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Archive for April, 2017

Bricsys Insights: ACAD to BCAD

Thursday, April 27th, 2017

I spent this week in the beautiful city of Ghent, Belgium for a series of company and product overviews at Bricsys at an event the company called Bricsys Insights.

For me, this was an introduction to and company and product line I had heard about, but didn’t have much knowledge about. This week that all changed for the better.

As a company, Bricsys has taken on several iterations over the years since it was founded in 2002, and has emerged today as a real player in the CAD markets for both architectural and mechanical design applications. The company currently has 130-140 employees, the majority being developers, so it is efficiently run and product focused.
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Hexagon’s Recent Ups & Downs Update

Thursday, April 20th, 2017

A lot has gone on in the past couple months at metrology giant Hexagon AB, so let’s have a look.

For starters, Hexagon AB, announced recently that it was acquiring MSC Software Corp. for $834 million cash. While not quite as big, the acquisition is Hexagon’s largest deal since it bought Intergraph for $2.1 billion in 2010.

MSC Software is the the company that has brought products that include Nastran, Patran, Marc, and Apex to market. For more than 50 years MSC has been a leading provider of CAE solutions, primarily simulation software for virtual product and manufacturing process development, and was one of the first 10 commercial software companies.

As I noted when the acquisition was first announced, acquiring MSC provides Hexagon with a strong foothold in the competitive simulation/analysis market with MSC’s diverse portfolio of CAE applications.

Hexagon: Shaping Smart Change

As it has with all recent acquisitions, Hexagon plans for MSC to run as an independent business unit within the Hexagon Manufacturing Intelligence (MI) division, that focuses on automotive, aerospace, machinery, consumer electronics, and other discrete manufacturing markets, getting close to offering comprehensive end-to-end solutions in these diverse workflows. About the only link missing is a true CAD component and I can think of several possible targets for closing this gap.

Process-oriented solutions are essential for manufacturers, and MSC’s applications definitely address design and engineering processes through simulation and analysis.

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COFES 2017 Tackles Complexity, Looks Ahead To Future

Thursday, April 13th, 2017

I just returned from Scottsdale, Arizona after a great week at the annual Congress on the Future of Engineering Software (COFES) event.

Over the years I’ve attended probably 8-10 of these unique events, and they have all been a bit different, but I have always come away with new insights and perspectives on engineering software.

The keynotes are always thought provoking and the roundtable discussions and general conversations are stimulating, because they often provide food for thought and questions for further investigation rather than just simple answers.

One of the aspects I especially appreciate about COFES is that the company behind the conference, Cyon Research, strictly forbids blatant “selling” by attendees. For the most this request is honored, noted a few exceptions, but I ignored them. This event is meant to be more a meeting of the minds than an opportunity to capitalize on a captive audience.

This year’s theme was on the many facets of transformative complexity and how to understand it and take advantage of the benefits it can present.

At COFES, Everyone Is Encouraged (and Expected) To Participate 

The growth of complexity in everything we do is presenting us with new and difficult challenges, from our constantly changing business environment, to conflicting requirements of more simplicity (to the customer) in products that require more complexity to deliver. New phenomena result from complexity, often requiring consideration of things that were not previously an issue. The demands of IoT, the emergence of additive manufacturing. And it’s not just products: emergent properties of complexity occur in processes, in IT, in business models, in politics, and in economies.

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ESPRIT CAM Software: 21st Century CAM

Thursday, April 6th, 2017

A few weeks ago at SOLIDWORKS World, I got reacquainted with a CAM company that previously I had only limited experience with – DP Technology. After talking with Don Davies, DP Technology’s VP of Americas, I came away from the event impressed with the company, as well as where DP Technology and its ESPIRIT product line are heading as ESPRIT CAM Software.

DP Technology Corp is a privately held company co-founded in 1982 by Daniel Frayssinet and Paul Ricard. The company gets its name from the first names of the co-founders – (D)an and (P)aul. The company’s corporate headquarters is in Camarillo, California. The rest of the company is structured by function with offices in France, Germany, India, Italy, China, and Japan. DP Technology is the developer of the diverse ESPRIT CAM system sold and supported via the company’s regional offices and its network of resellers throughout the world. ESPRIT has also developed close partnerships with several leading milling, turning, and wire-EDM machine tool manufacturers, such as Okuma, Mazak, DMG Mori, Citizen, Mitsubishi, GF AgiCharmilles, and Sodick.


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