While this week ushered in the first 3DEXPERIENCE World, today focused on the SOLIDWORKS community that built the event we know today. While the event has evolved, the community is the constant that fuels the engine. SOLIDWORKS users everywhere, thank YOU for driving our passion.
General session kicked off with Suchit Jain, Dassault Systèmes VP of Strategy and Business Development, providing a community update. Suchit highlighted the community’s passion that often starts in school before carrying on to work and projects at home. The dedication to create and forge relationships truly sets the community apart.
SOLIDWORKS user Eric Haddad is the archetype representing this community. Haddad first learned SOLIDWORKS during school, carried over into his first job and now uses SOLIDWORKS in his own business – 3DAeroventures. Haddad uses SOLIDWORKS and 3D Sculptor to develop radio controlled planes. During this time, he’s encouraged many, including his son to never stop exploring, never stop questioning and never stop playing.
Connecting engineers and bringing technology to a new generation is a key driver for Dassault Systèmes. Suchit shared that the education community has now blossomed to more than 4M users around the world. It is also Danielle Boyer’s passion. At only 19 years old, Boyer is the founder of The STEAM Connection as well as an accomplished inventor and author. The STEAM Connection’s Every Kid Gets a Robot (EKGR) program provides kids with affordable STEAM educational materials – with an aim to get kids invested in STEAM. Learn more about the program, and how you can get your own kids a robot, here.
Amazing things happen when engineers come together for good. Michael Mendonca of the LN-4 Hand Project is one such story. LN-4 has donated 55,000 prosthetic hands in 80 countries – at zero cost for recipients. #3DXW20 hosted the 3DEXPERIENCE for Good Hackathon, which challenged teams to design the next-generation prosthetic hand that LN-4 provides. By collaborating with Dassault Systèmes and the Fab Foundation, LN-4 has a goal to provide those in need with 1M hands.
No discussion of the SOLIDWORKS community is complete without discussing SWUGN, the SOLIDWORKS User Group Network. SOLIDWORKS Community and User Advocacy Manager Rachel York introduced this year’s SWUGN Award winners:
Innovator of the Year: Eric Spurgeon of Central Kansas
Meetup of the Year: Steve Calvert of Central Texas
Community Champion of the Year: Heather Hasz
Special thank you for this year’s winners, group leaders and SWUGN members. Your work defines SOLIDWORKS and beyond.
There are no limits in engineering and Sam Rogers, Additive Design Lead and Jet-Suit Pilot of Gravity Industries, is looking to break gravitational limits. Rogers provided an inside look at the jet-suit origin story – including the high heights and (the sometimes humorous) heavy turbulence. The jet-suit program is soaring. Recently, Gravity set a world speed record of 85 mph in the suit and plans to launch a racing program this March. Set your travel plans for Bermuda.
Next up was the 3DEXPERIENCE Pitch Battle pitting four startup finalists vying for a $10,000 prize. The teams included Grouphug, a solar panel provider that can be installed in any window, Membio, a company aiming to create a sustainable artificial blood source, Re:3D, makers of the sustainable Gigabot industrial 3D printer, and Winter Innovations, makers of EasyWhip, a patent-pending suturing needle designed to make whip stitching in orthopedic surgery easier. After a crowdsourced vote and deliberation of a panel of judges, including the aforementioned Sam Rogers, Steve Romine, Managing Director, Bose Ventures, and Melissa Withers, Co-founder and Managing Partner, RevUp Capital, Winter Innovations took home the grand prize.
Today’s keynote came from famed inventor and STEM champion Dean Kamen. His discussion covered a handful of the many innovations he’s created over the years, but really focused on the theme of imagination and inspiration. Kamen believes technology and today’s youth will play key roles in solving the world’s problems. We must invest and inspire in kids so they have the tools to create a better world. Kamen stressed that politicians and lawyers are not going to save us – it’s kids and technology that will change the future. There is no bigger proof of his belief than FIRST Robotics. During the last worldwide event in Dubai, an astounding 191 countries were represented. FIRST is the coming together of humanity in action and is the UN of engineering.
3DEXPERIENCE World closed with a final address from SOLIDWORKS CEO Gian Paolo Bassi. Gian Paolo praised the community for its imagination and inspiration. He recognized that technology is evolving, but the heart of the community and SOLIDWORKS remains at the forefront. It’s this energy and passion that will take your dreams to reality. As for 2021? We’ll see you right back here in Nashville, February 7-10. Thank you all for being a part of this amazing event and safe travels home.
You can also catch up on what you missed by watching this recap video: