Tag Archives: direct editing

Inventor Pro HSM Development Updates Available

One of the things I envied for years when I was on the outside looking in was the speed with which HSM has made updates available. Besides the year updates there are two other types. The latest official version is the one that has been vetted by means I do not know of right now for QA. The other is developmental which comes with the admonishment “not for production use”. In practical experience though if there is something you really need in one of these all it means is to go slow the first few times and make sure it works right for you would be my opinion. There are some turning things I want to try so I intend to grab this one.

Inventor Pro HSM update

While there were things that did not get into the official 2015 release it is HSM’s intention to as quick as possible work on getting the new turning and the Hole Wizard done ASAP. Turning by the way is supposed to be a complete revamp which would be good since turning has been a big weak spot in an otherwise powerful program. My guess would be that these will first appear here in the development side so early adopters keep an eye out. The philosophy that HSM has had for some time now is to have regular updates figuring that it was more beneficial to the customer to get working tools in hand rather than making us wait for an annual or semi-annual update that made a big old impressive looking list but also delayed significantly the improvements put into users hands.

HSMWorks for example had at least seven official versions for 2014 so if this is a typical average every other month will see new tools or bug fixes in your hands. There have also been thirty-seven developmental releases for HSMWorks for 2015 so far so there have been many things made available to users if they need them before the aggregate official versions get out. The pace of the official versions for HSMWorks has slowed down a bit for 2015 but these guys have had a ton of stuff on their plates with the integration with Autodesk so I can understand. Considering the world of CAMWorks which I came from the update rate here is amazing and quite frankly the idea that we users are important to HSM is a big breath of fresh air. It is HSM’s intent that some time this year the SW and Inventor and online programs will achieve near parity in features and be handled the same from then on.

By the way http://cam.autodesk.com/inventor-hsm-experimental/ will take you to the developmental I-HSM page where there are links to all the other flavors to. It is worthwhile to have a look and see what people who want you to succeed think is the right way to bring new features and bug fixes quickly to you. It is one of the things that influenced me when I was shopping some years back and still does.

Solid Edge and the Night of Sharp Knives

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.

Solidedging and Solid Edge and the Future

This will be a long post today and is an accumulation of thoughts and conclusions I have been having for some time now.

I went to Matt Lombards site “On The Edge” this morning and I see now that a link to my blog has been removed. While I am not at all surprised it did get me to thinking about the last few years and where I want to spend my time in the blogosphere.

Regarding Siemens it is funny how the question of why someone who was such a fan of SE has had this change of heart is never asked. But then asking in sincerity would mean a desire for SE to succeed and this does not exist inside of Siemens corporate where the decisions are really made regarding SE’s future. This is all I have ever wanted and as I have said many times and will again today SE is the very best mid range MCAD program. I see articles on direct editing in SE and picture my head nodding up and down in agreement. It is so powerful and all my major work is still done here. I wanted for SE to take by merit of capabilities it’s rightful place in the CAD world. Such was not to be.

It is hard to take the future of SolidEdge as a positive when so much is going wrong. The pace of improvements is slowing down and I hear nothing about any revolutionary new stuff. Only tinkering around the edges and improvements that are merely moderately evolutionary based on what is already there. Don’t look for any breath-taking announcements for ST8 would be my guess.

No I don’t think SE is going away. I remember thinking that SW would when it was clear Dassault corporate had determined SW was not the real future. It is still there and I guess will be until they can figure out how to keep their customer base intact while eliminating the program they came there for. Like Dassault Siemens is stuck with something that they can’t sell and don’t want and is not any part of their desired plans for the future. So the future is auto pilot but do not sell and don’t waste money on it either. SE represents income already paid for though so at least they see this and will keep it going to some degree. It will however remain the adopted red-headed step child that seems to be SE’s fate in life. Overseen by stupid people who do not want or desire for SE to have the success it technically merits for whatever reason. The idea that North American Siemens Software, and by extension I mean Chuck Grindstaff directly since he is in charge of it all has cast aside SE is plain silly. All because of a perceived threat to the sales of NX. The UGS people never did have much use for SE. I was there in person to see the love they had for SE in 2009 in Nashville,TN PLM World where SE user attendance was down to 37 people. You can lie with words but actions trump these and this was proof of the regard UGS etal had for SE and users responded likewise.

Just like this current user behind the SolidEdgeing blog is responding. Really don’t look for much in the way of hope for SE anymore. Follow me as I assembly bread crumb trails that make me think like I do. I still know a lot of people associated with SE from Europe to Huntsville. They know I was and am a huge fan of SE. They also in most cases share my discouragement over the plight of SE’s future. So let us go through some random dot connecting here.

I knew Don Cooper and Karsten Newbury fairly well. They were wholly dedicated to the idea that SE was the best and should take its place as number one. They lived and breathed this idea and worked for it. When Karsten left he still had about three years if I remember right on a five-year contract. I don’t know what Don’s status was. But the idea they left or were run off is the important thing here. It heralded I believe edicts from Siemens Corp to deliberately stifle SE and I figure that after a while Don and Karsten just quit fighting. After all why should eminently qualified people stay where their success is artificially limited by those who have no desire to see SE succeed.

I remember standing in a circle with Karsten and Tony Affuso and myself at the first SEU in Huntsville. Karsten insisted I come over there and meet him and I was really hesitant to do so after some of the things I had written. It was kind of strange and no one came to join the huddle so it was just the three of us for quite some time. Tony made clear his desire to beat the pants off of Dassault. He also made mention in reply to a comment Karsten made that the budget he had was his to spend as he saw fit. I left with a different opinion of Tony Affuso. I also noticed that with the changing of the guard to Grindstaff that the desire for SE to beat the pants off anyone was gone from Siemens.

We now have John Miller as head of SE in Karstens old spot. I don’t believe he has contacted a single user. There have been two posts by him at the SE Siemens BBS since he acquired this job. Well let me rephrase that. There have been two posts written for him. No one talks that way and I have been around long enough to see deception as blatant as those were. So the new guy could care less and has not evinced one iota of interest in SE’s users or future. He is a place holder by his very actions as far as I am concerned and this is not the sign of a company that wants SE to thrive.

Absolutely no mention of SE in any of the major Siemens Software grants I can see. I have asked for breakdowns of some of them and no one will provide them. I do see lots of high dollar Siemens NX and PLM Teamcenter related things though. Is SE in there? Who knows but for sure Siemens does not care to say so if it is. WHY?

SE has a custom car building kit thing of some sort. No it is not Local Motors it is a purely academic thing. The link evades me right now and I am not going to bother to look it up. I think however it is mainly the result of caring people inside of SE’s educational branch doing what little they can as they can. Siemens has not and wont be getting behind this in any major way I believe. Think about it. When was the last time you saw any pervasive long-term acted upon marketing strategy for SE? That’s right there has been none and this is solely because UGS and then Siemens do not want to allocate funds to something not important. You would not believe the fights that went on over stupid turf things with UGS and Siemens people where rational profit seeking corporate decisions were out the window. It is not like SE sells into the same market but try to tell the UGS and Siemens dudes this. Back to UGS veterans don’t like SE and until they go or have a change of heart forget it.

I admire the stance Carl Bass has taken with Autodesk. He has made long-term plans and bought control of key pieces for this and looks I believe decades into the future for the seeds he plants today. Siemens plants no seeds for SE and makes no acqusitions to bolster it and can’t even be bothered to vet the only major manufacturing integrated app SE has ever had. I am talking about CAMWorks of course. I don’t care about rendering and all that stuff I make parts. All design software has to make parts at some time to have a reason to exist. When Karsten left and SE was in Siemens loving hands CAMWorks went to crap. I to this day don’t know how much of the problem with CW4SE 2015 was with lack of co-operation from Siemens SE. But I do know that development budgets for SE are not what they should be and some top talent has been taken from them and put on the Siemens side to boot. So we see here intent by Siemens. Take good people away and make funding problems and do not pursue an integrated family of aps for SE. So just how does this indicate concern for SE’s future and yours to if you are a user might I ask?

There has never been a real aggressive marketing campaign for SE since ST1. I came on board just as ST1 was released for $3,000.00 and that bought one years maintenance and SE Classic. The main reason was to get SW users but if you really dug they would take any equivalent design package for this. This has not happened since then. I knew some people who wanted to do this but their hands were tied. Why when SW was doing all they could to give sales to SE for a few years did Siemens not take advantage of this? Perhaps what is going on in places in Europe right now might be a clue. SE can’t I guess discount beyond a certain price. I would imagine there are corporate hoops to jump through to do this. NX however is discounting to whatever level is necessary to clinch sales from, you guessed it, SE. Is this the hallmark of a company that might care about the future of SE or is it part of a plan to slowly subsume SE users into the NX side of things? In any case is there any sound fiscal reason to do this to part of your corporate body that could be making a lot more money for you? I don’t believe or subscribe to the idea that SE and NX serve the same basic markets. There is a place for both and not a whole lot of overlap. But for seven years now SE has not and never will do what was done for ST1 and I believe it is a deliberate choice by Siemens to not allow SE to thrive like it should. But apparently it can be allowable for NX. Why? I still remember the post by a major US VAR Saratech touting how easy it was to learn NX over SE https://solidedging.wordpress.com/2014/06/05/is-siemens-retarded-or-just-anti-solid-edge/ How did this bit of insanity ever even see the light of day except for the culture Siemens and UGS have created for SE to reside in. Funny thing about this post. It has been read more than any other past posts the last couple of weeks and I wonder why?

I remember sitting in an office in Huntsville talking to one of the marketing dudes who now works for Siemens and not SE. He belongs there to as far as I am concerned. I asked him why there were no spots made for bloggers and people who might give them favorable publicity at the SE Universities. I would have like to get a free pass for myself to no doubt but my main reason for asking was to try to get them to bring in bloggers that would give them press. His response was that this was too expensive to do. A short time SE employee sat there and heard this with me. We left and the comment made by the employee was that was just so wrong on many ways.
“You should NEVER tell a customer to their face they are not worth it”. I just shook my head sadly and said you see what we have had to deal with? This employee did not stay there long and left because it was clear Siemens did not intend to see SE thrive. Why stay at a dead-end? Subsequently that same year over fifty percent of the attendees were Siemens employees who were not going to write any press releases, not publish one blog post nor in any way do the good some free passes to bloggers would have done. Vacations for result free Siemens Employees however were dollars well spent. Is this the way an outfit that cares about the future is run?

Siemens promoted Dan Staples to be above the day-to-day management of SE he used to be in. Dan is brilliant as far as I am concerned but he is not a trench warfare fighter for SE who will battle corporate like Newbury and Cooper did. When Siemens promoted him they took this guy who was responsible for so many good things at SE and pulled him out of the real hands on loop. I hope he is making a lot more money now but as an SE user I have to say that I miss him in his old spot like I miss Newbury and Cooper for the same reasons. There is a dynamism certain teams have that can’t be easily replaced. They can however be easily dismantled by corporations that do not care. Like Siemens. I figure like Karsten and Don Dan will get fed up with seeing the thing he loves dearly wrecked by Siemens and he to will leave one day. Or acquire a trench warfare mentality and be told to leave because SE is not a part of the plan. How would you like to be in his spot with this great thing and then see it hidden under a rock?

CAMWorks for SE. Before I burned my bridges there with Geometric’s US guys I remember a conversation I had with a big wheel. He wondered why I had stopped blogging about SE and had started complaining about corporate and marketing. I told him exactly why and this was shortly after Don Cooper left. I explained to him what my suspicions were about corporate sabotage of SE and he said that could well explain why they were having trouble getting co-operation from SE. Like I told him Siemens NX people would rather we just buy Cam Express even though it was not truly integrated. I have to wonder how much of the 2015 CW4SE debacle blame should be allocated to which side. For sure Siemens is partly to blame and is this the action of a company that cares about what the SE users have to make a living with?

Speaking with some attendees from last years SEU in Atlanta. The general consensus was that Chuck Grindstaff did not want to really be there. Considering what is going on with SE I think these guys are spot on. You do not have to be present in a room where decisions are made to be able to discern what decisions have been made. The actions corporate officials take in so many ways telegraph what is going to be. I tend to think this was another indicator and since this was followed up with the appointment of John “Place Holder” Miller and the loss of Karsten do you have any doubts here about the veracity of the SE users observations regarding Grindstaff’s apparent disconnect? I don’t.

Marketing and Publicity. Where should I start regarding this mess? Or is it really a mess or is it by design? Siemens is eaten alive by rules and regulations and don’t even sneeze without running it by legal first. So we have this aspect of Siemens and it is a worrisome one. The paralysis created by meetings that do nothing and never reach a result is unbelievable. For this alone I fear for SE. Once a policy of neglect and or outright suppression is reached you are not going to change it. Once it has been DECIDED it is carved in stone. When the UGS people poisoned the well for SE I am afraid it will be so for many years. But above and beyond that does a company that wants a division of theirs to succeed spend some money and make a plan to do so? I think so. By the absence of a plan they also indicate their desires. You can go all the way back to the stupid days of Bruce Boes Velocity junk and continue to this day and see an unbroken string of marketing and publicity failure for SE. The reasons are two-fold. One, the UGS guys don’t want SE to make it and 2, Siemens corporate suffers from self-inflicted paralysis and they literally also do not have the ability to formulate and implement a marketing strategy. Thus you see Siemens but not Siemens what in advertising such as it is. Bold generic say nothing about anything but have generalities and say Siemens somewhere in there and you are done. WHOO-HOO!

