So with the edition of a few new tools, I have noticed that my
thinking in the program and how I go about creating models has not
just switched lanes, but I now feel like I am in a new car and even
more congested highway. What I mean when I say this is that with each
new iteration of SW new "tools" are added, for better or for worse. I
try them out, see where I can plug them into the design equations or
process and take it from there.
With some of these new "tools" (ie multi-bodies) and how you go about
creating in the program, it just feels different. I started back in SW
'98 and in some ways I do evny, in some ways, ppl who are just
starting out because you are absorbing everything at once...rather
than trying to teach this old dog new tricks.
I have no doubt that these new tools are helpful, maybe it is just my
brain flowing over with too many programs in my head as it is.
We have only been using it foe a little while. The hard part is forcing
ourselves to drop the AutoDesk stuff and actually "use" the SW.. It is vary
feature rich, that is where you have to take it home and "play" with it at
home. Having a good support group (4D Concepts in Mississauga, On) training
you. That got our feet wet, then we had to go from there.
R&R Woodwork Inc.
I think you are going to love it. After a little while, you will not be
able to fathom how you could design in anything less than 3-D, and will not
be able to grasp how the world could function without parametric relations.
You are entering a complicated world, but a worthy one.
Hi guys, could help but jump in here.
I'd actually like to see surface modeling eliminated. Yes, you heard
What I mean is that if we had enough options with SW, I'd like to stay
with solid modeling, yet be able to do local modification to face/s of
the model without having to go back and forth between hybrid surface
and solid modeling. So much of what we SWX surface modeler are doing
is "getting around the limitations of the history tree". You need to
keep in mind that surface modelers ultimately want a solid model.
I think that this is the direction to go because solid models are more
intuitive than surfaces (to the visual mind). Surfacing can be so
meticulous and it doesn't need to be. Unfortuneately, SWX has borrowed
a lot of the surfacing methodoloy from the way surfacing has been done
over the last 30 years (ship building = loft).
Instead, think of a future SWX modeler that started with a solid box
and apply radius to all 8 edges of it. At this point you break from
traditional modeling and go in and start to do local modification to
the connection of the faces of the solid model. Say, you had a
modification feature that you could pick the radius and change them or
both the radius and the adjacent model faces (flat sides) to a G2
connecton with a single button. Then, while still in the feature, you
had drag handles with a number box, to tweak the continuity at each of
the boundaries. would this be much more intuitive than the multitude
of curve network features that drive the surface?
Its time for a new paradigm, and althou its been tried and had many
false starts, "object oriented" modeling could be implemented in the
area of surface modeling. This would, for example, be the ability to
drag and drop complex, pre-parametrized features on to complex face/s
and then the feature is modified thru values. Think of a end cap
feature that can be dropped onto the end face of a shaft, and that
feature would match the adjacent faces of the "complex -
non-analytical" shaft with G2 continuity. In this way we get away from
certain features that we "re-create" over and over using sketch
curves. So many of the features presently are so dependent on 2D
planes and 2D sketches. These are great for a lot of prismatic -
analytical modelling but doesn't cut it for non-analytical (surface)
modelling. Why do we still try to use so many 2D methologies for
The second area that I think SWX need to really consider is
consolidation of features or what I call "Super-features". This is a
trend that is taking hold with SolidEdge and Wildfire. Think of the
flexibility and freedom to redefine the design intent if you had the
ability to redefine a loft into a sweep or a sweep into a fill. So a
general surface feature that could be fill, loft, sweep, dome, etc.
This should also apply for the analytical modeling features. The
Extrude command should encapsulate: Extrude cut, Extrude Boss, Extrude
cut surface, Extrude cut Boss, Thin feature. Revolve should do the
SWX should also be smarter about where to give up tolerance for the
sake of completing the feature successfully. This would be especially
true for shell, but also for many of the surface modeling command that
rely on "manifold" rules. We all know that there are many cases that
don't solve just because the "math" tolerance, which is extremely
small in deviation, isn't met, but the visual result is completely
SWX developers, mathematicians, and coders, need to break away from
their notion that surfaces are mathmatical; as far as the end user
thinks, they are not, they are visual, I repeat that again: THEY ARE
VISUAL, and this is the most important aspect of them, not that they
are mathmatically correctly. Because they are visual, more drag
handle, spin boxes and other dynamic type controls need to be
introduced into the interface.
