13 Replies Latest reply on Feb 23, 2013 11:41 PM by Matt Lombard

    What's with all this hysteria about Dassault killing SolidWorks?

    Alex Moskvin

      I've been hearing a lot of concerning rumors about Dassault and a future of SolidWorks application. And I am curious to hear what others have to say about that. Here are some of the links I came across:

      http://www.dezignstuff.com/blog/?p=8353

      http://www.dezignstuff.com/blog/?p=8367

       

      Should we dump SolidWorks altogether and move to another platform?

        • Re: What's with all this hysteria about Dassault killing SolidWorks?

          Relying on a fog blogger who is on Siemens payroll and who takes advertising money as a main source of information has very serious drawbacks.

           

          Here are the problems with programs that use the Siemens Parasolid kernel and D-Cubed 2D and 3D constraint managers:

           

          http://cadcamtechnologyleaders.blogspot.com/

           

          Read what the head of SolidWorks R&D Gian Paolo Bassi has to say:

           

          http://gfxspeak.com/2012/02/08/new-solidworks-rd-vp-gian-paolo-bassi-will-be-under-the-microscope-at-solidworks-world-2012/

           

          "One key to improving performance is to rid ourselves of the history-based design paradigm. There has been a rediscovery in the industry of a need for direct manipulation of shape, to give designers more freedom. We will work to give SolidWorks better design freedom performance, better computational performance, and greater flexibility.  I came to Dassault Systèmes through the ImpactXoft deal, when they bought our functional modeling technology. It is now being incorporated into several Dassault products, including the SolidWorks Live Buildings software under development."

           

          On Parasolid:

           

          http://cadinsider.typepad.com/my_weblog/2012/02/solidworks-the-kernel-change.html

           

          "SolidWorks plan is to have parallel products, one with the Parasolid kernel and one with the CATIA v6 kernel. “Let’s face it, the Parasolid kernel  may have been the right choice 15 years ago. But the CATIA engine is more  advanced,” says Gian Paulo. “Besides, why use a competitor’s product?” "

           

          Hold me to this, Alex:

           

          You will see new products announced in 2013 from those with amazing track records in the CADCAM business that won't use the Siemens Parasolid kernel or D-Cubed 2D and 3D constraint managers. If you read my first link you will understand the reason for that.

           

           

          Jon Banquer

          CADCAM Technology Leaders group on LinkedIn

            • Re: What's with all this hysteria about Dassault killing SolidWorks?
              Tom Helsley

              The parallel products falls right in line with what DS has been doing for years with CATIA, so I wouldn't be one bit surprised if the same is done for SolidWorks.  In comparison, since CATIA V6 was announced, they have continued development on V5, and I was told by my CATIA VAR that there was no end of life planned for V5.  I was also told that DS no longer develops and improves V4, but they still do support it.

               

              IMHO, and I hope I am right, all the hysteria will be for nothing.  The only downside of parallel products will be that we'll have to pay for a brand new product if we want to use them instead of the Parasolid-based SolidWorks.  Only time will tell. 

               

              Matt Lombard has been perhaps a bit over-pessimistic about this change to V6, but it is not entirely un-founded.  A few years ago, When DraftSight came out, SolidWorks said they had no plans on discontinuing the 2D Editor (formerly called dwgEditor).  But has been quietly replaced by Draftsight.  Fortunately, there is no cost for DraftSight (unless you want support for it).  So, with that said, it wouldn't be the first time a company has killed a product and tried to sell a new one in it's place.  I went through that with MSC years ago, and the end result was we dropped their products altogether.  Not a very smart move on MSC's part.  Hopefully, DS SolidWorks won't follow make that mistake. 

               

              I think most of Matt's anxiety about the V6 thing is the cloud.  Only time will tell how the cloud thing plays out.  From what I've read so far, it doesn't sound like users will be forced to work on the cloud if they want to use th V6 product.  I really hope they stick to their word on this.  There are too many companies out there that need to secure thier data for national security purposes, etc.  While there are some benefits to the cloud, there are too many concerns and issues to resolve before it becomes a viable option for CAD.  SolidWorks seems to be aware of this, and SolidWorks knows they risk losing too many customers if they force us to work off of the cloud.

               

              But knowing that DS plans on continuing with parallel product support for CATIA V5 & V6, and reading posts from Matthew West and other SolidWorks folks, I am fairly confident that SolidWorks will also do the same and continue support for both Parasolid and V6 products for many years.  I take all the fear-mongering and doom & gloom stuff with a grain of salt.  It's just way too soon to think about bailing from the SolidWorks ship.  Hopefully, all of the pesimistic talk has kept DS SolidWorks in check, and prevented a major mistake.

