I’ll be traveling to the Dassault offices in Waltham,MA on September 4th for the SOLIDWORKS 2015 press roll out. I have been using the 2015 beta release for a couple of months now so some of the things shown at the roll out I will have already seen and used and others will be completely new. The official public release of SOLIDWORKS 2015 is September 9th. Until that date SOLIDWORKS is releasing some “sneek peek” blog posts showing some of the new or enhanced functionality found in the 2015 release. I’ve assembled them here for your viewing pleasure. You can find more at the SOLIDWORKS blog. Don’t forget to check out the SOLIDWORKS 2015 launch page when it goes live September 9th.
I’ve posted my presentations from SolidWorks World 2014 on the downloads page. You can go there to grab the files or click the links in this post to take you there.
PhotoView 360 2014: What’s New. This session will cover all the new functionality found in PhotoView 360 2014. It will actually go a bit further and also cover a few things found in SolidWorks (not PhotoView) that can/will help with creating images from the SolidWorks graphics window. For this session I’ll be teaming up with Ron Bates. Ron is the former manager of graphical applications at DS SolidWorks. At this moment in time there is no other person with as much knowledge about PhotoView than Ron.
Rendering and Animation Tips and Tricks. This session will cover tips to achieve better renderings and animations. It’s a 60 minute session so we’ll have time to cover 5 tips for each subject. Tips will range from the very basic to the more complex and there should be something in there for everyone at all skill levels. This session isn’t meant to walk you through how to create renderings and animations. It’s meant to focus on specific areas where users may run into difficulty and show tips or techniques to work through the issue. As examples. One rendering tip covers how to create a custom appearance to match a very specific color and pattern. One animation tip covers how to perfectly create a fade from hide/show or color change components.
As an added bonus you can also find two presentations from Marlon Banta, manager, simulation product definition covering Motion Manager.
The general session typically sets the daily buzz at SolidWorks World and that’s exactly what happened on Monday. We of course heard the typical information like the numbers of attendees (which is 5600), number of worldwide users (which is about 2.3 million) and DS’ future vision which they market as the “3D Experience Platform”. All information you’d expect to hear but not terribly exciting. There were two segments in particular from Monday’s general sessions that stood out and kept people talking all day.
Hugh Herr is a double amputee who lost both his legs in a rock climbing accident. His passion for rock climbing and desire to continue doing that after his accident led him to found the company BioM. BioM develops prosthetic legs with a special “ankle system” that offers a number of benefits for the wearer/user. They work so well the audience was amazed when he rolled up his pant legs after talking, walking, etc around stage to reveal he was using the product. While the company has focused on their ankle system they have future goals of creating products for non amputees that enhances their ability to run, walk, jump with less effort and better performance. It was really a great story of someone who took something most people would see as a liability and turned it into an asset.
SolidWorks Mechanical Conceptual (SWMC) was released and shown during the general session on Monday. 3-5 years ago (it’s been so long I can’t remember exactly what year it was shown) SolidWorks showed a future product at SolidWorks World. Then it was being called SolidWorks V6 and it was thought by many to be the SolidWorks V1 replacement based entirely on DS technology rather than having to rely on other vendors such as parasolid. What was shown Monday is the current status of the product shown 3-5 years ago. It was shown using a pre recorded video that was narrated live on stage. After watching the general session presentation and then attending a couple of 1 hour sessions which showed the product actually being used I was able to have some questions about the product answered. Its still to early to give a complete review of the product but there were many first impressions among the people I talked with. It will take some time for more details to be released and users to actually get their hands on the product but in the couple of hours I’ve seen it in action I can say a few things.
The interface looked to be a very well thought out design with a clean modern feel. While it’s new I think the current SolidWorks user will feel right at home working in mechanical conceptual since the core tools are essentially the same as what their using now. The workflow is also similar enough that a user could jump between the 2 software’s with ease.
SWMC currently is not a replacement for SolidWorks. It’s just too limited in functionality at this point. That’s not to say what it does is limiting, it has some great tools and adds some nice new features (like trace path). From watching it being used it appears that its going to do what its designed to do (conceptual mechanical design) very well.
It does not communicate with SolidWorks well. This of course is an opinion and will vary by user based on their needs. When I say “communicate” I mean a SWMC model brought into SolidWorks does not import with a full feature tree. It imports Brep representation information, custom properties and colors. SolidWorks files brought into SWMC do not bring in a feature tree. Essentially communication is currently at the “dumb” solid level.
Pricing is set at $249/month but its not a monthly rental, its a one year minimum rental . Doing the math that’s $2988/yr.
You do need to have an internet connection to use SWMC, it’s a cloud hosted application
SWMC has a number of built-in tools for collaboration and social interaction which is supposed to make working with others all over the world easier and more streamlined.
For more information on Monday’s general session complete with video have a look at the SolidWorks Blog.
Here are some SWMC Images.
