to view the removed data the answer was NO and the indication was that the CAD vendor believed it was their property; therefore giving them both the right to access the customers business computers remotely and remove any data they saw fit to take. This is not fiction or a guess it is fact and CAD users have been very silly to allow this activity to start and continue as it now provides the precedence CAD vendors will use as a defense.

A further simple example: is my private and, then public, request to Solidworks management to discuss a provision in the Draftsight EULA. NONE of my approaches gained any response; even though we know the emails were received by senior management. Failure to respond as they have demonstrates a very real threat to those entrusting their business to these and other CAD vendors. With no ability to discuss contractual issues already demonstrated, as this instance does, can only mean dealing in the Cloud, with these same guys – and similar, is simply NOT a safe business decision and should not be considered or entered into!

We have, quite quickly, moved in a very dangerous direction and, now more than ever, there exists a reason for the creation of a ‘body’ users who could and would be prepared to act in unison on these issues. My effort has shown questions can be asked, warnings posted and wrong exposed; but acting as a single voice in opposition to CAD vendors’ past, present and future unconscionable conduct gains little traction – it needs a joint effort.

There are ways for CAD vendors to demonstrate their ‘Cloud’ is not to be feared and should be considered……….

Nick Sidorenko

Thank you for your list of cloud questions.

We are in Cloud Invent are definitely looking to the clouds and see there the natural place for our CAD. The Dave Ault’s list is very helpful for us to define our Nimbo CAD product line. Thank you once more.

May be we have no clear answers to all these 40 questions yet, but some answers we sure to have:

“4. How can the cloud do anything for me, when CAD is still basically a one-core program and multi-cores don't matter much, compared with basic single-core processor speed?”
This is one of the critical point for us. Our Cheetah Geometric Kernel is perfectly suited for parallel computing – it means that you can use on 100% the multi-core capabilities of your local client, but you have much more power with cloud computing.

”5. Does the cloud offer multi-core capabilities that you are unwilling to sell me with standalone seats?”

This is actually the same question. Leading CAD vendors are not “unwilling” to suggest multi-core capabilities. They, simply have ho parametric Solver that can use parallelization. As for Cloud Invent- we have it, and this is our main secret weapon.

” 11. Will stand-alone seats continue to be available?...”

Our Nimbo CAD will be ready to work 100% offline – so, this is “stand-alone seat”.

”13. Why are you implementing the cloud, when basic geometry creation still has big problems? Are these issues being fixed for the cloud, or will we be stuck still with problems, and now the cloud will bring an additional layer of problems to compound our woes?”

For us the answer to this question is easy. We are starting from the scratch and we see the cloud as just a better place to live. But cloud for us is just a one of the pillars of our CAD Revolution. Our main goal is to dramatically improve basic geometric creation (see more information on our site).

”26. Am I going to be able to even create a file if I have no access to the Internet for whatever reason? And if so, to what degree?”

Our client CAD applications will be based on the Silverlight. Though they are working inside web-browser, they can work easily offline (without any Internet). You’ll have full functionality, just a little bit slower (or much slower for complex models).

”31. How are you going to integrate third-party aps into all this?”

Our Nimbo CAD will be 100% open platform. This is our principal position. Any third-party vendor can easily integrate with it.

”39. Is it true that you have no answers for many of these questions?...”

Yes, it is true. Many of these 40 questions have no clear answers for us yet. But we are working on it. In any case the future is for the cloud!

”40. Do you have a successful implementation of the cloud to demonstrate to me?...”

Not yet. When we’ll have something to demonstrate in the cloud, it will be available to everybody who is interested in…

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