SW 2008 Review by Deskeng.com

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Funny how people tout things that they don't have to work with. SWIFT is one of them. I wish it would go away as far as mates are concerned. I just spent time today fixing an assembly that SWIFT got its claws into. If I want to play with a Chinese puzzle box, I'll get one at the novelty store.
TOP
Reply to
TOP
TOP,
I agree. All these new fangled "its easier to use" crap "features" are no good accept for marketing. In the real world they have little to no use. So many areas that we cry out ot get enhanced and they always add this crap to make the software more "usable" by the very people that shoudlnt be using it!
-DWH
Reply to
Anonymous
Everyone thinks they want an "Easy Button" :^) Unfortunately, the marketing/sales department always seems to get flashy features added that look cool in a brief demo, but are pretty much unusable for production use.
Reply to
Ken
Someday we may see reviews by people that actually use the software. This isn't one of them. When I read through the posts and when I work at helping people with SW usage, it is rarely a case of bad user interface that gets in the way. Performance, bugs and technique are far more important. Performance is SW responsibility as are bugs and technique is based on Software documentation either by SW or the user community.
TOP
Quoted with comments:
The new heads-up user interface allows the user to concentrate on the part and assembly, rather than finding menus, toolbars and such to define geometry. Features are dynamically edited, in real time, with fully dynamic previews of the end result of the modification, rather than showing the part in a rolled-back state.
When you start up SolidWorks 2008, the first thing that will hit you is the extensive overhaul of the user interface (UI). The new UI is in the style of Microsoft Office 2007, although not exactly the same.
[I don't have Office 2007. I probably won't have Office 2007 for several years. I have never seen Office 2007. So right away the author has lost me. Mayby I should go surf the web and see what Office 2007 is supposed to be in order to understand what he is talking about. The Office that I have now is OK by me and I see no reason to get a newer version.
Now if the UI is "extensively overhauled" that can only mean one thing. Seasoned users will have to relearn how to use SolidWorks. And this will take time away from design.
When he says "features are edited real time" I get chills up and down my spine because this sounds to me like a recipe for another major hardware upgrade just to keep performance up to a level I find acceptable.]TOP
What you gain is a method of interaction that hides away much of the clutter that is inevitable in such systems, but makes the whole system very task specific. So, in the Command Manager you now have single toolbar stripes for Sketching, Features, Assemblies, Drawings, etc. The PropertyManager, through which you access the Feature Tree as well as operation parameters and inputs, is automatically hidden on the left of the screen.
[This sounds like SolidEdge, which for those that have never used it, has a user interface that hides functionality away until the time is right (task specific Ribbon Bar). Unfortunately, hiding things makes them hard to find and forces users to follow the software's work flow instead of their own.
There are hotkeys in SW already to hide and show the feature manager. The current SW has problems with the Property manager obscuring the Feature manager. This sounds to me like they made the problem worse.
Finally, I don't have a problem with clutter. I use the command manager now in 2007. Why fix what isn't broke and concentrate on fixing what is broke?] TOP
Alongside this, there has been a rethinking of how you interact with data onscreen - this manifests itself in many areas, as we'll discover, but in general terms, there is a lot more interaction directly with the model. This extends to presentation of options and commands at the cursor, rather than resorting to menus or toolbars. For example, toolbars pop up at the cursor as they do in Office 2007, and hitting the S key brings up a fully customizable and context- sensitive strip of commands.
[Is is customizable enough to allow reverting back to a 2007 user interface in a manner similar to XP which allows reverting to "classic Windows" in order to get better performance.] TOP
DimXpert brings together a new set of tools that get you to a fully dimensioned part model in a fraction of the time - all of which conform to ASME Y14.41 standards for 3D documentation methods.
[Now this is an interesting statement. It says that the tools conform to ASME Y14.41. It doesn't say that it can produce drawings that conform to this standard. If the set of tools isn't complete then you won't be able to actually produce a drawing to this standard. This is one area that I have traditionaly had problems with SW giving some of the tools but not all of the tools necessary to complete the job.] TOP
Reply to
TOP
I agree. This review is an insult to thinking users everywhere. If we want to go read a marketing blurb, we can go to the SW site and read a marketing blurb. This is just parroted from someone at SW corporate who showed him stuff, then told him what he was seeing.
I agree. Same situation here. I had to go see it for myself at the MS site. Just because MS does something is no reason to copy it.
100% correct. If you take the interface right out of the box, experienced users will be figuring this one out for months.
Fortunately this is simply unbelievable marketing spin. They have slightly expanded functionality that already exists (Move/Size Features), turned it on by default, given it a face lift and called it a new way of doing things. The worst part of it is that this was tried back in like 97, 98 or 99, and the results were disaster back then. It will be the same now. You will have to turn this functionality off by default, if you do anything except demos.
