CAD Manager's Newsletter (#221)

8 Jul, 2009 By: Robert Green

CAD Management in a Continuing Recession, Part 1

Learn how to protect your job in the current economic downturn.

I've been receiving a lot of e-mail from CAD managers about the poor economy, posing questions such as, "How bad is the recession?" and conveying more practical concerns such as, "What should I do to keep my job?" and "How can I find a job?"

In the next few installments of the CAD Manager's Newsletter, I want to focus on these economic and career questions to provide some practical career advice. I'll be interviewing industry experts from around the globe so I can share a variety of opinions in addition to my own.

I'll kick off the conversation by presenting some survey and economic data to frame the discussion.

Survey Data
In my three-part, mid-year CAD Manager's Survey Update, I collected some data about the state of the economy and how it affects CAD managers. The data points to a market outlook that is gloomy indeed. Consider the following results .

  • 60% of CAD managers reported that their company has had layoffs in the last year
  • 21% of salaried and 33% of hourly CAD managers have had their pay rate cut in the last year
  • 21% of salaried and 28% of hourly CAD managers have had their pay rate frozen in the last year
  • 59% of CAD managers reported no new hardware being purchased in the last year
  • 57% of CAD managers reported no new software being purchased in the last year
  • 47% of CAD managers reported having training budgets cut in the last year

 Read more »

:: CAD Manager's Toolbox:
Configuration Tips for Windows Vista 64

The right system architecture, RAM, and graphics card make the difference in 64-bit operating system.

In the last CAD Manager's Toolbox, I answered some basic questions about using Windows Vista 64-bit operating systems. I wanted to continue the topic in this installment by sharing some configuration tips that I've found handy.

New Is Better
Although old machines might have to serve us for a while, 64-bit operating systems make a lot more sense on newer machines that have faster multiple-core architectures and modern chipsets that have been developed and tested in 64-bit operating system environments.

My rule of thumb is that you should buy new machines with 64-bit operating systems preinstalled as you phase out old machines and 32-bit operating systems.  Read more »

:: Resources

3D Printer Buyer's Guide

Learn which questions to ask so you can choose the best possible 3D printer to meet your prototyping needs without overspending. Available free in Cadalyst’s Whitepaper Library to users who register.

First Trace Releases AutoCAD LT Optimization Whitepaper

Is your firm using AutoCAD LT for design? Document management provider First Trace released a new whitepaper titled, How to Optimize AutoCAD LT: The Missing Piece of the Puzzle. The paper teaches readers how to make AutoCAD LT into a complete CAD solution with interoperable file management.

Geomagic Delivers 24/7 Online Support

Geomagic, a developer of solutions for transforming scan data from physical objects into digital models, launched its new online Geomagic Support Center to serve, support, and engage customers and partners around the clock. Features include user guides, tutorials, and videos that lead users through the workflows of Geomagic products.

:: Events

Webinar: Everything You Need for Large-Format Scanning

Through July 21, 2009
11 a.m. ET
During this webinar from Contex Americas, learn about the newest Contex scanning technology and scanning software, as well as the best ways to manage and access your scanned drawings. Read more»

Webinar: Working with Large-Format Scanned Drawings

July 9-23, 2009
4 p.m. ET
Once you scan your large-format drawings, what solutions and processes make it easy to edit, manage, and collaborate? See a sampling of products in this webinar from Contex Americas. Read more »

Revit User Group: Curtain Wall Forum

July 15-16, 2009
Various Cities
Ideate is hosting a discussion about Revit's Curtain Wall tool and how it meets (or doesn't meet) reality. Read more »

Autodesk University 2009

December 1-3, 2009
Las Vegas, Nevada
Registration is now open for Autodesk University 2009. The annual AU User Conference and Exhibition brings together thousands of Autodesk users, instructors, and partners to learn and network. Read more »

For a complete list of CAD meetings, conferences, training sessions, and more, check out our calendar of events on

:: What's New at

DoubleCAD XT vs. AutoCAD LT (Cadalyst Labs Review)
IMSI/Design claims its new, free 2D drafting tool is a viable replacement for AutoCAD LT. Is it? Read more

Circles and Lines AutoCAD Tutorial: A PDF Wish Comes True!
Lynn Allen shows how turning an AutoCAD DWG into a PDF has never been easier, thanks to improvements in version 2010. Read more

AutoCAD Map 3D 2010 (First Look Review)
Point group and multiple format importation help users who seek to bridge the gap between CAD and GIS. Read more

Event Report: PTC/USER 2009
PTC user conference rolls up its shirt sleeves and focuses on improving productivity.
Read more

About the Author: Robert Green

Robert Green

AutoCAD Tips!

Lynn Allen

In her easy-to-follow, friendly style, long-time Cadalyst contributing editor Lynn Allen guides you through a new feature or time-saving trick in every episode of her popular AutoCAD Video Tips. Subscribe to the free Cadalyst Video Picks newsletter, and we'll notify you every time a new video tip is published. All exclusively from Cadalyst!

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