Thanks for a thoughtful and informed comment from and experienced user.
David Janes wrote:
: > First, since the program is written and compiled for Unix,
: A well written program should be hihgly portable...
They try to make it highly portable by making it extremely generic.
: > I believe the graphics drivers are based on Wildcat.
: First off the graphics drivers are written by the hardware vendor, but I
: think I know what you're saying. The program itself is written to an
: API (Xwindows, Win32_GDI, GL, OpenGL, Starbase, XGL).
Generic, generic, generic: not optimized for any platform (SGI?), and most
certainly not Windows. Maybe when the hardware's closer, when the platforms are
closer, you can write something generic. But, for now, at least two streams ~
: Anywise, I would doubt that Pro/E was original designed around Wildcat
: hardware. Back in the late 80's and early 90's the first versions of
: Pro/ENGINER ran exclusively on SGI hardware (for obvious reasons). The
: first versions of Pro/E probably were written using IrisGL (GL), the
: proprietary SGI predecessor of OpenGL. Pro/E was probably rewritten for
: OpenGL in the early 90's and probably still running exclusively on SGIs.
: I'd be interested in knowing when the first ports were made to SUN, HP,
: and IBM and when additional graphics APIs were supported. I think
: WindowsNT wasn't supported until 1997. And OpenGL has not been a
: priority to Microsoft.
: > Everything non-Wildcat (3dlabs), is foreign and some kind of
: > approximation, some kind of 'workaround', of which, PTC is the
: > Supreme Ruler and Pro/e is the 'workaround' capital. This is most
: > true on graphics.
: It does seem that PTC has little interest in improving their code.
It improves it ~ 10 builds after release, when enough bugs have been violently
protested. It's like they need a blood transfusion, hotter, more lively blood.
: On SGI hardware one still suffers from the regular list of bugs and the
: occasional application crash.
: However while running SGI hardware I have never had a graphics related
: problem. I'd attribute this to SGIs excellent OpenGL implementation.
They have the advantage of writing OpenGL for THEIR hardware, not the hodge-podge
Windows writes its for.
: > No, there is no DirectDraw or Direct3D in Pro/e. OpenGL on Pro/e
: > is a 'close approximation', virtually a myth.
: DirectX has its own set of problems and at the moment it is more geared
: towards gaming. Without knowing more I wouldn't blame PTC or even
: Microsoft for OpenGL on Windows (though the later is certainly guilty of
: less than stellar OpenGL support). I'd probably blame the hardware and
: the driver, but then think twice because both are improving at a good
: clip these days.
: > When [...] it conducts licensing 'less efficiently', you will notice
: > a big difference in the code and the quality ~ less goofiness, for
: > sure.
: I'd say that quality will increase when the current management is gone,
: most of marketing is fired, money is spent on core software developement
: and not GUI changes, and the engineers are put in charge.
: > If you want to see a very nice graphical program, written by PTC, for
: > the Windows platform [...]
: Windows is a large part of the problem, leaving it in the equation
: wouldn't make me happy.
I'm not a platform partisan, have used all of them, but am not approaching any of
this from Sysadmin standpoint. My only concern is how well written and usable the
program is. Pro/DESKTOP's graphics are excellent. Pro/e's on Windows pale by
comparison; even when Pro/e is working correctly, graphics are lame, amateurish
(only exception is clipping ~ very slick, works well). And otherwise, very buggy,
so much so that every rev is a NIGHTMARE! No one wants to see another one, people
are holding off on getting one of the better working Pro/e revs, Wildfire,
of all the headaches. Let's face it, these quality and implementation questions
are killing the software. And the business.