I was sent a link to a video some time back and the premise of the author was that when a company that is big becomes old to there is a paralysis of bureaucracy that sets in and it stifles innovation. One of the methods to fight this by CEO’s who see this but can’t prevail against it is to buy competitiveness. Buy a lean mean going somewhere outfit and bring it in-house to improve your company with an end run around the killer culture of old, tired and bureaucratic. I have always felt that Siemens bought UGS to improve manufacturing efficiencies and to do so with something they would have sole control over. But now as it is subsumed into the monster what happens to it? Now decisions are in the hands of those who make a living by perpetuating layers of inefficient bureaucracy and they are not ever going to make or allow to be made decisions that might in any way reflect back upon them. And in this culture they are rewarded with weekly checks and almost guaranteed jobs irregardless of performance so in essence they are being trained that this stifling stupidity is right. SE is never going to have a bright future with this paradigm.

I could go on but I think you get the idea. Quite frankly my interest in this whole SE thing has been killed by Siemens and this debacle with Geometrics CW4SE was just the icing on the cake. I use SE now and regard it as my main design tool but since manufacturing is far more important in my shop now CAM must and does come first. Is it not ironic that I find myself in this spot with software bought by a manufacturing giant to improve their manufacturing? That I have to leave them and go to Autodesk and get Inventor HSM Pro to achieve manufacturing efficiencies in my shop? I am going to keep this SolidEdging site for some years yet as I believe in what I say and think it should have life on-line. But the desire and excitement all belong to Autodesk now and I will probably startup another blog for that. Hopefully Inventor will be improved enough soon so I can just quit the whole Siemens induced disaster for SE. For now though it is with real mixed feelings I still use SE. I have pretty much decided that I will not be renewing SE as there are just no new exciting things on the horizon worthy of more money above what I already have and I don’t believe in rewarding mediocre corporations with my hard-earned money so Siemens is OUT. I can use SE for years to come after all.

I may very well attend SEU in Cincy this year. It is the best bargain in annual cad conventions and this year it is cheaper yet. If they really end up having it. I will not be going because I am excited nor to make waves but rather it will be to see friends I have made over the years once again before I close the SE chapter of my life.

Thanks a lot you crap heads for doing this to a product I really had high regard for. Pardon my French but it is the way I feel about all this today.

33 Weeks After ST7 Release And Still NO Viable CAMWorks for Solid Edge

Today I am going to talk more about the Siemens SE side of the equation than the Geometric side. First though the count.

37 Weeks since the last communication from Geometric to SE CW4SE users about CW4SE for ST7.
33 Weeks since ST7 was release to customers.
14 Weeks since the last CW4SE user post at the Geometric CW4SE user forums.

Can you offhand think of a single example of such woeful neglect of a buying customer user base? I mean it. Think about your experiences over the years with any software vendor and can you think of another debacle equal to this one besides perhaps an outright bankruptcy of a software company or Dassault Cloud Vaporware? Refund our money Geometric. You can’t fix this mess and your inability to do so I think has been pretty well established. Give us our money back and just GO AWAY. What are you going to do this time? Give us another extension of maintenance so we can have another year or half-year of waiting for nothing? I have really enjoyed my half-year extension which is now four months up and still nothing to use in sight. In reality this means as an SE user I would still have to be using ST6 and LAST years cam program to have a semblance of working software.

The other side of the equation is of course Siemens Solid Edge. I don’t refer to Solid Edge much as an independent entity anymore as those days died when Karsten left. Thus the Siemens Solid Edge moniker. Look at the contrast with the following two screen captures. First we have one from a real person who cared.

ScreenHunter_06 Apr. 13 08.50

Now we have one from somebody whom I am not certain exists as a real functioning head of Solid Edge/Siemens Mainstream Engineering Software.

ScreenHunter_07 Apr. 13 08.52

I want you to pay particular attention to the rate of comments posts per month and the stark contrast between one who cared and one who quite frankly can best be called MIA.

Now read this. http://community.plm.automation.siemens.com/t5/Solid-Edge-Forum/Welcome-from-the-new-guy/m-p/296259#U296259

Can I be blunt here? This is the most mindless empty bunch of verbage, referring to what was supposed to be coming from John Millers mouth that is, it has been my misfortune to have read for some time. It is just as bad as the first introductory post he supposedly made some time back.

I remember sitting down with a couple of marketing people while we had just a couple of days under our belts with CW4SE during beta training before CW4SE was released. These marketing people were silly enough to actually ask us how much improvement we were going to gain by using CW4SE over our current CAM programs. My response was I have no way of knowing when I have not cut a single part with it and I forbid you to use my name in association touting the wonders of a program I have yet to cut a part in. The stuff that John Miller is supposed to be saying reminds me of the empty Marketing garbage they wanted me to sign off on. I mean it literally. They were presenting me with comments from their fertile imagination and all I was to do was sign off on the use of my name. They were not there for real feedback or commentary although that is what they ended up with. Subsequently they never used anything from my “interview”.

John Miller I am beginning to think has yet to actually speak to the SE user community. I base this on the marketing and publicity babble-speak nonsense it has been my misfortune to see from empty heads in the past who are however paid to produce something. So the end result is an eruption of industry accepted phrases and empty words that fill a spot that we in the intended audience are some how no doubt going to get excited or pacified over. That is how I regard the commentary that has so far populated Millers “posts”. The direct contrast between what Karsten Newbury used to say and the clear interest and genuine interaction is diametrically opposed to the empty junk coming from the automaton P&R generated script purportedly coming from Miller. Marketing and Publicity has I figure been given orders to fill an empty spot is my guess with something because perhaps the idea that Solid Edge has been cast adrift with a place holder manager is gaining traction. But even here the paucity of comments and the vapid empty words used reveals the lack of interest Siemens has for SE.

Mr Big has yet to reply to my questions about CW4SE. I don’t think “he” will and marketing for darned sure will not touch that one with a fifty foot pole. I am sadly coming to the conclusion that the CW4SE users are being cast adrift and are of no consequence anymore to the decision makers at Siemens. BUYER BEWARE! Buy Solid Edge because it is the best midrange MCAD program with the best direct editing capabilities out there. Do not ever consider SE for any other function though as there will probably never be a robust family of integrated aps and pursuit of market share which would gain you additional work potential. If you do work in-house design SE can’t be beat. I use it all the time and can’t imagine working without it. Even if you are an SW or Inventor house you still would benefit from at least one seat of SE just for editing imported parts and best in class sheet metal. But you are not going to work with other SE using companies in all likelihood and you probably will not have a resource of trained users unless it is you who creates them. I have yet to work with another company that uses SE here in southern middle Tennessee, just north of Huntsville by the way, and quite frankly I am tired of hearing surprise about my choice of CAD programs from others. Comments like you are the only one I know of using it.

