SOLIDWORKS 2016: Introduction to the Breadcrumbs Selection tool

When tackling complex projects through CAD software such as SOLIDWORKS, it's essential that designers are able to easily track their own movements and changes to avoid productivity losses.

The many changes new editions of SOLIDWORKS possess are often the result of community feedback. These users engage with the software for hundreds, if not thousands, of hours per year, and are perfectly positioned to provide valuable feedback

This commitment to enhancing the user experience is reflected in the addition of the Breadcrumbs feature. How does it make the process of designing with SOLIDWORKS 2016 easier and more efficient?

How to make the most of breadcrumbs

As designers and other professionals have different workspaces, it can be difficult to keep track of essential features. Over time, the screens people use have gotten significantly larger and, in some cases, designers are using two or more at once.

It can be difficult to keep track of essential features with larger screens.

Traditionally, the UI for SOLIDWORKS is displayed within the borders of a screen. As screens get larger, essential features become more spread out, increasing the time it takes to find what is required.

The solution, thanks to Breadcrumbs, is to bring these commands to a central point of focus: the cursor. As people are always looking where their mouse is located, they know exactly where the required features or actions are located.

All a user has to do is press the 'D' key to display popular functions. This brings up the available menus and commands for the selected entity right where the cursor is, eliminating the need to go hunting for the desired feature at the borders of the screen.

Why is this improvement so important?

The Breadcrumbs feature is intended to greatly simplify the mouse movements designers make when creating something. As detailed above, many users are trending towards larger screens and multi-screen setups.

While these professionals may be experts with SOLIDWORKS, and likely know where the features are, there is still a significant amount of mouse movement involved.

Reduce mouse movement with Breadcrumbs.Reduce mouse movement with Breadcrumbs.

So, with breadcrumbs bringing all possible actions right to your cursor's location, designers can be much more productive.

The effect this addition and the many others included in SOLIDWORKS 2016 are having was reflected by an example from a recent launch event. A workstation running the latest version of SOLIDWORKS was set up for attendees to trial the software.

Even just from this brief interaction, those who engaged with the updates believe they'll achieve productivity improvements of up to 10 per cent.

Contact the team at SOLIDWORKS to discover the rest of the enhancements new to the 2016 version.