October 20, 2008
iCHECK For Autodesk Inventor Identifies Design Problems
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Jeff Rowe - Managing Editor


by Jeff Rowe - Contributing Editor
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PTC announced that Black & Decker has selected Windchill for strategic PLM initiatives in its Industrial Products Group. The implementation includes Windchill PDMLink, Windchill ProjectLink, Windchill PartsLink, and Windchill Enterprise Systems Integration (ESI) to SAP. Black & Decker required a PLM solution that would enable it to accelerate time-to-market without compromising quality and innovation. Equally important was the company’s desire to maximize its technology investment by embracing a solution that would support the complex collaboration and data management requirements of its heterogeneous CAD environment and global product development initiatives. Looking to improve the
capabilities of the company’s existing product data management (PDM) solution to successfully address these challenges, Black & Decker began searching for a replacement PLM system, and ultimately chose Windchill.



IFS announced the North American beta launch of a CAD integration tool for its enterprise suite, IFS Applications. The first customer deliveries are scheduled for next month, with general availability planned for early 2009. While some other enterprise software products – including enterprise resources planning (ERP) software – have CAD interfaces, they typically are designed to import and export data in and out of a CAD tool. This approach creates two separate product data management (PDM) databases, and related synchronization problems. IFS leverages web services built into its service-oriented architecture (SOA) to share PDM data common to both engineering and manufacturing, resulting in “real time CAD to PDM” integration. For customers that want to keep separate the engineering and manufacturing functions, a future release will also support a more traditional “PDM to PDM” integration model. The interface can be accessed from many popular CAD applications, which addresses the problem of which CAD tool to use. Now, various CAD tools can share standardized PDM data and functionality within IFS Applications. Typically, PDM tools are proprietary to CAD platforms, which can create vendor lock-in. IFS “plug-in” adapters support multiple CAD platforms, including AutoCAD, Autodesk Inventor, Pro/ENGINEER, and SolidWorks, allowing each CAD application to
access the same web services within IFS Applications to access PDM and engineering data stored in IFS Applications.


Jeffrey Rowe is the editor of
MCADCafé and MCAD Weekly Review. He can be reached at
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