Solid Edge, the best software you’ve never heard of from Siemens the company that does not care if you ever hear of it. Co-sponsored by CAM prize fighter Geometric that could not punch it’s way out of a wet paper bag.

CAMWorks for Solid Edge 2015 Update

Well if you clicked in here hoping to find out something new forget it. ST7 was in our hands last August and we STILL do not have a worthwhile working program. We still have no idea what if anything is being done and still not one word from Geometric who obviously could give a flip about its CW4SE users. I have never in my life encountered people like this who saddle their customers with something that does so poorly and then ignore them so thoroughly on top of it. I had hopes that I might see an updated version of CW4SE before my six month extension was up but begins to look like it will never happen. Thanks Geometric for the half over six month extension of what apparently will be NOTHING. I hear there is a blame game going on while fingers are being pointed between Siemens SE and Geometric at each other as to who is to blame. I don’t give a damn about that garbage. I am a customer and I want you to fix it NOW and worry about blame later. FIX IT. NOW!!! What is wrong with all of you that there can be such an unbelievably cavalier attitude towards the small businesses whose livelihoods you have screwed up! Why don’t you just offer a turn in your dongle and get a complete refund program and we can take the money you have screwed us over on and put it to good use somewhere where people care about our success. Somewhere that will provide us with working software. I for one would have mine in the overnight package tomorrow morning. Unbelievable!! Who is to blame and not what do we do to make it right for the customer and this is a part of the “professional” face you wish to present to the world?

Here is my prediction. SE runs on an 18 month development cycle from the beginning to the end. ST8 is for all practical purposes done and serious beta testing has started. This means these finger-pointing foot-dragging idiots have probably managed to drift along until it is so late that it will be ST9 before some serious deficiencies are rectified. Nice, way to go. Two software companies who are supposed to be integrating but don’t talk to or co-operate with each other about integration problems in a timely competent fashion. This of course assumes that Geometric can even identify problems to begin with and I am not sure they can. So put this garbage on the shelf for another year I suppose and pay too by the way and be patient. Right?? Let me clue you people in. We small guys don’t have that time to wait for a tool that was supposed to work RIGHT and NOW.

It has been nine weeks since there has been any activity on the CW4SE forum by users and of course Geometric which strives to keep users in the loop and supplied with competent working software has had a much longer hiatus. People are losing any hope for a good outcome and don’t even bother to ask anymore. I have asked repeatedly for updates and I don’t intend to do so again. I do however intend to make sure that anyone who reads this blog knows about how we have been and are being treated. I never in my life thought this could happen and I am appalled at Siemens/SE for allowing this to ever begin and then to drag on and on and on and not a word. From them or Geometric. Hellooooo up there!! Is there ANYONE with either organization that thinks we might be worthy of some sort of updates or are we just jerks who should shut up and send in the dough.

People if you have any thoughts of buying CW4SE this ought to give you an idea of what kind of regard Siemens/SE and Geometric’s CW4SE will have for your future CAM success. They don’t seem to care and if you have to limp along for YEARS before they make it right if they ever do and lose gobs of money over this. Remember one thing. Unless there is a big shakeup what they have done to us they will do to you and not bat an eye over it all. One might say this is a dynamic combination of the best CAD software you’ve never heard of and the worst CAM software you don’t want to hear of.

So the update for CW4SE 2015 is ————————————————————- and————————– and if you don’t like it to bad.

We wish to thank our customers whom we value and believe are the backbone of our business. We thank you for your patronage and now wish you would just get lost until we send you another bill.

The Corporate Philosophy of CAMWorks For Solid Edge VS Autodesk Inventor HSM

I was struck by the difference between the public face of Autodesk HSM and Geometrics CAMWorks for Solid Edge (CW4SE) and Siemens Solid Edge last Friday. What started this has been an ongoing failure of Geometric to fix problems that are systemic and pervasive with CW4SE to the point where I just pulled it off my workstation this week. I have been using Inventor HSM for CAM for months now and CW4SE sits idle as I wait for an update some day some month some year. Who knows as Geometric does not keep its CW4SE customers notified about anything. The reason I pulled it off was licensing. Once again for some unknown reason the Sentinel dongle with CW4SE is interfering with the Sentinel dongle from SE and now I have to reload the license file to use SE again. That was it for me. I don’t even use this afflicted program anymore and it STILL messes with my day. This by the way is a known problem that goes back many years on the SW side of CAMWorks and is still not reliably fixed for either flavor of CAM. Funny how I have never had this problem with SE Sentinel dongles for the last seven versions I have been on board for. So, off it goes until the next service pack comes out hopefully within the next six months to maybe fix some of these problems. I would hope it to not be six more months but who knows as Geometric does not tell the CW4SE customers they have treated so poorly anything. No hope, no updates on why things are the way they are and what is being done. I have asked Geometric, yes they do read this blog so they know I have, to come here and give updates or good news or something. They hardly ever respond and I have found this to be typical behavior. Even when I was on good terms with them they had to be pursued for information. I guess their idea of keeping you up to date is hire some PR dudes to make some glossy ads that cover over how difficult this program is to get up and running and to work reliably and to do all these wonderful things they promise. That not ONE single CW4SE customer I know of has seen to date but still they try to sell new potential victims on this efficiency fallacy. Great sounding but completely untrue in the actual experience of every CW4SE user I know.

Speaking of CW4SE customers let us take a peek behind the closed-door of the Geometric CW4SE forum which was started thirteen months ago. (“Program Smarter Machine Faster” right there at the top. Someone at Geometric has a twisted sense of humor.)
CW4SE forum on 3-1-15
There must be very few of us judging by the participation rate here. I found only one mention from Nishant about V2015 where he stated that they would typically release CW4SE within two months of the official SE release in July 2014. Took them four plus and then it was terribly buggy so what we have is still not usable in many cases. No word on why the delay for CW4SE 2015 and now no word on when the numerous show stoppers will be fixed either. It is not like Geometric or Siemens SE don’t know about user angst. They just prefer to ignore the situation when they have no good answers not understanding that silence is worse than saying here is the problem and what we are doing about it. Perhaps they are embarrassed about it all as they darned well should be and don’t want to talk about it.

