SolidWorks Corporation is out with a new version of its eDrawings email collaboration tool that allows users to drag-and-drop drawings into Microsoft Word or PowerPoint documents with all of the drawings’ pan/zoom/rotate/animate features preserved. It was possible to do that before, says Aaron Kelly, SolidWorks’ director of product management, but it was nowhere near as easy as it is now, and what’s more, those who receive the documents don’t have to download software to view them because that software is embedded in the file.
Another big deal in addition to the drag-and-drop enhancement is support for AutoCAD 3D files and AutoCAD layers, including selective activation of layers in a drawing set. Previous versions supported 2D files but did not support layers. The new version also supports AutoCAD 2007, and Google SketchUp.
An in-depth survey of 700 current and future users of 3D printing holds few surprises, but results emphasize some major trends already in progress. Two standouts are the big growth in end-use parts and metal additive manufacturing (AM) most respondents expect.
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