CAD Revolution: Inevitable and Already Started

There are several more or less obvious objective and subjective reasons to systematize the main trends in CAD/PLM development at the beginning of 2011. The isicad editorial board has asked its leading expert and reviewer Vladimir Malukh to characterize these trends, and his opinion formed the basis for the article published two weeks ago at isicad.ru in Russian and just published in English at isicad.net.

To give a more pronounced position of isicad.ru, Vladimir’s paper is extended by the Appendix combining an interview with the author and some elements of a Round Table, involving along with Vladimir Malukh, also Dmitry Ushakov and me.

Vladimir has outlined 12 trends and then we commented some of them. For example, we discussed whether Autodesk, DS, or SpaceClaim can really be acquired. Dmitry added his opinion about future of direct editing. I espressed some concerns related to whether CAD could or should be used by everyone. Also I said something about a very simplified approach to a so-called sustainable design...


Bricscad Enters 3D Solid Modeling for Mechanical Design Market. A Long Interview with Erik De Keyser

isicad had a chance to interview Erik De Keyser, founder and CEO of Bricsys - the company which positions itself as at least a leader of the world of AutoCAD analogues. My conclusion: Erik wants to go much further.

Here are the questions:
-You position your main product – Bricscad – as the number one DWG CAD alternative. What are your advantages over competitors?
-What industries cover your solutions? Who are your customers?
- Is the Russian market important for you? What are your plans here?
- How long are you in the CAD business? Please describe in brief your background and Bricsys history.
- Bricscad is a platform for application developers – there are over 170 third-party products based on it. How do you support third-party developers?
- Previous versions of Bricscad were based on the IntelliCAD platform. Why have you left the ITC?
- Recently you released Bricscad for LINUX. Do you plan to enter the Mac OSX or maybe the iOS (iPad) markets?
- Your second product – Vondle – a document and data management system, is based on the SaaS business model. Are you planning to use the same model for Bricscad?
- In the latest version of Bricsys Platinum you introduced 3D parametric solid modeling. Did existing users request this functionality or are you planning to attack new markets with it?
- Last summer Dassault Systemes released its free DWG CAD (DraftSight). Has it impacted your business? (asked and answered before SWW 2011)
- What are your plans for the next years?

For detailed and open Erik's answers visit the paper at isicad.net.


Microsoft in Russia: +25%. What about Autodesk?

According to the article in the Russian daily Vedomosty (partially based on the IDC data, the Russian sales of Microsoft in 2010 grew by at least 25% while the whole Russian software market increased by only 15%. IDC estimates the Russian income of MS in 2009 as $800M and correspondingly as 1 billion in 2010. At the same time, IDC believes that the total volume of Russian software market during 2010 increased up to $ 2.3 billion which means that MS's software market share in Russia is today about 43% (looks strange to me).

The sources of this MS growth are more or less clear:
- general market recovery after the crisis,
- success of Windows 7,
- increase of the share of legal software, primarily due to the corporate sector,
- expansion to the Russian regions: the number of MS regional offices/partners has increased over the year from 58 to 70.

Why, in this context, I mention Autodesk? Just because among the CAD vendors in Russia it's only Autodesk which can somehow be compared with MS: of course not by the income but in particular because in Russia Autodesk is definitely the No.2 actor (aggrieved party) of all cases on the illegal software, obviously - after Microsoft. Autodesk, as practically all CAD vendors operating in Russia, never opens absolute data about its annual income, however comparative changes are usually announced. Thus, I am interested in how the Autodesk growth in Russia within its financial year corresponds to 25% of MS and to 15% of the whole software market. Everyone who has seen the Russian Autodesk Forum 2010 (see some pictures) can hardly imagine a lack of considerable growth of the Autodesk sales in 2010:).

Well, another source of MS-Autodesk associations is a recent media flash (joke? provocation? non fantastic scenario?) about possible acquisition of Autodesk by Microsoft. I wouldn't love such development. However anything can happen in our world.

Source (in Russian): here.


What Publications on CAD/PLM are the Most Popular in Russia?

It seems usual for all kinds of media to announce their year-end statistics. I will now make this for the Russian versions of the isicad portal and of my blog that hopefully gives some impression about distribution of interests and preferences in the Russian market.

Top 10 of isicad.ru (from 527 publications of 2010)

1. Software renewal is rather investments than expenses. An interview with Anastasia Morozova, Field Marketing Area Team Manager, Autodesk Russia and CIS
2. What Affects Adoption of BIM in Russia? Vladimir Talapov (Novosibirsk Architecture Academy)
3. KOMPAS-3D V12 to be Released in May: Interview with Vladimir Zakharov, CTO of ASCON
4. AutoCAD 2011 brings 3D to the Mass Market. Ilya Tatarnikov (LEDAS)
5. What People Usually Mean by BIM. Vladimir Talapov
7. To Increase Adoption of PLM in Russia We Need a Competitive Environment. An Interview with Dmitry Osnatch, Marketing Director of ASCON.
8. How We See CAD/PLM in 2020. Vladimir Malukh, Dmitry Ushakov (both - LEDAS)
10. Not Just Almost Everything about Autodesk 2010-2011 in Russia. An interview with Anastasia Morozova, Field Marketing Area Team Manager, Autodesk Russia and CIS.
(Note that 9 and 10 were published quite recently).

Top 10 of David Levin Russian Blog (from 215 posts of 2010)

1. Cloud: the Most Fashionable Word in CAD?
2. AutoCAD for $50 or The torrents.ru Case
3. From AutoCAD 2011 and KOMPAS-3D to SolidWorks-2011
4. DS Wants to Kill AutoCAD
5. AutoCAD 2011 is More Cool than Ashton Catcher and Avatar
6. Working Days of CAD Market Competition
7. Innovative Economy in Russia: Inevitable Future or a Dream?
8. On a Reflex of Contempt for What is not a Short-term and Freestuff: in CAD and in General
9. SolidWorks, PLM, and Enovia Meet in Clouds
10. What is New in Autodesk Inventor 2011

Now - some simple conclusions:
- Autodesk and ASCON are definitely the most popular CAD vendors in Russia,
- Inventor hardly enjoys popularity of Autodesk, however its popularity at the level of SW, DS, PLM,... is perhaps honorable for Autodesk,
- People are VERY sensitive to the topics of (il)legal software which from my point of view reflects a considerable progress in overcoming the problem in Russia - definitely an important topic to discuss separately,
- People are more and more interested in technology, trends, overviews, test drives... - if they trust the authors:),
- As always and everywhere, people are obviously attracted by topics of competition, conflicts between vendors, ..., whatever flavor of sensation...