As an aside here there is a new guy who replaced Karsten Newbury over SE a number of months ago and he has squat to say about anything. No direction, no communications with users and no public face I can find. It is like SE has dropped off the map as far as Siemens is concerned with Karsten’s departure. I am coming to the conclusion that Chuck Grindstaff who is over the Siemens UGS/SE software division, could care less about SE. That he has put a place holder over SE just to say the position is filled. What else can possibly explain why SE has for all practical purposes just dropped off the map and this new guy has had nothing to say and no interaction with users anywhere? I lean towards the idea that anyone who wanted to make SE a true success story has been run off because that is not the desires of those who run it all. I see some really great people leave and in some cases they have told me why. SE is in the same spot now as SW where it appears these lesser programs are not in the future vision of the anointed leaders. This by the way does not bode well for CW4SE victims looking for relief from the nightmare they are in.

So we have Geometric with a proven history of really buggy software and now add in disdain for SE from those who bought it to plunder Synchronous technology from to incorporate into NX and are now stuck with something I figure they don’t want but can’t sell off. Wonder if SE will be subsumed into NX one day like it appears SW will be into ‘Catia Lite”. In the mean time just what are we who have bought into this to think of our long-term futures here? Actions speak louder than words and I do not like what I see and hear darned little on top of that. Thanks guys, glad you like our money but could care less about us.

You know what, if you people don’t like the way I talk about things maybe you could make some sort of effort to give me something good to talk about. When you say nothing month after month what am I to think? My experience in life says that those who keep quiet at the least could care less and at the worst know there are problems and want to hide them. I get tired of having conjecture and lousy reports to give on something I had such high hopes for.

I have watched Autodesk for the past three years and have been quite critical of what I perceived was going to be a cloud only paradigm for its customers. Even in the middle of all that I have to say they were in communication with the world about what was going on. They were working on cloud based programs and told customers about it and then gave lengthy free betas of the products to work with. Things that actually did stuff and not vaporware like Dassault was so enamored of. My main point here is that Autodesk has been the epitome of open for scrutiny. Like or dislike what was going on you at least did know.

So I go to the open Autodesk Cam forum today and read this. http://camforum.autodesk.com/index.php?topic=6395.0

I guarantee you that over in the closed Geometric forums there is not one word to CW4SE users about the current situation with CW4SE 2015. Over on the Siemens SE forums the same thing for CW4SE users. They had a guy show up one time during all this mess and say they were appointing him to “look” into the problems. That has been the totality of the evinced concern for us there. If anything is being done by either company to remediate the CW4SE mess I don’t know because neither group cares enough about their customers to be bothered to tell us. HEY GUYS, you tell me and I will post your words verbatim. Watch me hold my breath waiting for that one.

Here is a little chuckle for the day. http://allyplm-solutions.blogspot.com/2015/02/the-latest-camworks-promotion-dont-miss.html
For $4,500.00 dollars you can have the same capabilities that SW and Inventor customers can have for free. The additional consideration here is that free HSM works and makes your day productive while the one you have to pay for brings a boat load of trouble to its SE customers.

I am reminded on a regular basis of the philosophical difference between these companies and in spite of how clunky Inventor is right now compared to SE seeing more and more value with Autodesk CAM. It is nice to be wanted as a customer of a company that is making efforts to keep you in all the loops as compared to Geometric who wants you to be an ATM and keep quiet or SE where you can use a great CAD tool that “no one has ever heard of” but don’t look for anything else. Let me put it this way. I am excited about the upcoming release of Inventor HSM 2016 and I could care less about SE ST8. I used to laugh at “end of life” SW users and now have to wonder about the same for SE. I am so mad at Geometric over CW4SE and I have progressed from being excited and one of the four original CW4SE beta testers to complete fury over what they have done to the first and probably last shot ever at integrated CAM for SE.

All I can say is that if you are thinking about CW4SE stop it right now. If they started working on it seriously today it will still be some time before they can get it mostly right if they ever do. Software companies do not change things on a dime and Geometric is apparently incompetent and Siemens SE apparently did not care enough to check under the CW4SE hood to see what was going on. Let me rephrase that. Siemens SE did not and still does not even have a real oversight arm to see how integrated partners were doing. Not a stellar combination for you to put money into.

Folks, put 3-23-15 on your calendar as the day when Inventor Pro HSM 2016 will be out and we can check out some goodies worth getting excited over.

And Geometric, that lathe post you promised me in the beginning when I paid for turning over a year ago before I bought my lathe ? The one you won’t give me now but want to ATM me on? Pssst, it’s free for everyone over there with the HSM guys who care if I make money to.

Are You COMMITTED To Your Customers ?

As SW World winds down this year I look at the lack of involvement by users and Dassault. Yes there were a lot of people there but I wonder what the real reasons were? I wonder where all the hub-bub that used to accompany this event has gone to? I know if I go to SEU 2015 it will be principally to see my peers again and not because I expect to learn a lot there I could not elsewhere for free. I have to believe that outside of people in direct employ of those who intend to make money like Dassault or vendors SWW is mainly a re-union of peers. Then I look at Dassault and they trot out stuff no one wants and if you buy into your profits will diminish Dassaults will increase. Strange thing its that as far as I can see you wont get as a buyer anything you really need beyond what you have now for far less $$$$$. So users show up to see each other and Dassault shows up to talk to themselves about stuff that is overpriced and users don’t want. Here is an excellent article on just this thing. http://www.solidsmack.com/cad/pricing-next-gen-cad-dassault-systemes-lost-plot-3dexperience/ I find with great interest they also mention Autodesk. Autodesk is transparent about what they do. They have the best prices for what is offered. Autodesk is serious about gaining new customers and unlike Dassault and Siemens apparently does not believe your primary reason for existance as a company is to be a cash cow for others. I fully expect in this tough market to get new sales generated and where your best source of new customers is your competing software peers that over time this combination of leading best prices and transparency and features of the programs from Autodesk will erode the base of Dassault and Siemens. Autodesk, get busy and fix Inventor and you will get much more attention.

But there is another aspect of this and it is are you committed to your customers. Do you listen to what they want beyond the top ten things to be fixed or do you take your subs money and devise products they don’t want or will run up expenses needlessly or both? How about do you take integration seriously and spend time to make sure your “Gold Partners” so to speak are delivering what they promised? Once again I see the huge contrast between Autodesk and Dassault and Siemens where everything Autodesk does or intends to do is an open book with lengthy beta periods where they give users free use of a product to make sure it is what they want or if it will even work. And they are doing so at prices that businesses will appreciate. (It looks to me like Autodesk wants to be your partner and not your overseer unlike others that come to mind.) Thinking of all the vaporware Dassault has come up with over the years here. Thinking of Siemens where you have to inflict sales drones upon yourself to even get a price. And in particular thinking of Solid Edge where this wretched mess of CAMWorks for Solid Edge has been allowed to fester and only after some real public user anger did Siemens decide to look into it. I have no idea if it will go any further than this because Siemens is so bureaucratic that they could not decide on a plan of action in a reasonable time frame if their lives depended on it. CW4SE has had serious problems from day one and I am convinced that Geometric had no intention of fixing it. Indeed a comment to one of the users about problems that plagued him their reply was this was “intended behavior”. I kid you not. Then after the big stink starts and the heat is on they want to fix it. Does this kind of reaction inspire any confidence in you as a potential customer?

