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Autodesk University 2016, Part 2: What's New for AEC, Manufacturing Tools

16 Dec, 2016 By: Nancy Spurling Johnson

Event report: Product Innovation keynote session delivers latest software news, including a sneak peek at Project Quantum, a fully integrated, collaborative, cloud-based platform for AEC.


Autodesk University isn't just an opportunity for users to soak up information and advice to support their design and engineering efforts — it's also an opportunity for Autodesk to update customers about current and future software developments. At Autodesk University 2016 in Las Vegas last month, the Product Innovation keynote session devoted 90 minutes to sharing the latest software news.

Amar Hanspal, senior vice-president of products, led the presentation. "You're living in a time when so many things are redefining the way you work" and creating new opportunities, he told the thousands in attendance. "We're going to tell you how we're transforming our products so that you in turn can transform the way buildings and bridges are built, movies imagined, and products made."

Amar Hanspal, senior vice-president of products, kicked off the Product Innovation keynote session at Autodesk University 2016.
Amar Hanspal, senior vice-president of products, kicked off the Product Innovation keynote session at Autodesk University 2016.

This report will summarize the Autodesk manufacturing, AEC, and civil engineering product updates shared at the annual conference and exhibition, as well as product-related announcements from AU 2016 exhibitors. (See "Autodesk University 2016, Part 1: Tomorrow’s Design Reality is Already Here" for a review of the trends the company believes are driving the industry's future.)

What's New: Current-Generation Products

Autodesk is accelerating the rate of flagship product development, Hanspal said: "You might have noticed just how much better they've gotten this year." For example:

  • Revit now offers improved scalability, performance, and navigation in complex models; includes Dynamo Player for creating scripts to automate Revit or enhance model behavior without programming ability; and includes Scan to BIM for creating and validating models from point clouds. And, Hanspal concluded, "[Revit has] moved fabrication right next to design ... to give you the level of detail you need to get your job done."
  • Inventor has added more than 100 enhancements, including a shape generator that supports conceptual design.
  • Civil 3D offers new ways to visualize roadway corridors and has enhanced building information modeling (BIM) interoperability. 
  • AutoCAD now can turn PDFs into editable drawings and share them easily with users on any device.

"Every major product in our portfolio has seen a lot of enhancements this year," Hanspal added.

Autodesk announced its partnership with Leica Geosystems that will pair the Autodesk Recap 360 Pro mobile reality capture app for the iPad Pro with the Leica BLK360 scanner, a 360-degree panoramic imaging device; both are slated for Q1 2017 release. With this pair of tools, iPad Pro users can scan as-built environments, interact with scanned data, make notes, and sync to the cloud for near–real-time data sharing with anyone, anywhere — making 3D scanning and data sharing "ridiculously simple," Hanspal said.


The Autodesk Recap 360 Pro app for the Apple iPad Pro works in tandem with the new Leica BLK360 scanner, with the goal of simplifying reality capture.
The Autodesk Recap 360 Pro app for the Apple iPad Pro works in tandem
with the new Leica BLK360 scanner, with the goal of simplifying reality capture.

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