Year End Countdown

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I asked Ryan Seacrest to do a year-end countdown with me, but his agent says he only works with guys over 97 years old. [Dick Clark] Thus I am going to do this one solo.

Top ten cool CAD related things I saw/experienced in 2009:

10 – Sir Richard Branson, guest speaker at SOLIDWORKS World.
I have to admit I didn’t know much about the guy before his speech, but he is the kind of person who you could listen to for hours. Very inspirational. I thought it was cool that after he saw the baby incubators designed for 3rd world countries, he pretty much snapped his fingers, ordered some and had them sent out. Do you think he said it like this?

9 – The release of Windows 7.
Not so much the new OS, but mostly that fact that Vista is dying. My life seems to improve with every uninstall.

8 – Twitter
I’ve found the SOLIDWORKS community on Twitter a very helpful group. I’ve made contacts through Twitter that have helped me out of several jams. Check out SolidSmack‘s listing of over 180 SOLIDWORKS and 3D CAD users who use Twitter. (yes, yes I know Twitter actually came out in 2006, but I didn’t find it until this year -and it’s MY list!)

7 – Columbus Technical Summit.
Great to see something local so well attended, I met people as far away as Philadelphia. It is fun networking with other SOLIDWORKS users.

6 – The release of DriveWorks Solo.
This one took me by surprise. I knew the DriveWorks folks were working on something pretty big, ’cause I hadn’t heard from them in a while, I just figured it was DriveWorks 7. Who knew it would be a new product?!

5 – Tasks in SOLIDWORKS Enterprise PDM 2010.
Batch work being done off line. Printing, conversions, you name it.

4 – 2010 Simulation motion’s event based triggers.
Finally don’t have to use timers on everything any longer!

3 – Design Study in SOLIDWORKS 2010
This one doesn’t seem to get much love in the community, but I love it! It is a great way to quickly watch how variables affect designs.

2 –The new SOLIDWORKS forum.
Simply improving the search capabilities alone gets this item in the top ten. (A forum where you couldn’t search? How did that ever get adopted??) The new system, bookmarks, friends and ease of use, make this a very valuable resource.

1 – Toolbox integration in Enterprise PDM 2010.
Let’s face it, the integration before wasn’t even a bandage for the issues multi-sites are suffering through. I think they finally have it right now

What’s the big thing for 2010? I think it is going to be Google Wave. Design communication and collaboration via email is very difficult compared to the benefits Wave provides. Granted Wave is not getting very good press and there are already good tools available to help designers with their communication issues. However remember Wave is still in its preview stages, it is constantly improving and you can’t beat the price. With screen caps, file uploads, threaded replies, I think it would be an interesting support platform too! Would you like it if 3DVision’s support team was on the Wave?