Will Machinists Capitalize on the PMI Opportunity?

Am I talking about some far off technological leap for machinists? Actually, no. There’s a movement occurring right now that promises some value for machinists. In the 3D Collaboration and Interoperability study I am conducting right now, 40.2% of respondents are creating 3D models with Product and Manufacturing Information (PMI).

Clarifying the Confusing Terminology of Drawingless Initiatives

In this industry, terminology is a bear. There are special acronyms and terms with subtle differences that can actually have big implications. And unfortunately, there isn’t a good place to get definitions for them all. A few weeks ago, I launched survey that looks at design data interoperability, model-based enterprise initiatives and the use of 3D outside engineering. Statistics and findings from that survey will be used to publish The State of 3D Collaboration and Interoperability Market Report in May. You can take the survey here to get a complimentary copy of the report. But the exercise of carefully developing the survey made me tease apart the definitions of various terms related to drawingless efforts.

A 3D CAD model of a car with its door open

Tetra4D: Leveraging the Adobe Ecosystem

What are your first thoughts when you hear the words “pdf” and “product development?” When I first heard them together, I have to admit that I wasn’t buzzing with excitement. Sure, there are lots of documents involved in product development, but I there’s nothing specific about that for engineering. My general expectation is that pdf …

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The Long and Winding Road of 3D Visualization

I will never forget my first exposure to 3D visualization. It was back in 1996 or so. I was assisting on the development of a Crew Return Vehicle (CRV) program at NASA Johnson Space Center in Houston. There was an executive presentation on the progress of the program and how their new parametric feature-based CAD …

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Low Spatial Intelligence as an Impediment to 3D CAD

If you’ve been following the engineering-matters blog for a while, you know I’ve written a good bit about CAD over the past year or so. And why not? It’s an industry that’s been re-energized by a number of big shifts in technology during that time. Several old and new software providers are trying harder than …

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The State of Paperless: More Feasible Than Ever?

Going paperless. What a vision, right? Some ten years ago, the concept of taking product development completely electronic seemed like some far off and unobtainable goal. But fast forward to today and it doesn’t seem quite so far out of reach.

The Subtle Distinction Between Designing and Documenting Products

Last week, I wrote about a topic that generated a lot of discussion over on LinkedIn: Who builds 3D models? Engineers? Designers? Drafters? It’s been an ongoing debate for quite some time. Coming out of that discussion, at least in my mind, I’ve come to some clarity on the topic. But not necessary from a role specific view. In general, I believe there are two sets of activities in the design phase.

Who Builds 3D Models? Engineers? Designers? Drafters?

With that in mind, I started up a conversation over at the ASME professional group over at LinkedIn. Not to get a definitive answer, but at laest to test the waters two years after some direct modeling CAD technology had hit the market. Specifically, I asked “Who should ultimately be the user of CAD tools? Engineer? Designer? Drafter?” Naturally, the question got some strong and opinionated responses.