Design Visualization

Cimmetry’s AutoVue Returns Under Oracle's Hood

14 Jul, 2008 By: Kenneth Wong

Classic viewing and markup program upgraded as an enterprise visualization tool.

Last week, what was once known as Cimmetry AutoVue returned as Oracle AutoVue. In its humble origin at Cimmetry Systems, AutoVue was a viewing and markup tool for CAD users who needed to work with multiple CAD formats. Now, under Oracle, AutoVue is rebranded as an enterprise visualization tool.

AutoVue's Origin
1988Cimmetry System founded in Montreal, Quebec
2005Agile acquires Cimmetry Systems for $41.5 million
2007Oracle acquires Agile for $495 million
2008Oracle releases Oracle AutoVue 19.3
In the announcement, Oracle described AutoVue's aim as making "technical information such as product specifications and CAD drawings available to all users, wherever this information may reside, and without requiring costly authoring applications."

According to Paul Giaconia, Oracle's vice-president of application development, "Historically, visualization technology has served the engineering community well, but to reach across the enterprise — to supply chain, field service personnel, and manufacturing shop floors — has been a challenge."

AutoVue can be integrated with Oracle's Agile Product Lifecycle Management (PLM), Documentum, Microsoft SharePoint, Dassault's ENOVIA MatrixOne, and SAP PLM.

Release 19.3 is marked by the introduction of these features:

  • AutoVue Mobile, which allows field workers and business travelers to take their work to the site or on the road as a Mobile Pack, work on it offline, then update their data into the enterprise systems upon return

  • IntelliStamp, which enables electronic signing and stamping of documents with predefined enterprise system attributes.

This is also the first release to support the Industry Foundation Class (IFC) format, used in architecture, engineering, and construction industries. This addition, Giaconia said, was "largely driven by the fact that Oracle sales force has lots of opportunities in that space."

The software also supports embedding Product Manufacturing Information (PMI) and Geometric Dimensioning and Tolerancing (GD&T) data. So published 3D models can include captures, annotations, views, references, and hyperlinks.

The familiar viewing and markup program AutoVue returns as Oracle AutoVue, an enterprise visualization solution. Targeting not only engineers but also suppliers and contract manufacturers, Oracle introduced support for embedded manufacturing data, tolerances, and dimensioning information in this release.

AutoVue vs. Acrobat
As it happens, Adobe Systems is also promoting Adobe Acrobat as the document-exchange tool of choice for manufacturers (see "Adobe 9 is Ready for Collaboration," CAD Central, June 2008).

Giaconia said, "Our biggest differentiator with respect to Adobe is [AutoVue's] back-office document management functions. Typically, the way people use [Adobe] PDF documents is to email them around. That can get pretty complicated when you have multiple suppliers involved."

AutoVue 19.3 uses IntelliStamp to enable digital signoffs and approvals; track and manage markups from multiple collaborators; and attach sound, video, and graphics to documents. By contrast, Acrobat 9, the latest version, uses Adobe Digital Rights Management features to control access of the documents sent beyond the enterprise. Acrobat 9 also lets users embed PMI information and media files in documents.