Chad Jackson

Tops Methods of Exchanging, Translating and Modifying Design Data

October 22, 2013

This finding uncovers some concerning methods of exchanging, translating and modifying design data.

Tops Methods of Exchanging, Translating and Modifying Design Data

The details around working with other’s design data can have a big impact. This finding focused on quantifying which means are being used most frequently.



By simply looking at the numbers, it is obvious that organizations are using many different methods to exchange design data. While that is concerning for consistency sake, the use of some of these methods is concerning. Email is by no means a secure method to exchange data. It is way by which that design data can be intercepted by competitors and duplicated. It is a serious problem with respect to protecting intellectual property.

When it comes to translating design data, the use of CAD software is commonplace. Moving from one CAD tool to another, however, warrants serious consideration of Translation software, which can often smooth the process and provide cleaner geometry.

The most concerning statistic in this set, however, is that 46% of this study’s respondents have rebuilt the design using features. This is emblematic of just how bad the design interoperability problem really is. Even though they might have the native file and use the same CAD application, some engineers choose to rebuild the model because there are too many feature failures. In other circumstances, translating the design results in so many geometry errors that it is simply easier to rebuilt the original. In either case, this represents a significant amount of time that could be dedicated to developing new designs.

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