SolidWorks World: Day 3

Jeff Ray kicked off the morning’s General Session. He showed a hilarious video taken in the arcade at the off-site event of the heads of John McEleney and two others on top of these little cartoon bodies dancing to the Beach Boys tune “Fun, Fun, Fun.” I never laughed so hard.

We then got a sneak preview of SolidWorks 2007 presented retro-style in a “Dating Game” skit delivered with lots of puns and 60’s humor. The new features flowed quickly, but I caught a few of them here:

  • Balloons link to any attribute, not just part numbers.
  • Sketch blocks allow 2D animation, such as pulleys and CAM systems.
  • When you add new dimensions to drawings, the dimensions no longer overlap, but space out automatically. And it’s easier to move dimensions.
  • COSMOSWorks now supports beam elements.
  • COSMOSXpress calculates minimum factor of safety automatically.
  • Based on SWIFT technology, TolAnalyst for true tolerance stack up.
  • Also based on SWIFT, DraftXpert makes it easier to add draft angles.
  • You can automatically add flanges to the curved edges of a sheet metal part and unfold them.
  • Multimate command applies mates to multiple components with a common reference.
  • Freeform feature lets you specify the exact points you want to push and pull to manipulate a part.
  • Toolbox automatically generates missing components making it easy to share designs.
  • Copy Design command gathers all the files you need to transmit a design via email.
  • Belt command automatically wraps belts or chains around pulleys.

The focus of SolidWorks 2007 is reducing CAD overhead so designers can focus on making great products with four key themes:

  • Harness 2D expertise to power your 3D design
  • Focus on product design, not the design tools
  • Innovative new design tools
  • Design new and innovative products

The software ships this summer.

Joe Dunne, director of technical marketing, announced the winner of the SolidWorks 2005 design contest: Oslo, Norway-based 360 Grader Produktdesign with its PREMACARE Incubator. The product keeps premature babies safe and warm and gives parents a 360 degree view of the baby under a clear dome cover.

At the end of the session, CEO John McEleney came back on stage to thank everyone for coming to the event. “We’re a different company,” he said, “because we focus on our users, and that’s the difference at SolidWorks World.”

He also announced that the next SolidWorks World takes place in New Orleans February 4-7, 2007. See you all there for some gumbo.

Amy Castor

Matthew West

SolidWorks alumnus. I like plate reverb, Rat pedals, Thai curry, New Weird fiction, my kids, Vespas, Jazzmasters, my wife & Raiders of the Lost Ark. Not necessarily in that order.