I know that this is hard to hear for a ME, but is is absolutely true
and it is why we struggle so hard to do surfacing. It is so hard
because we are trying to apply analytical, parametric concepts to a
non-analytical, non-parametric feature (surface) in principle. Now,
there are cases where parametrics work quite nicely for surfaces, and
I happen to believe that the parametric surface model is the way of
the future, but only if we allow ourselves not to force surface
modeling features into the prismatic modeling box, metaphorically
This is an excellent post. Overall, I agree with most of your ideas.
Surfaces are really just workarounds for stuff you can't do with solids,
and it would be a benefit if you could do what you want directly with the
I have submitted the idea of a feature type that has parametric edge
conditions, but non-parametric NURBS type U-V point control for the face.
More comments in-line below...
email@example.com (Mark Biasotti) wrote in news:c0d657c3.0308100841.2ed4dde6
Yes, I think this is a great point. Surfacing in itself has little value
until it is made part of a solid. The new "merge result" option in the
Fill command makes a beginning toward this, taking a formerly surface-only
function, and merging it into the solid immediately.
To some extent you can do this with Library Features. Multiple complex
features can be set up, saved and reattached to new geometry using the
Library Feature "wizard" interface. I know what you're saying though, it
would be cool if the functionality were extended.
Yeah, you're right. That would save a lot of editing time. I don't think
that should be too terribly difficult, as long as changing feature types
doesn't blow the hell out of your downstream features.
I think you need to be careful here. Solid modelling in general has had to
shake off the "pretty picture" stigma by proving that the visual image
represents data that can be used to manufacture. Someone who designs cams
or dish antennae is concerned about mathematically accurate models, and
doesn't give a damn about how it looks.
All of your curvature continuity concepts are just practical application of
first and second derivatives (calculus).
In the same way, ID folks are always trying to shake the stigma of ignoring
manufacturing issues. IDEO, for example, did a project for a company I
worked for which looked good "visually", but was neither manufacturable nor
functional. I was required to sign off on the design, but could not
because it failed all of our tests. The company paid $250,000 for that
"visual", and almost that much more to make the numbers work.
I'm always glad when I run into ID folks that have the ability to see
things from other points of view, and I have met a couple. Ed Eaton is a
rare example of someone who thinks about how what he does affects the rest
of the downstream product development cycle. I've worked with ID folk from
Fisher-Price, Hamilton Beach, Crosman, Kodak, Rubbermaid, Levolor among
others, and the ID-ME interface always requires imagination and compromise
from both sides of the aisle in order to get a successful product launch.
Anyway, thanks for the surface/solid comments.
Do you realize you have just described what *already exists
today* in thinkdesign using Global Shape Modeling ???
LOL. See below.
Agreed. No reason to be forced by a history at *every single
step* !!! It's stupid and it's an unproductive waste of time. It
also destroys creativity.
Thankfully sales of Unigraphics are way down and EDS was
forced to come up with some real innovation for SolidEdge.
Now if EDS could only start converting more users you
might see some true innovation in Solidworks 2005 or 2006.
Were is Rick Mason when we really need him ??? :>)
jon (Solidworks it's hack and wack. (Hack and wack
"Solids are just surfaces with macros". (copyright Edward T
Little value to who ??? You, obviously. Many others.... uh,
Are you now in California and running for governor ? I still
think Gary Coleman and Larry Flint are more qualified....
well maybe not Gary Coleman. :>)
What you and Mark want is revolution in a business than is
really more about evolution.... especially in regards to
SolidWorks Corp. Super features is one such evolution.
think3's thinkdesign with Global Shape Modeling is another.
IMO the real problem with SolidWorks probably lies with d-
cubed's 3D DCM and with ACIS's Deformable Modeler which still
don't have anywhere close to enough functionality to do the
kinds of things that think3 thinkdesign with Global Shape
Modeling can, the kinds of things that the new version of
SolidEdge can, or that Pro/E Wildfire with ISDX can.