What it says to me is that both Siemens/SE and Geometric will not do the right thing unless pressure is applied. What is also tells me is that a company like Siemens/SE has had no interest in what their integrated partners do and therefore no method of policing them for quality. At this time I can only say that by association and by their actions with CW4SE I would not trust a darned thing they have partnered with unless I first did extensive testing. They recently appointed some poor guy, that’s right one, to be in charge of this but I can tell you that in my experience with the gargantuan bureaucracy he will have to fight through this is meaningless. It is a see we are doing something now please go away action that will not affect the serious plight of every CW4SE buyer. So we will now have a barking dog on a chain who will be told when he will be allowed to do anything by those who have better things to do with their time than worry about their customers losing money with the garbage they produced.

In this day and time where people can verify statements of intent and the validity of promises made by software companies it becomes harder to fool them. What does a company do compared to what they say and what are the real life experiences of those who are users or buyers? Many years ago the automotive companies brought upon themselves the “Lemon Law”. It was a response to big-ticket items that were so fundamentally flawed they spent more time in repair than on the road. It was a legal response to companies who refused to honor the idea that customers had a right to expect a certain level of reliability in what they purchased. There remain whole industries that do not have protection of this sort for buyers and whose response seems to be too bad so sad. We have your money and if you don’t like it leave. You kept it past 30 days and now you are stuck with software that took you that long just to start figuring out you were had and the only lemon law here for you is the sour taste in your mouth.

Software in the business world is something that can make or break you. Remember some years back when K-Marts bought into that new whiz-bang inventory control system. The huge expense of this debacle is what tipped them over into bankruptcy and reorganization. The only recourse for the little guy is negative publicity primarily on the web where he can’t be shuffled to the side by excuse making corporate representatives. Most of the time this does not mean you get your money and wasted time back but you can prevent bad corporate entities from inflicting further harm on as many people as they would have otherwise. Over time when you hit their bottom line hard enough things can change for the better. I have two companies in mind here and one of them is duplicitous as far as I am concerned and the other is merely derelict in it”s responsibilities. Dassault and Siemens since you wanted to know.

Since this is the case and since we do not have a Lemon Law for CADCAM we will have to make do with user experiences. That word Dassault likes so much. Research carefully what other real users have to say and why. I have not seen one positive word about CW4SE for a long time online and this is for a reason.

Just like Dassault at SWW this year I have to sadly conclude that Siemens/SE is not committed to it’s customers. They have their own little worlds to live in and we are not decision making participants in it until we force them to listen by leaving and costing them potential business by warning prospective buyers off. Money, ours in their pockets and not ours by the improved bottom line for our pockets seems to be all they understand so here is some help. From a CW4SE victim buy SE because it is great even though Siemens will not work for you but put the ancillary products under a microscope before you buy and in any case DO NOT buy into CW4SE until (if ever) this mess is fixed.

Of the three big CAD dudes at this time Autodesk is the only one that looks like they care for the future of it’s existing and future customers.

No Interest No Bloggers SolidWorks World 2015

Have you been to http://www.novedge.com/pulse/items these last two days? I did not realize until I returned from a job in Orlando over the weekend that this yearly event was going on once again. With an attendance at over 6,000 even if many were VAR’s or SW employee types it is still an impressive number. One that Siemens and SE can only dream about if they even care. I perused some of the official SW blogs and noticed entirely too much cloud collaboration and crowd whatever paradigms but I also noticed something even more striking in my mind. We know what to expect from a company tooting its own horn but what has happened to the independent voices that used to spend their time writing about a topic they were passionate about? The bloggers today for instance were all paid employees of Dassault, VAR’s or of ezines whose income is derived from CADCAM centric activity. Not one independent that I could recognize.

I believe that user fatigue has set in. Way to many of us don’t like the direction our CAD companies have chosen to go or not go. In any case they are doing things we do not like and so after years of accumulating disappointments most of us have simply dropped off the map. Why write about companies who are tone-deaf and so wrapped up in their own little worlds that they forget we have ours too and the two do not juxtapose as well as they used to. When new features mean the cloud and crowd sourcing so the wages achieved for CAD users means a race to the bottom for wages are we all supposed to be happy? I bet this is the number one concern with long time users who used to also be passionate advocates for programs like SW. So we see companies yanking the rug out from underneath us and then additionally putting intellectual property in jeopardy to as the cloud still is sadly not secure and will never be. But somehow there is never any indemnification offered to protect us when we get sued for loss of out customers intellectual property because of the requirements to work online foisted upon us by companies that do not care about what we think. So we go away. Who wants to talk about Turkeys unless it is Thanksgiving?

There was one post though that really caught my eye. http://blogs.solidworks.com/solidworksblog/2015/02/the-cam-ecosystem-at-solidworks-world-2015.html As a Solid Edge user who has been soundly abused by the first true CAM integration for SE I could only look on in envy at the list of SW Gold CAM Partners. SW benefits from the tremendous forward looking visionaries that began it and created the community of integrated aps that has been so successful. Autodesk is another where this has benefited them in great ways. Then there is Solid Edge and their efforts too as haphazard as they have been. I looked at the CAM list for SW and #2 was CAMWorks. I can only say that you SW guys are darned lucky that much of the work for CAMWorks was done before Geometric bought them out. Judging by the repeat problems that stem from licensing and the Tech Data Base that have been there from day one (based on research into past forum postings by users in existence from the first day of CW on) you benefit from prior works by others. Here in SE never-never CAMWorks for Solid Edge land we have a program that after a year and a half is still so fraught with problems that it defies belief but for those who have to deal with it know. Geometric did not have others to do the heavy hitting here for them with prior works and boy does it show.

Part of what has made SW and Autodesk successful, and this is conjecture on my part as I have yet to speak to anyone who is in a real position to know for sure, is the maintaining of certain standards to be the equivalent of a “Gold Partner”. Solid Edge does not have in place any authority over this with teeth and the current CW4SE debacle is proof of this. People, I cant say this enough. If you are in the market for CAM integrated with SE you only have one choice and it is not at this time a viable one. You are far better off going with a good external CAM program that is not integrated than doing to yourself what I did. Do not walk but run when the CW4SE sales guy comes to your door knocking.

