SOLIDWORKS xDesign Fridays with the Product Definition Team

SOLIDWORKS xDesign Fridays with the Product Definition Team

It’s July, and the thermometer has been flirting with +90° temps for the past week here in Waltham.  The office environment at SOLIDWORKS is relaxed, which is ideal on hot and humid New England days.  When I say relaxed, what I truly mean is you see few suits and ties.  Well, one “anonymous” employee typically will wear a suit and a few executives will wear a jacket.  My impression as a contractor is, while I am still learning to navigate the labyrinth of cubes and conference rooms, it must be their preference, which is a good thing.  For me, wearing a suit on a 90° day is far from comfortable, nor relaxing.

My least relaxed day is typically Friday, a day I prefer to name “get ‘er done” day!  Among many things, I’m usually trying to finish the next xDesign model as well as meet with product definition, aka the P.D., Sal Lama (on the left), Rob Jost, and Jody Stiles (on the right).  I am sure you have heard these names somewhere prior.  Ever have a SOLIDWORKS customer visit?  I will bet you the visit was by one these three, maybe all three.  Perhaps you attended one of their SOLIDWORKS World presentations in years past.  Lucky me, I get to see them once a week or every other but the conversation is always the same…xDesign!

One of my requirements (along with writing this blog) is to meet with the product definition and the UX (user experience) staff.  This was not an immediate requirement when I landed here in December of 2017.  However, it was quickly recognized that my feedback about xDesign had immense value to the team, as in where it is today and where it needs to be for tomorrow.

So what does this meeting look like?  Originally, I would recite the weekly notes I wrote on functionality and workflow.  After several weeks trying to explain from notes what I was trying to convey, I found it easier to record my xDesign sessions and take screenshots.  Meetings can last as long as two hours and everyone in attendance walks away with something they can use to make xDesign better.  Most take notes, which will turn into specifications for programmers to create new code for a future release or to fix current code.

I am not privy to know what gets designated as a higher priority when these specs are written.  I am sure like most things, even when it comes to writing code for SOLIDWORKS, everything has its place based on customer and user needs.

Dassault Systemes recently hired two astute summer interns, Benjamin Arnold and Nikhil Potabatti.  They are here to help create content and to push the boundaries of xDesign even further.  We have been immersing ourselves to better understand how collaboration works in xDesign.   I am also educating myself to learn the overall structure and roadmap for collaboration as intended.  Truth be told, I am very excited to see how the collaboration portion of xDesign as well as the 3DEXPERIENCE platform will evolve.  Collaboration by itself is an extremely powerful and important piece of the software, one that has to be right for the user and on the mark.

So it’s time for me to get back to my relaxed office atmosphere.  At least there is air conditioning in the building.


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Ed Gebo

Owner & Designer of Digital Detail & Design. Lover of Life! I can talk craft beer just as good as I can SOLIDWORKS. Follow your passion and make a difference!

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