2008 will cure you of using the CommandManager. They have removed too many options, and are locking you into one way of using it. I'm still very unclear about what the advantage is other than they were able to waste a vast swath of area in your interface and put a DS logo there. Then they had the audacity to show how you could put your own image there in place of the DS, as if losing all of that space was an advantage.
No. 2008 is the release where they take away options without giving options back. In the initial betas, they had made huge changes to the interface without offering a way to customize, and removed old ways of customizing existing interface elements. I'm not against new ways of doing things, but I do want to be able to customize the interface to the way that I like to work. Options are valuable, locking users into a certain way of working is not.
Gradually, they have added some options, but there are still things that you will not be able to do in 08 that you are able to do in 07. Through the betas and pre-release, they have done a lot of backpedalling because of all of the valid complaints on top of all of the very obvious bugs. I am experimenting with a new way of working with 08 to compensate for the loss of a usable CommandManager.
In as much as options have been removed or new interface elements have no customization options, the 2008 interface is a disaster. It can be set up to work like 2007 as long as you don't use the CommandManager. The RMB menu can be put back together so that it is usable again, and you can get rid of the little toolbar that obscures something everytime you click. You don't have to use the S toolbar which just brings up a toolbar button that you probably already have on your screen somewhere else. You can remove all of the icons from the semi-transparent View toolbar which is placed in the graphics area and overlaps with other things that don't belong there such as the minimize-restore-close buttons, the ConfirmationCorner, and whatever else is there now. In 2008, SolidWorks makes a lot of assumptions as to which tools are the most frequently used, and for me anyway, got it completely wrong. Toolbars which are supposed to contain the most frequently use tools, have stuff I never use, and don't have stuff I do use. No doubt their assumptions are based on statistics rather than common sense. Remember the disaster with the shortened menus? Same thing. New crop of people making the same old mistakes at SW.
Fortunately they relented and removed some utterly disastrous sketch workflow changes that were in the original betas. They were again, stuff that sounds great unless you actually use the software. One would start a sketch in the location where you picked the sketch plane. The problem was that if you wanted to sketch from the origin, you had to do it some other way. Another brilliant idea that didn't work out so well was the ability to edit multiple sketches at the same time. (SolidWorks is trying hard to change the history-based rules, I think.) The problem was that the new editing rules weren't very clear, the display seemed to get buggered easily, and the extra icons added to the upper right corner of the graphics window laid right on top of all the other new junk up there.
And then I haven't even mentioned that SW08 obsoletes graphics cards more than a few months old. Why? For reflections on the floor, better shadows and reflective backgrounds. Wha???? This isn't a "My Pretty Pony" game for 8 year old girls, this an engineering application! Most of us are middle aged, overweight, balding, tinker with the car on weekends, and like to take things apart. We are not drag queens, graphic arts types. SolidWorks is losing touch with the demographic that put them where they are.
SolidWorks says they listen to users. If you read any of the Beta forums on the SW site, the ONE thing that all of the users seem to be saying with a unified and clear voice is:
SLOW DOWN DEVELOPMENT - WORK THE KINKS OUT OF THE CODE - IMPROVE PERFORMANCE
Ok, that's three things, but it's really all the same. Have some pride in workmanship. You could deliver half of the new features which work solidly. In the initial beta contest, I spent more time documenting bugs than I did looking for them. It was like fishing in a barrel. The beta contest was FAR too short. There are still some nasty surprises in pre-release. There were installation problems with every beta and pre-release version.
Is there anyone in charge? Who is responsible for what is happening? You don't need an MBA and 20 years of industry experience to know that the rate of development is out of control. Documentation can't keep up. This has been admitted. We also see that the new features are added with too little forethought because of all of the backpedalling done in this release. In this release I would have sacrificed the interface fiasco and the RealView coup, and just taken some of the other improvements which are actually highly useful, but get far less attention because of the long list of profligacies.
The one problem with that is that 14.41 is a 3D drafting standard, not a 2D standard. I haven't really used this area much, but it looks interesting. The next hurdle is to get design to use it, and also to get mfg to accept it.
Reply to
matt
"my copy of SolidWorks 2007 Bible showed up today." - Jon Banquer - May 31, 2007
SolidWorks 2007 Bible "the content is just superb!" - Jon Banquer- Aug 8, 2007
Tom
Reply to
brewertr
I'm sorry that's the way you see things. Believe me, I am making note of things that people don't like about the book. But when you live in the real world and are trying to create something out of your own head, you cannot be perfect and will not please everybody all the time. Some comments about the book I fully plan to ignore when it comes to editing time such as "it's too long" or "it's too detailed" or "it doesn't explain how to use SolidWorks like AutoCAD". Sorry, I don't see those as valid complaints or constructive in any way. When you write your own book, you can make your own decisions.
