9 Replies Latest reply on Apr 5, 2018 12:55 PM by Deepak Gupta

    I have created a Free Product Configurator. Sharing to see if this creates buzz or not.

    Jeetendra Prasad

      Hi,

       

      Hello everybody out there using solidworks –

      I’m doing a (free) product configurator (just a hobby for now, won’t be big) for SW2016, EDrawing 2016, Acrobat Reader DC and Excel 2013 in 64Bit in windows 10 system. This has been brewing since Aug, and is starting to get ready. I’d like any feedback on things people like/dislike at jeetendraprasad@gmail.com. I’ve currently used SW2016, EDrawing 2016, Acrobat Reader DC and Excel 2013 in 64Bit in windows 10 system, and things seem to work. This implies that I’ll get something practical within a few months, and I’d like to know what features most people would want. Any suggestions are welcome, but I won’t promise I’ll implement them  

       

      Jeetendra Prasad (jeetendraprasad@gmail.com)

       

      It may work on other versions of SW, Edrawimg, Acrbat reader and Excel, but I have not checked them. Do let me know if you face any issue in running the software. Also I have not checked License Server implementation (Rhino.Licensing.dll) on wild, so please let me know if you face any licencing issue.

       

      This product configurator is based on Excel. Here the User interface and individual design tables are merged into a single workbook. And there there is a JPProdConfigConsoleApp.exe application which shows the user interface on basis of excel file. The user interface approach is a unique approach which I believe has not been done earlier. Also the excel makes this configurator very friendly to engineers.

       

       

      The attachment zip file ( ToWorld_Rev01.zip ) contains 3 folders with examples which has to be extracted so that you get 3 folders once unzipped.

       

       

      Product configurator example 1 : MyProdConfig1

      Description : This is incomplete as model is not there. See IMPORTANT_NOTE.txt file. Without sw model files this project will not run. Once you copy models you need to press "Run.bat".

       

      Product configurator example 2 : MyProdConfig2

      Description : This is complete project. Just press "Run.bat".

       

      Product configurator example 3 : UIExample1

      Description : This is complete project but highlights only the UI portion. Just press "Run.bat".

       

       

      Please check it and let me know about the feedback.

       

       

      Regards,

      Jeetendra Prasad

       

       

       

      NOTE : I have reattached ToWorld.zip as ToWorld_Rev01.zip as earlier was not usable.

       

      Message was edited by: Jeetendra Prasad

       

      Message was edited by: Jeetendra Prasad

        • Re: I have created a Free Product Configurator. Sharing to see if this creates buzz or not.
          Rick Becker

          Jeetendra,

           

          Can you explain, in much more detail, what exactly a product configurator is? I read the above and I am clueless what you intend this to be used for?

           

          Thanks in advance.

            • Re: I have created a Free Product Configurator. Sharing to see if this creates buzz or not.
              Jeetendra Prasad

              What is a product configurator w.r.t. SolidWorks CAD modelling?

               

              A product configurator is a software which helps you achieve design automation or automatic updation of models/drawings/BOM/price by use of simple interface which can be used by non-technical persons (e.g. sales-person).

               

              For example, your sales person is sitting with a client understanding the product variant required by client. Once a variant is finalised and he needs to give price to customer then either:-

              1> sales person will call engineering office and send engineering office the product variant who would update Models/Assemblies/Drawing/BOM/Price and send back to the sales person the required variant. [This is time consuming]

              2> sales person will feed input parameters to product configurator which will then spit out required variant with Models/Assemblies/Drawing/BOM/Price instantaneously. [This is faster and client can see and understand the product in 3D] [Here the role of product configurator comes into play]

              3> sales person will refer his vast product catalogue for Models/Assemblies/Drawing/BOM/Price [This option is ruled out if the varieties are Hugh]

               

              However the change which has happened now a days is that sales person is getting replaced by websites. And hence the product configurators have all become available online.

               

              Product configurators are very helpful if your product/assembly is similar in broad-level philosophy and can be controlled by changing parameters in individual parts and assemblies.

               

              Traditionally configurators were achieved by using:-

              1> Design tables (excel): This works on parametric modelling approach.

              2> Macros/Full-fledged programming by creating exe: This works on parametric modelling approach for most of the time and for all practical purposes. Let’s not discuss on generative approach.

               

              Design tables (excel) approach: This is relatively much easier way and can be done by designers. Limitation are 1> individual design tables are to be updated separately (thus 1 input needs to be given at different excels. Please look at great link to overcome this https://forum.solidworks.com/message/665832#comment-665832), 2> sales person can’t do it.

               

              Macros/Full-fledged programming by creating exe: This is much harder approach involving tons of programmers and time. Very few large companies can do it economical successfully. This also involves 3D model which needs to be updated through program.

              Owing to above limitation the ‘generic product configurators’ came into being. They allow non-programmers to create product configurators for specific products. They majorly work on parametric modelling approach and aid designers (with much lesser programming skills than programmers) to build product configurators which can be used by sales persons or end customers over website. These are great software and works over internet also and examples of famous once are DriveWorks, TactonWorks, etc.

               

              The limitation of these generic product configurators are that these involve a learning curve to master them by learning ‘rule engines’ syntax they are based on.

               

              This is where my ‘generic product configurator’ internally named as ‘JPProdConfig’ comes into picture.

               

              Benefits of ‘JPProdConfig’:-

              1. Using ‘JPProdConfig’ you can create complex UI in excel sheet which on the fly is reflected to windows form user interface. Hence no training is required for creating UI. [If you want to try out this then you open ‘UI.xlsx’ in ‘Model’ folder in ToWorld_Rev01.zip attached in this post. Also you can refer PCLogic.rtf present in ToWorld_Rev01.zip]
              2. Design Tables are heart of ‘JPProdConfig’ which is well understood by engineers. With ‘JPProdConfig’ you can put all independent design tables into single workbook along with user interface sheet. Thus building logic only involves playing with excel formulas only. Anybody knowing excel VBA can do wonders with my software. [If you want to try out this then you open ‘UI.xlsx’ in ‘Model’ folder in ToWorld_Rev01.zip attached in this post. Also you can refer PCLogic.rtf present in ToWorld_Rev01.zip]
              3. ‘JPProdConfig’ is free alternative to DriveWorks, TactonWorks, etc. It’s free for now.

               

              Limitations of ‘JPProdConfig’:-

              1. Not internet based. In future that may come.
              2. Slow. I will be working on that but then I would like to see some persons using it 1st.
              3. Somebody pointed out to me that the working description is not there and that I should have instruction video. [I will be working on that later. But time being you need to refer PCLogic.rtf (present in Bin folder) which gives example on how to automate driveworks solo model.]

               

              I shall be updating more on this. Thanks for showing some interest here.

               

              Regards,

              Jeetendra Prasad

            • Re: I have created a Free Product Configurator. Sharing to see if this creates buzz or not.
              Kody Brown

              Jeetendra,

               

              I am looking for something that can allow a sales person in the field to fill out a design table (probably excel), automatically update the model and drawing. After that is done, they will have a complete drawing that they never have to touch. So far I have accomplished this, but they have to have access to solidworks and have some knowledge of how to use it. Ideally, I would like to have something that doesn't require solidworks to be accessed on their machine. Is this something your configurator can do?

               

              Regards,

              Kody