Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Spatial Releases 3D Contraint Manager

Spatial recently announced their new and/or improved 3D Constraint Manager.

I can't say I am familiar with this product in the past, so it is another one of those new or new-to-me questions. My main question is thus, why? I am doing some research to find customers who have implemented a Spatial solution for the CAD/CAM/CAE software, but I'm not having much luck narrowing the field down to the customers utilizing 3D Constraint Manager.

D-Cubed, now owned by Siemens, remains a part of the Seimens/UGS Open Solutions portfolio. As far as I know, this hasn't changed recently and many CAD/CAM/CAE vendors are fully entrenched into D-Cubed's 2D and 3D constraint management tools. Why is Spatial focusing on this? What product? What customer? Do they really have that much better of a product to be able to usurp the competition?

Needless to say, I am very interested in seeing where this product evolves. Between Catia v6 and what looks like a direct competitor to Synchronous Technology, ACIS's amazing ability to generate and heal complex surfaces, Spatial's Interop Suite that may one day make working with any native file a breeze in any other program, and now a 3D Constraint tool, Spatial's well-rounded portfolio is set to be the full-solution provider for any up-and-coming CAD vendor ready to take over the market with the next revolutionary idea.

Spatial Releases ACIS v19

Spatial issued a press release announcing the next version of ACIS 3D Modeler and the 3D Interop Suite.

I have been impressed with Spatial and their continued focus on interoperability. Of course, I don't think ACIS will ever make it to the de facto standard like Parasolid, nor make it to an industry standard like STEP, but they continue down the path none-the-less putting just enough competitive pressure on Siemens to continue improving. Kind of like AMD is to Intel.

One thing that is very interesting, and I don't know if it is new to ACIS or just new to me, is the 3D Springback for the press metal industry. This one appears to be a part of their analysis suite and focusing on tool and die makers. Personally, I think the real power in this one would be if it can be integrated into the design side as part of the Sheet Metal environment in CAD programs.

Not surprising in this release is the 3D Interop portion being focused on the improved data sharing between Catia v5 and Solidworks. Perhaps Spatial/Dassault is seeing a little pressure from Seimens and Seimen's interoperability between native NX and native Solidedge. Of course, the fact that Catia and Solidworks don't use the same kernel makes the interoperability that much more of a challenge. If Spatial can make Catia and Solidworks share native file formats at least as smoothly as NX and Edge, perhaps ACIS will be the new de facto standard. Keep at it Spatial.