CAD Manager's Newsletter (#215)

7 Apr, 2009 By: Robert Green

CAD Manager's Journey into 3D, Part 2p>

Reader uproar indicates that CAD managers have wildly differing views about adopting 3D.

In the last edition of CAD Manager's Newsletter, I presented some 3D software data from my CAD Manager's Survey 2008 and expounded on a few conclusions.  I expected a few emails and perhaps some disagreement, but -- whoa, Nellie! -- I did not expect the firestorm of conflicting responses I received.

I'm going to kick off this issue by sharing and commenting on some of those responses.  This way, I can present a variety of opinions, address some relevant questions, and clarify responses.  Here goes.

More Survey Details, Please
In response to my data for various 2D and 3D usage, which tallied like this:

Totally 2D                                          19%
Mainly 2D but evaluating 3D         51%
Hybrid 2D/3D                                    24%
Totally 3D                                            6%

I received several comments along the lines of this one from DB in Pennsylvania:

"This tally was quite a surprise, and I was wondering what background or field the survey involved.  By that I mean, was it broken down into the architectural/civil/manufacturing fields, or was it strictly, let's say, mechanical?"

RG replies:  The survey base was multidisciplinary, so the totals I gave were a mixed average of all fields.  It will require a bit more work to separate out the data and analyze it, but I'll do so in the next newsletter.  Read more »

:: Spring Cleaning for Computers (CAD Manager's Toolbox)

Speed up your workflow by clearing out the clutter and getting those machines operating at peak performance.

It happens gradually over the period of a year or more, until one day you realize your computer is booting very slowly and its performance is sluggish.  You then think to yourself, "Is there a way I can clean up this machine and restore its youthful vigor without reinstalling the operating system or spending a fortune?"

I recently went through this spring cleaning routine with my 32-bit XP and Vista machines, and would like to share my process with you in hopes that you'll experience the same good results I did. Just follow the simple steps below.

Step 1:  Delete the garbage like BAK files, stuff you'll never ever need, etc. 

Step 2:  Backup files that you might need to DVDs or a portable backup drive to clear away disk space.  Read more »

:: Events

COFES 2009: Slipstreaming Innovation into the Mainstream

April 16-19, 2009
Scottsdale, Arizona
The gathering brings together a community of engineering software vendors, developers, resellers, analysts, and software users for an open discussion about the future of the industry. Read more »

Greener by Design 2009

May 19-20, 2009
San Francisco, California
Greener by Design 2009 gives you the tools, insight, and inspiration to improve your company's bottom line through product innovation and green design techniques that work even during tough economic times. 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

HP's New Z Line: Breakthrough Workstation Technology
At a launch event in L.A., company shows off landmark leaps in system design and performance and gives a sneak peek at SkyRoom web conferencing. Read more

Autodesk ImageModeler 2009 (First Look Review)
Generate 3D models from 2D digital images in a flash. Read more

NVIDIA Quadro FX 4800 (First Look Review)
High-end performance and support for new 30-bit color monitors make this graphics card an excellent professional choice. Read more

Tutorial: Convert Traditional Solid Edge Models to Synchronous
The Solid Edge Convert option allows users to convert traditional history-based models to Synchronous Technology. Read more   All Cadalyst Tutorials

Looking for Hot Tip Harry?
Hot Tip Harry’s latest AutoCAD customization tips are now posted online at Cadalyst’s CAD Tips site. Harry’s posting tips all the time now, and you can find the latest ones by checking the Recently Posted list, along with the latest tips from Tips & Tools Weekly. You can also find out about the latest tips from Harry himself (aka Cadalyst's Bill Kramer) by hanging out on Harry’s Tip Jar Discussion Forum. Look for the posts labeled "Hot Tips!" for regular updates.

Brand new, Cadalyst and Hot Tip Harry also introduce his new Programming Concepts Discussion Forum. Keep tabs and chime in to exchange AutoCAD programming expertise and advice.