Of the three, Dassault, Siemens and Autodesk the only one who is doing anything of interest to this independent blogger is Autodesk. What is being done there is the establishment of a manufacturing ecosphere that is not only including best in class CAM products they went a step further and BOUGHT them instead of partnering with them. I believe in what is going on there enough to have spent my own money to be a part of it. Sad to say though I am in two worlds as SE is far superior (light years) to Inventor at this time and HSM beats the pants off CW4SE and even works right where getting much of anything done with CW4SE can be an epic journey of time and frustration. Bouncing files back and forth is no fun but beats the masochism of CW4SE.

So we limp forward into another year with dwindling independent blogger interest and is it any wonder? Users tell these guys what they want and then get ignored and so the interest wanes. Philosophical directions by the leadership in SW and in SE the bad integration issues with CW4SE casting a pall on CW4SE and indeed on any other integration partner for SE and then Autodesk buying up great CAM only to saddle it with Inventor. Don’t really have a goal in mind for this post as much as just reflecting on how many flies are in the ointment and wondering why no one seems to get it right. I hope for Autodesk to get things right but today with Inventor was a sad one and I wonder with SE and Inventor how one part can be so good and the other not and why? It would be nice if SE would kick Geometric in the rear end hard enough to make them fix CW4SE and then keep them on the straight and narrow in the future. Geometric will slack off the second the scrutiny goes away I fear so attention can’t wane. It would be nice for SW to drop the crowd sourced internet managed stuff and get back to CAD as its users use it and not undermine their wages and security. It would be nice if Autodesk would fix Inventor so that so many uneeded steps were not in there along with outright missing things. I am coming to the conclusion that with Inventor they expect you to work only with native files and not on imports and when you machine parts for others imports are what you get.

Is anybody really listening to the growing silence and of any of you software companies does anyone really care? Would you please start fixing what is there and skip the window dressing new doo-dahs for a while?

Discouraging Addition to the Semi Annual Marketing and Publicity Update

I have no idea what is in the water people in corporate boardrooms drink. No idea how they formulate ideas that are supposed to appeal to people like me who use their software. No idea why a cohesive multi-year organized effort to promote SE or a vibrant ecosystem or user community does not ever happen. No idea what salient features and promo campaigns they think are useful to grow market share because none ever survive long enough to even have results to judge by.

So today this is posted. http://community.plm.automation.siemens.com/t5/Solid-Edge-Blog/Interview-with-John-Miller-Senior-VP-of-Mainstream-Engineering/ba-p/288511

There has been a hiatus of driven and focused leadership for a while now with the Cooper Newbury team finally giving up before the Siemens corporate have meetings and do nothing culture. Seemingly obsessed with protecting make work jobs for those who could not produce real and meaningful results if their lives depended upon it and protecting NX et al at all costs SE has languished and continues to languish. So I read what this new guy has to say and I think empty words. Yet another Marketing PR guy with no real vision and no clue and no road map for success. I read what he has to say and think here we go with buzz words and catchy phrases that mean things only to the select group of psyco-babble market-speak cloistered company dudes. How many times do these guys think they can wrap up the same tired old promises and mantras and expect to be believed?

OK John you like the word passion. I used to have one for Solid Edge but nonsense like this empty rhetoric you bring to the table has killed it. All I see here is same old stuff new suit and SE is going nowhere. Yeah yeah synchronous. The best single thing to come down the pike for CAD and Siemens SE has been so inept at convincing users of its value that it’s power as a sales tool has been completely squandered. I sit in user group meetings where I am the only one who uses ST and the students who are supposed to be part of the future for SE are not even taught ST at the University of Alabama Huntsville. I don’t know which is worse. Teachers who are so lazy they can’t be bothered to put this powerful tool in student hands or the dumb company that gives software away and then never follows up to enforce what is done with it. Or VAR’s that should be showing the value of ST to customers who would then adopt it. Really, they don’t go out and prove this so customers think they have no time to learn new things when in reality if they did learn this new thing their time savings from then on would dwarf this supposed “expense” to switch over. But one thing is for sure we don’t have to worry about “passions” running amuck with you Siemens UGS SE guys and planing for and demanding results with cohesive long-term pervasive strategies. The market has been there to seize and Dassault did their level best to give market share to you all but corporate backstabbing and NX UGS turf protection stopped the only guys who wanted to deliver this.

Another year, no summits, no user organizing, best software you’ve never heard of campaign still going strong and no growing ecosystem to speak of to contend with SW’s large and established one. Big whoop, finally got rendering. Last one to do so. Finally get integrated CAM which then falls flat on its face because you don’t care enough about what is associated with your products to police your partners. Further more you have no established method for doing so and the belated chasing after Geometric to do right was started by disgruntled users because you guys failed to do your jobs. But meetings. Oh those wonderful meetings that go nowhere and do nothing were quite prolific and lots of wages were earned with them while staving off the dreaded specter of concrete positive results.

Or the ecosystem being assembled with bought outright superior tools by Carl Bass who does have a plan and desire and the ability to make it happen which is coming your way to make life even more difficult. I quite frankly can’t see Siemens or you ever coming up with any kind of strategy to beat SW or the giant billy club Autodesk is going to hold over your head later this year. You guys have no clue what you are facing although we little people here in the trenches that you would like to have as customers are certainly paying attention. I am completely thrilled that you are going to have meetings and conferences to jump-start your new way. Oh goody I can’t wait. Another SEU where over half the people in a rather small crowd are employees of Siemens one way or another or VAR types because you guys have totally failed to convince the world there is a reason to attend. And conferences too and all this nonsense that leaves convincing people to become your customers as an afterthought while you professionals talk to each other and mirrors.

I read this interview today and just shook my head. Not in disbelief anymore but rather with a sense of resignation to the idea that SE is never going to amount too much in the world of MCAD. We have come full circle back to the sad days of Bruce Boes Velocity Series genius I fear. I hope I am proven wrong about my suspicions. I would like for SE to have it’s technically deserved place in the world. I will however go to sleep tonight convinced this will never be. Whether it is Siemens culture or outright UGS veteran hatred of SE does not matter. The results are going to be the same.

It is a sad contrast to what I am seeing with Autodesk Inventor HSM after you guys forced a loyal customer into looking elsewhere with the Geometric CW4SE debacle.

Update 1-23-15

Yoo Hoo John new leader guy looky over here.

Anyone but Solid Edge

I figure you don’t mean any of the PR babble-speak emitted and I figure you are just there because there is a position that has to be filled. Even though the job description is to keep SE under the radar for the majority of potential customers so it can’t grow or possibly threaten any precious NX seat sales there still has to be a warm body there so why not you eh? Siemens will not take the chance of putting an effective person in this position again because, well you know why. You took the job and have your instructions so you do know. Be their rubber stamp take your pay and don’t rock the boat. Have all the meetings you want but don’t make progress OK. Here you go John, enjoy. The sublime irony of a job title like VP Mainstream Engineering when the function is Forgotten Pond Engineering.

