On the Job: Penn State Goes Mobile to Manage Facilities from Any Location

14 May, 2005 By: Cadalyst Staff Cadalyst

GiveMePower's mobility software and Dell handheld PCs update AutoCAD-compatible drawings in real time.

Prestigious Penn State University (figure 1) has increased productivity, noted substantial time savings, reduced errors and improved collaboration in its facilities management group using GiveMePower's PowerCAD CE mobile CAD and VoiceNOTE hands-free audio note-keeping solution on Dell Axim wireless handheld PCs.

Figure 1. The marker at the northeast entrance to Penn State University.

Prior to adopting PowerCAD CE, Penn State's facilities management group -- which requires as-built drawings for all facilities -- recorded measurements using a pad of paper and measuring tape. Staff members would take the sketches to their offices to recreate them manually in AutoCAD on a desktop PC.

Searching for a more efficient method, Scott Hord, facilities analyst within Penn State's Facilities Resources & Planning department, gathered a team to develop a mobile solution. Along the way he discovered PowerCAD CE.

"PowerCAD CE is exactly what we have been looking for," says Hord. "We now manage our drawings directly from anywhere on campus. No more returning to the office with a stack of sketches to redraw in AutoCAD. We simply add or make changes as needed during building walk-throughs, save the file as an AutoCAD drawing on our Dell Axim handheld PCs and drag-and-drop them to our desktop computers back at the office" (figures 2 and 3).

Figure 2. Scott Hord and Dwayne Witmer of Penn State's facilities management group work in the field measuring and recording information in real-time.

Figure 3. The facilities management team records data from the field using GiveMePower's PowerCAD CE mobile CAD on a Dell Axim wireless handheld PC.

Hord notes the group also can send and receive drawings through e-mail or by wireless Web. And by using PowerCAD CE's exclusive VoiceNOTE hands-free audio note keeping technology, Hord's team saves hours of time by speaking directly into the handheld PC with detailed verbal information instantly embedded into the drawing and referenced to specific objects or locations, he says.

Bill Walton, president and CEO of GiveMePower, says, "Again, we see our PowerCAD solutions making life easier for our users, saving time and adding immediate value to the bottom line. We are thrilled that Penn State University chose PowerCAD CE to improve the way they manage their facilities."

PowerCAD CE is part of GiveMePower's complete family of CAD Anywhere 2D and 3D design, viewing and mobile/wireless collaboration solutions, each designed to save time and money in the office, in the field or on the shop floor.

About the Author: Cadalyst Staff

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