CAD Manager's Newsletter (#178)

7 Aug, 2007 By: Robert Green

CAD Standards, Part 5: Enforcement

Tips for getting users to follow the standards you worked so hard to create.

In the last installment of CAD Manager's Newsletter, I continued my series on CAD standards by explaining how you can ensure that your standards are results and process focused. I hope that everything I've covered in this series has led you to an understanding that CAD standards are simply a way of working smart, in a coordinated process, to get more done. After all, if standards don't help you get more done over the long haul, what's the point of having them? If you haven't had a chance to read the first installments, I recommend doing so now.

This time I will talk about the ultimate CAD standards problem: enforcement. Where standards are concerned, enforcement is "where the rubber meets the road," so it is critical that we give this crucial task the attention it deserves. Here goes.

I'll start the discussion with an e-mail message I received from a frustrated CAD manager:

"I've built my standards, but for whatever reason I just can't get people to follow them! What's the problem? Why won't people follow the rules? Help!" Read more>>

:: CAD Manager's Q&A

We're using a mixture of AutoCAD and presentation graphics tools and function in a primarily 2D environment. Should we spend the extra money to get high-speed dual-core or quad-core machines, even though we're not using high-end 3D software?

Robert Green replies: Yes! Just because you're not using the most cutting-edge 3D tools doesn't mean your users should be stuck with slow machines.

Here's my brief take on the current hardware situation:

Multicore processors and fast disks really are cheap. The cost of these computing platforms isn't a big barrier anymore, especially when amortized over a two-to-three-year service life. Buying older, single processors just to save a few dollars locks you into old architectures and low throughput. When you buy the new hot rods, be sure to specify RAID 0 disk controllers with two fast disks to almost double your disk drive throughput! CAD users make their machines perform a lot of disk access, so disk speed is a must, and the difference in cost is usually less than $100. Read more>>

Submit your questions to Robert Green

To view previous CAD Manager's Q&A topics, click here.

:: Resources

CAD Management Course
New York University School of Continuing and Professional Studies presents this two-day seminar, which covers the essential concepts that every CAD manager should know. Topics include training and supporting staff, customizing menus, printing for best results, information sharing, writing macros to automate day-to-day procedures, and setting up company and client CAD standards. The course will take place November 5-6 at Midtown Center, 11 W. 42nd Street. Click here to find out more.


Send us the address of your favorite Web site or other resource and a few words about why you like it. If we publish it, we'll send you a Cadalyst t-shirt!

:: Events

Webinar: Unleashing 3D CAD
August 29, 2007
10 a.m. CDT
Seemage, a SolidWorks solution partner, will present a live webinar on improving business processes enterprise-wide with SolidWorks and Seemage. A question and answer session will follow the webinar. Read more


Click here to view the complete calendar of events at