Quite simply, SolidWorks Corp. is not an innovator in regards
to giving the user tools to easily and effortlessly create
beautiful aesthetic designs. SolidWorks has proved very
adept at hack and whack, though. (Hack and whack
or is it whack and hack... does it matter... either way it
still freaking sucks) copyright J/K)
What you get with super features and with SolidEdge's
technology (They call it Rapid Blue....whatever the fuck
that means.) is really the best of both worlds. Thought you
might want to read about how it works straight from the
Also from :
"A new paradigm for shape design Solid Edge boosts design
productivity of complex geometry with tailored commands and
structured workflows that help you design much more quickly
than general-purpose surface modeling tools. With Rapid
Blue, you get the shape YOU want, not the one the CAD system
wants to give you. Shape preserving curves retain your
original shape even through complex edits. Blue Dot editing
introduces an industry first by addressing order dependency
and providing significantly more freedom and control for
evaluating and manipulating shapes in real time.
Complemented by a variety of new process-oriented tools for
shape design and dynamic editing, Rapid Blue shatters the
barriers of traditional "history-based" surface modeling.
With significantly fewer steps to create and edit complex
shapes, you can evaluate more alternatives in real time and
get the design you want."
Finally a review from Joe Greco of this technology can
be found here:
IMO Joe Greco does the best job of describing this technology.
I and many others know you can have both. You don't have
to make the sacrifice and compromise.
Matt, I say this from the standpoint of trying to get more of my ID's
using 3D solid modeling as a conceptual tool. Actually my team, using
ProE and Solidworks, have control of and release manufacturable
surfaces to our clients (clients with external ME teams). We are very
proud of this fact that we have control of the external tools
surfaces, but I work very hard at maintaining this.
Matt, you have me very curious about this. Would you mind sharing with
me what IDEO office you had this experience with and who from IDEO was
Thanks for you comments.
I think I'm going to regret this, but here it goes?
Jon, I don't understand your feelings for SWX verses Think3.
I've followed think3 since the CadLab days and even betaed it a few
years ago. Granted it is a robust surface modeler and I especially
like the way it can "cap" surfaces (3 sided). In this area it out
shines SWX. Now I haven't look at it for about 6 months but did an
on-line demo with them at that time. From what I could see of it, I
was still very concerned about the interface (the sketcher,
dynamic-ness and menu layout and iconage) which has always been it's
weakness. I also feel that in the solid modeling aspect, it is not as
good as SWX.
For me it is not and issue of whether I use think3 or SWX, but which
is the prevailing modeler in the industry currently. Unfortunately, I
actually don't have the luxury of picking which modeler I use, but I
use what the Fortune 500 consumer products industry uses. Currently
that is about 40 percent SWX, 50 percent ProE, and 10 percent Alias.
Keep in mind in almost all cases that Alias is being used along side a
parametric Solid modeler when it comes to released database.
As good as a surface modeler as think3 is, it is not a player in the
US market and compatibility and parametric database is so important to
us ( product design consultancies). Now of course, this is a different
issue for a manufacturer, in that they, in large part, can make a CAD
product choice, and work very comfortably in building there investment
in that modeler.
But, at IDEO, I've personally benefited from using several modelers,
both surface based (Alias and CDRS) as well as solid based
(SolidDesigner, ProE, and SWX). They all have there strengths and
Of all of the modelers I've experienced over the last 19 years, SWX
has been the most progressive, creative and attentive toward the
customer. Keep in mind that SWX is in its 7th year of production and
in its 8th revision (you can't really count '95 or the plus revs.).
When it was at SWX96, ProEngineer was at rev. 16 and in its18th year
of production. We often forget how far its (SWX) coming in about half
the time other modelers have evolved.
I think that SWX and think3 are more alike today than they have ever
been in there ability to do hybrid surface/solid modeling.
I talked many hours with SWX in the late ?90's and early 2000 period
about what think3 had and what SWX didn't. As a result (and also
others like a lot of the users in this forum) they listened and
incorporated multi-body which now gives you the ability to delete a
face and turn a solid into a surface body manifold and then back to a
solid as many times as you'd like. But unlike think3, they made it
very intuitive and easy to do. I don't say this to be boastful, but
only to assure you that they are listening to their customer.
