This author catches flack sometimes from various places and one of the ones lately has been from some fans of Solid Edge. Of course I am in that number but I am not blind to what the plans just might be for SE as demonstrated by the actions taken and not the few words spoken by Siemens SE and the Siemens Corp people. I get an email today reminding me of the October SE University and following the bread crumbs tells me why for the first time this premier annual SE event is to be well after the typical SE rollout time frame. It is because the whole thing is to be buried as a footnote into the world of Siemens PLM World and pretty much ignored from there. Why do I say this? Follow me as I use Siemens own pressers and words and I ask you to tell me how I am wrong in my conclusions. Then if you think I am wrong present evidence as compelling as what I bring forth here today regarding the future for SE to support your opinion. Please, it would be nice to be wrong here but where is any evidence to support the bright future idea.
http://blog.industrysoftware.automation.siemens.com/blog/2015/05/18/solid-edge-st8-design-without-boundaries/ will take you to an interesting release where it is announced that SE ST8 will be released at—- PLM World in Dallas this week. I had not seen this before and the only announcement I remember seeing regarding SE ST8 which I had assumed would be rolled out at the premier SE event has been announced instead for this PLM World. So now I begin to understand why SEU 2015 was so delayed. There is history here and I sat there in the middle of it and what I will tell you is from personal experience with witnesses who also saw this.
The year is 2009 and I ran all the SE sessions with the dreaded blue survey forms in hand for the PLM World in Nashville that year. It was what directly got me involved with SE as an active advocate for change when much to my amazement there were only 37 actual SE users there in attendance out of over 50,000 SE users by a Joe Greco estimate. I’ve been told there were over 500 in the annual Summit as it was called back in Cincinnati in 2005. But some wise people somewhere in the corporate UGS food chain decided that they needed to save money and looked for unnecessary things they could afford to cut out. So they killed the Summits and rolled it into PLM World where SE users DID NOT want to be. It was made clear to them they were not important and by 2009 the results were irrefutable. Karsten Newbury and Don Cooper and I along with a few others decided that it was time to restore a specific annual event for SE users and thus was born the Solid Edge Universities. It was decided that yes an SE user community was worth while and the Universities would be the kick start to a hopefully vibrant user community. There was a lot of fighting over all this and the PLM World people were quite upset. Now these PLM World people are really tight with the NX/UGS side of things and they never did really care about SE. Talking with one of the PLM wheels after the 2009 PLM World he interviewed me to get my opinion on what had happened. I told him that SE needed to have its own separate meeting. You see SE guys are polo shirt casual work a day types and the PLM World people are fussy “professionals” with a bit of look down their nose attitudes for any other than their NX etal peers. We did not belong there and the numbers proved it. Tom Both’s response was well hey, if we do something for you then we will have to do it for all the others who whine too. The concern for user opinions was quite touching and the war against the PLM World way was born that day.
SEU 2012 had a surprise visit from PLM World just after the University was over. Karsten and I were walking to the room that the user group wrap up was to be held in after the last sessions were over. I remember Karsten saying to me that a PLM World guy was going to be there and he asked me not to say a word no matter what this guy did. So we get started and the PLM guy, John something or other and no I am not going to bother to research his last name again, says he is there to find out how to get us back under PLM World auspices. Now poor John is such a perfect example of the problem and no clue about it either. He was the only person in the room including the leadership from SE who had a suit and tie on. It is how they dress you know and also how they think. Two separate worlds. I even asked him as I walked with him after the meeting if he had noticed he was the only one in the room with a suit and tie on. He laughed and said yes but was, he was in marketing now I kid you not, oblivious to there being any significance there. I find this attitude bleeds over in other areas too and it is why the UGS NX guys try to smother SE and never understand that these programs appeal and sell to two different markets. They perceive it as a threat to NX.
But anyway back to the meeting. I am listening to poor old John pontificate a bit and sitting there in silence fulminating. Finally Matt Johnston had enough and he spoke up rather bluntly about all of the junk the PLM World guy was saying and Mr. PLM John says they would form a committee to study what the problems are. I kid you not. The true Siemens answer for anything I guess. Form a committee and have lots and lots of meetings and decide nothing in them but bury the problem so you don’t have to deal with it. In any case Karsten knew what I thought and he wanted to see what the other users thought. Karsten you see cared and I will never forget him looking time and time again at the actual users to gauge their reactions to PLM John. It was quite clear that SE users wanted no part of what PLM John had to offer and John was being given enough rope to hang himself by. But you see the good guys that used to run SE are now gone and we are back to the loving hands of PLM World and UGS/Siemens.
SE ST8 to be rolled out at an event that has not one thing for SE I can find in the agenda. http://www.plmworld.org/d/do/5396 is the link to the full agenda and I have looked twice for SE anything. Please help me to find what I may have missed and point out to me the nice little SE things. So exactly what are they rolling out and to whom if it is not on the agenda anyway? Why even bother with this stupidity is my question and do they think SE users appreciate this type of patronizing attitude of out right neglect after some thrilling empty words announcement? No sad to say the thought processes never got that far. Siemens UGS PLM World just simply does not care.
http://www.plm.automation.siemens.com/en_us/products/solid-edge/st8/index.shtml will take you to the ST8 new stuff. Go there and please tell me how exciting you find it. I can only hope they have a lot more held back. I see incremental improvements on things already there which in aggregate can be quite beneficial but nothing new unless the idea of porting to a Surface Pro is exciting to you. Personally speaking I find a real 15″ Workstation Laptop at a minimum to be worthwhile in spite of the larger size since I want to be able to fully work when I get to my destination. But I know little bitty screens and crippled computing capabilities excite some so there you go.
Question for you dear readers. Is there a discernible pattern of behavior here and what does this foretell for the future of SE if this current attitude is to become permanent Siemens policy? I want to hear from any SE user regarding what you see and hear this week at PLM World. If indeed there are any SE attendees to begin with. RIP.