The truth is that I started to allow your comments to go through. ALL of them, even when they contained language that I don't use on my blog. When you saw that I was allowing you to post, your comments got wilder and more ridiculous as you whipped yourself into a frenzy. I didn't want what happened to the Novedge blog to be repeated on mine, so I put all of your posts that I would allow into a single comment, and removed the rest. If any of your little friends start posting, I'll block the whole lot. You bring destruction, not constructive commentary, where ever you go, regardless of how you view things.
I prefer a rational discussion between people who really use the software. You prove on a regular basis that you can't be rational, and you have never said anything that makes me believe you have more than a passing familiarity with SolidWorks.
As for the multibodies stuff, users need to understand what assemblies are before they are thrust into multibodies. Again, if you don't agree, well, that's your choice. When you write a blog and a book, you can determine the order in which things are included and who gets to make comments.
Plus, the book is not really written in any sort of chronological order, except by complexity of topic. You notice there are several places where the reader is either referred forward or backward in the book. It is, after all, a desk reference, not a novel. If a dictionary were written in chronological order, it could never define anything at all.
Multibody solids leave the door wide open for a ton of poor modeling practice. The implementation in SolidWorks isn't perfect. If you turn novice users loose on multibodies, you are going to have a mess.
I strongly recommend that you actually do something of your own which is original, so you can show the rest of us how it "should" be done. All you do is criticize, and you never do anything constructive. I will never take anyone like that seriously.
You mentioned once that you wanted to start a blog. I strongly recommend that you do that. Then I recommend that you do something other than what the original poster of this thread is complaining about - parroting press releases. It would be a great advantage for me to have all of your ranting insanity in one easy to ignore location. You and the lot that follows you around have completely ruined this newsgroup. The amount of useful technical content found here has greatly diminished, most of it moving to the moderated SolidWorks forums and the uber-moderated eng-tips. I don't like moderation, I like personal responsibility and the ability to behave like adults. I don't believe you understand either concept. Freedom is not anarchy. You misbehave simply every time you *can*.
Reply to
matt
You didn't buy from Amazon so why threaten to post a negative review there?
"I'm the kind of person who doesn't learn very well reading" - Jon Banquer - July 22, 2007
"SolidWorks has changed so much since I've been away from it and I feel like I'm really far behind." - Jon Banquer - Aug. 8, 2007
Tom
Reply to
brewertr
Good grief now thats hilarious, I'm glad I just shut the machines down for the day, I could of made a silly mistake if I'd carried on while almost pissing myself laughing.
I think there's a requirement for a new catagory of lunacy.
Wayne...
Reply to
Wayne Weedon
"I'm the kind of person who doesn't learn very well reading" - Jon Banquer - posted July 22, 2007
"It takes a lot of effort to really understand SolidWorks." - Jon Banquer - Aug 8, 2007
"make the video interesting like you did for the razor. Without a practical real world example like the razor I find myself losing interest quickly." - Jon Banquer- Aug 3, 2006
" I dropped out of high school to pursue my dream of making a lot of money and never went back" - Jon Banquer - Dec 28, 2002
Wisdom of Jon-the-Banquer, machine operator, San Diego, Aug, 2007
Reply to
brewertr
Make up your mind Jon, you complain that your censored in other groups but now your saying Franco is an idiot because he didn't censor responses to your "interview" and your fake posts.
Tom
[ Franco Folini
UPDATE -- July 8, 2007 -- I had to close this blog post to further comments and to remove the personal attacks between Jon and some other newsgroups readers. Before the interview, I made an agreement with Jon about the style of the interview and the way to handle it. Jon didn't respect our agreement, posting comments under fake names. Jon's authentic and fake comments are all posted from the same IP address, 72.199.251.224. I can now see that my trust in Jon was misplaced. ]
Reply to
brewertr
Matt,
Somehow SW keeps getting more and more like SE with the stricter workflow control. There is a guy at work who is absolutely going to hate 2008. He always has every toolbar out. His graphics area is only acceptable because of the screen resolution.
It sounds like 2008 will be another 2005 for me. I may stay away while it is still in diapers. I went from 2004 to 2006 at work and then 2007. 2005 was where they took away performance. We didn't gain anything in productivity in all that. I'm from Wisconsin. People from Wisconsin in my age group knew that you didn't buy the first model year of any American Motors product and you didn't buy one that was built on any other day than Wednesday. :)
TOP
Reply to
TOP
I SEAKING ANOTHER JOB IN DESIGN AND DEVELOPMENT PLEASE SEND ANY REQURMRNTS IN US I HAVE B1 VISA
SEND A MAIL TO snipped-for-privacy@GMAIL.COM
....PRASANNA
Reply to
prasanna
HI FRIENDS I HAVE 3+EXP IN SOLIDWORKS I'M WORKING IN ONE OF THE INDIA MNC SO PLEASE FORWARED MY NAME TO THE REQUREMENTS
THANKS PRASANNA +919841139526 INDIA snipped-for-privacy@GMAIL.COM
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prasanna

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