Announcing Cadalyst All-Star Award Winners, Part 1: MicroStation V8 XM

3 Jun, 2007

Today's spotlight shines on MicroStation V8 XM from Bentley Systems.

Cadalyst All-Star awards honor the best of the best -- the most outstanding among all software and hardware products that earned Highly Recommended ratings from Cadalyst Labs in the past six months. Four software systems and five hardware products earned the latest Cadalyst All-Star awards, announced in the June 2007 of Cadalyst magazine. Today's spotlight shines on MicroStation V8 XM from Bentley Systems.

Cadalyst reviewer Randall S. Newton gave MicroStation V8 XM a Highly Recommended rating in his November 2006 review, in which he noted that MicroStation users often work on large, multiyear projects and won't upgrade their CAD software in the middle of a project. He noted that administrators may want to rethink that policy in regard to MicroStation XM, because the upgrade comes with a big upside in terms of immediate productivity improvements.

The latest version of MicroStation is officially called MicroStation V8 XM edition, but most users are calling it XM, which doesn't stand for anything in particular. It was introduced with much fanfare at the 2005 BE (Bentley Empowered) Conference, but it didn't ship until July 2006. Bentley never commits to a specific release date. The long period between its first public preview and its general availability is attributed to the need to ensure a tight fit with Bentley's wide portfolio of applications for architecture, civil engineering, plant design and geospatial users.

MicroStation XM builds on previous releases with a complete overhaul of the graphics subsystem, a modernization of the user interface, compatibility with Google Earth and Google SketchUp, distributed file access and many more under-the-hood improvements.