Meet the Product Definition Team: Jody Stiles

SOLIDWORKS 2016 Launch

Who decides What’s New in SOLIDWORKS? Product Definition team members are a major component in determining and defining enhancements and new functionality included within the SOLIDWORKS products each year. They meet face-to-face with SOLIDWORKS customers to discuss what’s working, what isn’t, and what they would like to see in the future. These customer visits are fantastic opportunities for you to connect with SOLIDWORKS directly, and let us know what we can do to help make your jobs easier. Over the next few weeks, we’re going to be talking with members of the Product Definition team for an inside look at their favorite 2016 features.

Product Definition: Jody Stiles

Jody has more than a fourteen years in machinery design roles, working on high-speed corrugated stacking and conveying to thermal testing systems to high-precision PCB stencil printing equipment. He gained 10 years of hands-on Pro/Engineer experience and 6 years of SOLIDWORKS before joining the SOLIDWORKS Product Definition team.

What is your favorite 2016 feature?
The new Thread command. It was highly requested from our user base and is a real time saver.

Why the new thread command?
It creates accurate and robust geometry in a fraction of the time it would normally take to do it manually.

How does the new thread command enhance/improve the user experience?
It now takes one feature with a few selections where is used to take at least three features and multiple steps to create the same geometry.

What was the hardest part of bringing the threads to life in 2016?
It was a challenge to decide exactly what functionality to provide with the first release of the command. We strive to make the first use of the command not the last use of the command. By thinking through the most common needs of our users, we got many, but not likely all, of the needs covered. We make sure that the first release will satisfy many user’s needs with only minor additional effort. Future releases are sure to cover unmet needs in short order.

What was the most enjoyable part of developing the new thread command?
It’s really cool to see the preview geometry pop-up on the screen with just one selection in the PropertyManager. There’s very few commands where only one input is required to get a preview.

Was the new thread feature initiated by a customer visit? An Enhancement Request? How did it start?
We’ve had the Thread functionality on our radar for several years. We had been apprehensive about creating it due to the inherent performance impacts of generating helical geometry. Over the last two years we saw an overwhelming response on the SOLIDWORKS World Top 10 list and associated SPR to get this feature done so we acted.

Anything else you’d like to add about your experience in SOLIDWORKS Product Definition?
I love my job. There are peaks and valleys just like any other job, but the satisfaction of seeing my ideas brought to life by our development team is second only to seeing it put into action by our user base.

And finally, who do you root for?
UConn Huskies Basketball!

If you’re interested in setting up a Customer Visit with a member of the SOLIDWORKS Product Definition Team, send an email to Please include: your name, company, contact number, and a brief summary of what areas you’d like to discuss (Assemblies, Weldments, Sheet Metal, Drawings, Simulation, eDrawings, SOLIDWORKS PDM Standard/Professional, etc.) to get started. You can also find the team at your local user group meetings, and at SOLIDWORKS World 2016 in Dallas, Texas.

Every year SOLIDWORKS releases a new version of its flagship product, and last year, a new tradition was born here on the Blogs. Over the next few weeks, we’ll be taking a Sneak Peek at 15 new features here on the SOLIDWORKS Blog, and then we’ll be following them up with short, detailed videos on the functionality over on the SOLIDWORKS Tech Blog beginning September 23rd. Until then, you can learn more about SOLIDWORKS 2016 by clicking the banner above and checking out the Launch Site.

Dassault Systèmes SolidWorks Corp. offers complete 3D software tools that let you create, simulate, publish, and manage your data. SolidWorks products are easy to learn and use, and work together to help you design products better, faster, and more cost-effectively. The SolidWorks focus on ease-of-use allows more engineers, designers and other technology professionals than ever before to take advantage of 3D in bringing their designs to life.