The Release 2 version of Autodesk Inventor™shipped in mid-March, adding web-enabled virtual meeting capability to the 3D solid modeling program's trademark "adaptive technology."
The latest changes allow designers to take advantage of four trends in 3D modeling: a more intuitive user interface allows engineers of various experience levels to be trained on it; Design Doctor and Design Professor functions ease training and interoperability; web-enabled functions permit collaborative design; and a parts catalog speeds design through re-use of standard fasteners.
While these are hardly unique features in the CAD market, Inventor R2 is the only program to pull web-enabling, new applications, and "adaptive technology" together in one package, says Autodesk's Robert L. Kross, vice president, mechanical. In response, programs like SolidWorks tout different strengths, like single-keystroke operation and faster processing speed. But Autodesk insists its "adaptive technology" allows the most intuitive design, so engineers can worry about function before form, Kross says.
With Inventor, designers can sketch simple 2D layouts to
test ideas and functionality before constructing a full 3D model. And Inventor
R2 has built-in Net Publishing, so an engineer can publish his drawing to a web
site where he can share it with other AutoDesk users. With the integrated
Microsoft®Net Meeting, he can host an online "conference call" from his laptop,
collaborating on new designs with other engineers. Attendees at this meeting can
view, chat and whiteboard ideas, all without having Inventor software on their
own computers. For information on Inventor R2, contact Autodesk, 111 McInnis
Pkwy., San Rafael, CA 94903; Tel. (800-964-6432); www.autodesk.com
Some cars are more reliable than others, but even the vehicles at the bottom of this year’s Consumer Reports reliability survey are vastly better than those of 20 years ago in the key areas of powertrain and hardware, experts said this week.
Many of the materials in this slideshow are resins or elastomers, plus reinforced materials, styrenics, and PLA masterbatches. Applications range from automotive and aerospace to industrial, consumer electronics and wearables, consumer goods, medical and healthcare, as well as sporting goods, and materials for protecting food and beverages.
While many larger companies are still reluctant to rely on wireless networks to transmit important information in industrial settings, there is an increasing acceptance rate of the newer, more robust wireless options that are now available.
Focus on Fundamentals consists of 45-minute on-line classes that cover a host of technologies. You learn without leaving the comfort of your desk. All classes are taught by subject-matter experts and all are archived. So if you can't attend live, attend at your convenience.