Autodesk is taking aim at contractors, self-professed do-it-yourselfers and anyone else who performs tasks requiring accurate plans with AutoCAD Freestyle, a new drawing and sketch package.
As opposed to using pen and paper or more complex software, AutoCAD Freestyle has been designed to let users generate quick, accurate and professional-looking designs without the need for or the learning curve of industrial-strength CAD software. AutoCAD Freestyle is designed for any task that requires the creation of accurate plans and construction documentation.
Built on the AutoCAD platform, AutoCAD Freestyle provides a toolset for creating standard shapes (lines, arcs, circles, rectangles), annotating drawings (dimension, text, fills), sketching, doodling and inserting images and symbols. The grid on the drawing surface helps users understand spatial dimensions such as proportion and distance so they can solve design challenges and create accurate sketches, much like drawing on graph paper. A full library of pre-drawn, commonly-used symbols is also included to help save time. In addition, the software provides the ability to insert and trace over a photograph or one of the many sample drawings provided in the package available for download from the AutoCAD Freestyle community.
AutoCAD Freestyle, which supports full DWG compatibility, can also be tapped by non-CAD employees working with architects and engineers, allowing them to markup and annotate designs created in AutoCAD. Once their input is complete, they can send the design changes back for incorporation into the AutoCAD file, which helps reduce rework. AutoCAD Freestyle also uses Windows 7 support for multitouch, including panning, zooming, rotation and flick functionality. The software was previously available on Autodesk Labs as a technology preview known as Project Cooper. AutoCAD Freestyle is now available for download from the Autodesk eStore.
A new service lets engineers and orthopedic surgeons design and 3D print highly accurate, patient-specific, orthopedic medical implants made of metal -- without owning a 3D printer. Using free, downloadable software, users can import ASCII and binary .STL files, design the implant, and send an encrypted design file to a third-party manufacturer.
For industrial control applications, or even a simple assembly line, that machine can go almost 24/7 without a break. But what happens when the task is a little more complex? That’s where the “smart” machine would come in. The smart machine is one that has some simple (or complex in some cases) processing capability to be able to adapt to changing conditions. Such machines are suited for a host of applications, including automotive, aerospace, defense, medical, computers and electronics, telecommunications, consumer goods, and so on. This discussion will examine what’s possible with smart machines, and what tradeoffs need to be made to implement such a solution.