               

              If I am wrong, and DS does kill Parasolid-based SolidWorks you will have plenty of time later to switch.  If the worst case happens you might not be on current SolidWorks, but can continue using your current version until you have a replacement.  Data migration may be an issue, but depending on how you handle it, it might not be a big deal.  Switching now instead of later may not help.

               

              So, once again, I'm just going to continue on and wait and see what happens.

                • Re: What's with all this hysteria about Dassault killing SolidWorks?

                  "IMHO, and I hope I am right, all the hysteria will be for nothing."

                   

                  Sorry but there is no hysteria among the masses. Most users are happy with SolidWorks. Some users are concerned with the serious lack of development in SolidWorks and a few users are very unhappy. I haven't been very happy for many years with Solidworks because of the lack of direct modeling tools. Getting SpaceClaim so I could argument SolidWorks has made my life much, much easier because I mostly work with non-native solids.

                   

                  "So, once again, I'm just going to continue on and wait and see what happens."

                   

                  Easily the smartest move to make right now.

                   

                  Your comments don't deal with what concerns me and should concern others the most... transferring files between different kernels. Legacy SolidWorks will continue to use Parasolid. SolidWorks Mechanical Conceptual will use the Dassault CGM kernel. I definitely see that as problematic and that's putting it mildly.

                   

                  "There are too many companies out there that need to secure thier data for national security purposes, etc."

                   

                  None of those that I work will put any of their data on a public server. They all have to comply with ITAR regualtions. If they were forced to do this they would dump SolidWorks in a freaking heartbeat.

                   

                  "reading posts from Matthew West"

                   

                  I don't trust a lot of people. I trust Matt West and I'm confident that SolidWorks users will have the option to run on a private cloud. I've read how Matt Lombard has treated Matt West on his fog blog. It's pathetic. I hope Matt West is all done posting there.

                   

                  Having said all this, I do think that Siemens is doing a very good job improving Solid Edge ST and I expect ST6 to be a great release with tons of needed real world improvements. The only thing that will save Solid Edge (which is legacy code) is making direct modeling more powerful and eliminating any real need for history based modeling. I don't see history based modeling getting the kind of work that direct modeling has been getting in Solid Edge. The problem with Solid Edge has been and still is lousy US manglement. It hasn't improved. The product is all but invisible where I live: San Diego, CA. No user groups and Siemens Solid Edge mangelment has never held a Solid Edge World here on the west coast. There is good reason for that... they don't have the users here.

                   

                  Jon Banquer

                  CADCAM Technology Leaders group on LinkedIn

                    • Re: What's with all this hysteria about Dassault killing SolidWorks?
                      Toby Robinson

                      I just looked at the first link in the first post. There is a video with the CEO of Dassault saying

                       

                      SolidWorks will adopt the V6 technology everywhere, modeling included. We’re going to drop Parasolid.”

                       

                      Here is a link to the video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eVTsyfFRDMQ&t=14m45s

                      From that statement I take it that SolidWorks will be going to V6.

                      If this is a good or bad thing I don’t know only time will tell.

                        • Re: What's with all this hysteria about Dassault killing SolidWorks?
                          Jeff Mirisola

                          This concern has been addressed a few times. There is no end of life plan in place for SolidWorks. 2014 is in alpha testing and 2015 is in developmental stage. Dassault has reitereated that there are no plans to replace SolidWorks, as we know it, in the foreseeable future. This was said at SWW this year, and has been repeated by Matthew West here on these forums. Also, to quote him from Eng-Tips Forums:

                          Just to clarify, the current SolidWorks tools you and others use today will continue to be based on Parasolid. That's not changing. Future products built on the Dassault Systemes 3DEXPERIENCE Platform, such as SolidWorks Mechanical Conceptual, will leverage the CGM kernel. Bernard was saying that we are moving away from Parasolid as we develop new products.

                          So, no need to panic.

                            • Re: What's with all this hysteria about Dassault killing SolidWorks?
                              Matt Lombard

                              Bernard Charles, the Dassault CEO, Dassault being the parent company of Solidworks, stated very clearly:

                              "SolidWorks is also expanding, and as you know we have announced clearly that SolidWorks will adopt the V6 technology everywhere, modeling included. We’re going to drop Parasolid. It’s going to be marginal. And we’re going to generalize the use of the power of modeling of Catia, for everything we use the power of V6 technology.

                               

                               

                            • Re: What's with all this hysteria about Dassault killing SolidWorks?

                              It's a good thing because Siemens Parasolid and Siemens D-Cubed contraint solvers represent the past.