Question for the day. Is there any particular mid range or high end MCAD program missing from the Dell list? If there is would there be any particular reason why?

2015 Solid Edge Semi Annual Publicity and Marketing Efforts Review

Continuing a tradition of heralding the single most important key component to the success or failure of SE to thrive. The program is and has been quite competent for some time now and with the level of capabilities existing in ST7 especially with Synchronous there is no technical reason for SE to be the best software you have never heard of. But we know there are core software competency technicalities and then there are Marketing and Publicity technicalities. The second has been and continues to be a failure.

I have recently become a customer of Autodesk because of this and let me explain why. Marketing, unless it exists in a mental void where meetings to plan for more meetings is the penultimate goal has to be aware of what draws and keeps customers and plan accordingly with a consistent multi year endeavor to both create an integrated software ecosphere customers will want and then consistently without fail year after year MAKE people aware of what you have. Geometric’s CAMWorks for Solid Edge is an example of where SE might have been heading until the powers that be set about destroying what Don Cooper and Karsten Newbury wanted to establish. The only major new integrated ap for SE in some time besides Keyshot and the first and only CAM program truly integrated with SE. But apparently with turf war troubles beginning some time back eyes were taken off of CW4SE and focused on who knows what. CW4SE is if Geometric would ever get it’s act together and stop stonewalling customer improvements and make the workflow reflect the way machinist’s work with current modern tools and strategies in the TDB before shipping pretty darned powerful. Recently Geometric had the heat put on them to get their act together and seemingly within a few weeks fixed a lot of problems they had maintained were “intended behaviors” prior to that point in time. Why weren’t they fixed sooner? Why were these things, numerous and aggravating to say the least and show stopping at worst not audited by Siemens SE and prevented to begin with?

Now no one from Siemens or SE comes right out and tells me much in this area but I can see what happens as time passes year after year and even though my comments are my opinions try and disprove what I say. So M & P who have no plans and have had no plans drift along grateful I suppose that the nuisance of Cooper-Newbury are gone and they can go back to doing nothing which they excel in. In the mean time CW4SE which they probably never wanted runs unattended and into serious trouble before any oversight agency at SE is aware there is a problem. You see no one really cares at Siemens SE anymore or else this would have never happened. Now Geometric much to my disgust was willing to stonewall a lot of these things and the idea they would do so deliberately bothers me a lot. Does this mean they will revert back to doing this junk again when the heat is off? I hope not but they have had problems with the same things year after year and somehow never finally fix them. I will say this current version of CW4SE has been the most painless install and the TDB for the first time is working correctly as far as I can see. But why did they have to be forced into doing this? This behavior by both Siemens SE and Geometric is pretty disdainful towards cash customers who have to guarantee what they do to for their customers only to find out that there is no guarantee of quality from Siemens SE CW4SE for them. A double standard that is not unique to them perhaps but never the less sure is in the minds of those who buy and are then abused by this cavalier treatment.

When I lost three weeks recently to problems that was when I jumped in my life raft and bought Inventor HSM. But this was dwelling in my mind this New Years as an example of how things never have really changed with SE. Back in the recent Halcyon days when it looked like SE was finally going to be the big dog it deserved to be on it’s merits one of the things that were done was the hiring of Matt Lombard. For a brief while he actually had some spot on stuff before the slimy psuedopods of the Siemens SE amoeba got in there and made sure nothing of even the slightest controversy could get out. In part thinking of all this today it was an old article from On The Edge that made me think about the way it is and was. He was the ONLY bright M&P spot I can think of besides the creation of the Universities for SE.

Here is a link
http://ontheedge.dezignstuff.com/is-solid-edge-the-best-cad-program-youve-never-heard-of/1044

Inside of this as I read through all of it I reread something Al Dean had to say. This time however I went to the article he referenced which was
https://web.archive.org/web/20031203205940/http://www.cadserver.co.uk/common/viewer/archive/2003/Aug/1/feature2.phtm

So this M and P failure precedes Siemens by many years apparently. I just don’t understand it and I guess there will never be an end to it either. This attitude is why the header in my blog was changed early last year and this is why it will remain the way it is.

The question I now have is was the original source of the Naegleria fowleri M&P amoeba from EDS and spread to UGS and then Siemens or was there an independent transmission vector causing all three companies M&P to independently fall prey to this only to then combine pockets of lack of vision and abilities into a large singular morass of the same?

2014 as far as I am concerned is another year of abject failure of SE to deliver value to it’s customers beyond the basic capabilities of the software which is considerable. Giving you an ecosystem like SW to thrive in with increasing market share for them and jobs for us? Nah not gonna happen. Like Autodesk where the guy running it is a builder and he understands every aspect of design to building far more than any other major CADCAM software company executive is planing. Giving his customers extra value with extremely competitive prices and a big ecosystem with lots of jobs and future workforce guarantees for employers and as the circle goes around more jobs and more jobs for Autodesk customers. From a guy who is hungry for conquest and is going to use his unique ability to use the software produced under his direction work. Now I say this and think about Inventor with crossed fingers in hopes for may things to change there. But even so just because I don’t get it yet I see lots of people who do good work with Inventor so I know it can be done.

So far I really like HSM and it is the program I had originally wanted integrated with SE. Inventor is painful to use compared to SE and I struggled today to just try and figure out how to apply dimensions to parts. A lot of my problems are newby problems but the way things flow in Inventor just don’t make much sense to me yet compared to SE. But by golly I CAN hire someone trained to use Inventor and HSM is a breeze.

I have to admit that the move to Autodesk for HSM has relieved a lot of pressure on me but I find myself in two worlds now. SE for CAD and HSM for CAM and quite frankly hoping for Inventor to dramatically improve so I can go with just one company. If Inventor was as slick as SE I would leave Siemens today. I am tired of the treatment SE customers get and I am tired of wrestling with CW4SE and I just want my days to be trouble free. I don’t trust Siemens SE to have my interests at heart after Don and Karsten left and I don’t think they much care about things like CW4SE either or this 2015 mess never would have happened.

So another half year passes and the fine tradition of the best software you’ve never heard of continues and you won’t hire in the state of Tennessee anyone trained in state in SE at any Tech school High school or University close to where I live that I am aware of.

I get tired of running into my peers who when they find out I use SE tell me I am the only one they know doing so. Thanks M&P for all you do and may you prosper for another year with your endless meetings and empty works.

May I propose a 2015 campaign for you. Yes our combination of CW4SE and Solid Edge will cost you twice as much up front compared to Inventor HSM and yes the yearly fees are almost triple but we give unto you dear customer the absolute thrill of being a part of Siemens. You won’t have to lift a finger to do this as all the real work is being done by Autodesk to your benefit. I mean judging by the last eleven years this is the way you want it isn’t it?