I did not put this on the academic forum because as a former CAD professional in the private sector, it is only the industry that can answer certain questions. I have now transistioned to be a k-12 teacher of CAD. I have incoporated NX into my program as I have an aerospace background, but we have Solid Edge as well. It seems like many are going to teamcenter, and with it, the eventual incorporation of NX or Solid Edge. Can anyone give me some insight on the growth of Solid Edge? Do you see it dethroning Dassault?
Irs great that you are teaching CAD to that age range - I am sure you will have some interesting stories to share!
Solid Edge does not have the market presence of SolidWorks right now but we are working hard to change that. I think the fact that we are the "challenger" in the market can be good for our users - it makes us try harder and hopefully, be more responsive to our user's needs. A great example is the growth of the Greenpower academic program that Solid Edge supports - this started in the UK and is now growing fast in the USA and globally. Maybe you can get your school plugged in to this program?
Solid Works does have the market right now. Any company with more than a few CAD people are very unlikly to change system unless the company is purchased and the new parent requires something different.
Changing CAD formats to too costly.
Things change by capturing new companies and building momenum. 15 years ago DWG format was the basic commidity for engineering companies. AutoCAD won the market with good documentation early on when nobody understood CAD. The move to 3D has been made by most except anything government and regulation related that are still done in 2D.
Autodesk lost the market to DSS because Solid Works was easier to use than Inventor at the time people were making the move to perametric from 2D CAD.
The next change is incorperating reverse engineering and 3D printing. Whoever can provide clear and easy to use doumentation for training and easy to use interface for the next step will win.
That requires easy translation between Points/Nurbs/Polygons/Primatives, class A surfacing, Non history based models.Easy translation from survey to 3D Print is a HUGE undertaking.
The other important cog is how well programmed each contries manufacting and construction standards are built into the software at what cost, and how that can be used to prove compliance for structural and flow calculations.
SE is in the best position for this for two reasons:
1. They own the core code that both SE and SW use
2. They are already working out the kinks in non history modeling.
The ease of use is also decent, but SE is not fully mature yet and documentation has a long way to go. Too soon to tell.
@12GAGE My opinion was that AutoCAD lead the market because it's license protection was pretty much non-existant and everyone thus had a copy, and you use what you know.
I felt that when Inventor began it started out functionally a couple years behind SolidWorks and Solid Edge and that hurt them, but they did have a leg up with a lot of companies that were legacy AuoCAD users (foot in the door).
Here's the thing. This is of course personal opinion. I bet my career (changing from Works to Edge) on the idea that Works has hit its peak and that Edge has the technology to dethrone history-based modeling.
To me, the combination of Works and Catia is less compelling than the combination of Edge and NX. So I believe Siemens wins either way. It's hard to tell the future, but this is how I have cast my die.
I will agree about the copy protection of early CAD. I obtained a copy of ACAD 10 on a single floppy in 1988 and was my first CAD package. AutoCAD also had 5 open add on languages. LISP allowed companies to program simple tasks. Other languages were used by Softdesk & others to make Civil and Architectural add ons that later became the Civil and Architectural versions fo ACAD.
My University had ACAD 7 because of the documentation.
SE has effectively done the same thing with the free 2D version. My current company used that and is how I ended up looking at SE for the first time for production other than a minor look at it in 2000 for extrusions when I was reverse engineering. SE in 2000 was the only program that could correctly extrude the trim around the state capital of Kansas.
My personal industry, off-road vehicle & product design has seen a slight increase in the use of SE. I'm one of a handful of guys that cater to this industry as independent CAD designers. I've always pushed SE along the way to others that ask questions or are interested in sterrping into the industry. It's sort of a monkey-see monkey-doo, most people know somebody that has used SW and when deciding upon a program they use what their friend has. Larger business obviously have a bit more thought into a purchase but it still relies upon the CAD departments history or use of programs.
While I've never been a part of the program I know Solid works is a sponsor of the SAE collegiate series of events. It would be good to preceed students use of SW with SE at the high school level.
That's a loaded question to ask in such a biased forum. But, nonetheless, a couple great questions.
Growth of Solid Edge. I see that Siemens has been positioning and posturing SE for the eventual DS announcement that SW Mechanical/desktop version (no the SW apps) will no longer be developed. You can see examples of this all throughout the last 5 years worth of enhancements. Each enhancement has been to either "complete" the SW feature to feature set and the migration and quick re-purposing of Parasolid data- now with ST9 the infamous drawing to drawing translation!
Will SE grow? I sure hope so and, like Matt, I'm "investing" in SE for that reason.
SW as a software has not really be implementing any significant functional enhancements-- they have combined multiple functions, "macrotize", to create new functions. Any new main module was a 3rd party add-on that they may have purchased and rebranded. Support, to my knowledge, has been outsourced. The last key incentive to buy the software ($500 penalty) as back maintenance is now gone. All new functions at the last few SW conventions have been all SW app related (all running on new ENOVIA environment). Free PDM is very limited and requires the medium license for the free seat of PDM.
I hope you can see that these are all business signs that something is happening to SW desktop. With that, we all hope to see Solid Edge as the logical replacement.
Can SE dethrone SW?
Dethroning usually requires a revolt from the masses and usually has a financial backer hidden away in the background. With that you can take a look at the SW forum areas to see that folks aren't that happy-- at least the folks on the forum aren't that happy.
Secondly, you will need a financial reason to switch. Now, this could be a straight up I need to have support type reason or for the company it can be a strategic partnership reason. I prefer the strategic partnership reason and it is a great "story" to tell. Even better when you compare and contrast the SPLM and Dassault System stories.
I feel your questions might be alluding to a hidden question of "Should I teach this software and will it be beneficial for my students?" Am I correct? If so, I'd say yes Solid Edge is beneficial because it allows you to use three (3) different modeling paradigms- History-based, History-free and hybrid. One or all of these paradigms are going to win out eventually. Better to know all three then be on the losing end of one.
Teamcenter, to my knowledge, is still the PLM king when it comes to amount of data managed by a PLM system. Keep in mind this tool manages multi-CAD files-- not just Siemens PLM data files. Teamcenter can also be setup to mimic either a real engineering/design workflow or even an academic environment workflow of submitting work for grading, rework, and final grade and to help curtail plagiarisms.