                               

                              When Siemens decieded not to license their direct modeling (Synchronus Technology) because they knew Parasolid and D-Cubed were showing their age and were very vunerable this threw the door wide open to new kernel and constraint manager developers to move forward at a much faster rate. No one I know of that will be announcing new CAD products in 2013 will be using Siemens Parasolid or Siemens D-Cubed constaint managers. There is very good reason for this:

                               

                              http://www.cadcamtechnologyleaders.blogspot.com/

                               

                              You will see disruption with solid modeling in 2013 that will not come from incremental refinements to B-rep technology.

                               

                               

                              Jon Banquer

                              CADCAM Technology Leaders group on LinkedIn

                                • Re: What's with all this hysteria about Dassault killing SolidWorks?
                                  Toby Robinson

                                  I also think this is a good thing. Parasolid is old technology.

                                   

                                  I know its going to be painful to switch to new technology. At first if it’s too painful to switch I’m going to keep using the parasolid version of solidworks. At some point in time it’s going to become more painful to keep using parasolid then it would to switch. 3 years, 5 years, 10 years dont know. Parasolid is old technology and if I stay on it I will be left behind. At some point in time I will have to switch to a new technology. I will then make the switch to who ever has the best solution.

                                   

                                  IMHO the best solution is updating SolidWorks. 

                                  Let’s say SolidWorks X is the last version to use parasolid and Solidworks Y is going to use V6. Great I have no problem with that as long as I’m told about it and given a clear plan on how to make the update. If there is not too much pain to do it I’m going for it. If it is too painful at the time I will use SolidWorks X for a few more years and then upgrade when it’s less painful.

                                   

                                  I do not want to buy a new solution there is a lot of pain involved. Which will make me put it off longer then I should. This will open the door for other solutions.

                                   

                                  I use the word pain because each person’s needs are different. I also use the word solution because it’s no longer just software.

                                    • Re: What's with all this hysteria about Dassault killing SolidWorks?

                                      In my view the new technology will only be a good thing if a user isn't locked into a CADCAM company with forced software rental / maintenance and if the user isn't forced to put their data on a public cloud.

                                       

                                      Another major concern of mine is how well will files transfer between SolidWorks and SolidWorks Mechanical Conceptual? I'm not happy that so little information has been given so far by SolidWorks on this very important matter.

                                       

                                      "Parasolid is old technology and if I stay on it I will be left behind. At some point in time I will have to switch to a new technology. I will then make the switch to who ever has the best solution."

                                       

                                      The only CAD I have faith in to expand and stay relivant that uses Parasolid and D-Cubed constraint mangagers are Siemens own products: NX and Solid Edge. I think those licensing Siemens Parasolid and D-Cubed constraint managers are going to have to look elsewhere for more modern kernels and constraint managers to license.

                                       

                                      "IMHO the best solution is updating SolidWorks."

                                       

                                      I think the best solution at this point is to wait. Jumping ship right now would in my view be a huge mistake for most unless the overriding factor is very powerful, true, fully integrated CAM. I expect the next release of Siemens Solid Edge ST to finally put a good deal of pressure on SolidWorks technically. Sales wise, not so much as Solid Edge ST has incompetent, bungling mangelment at the very top. Hopefully SolidWorks Mechanical Conceptual will have something in it to convince me that serious innovation is alive and well at SolidWorks. If SolidWorks Mechanical Conceptual is a total disappointment it's at that point that I and those that I work with will get serious about looking at other alternatives for the future.

                                       

                                      In the mean time it's watch and wait while keeping a close eye on new kernel and constraint manager development. For those interested in doing the same this might be a good place to start:

                                       

                                       

                                      http://www.phenometry.com/

                                       

                                       

                                       

                                      Jon Banquer

                                      CADCAM Technology Leaders group on LinkedIn

                          • Re: What's with all this hysteria about Dassault killing SolidWorks?
                            Vajrang Parvate

                            Hi Alex,

                             

                            You have partly answered your own question by calling it hysteria:

                             

                            "Hysteria describes unmanageable emotional excesses. People who are "hysterical" often lose self-control due to an overwhelming fear that may be caused by multiple events in one's past that involved some sort of severe conflict."

                             

                            I suggest looking at the question objectively:

                             

                            - Fundamentally, are you happy with the product and the service SolidWorks provides and are you getting good return on your investment ?

                            - If you are not, please reach out to your reseller / us and let us know. We want to make things right.

                            - Before you let rumour- and fear-mongering influence your decisions, please look at more than one source; sources that may be more recent, better informed and more objective.

                            - We're in the middle of SW2014 development and Beta will be out in July.

                            - Planning for SW2015 has begun.

                             

                            Of course, if you're the kind who likes this rumour sort of thing, then go right ahead - "never let facts get in the way of a good conspiracy theory" (to paraphrase Mark Twain).

                             

                            Hope this helps,

                             

                            Vajrang