Over the holidays, I made it a point to visit a few CAD sites. While I’ve always been a lurker on Eng-Tips, I created an account this time. Thanks to Franco Folini’s Novedge site, I found a few new CAD blogs to look at (if you go there, be sure to give this post a beat ) There are some Ning sites taking hold as well. SpaceClaiming is one and I was able to join a Solid Edge Ning site set up by Edinburgh University for their CAD and FEA students. I also updated my Orkut profile and joined the Solid Edge and Siemens groups there.
In reading though the blogs and comments I’ve seen some confusion about Solid Edge and Synchronous Technology. For example, you may be seeing some interesting debate going on related to the relatively new type of history free direct modeling and the more traditional history based modeling. On your left you have products like SpaceClaim, CoCreate, Solid Edge ST, and NX. On your right you have SolidWorks, Catia, Pro/E, Inventor, Solid Edge ST and NX.
Yes, Solid Edge ST and NX are on both sides. These products are in the unique position of letting the customer, not the vendor, decide which technology is best for them. Maybe you are more conservative and want to let this new fangled modeling play out a bit more. That’s cool, we have been doing history a long time and understand it well. Or maybe you are sick and tired of long recomputes, broken history trees, and lack of flexibility for your serious parts. We have you covered here with our Synchronous Technology.
Or maybe you need both. History based for the traditional folks, history free for the advanced thinkers or for imported parts from other CAD systems, FEA model prep and rapid design or concept work. I guess you could buy two CAD systems, one from each category, or a single copy of Solid Edge ST or NX6. Of course, let’s not forget about assemblies. Want to mix your history based parts with the new Synchronous parts? Go ahead. That is your choice too.
Another misunderstanding I’m seeing is the idea Parametric = History when history is really just one way to do “parametric”. If you say, “I want this face always 10mm from this other face”, you can do that in either method – in fact it’s more visible and intuitive with Synchronous Technology. There are lots of ways to lock down or parameterize engineering requirements with Synchronous Technology. You might take a look at Russel Brook’s latest tutorial.