The last attendees are arriving today and everyone is registering for SolidWorks World 2014. The conference officially kicks off tonight at 5:30 with the welcome reception in the partner pavilion. The official numbers can’t be calculated until Monday but I’m told they on are track to be about 6000 attendees.
I’ve been walking the halls of the convention center and the streets of San Diego the last couple of days soaking up the sun and warm temperatures. It’s quite a change from the -13F I left back home. I’ve bumped into lots of old friends and user group leaders and it’s been great catching up with everyone. One of the most talked about topics so far this year has been the location of SolidWorks World 2015. We have one clue from Richard Doyle who swears he has no idea where it will be. The 2015 conference will be held in a city that has never hosted a SolidWorks World. A lot of cities have been thrown out as ideas but there hasn’t been a consistent front runner. What do you think? Where will SolidWorks 2015 be held?
Some things to note about this years conference.
There are a number of SolidWorks Mechanical Conceptual sessions listed in the agenda and a couple of press conferences on the topic. This makes me think DS is finally going to release the product to consumers.
If you’re attending SolidWorks World and want to learn more about rendering and animation be sure and stop by my two sessions.
If you you’d like to talk computing power, rendering, animation, SolidWorks user groups or just about anything else you can find me at the Boxx Technologies booth in the partner pavilion at certain times throughout the conference.
It really just doesn’t seem possible but this will be my 10th consecutive SolidWorks World! My first SolidWorks World was in 2004 in Boston. Boston in January isn’t for everyone and that probably had something to do with why the conference attendance was low that year. For me however it was great. Living 4 hours north of Boston we typically have temperatures in the single digits (or colder) and a few feet of snow at the end of January. Boston had temps in the 30s and a few inches of snow. It’s also an easy drive and since I covered that my employer was more wiling to pay the conference fee and hotel. I was able to participate in alpha testing for the first time and the Boston conference is where I passed my CSWP exam. The old 8 hour exam that was part written, part modeling. I even gave the model mania contest a try although I didn’t do so well.
What happened in the years between 2004 and 2014. Well, I started a SolidWorks user group, won user group leader of the year, participated in a lot more alpha testing, met some really great people, went to theme parks, met the guys from OCC, heard Burt Rutan, Steve Wozniak, Gene Kranz and Jim Lovell give some amazing talks, became a blogger, learned black jack from an MIT black jack team player, have presented 9 years at World and whole lot of others things I don’t have space to write. If you really want to read a few more you can see what Richard Doyle posted on his blog.
Fast forward to the present and some things are different. I’m now self employed, have two kids, am a SolidWorks World veteran and San Diego is a whole lot warmer than Boston in January. Some things are still the same though. Like in 2004 I’ll be participating in alpha testing again this year but no model mania contest. I still don’t do well in those. I’ll be giving two presentations this year. I’m hoping we will finally have a version of SolidWorks Mechanical Conceptual (dare I say V6) that is actually available for everyone to use. I’m still having a great time at SolidWorks World and its still the best place to network with SolidWorks users from all over the world.
Hopefully you’ll be at SolidWorks World this year and starting or continuing your journey to a decade of SolidWorks World’s. Hope to see you there.
SolidWorks World 2014 is quickly approaching and for the 9th consecutive year I’ll be giving presentations at the event. As in the past my sessions will cover topics which aren’t necessarily considered mainstream in the SolidWorks community. This is great because it’s a way for users to find good quality information about topics they might not be able to otherwise. I like presenting because it gives me a chance to really connect with users and share what is hopefully helpful information.
This session will cover tips to achieve better renderings and animations. It’s a 60 minute session so we’ll have time to cover 5 tips for each subject. Tips will range from the very basic to the more complex and there should be something in there for everyone at all skill levels. This session isn’t meant to walk you through how to create renderings and animations. It’s meant to focus on specific areas where users may run into difficulty and show tips or techniques to work through the issue. As examples. One rendering tip covers how to create a custom appearance to match a very specific color and pattern. One animation tip covers how to perfectly create a fade from hide/show or color change components.
This session will cover all the new functionality found in PhotoView 360 2014. It will actually go a bit further and also cover a few things found in SolidWorks (not PhotoView) that can/will help with creating images from the SolidWorks graphics window. For this session I’ll be teaming up with Ron Bates. Ron is the former manager of graphical applications at DS SolidWorks. At this moment in time there is no other person with as much knowledge about PhotoView than Ron. If PhotoView is something you need more training and information about then you’ll definitely want to attend this session.
As always, if you have questions, comments or just want to say hi feel free to find me at one of my sessions or roaming around the convention center. Hope to see you in San Diego.
SolidWorks 2014 adds the ability in drawings to convert lower case text to upper case with the click of a button.
SolidWorks 2014 eliminates edge bleed on thin walled parts.
Sometimes you want a non photo realistic effect for your renderings and animations. That’s easier to accomplish in SolidWorks 2014.
Here is a nice feature for creating quick screen shots with versatility.