From everything I can see, they are equipped to go forward and improve
on the area of surface modeling. The fill surface alone, should be
evidence of this alone, and they are not going to stop there. I'd love
to divulge more, but of course, I can't being under NDA.
Now, as you can see from my posted, do I think SWX is perfect or "they
have arrived"? no they haven't. But, they have made a lot of progress
in the pass seven years, and from every indication they are still
going at a pretty healthy pace in adding new functionality. The one
big area that I'm still hitting pretty hard on is the area of accuracy
and tolerance especially in the area of hybrid surface solid modeling.
In this area SWX still need a lot of work.
firstname.lastname@example.org (Mark Biasotti) wrote in
It was the Boston office, and it was a lasting impression. I don't hold
any grudges, but I'm more careful to look before I leap since that
experience. I wouldn't name any names, this was in 1998.
Various snips throughout
in the feature, you
A very nice post, Mark. At least one ME agrees with you completely on the
above points. I sure hope your friends in Cambridge are listening to you on
Here is a post from just 2 days ago, Cliffy from yet another
regular long time poster to alt.machines.cnc who also has
you filtered because you are a liar and a phony. His post
From: Gunner ( email@example.com)
Subject: Re: OT - More Book Burnings for Glen
Date: 2003-08-10 14:15:38 PST
Cliff? Cliff who?
I finally had enough. Working with the retarded is far less
challenging, frustrating and more rewarding than reading his
posts of nonsense. Shrug..far more interesting things to do
in life than watching paramecium aspiring to homo sapiens
I wasnt..but drooooool!!!
They were a lot of fun..but very expensive to plink cans
Here's another long time poster to alt.machines.cnc
who knows exactly what you are, Cliffy.
From: Glen ( firstname.lastname@example.org)
Subject: Re: OT - More Book Burnings for Glen
Date: 2003-08-06 08:23:56 PST *Almost* everyone admits to knowing that Cliff is mentally defective.
Carry on a conversation with a head case and you risk becoming one.
Here you are being nailed to the wall once again for being a lying
piece of shit.
From: Glen ( email@example.com)
Subject: Re: OT - More Book Burnings for Glen
Date: 2003-08-10 20:43:10 PST
The topic pretty well says it all. Cliif knows I'm not in
favor of book burning any more than he is in favor of eating
kittens, he just has no morals at all that would stop him
from saying crap like that.
It's really kind of sad.
"Gunner", as the name indicates. is a troll from misc.survivalism and
the gun & NRA groups as well as being so far right-wing he thinks
Attila the Hun was an "east coast liberal ".
I think they used him as a model, in part, for Archie Bunker.
Claims to be a "libertarian" but the party platform, when called to
his attention, confused him.
He uses NO CAD, CAD/CAM or CAM system and does not even
claim (as you do) to be a CNC machine operator.
He's a good enough guy otherwise . Armed to the teeth ...
I thought he'd got you on his last trip to Phoenix as you went into
hiding the same day
Now, about those red and blue frogs .... try leaving the good
people in comp.cad.solidworks alone. They actually know what
they are posting about (for the most part ). Take the meds
Find one lie.
I posted links to the media news sources I quoted . Take
it up with FOX news and the other sources.
Find one lie, I dare you (again) .
I'm not the one burning the books!! Honest !!
Now, now, clueless.
I guess you had no clue ..... those thumpers burned (stolen motel?) bibles,
the Book of Mormon as well as Harry Potter books for fear of Witchcraft.
Glen has yet to comment much .... but is's along his lines of interest. Just
like complaining long and loud about imported goods ..... while always
buying foreign made machine tools it seems ....
I also note you still did not comment on my little list .
Now, please leave the good folks in comp.cad.solidworks alone. THEY
have clues .
Glen's always trying to convert the heathen to his fundie church.
They have rewritten the bible .. seems that "thou shalt not kill" really
means "thou shalt not murder unless they are of another faith in which case
nuke them before they break in and steal my credit card". He's
not too fond of certain Baptists either .
I suspect Glen of *extreme* right-wing leanings as well .
Poor clueless, posting examples of how twisted those that post
politics & religion to AMC get (with a little help ).
I do note that you avoided any responses to my little list .
Got caught in too many lies already?