AutoCAD 2010

I am at the Bangalore airport waiting for my flight back home to Goa. I came here to attend the DevDays event held at the Windsor yesterday. DevDays is a set of one day events that Autodesk holds in various cities around the world where they show their partners (mostly Autodesk Developer Network members) the upcoming versions of their product range and offer indepth technical advice on the issues that may come up with porting their existing plug-ins to the new versions.

Anyone who attends DevDays is bound by a Non-Disclosure Agreement, so I cannot say much. In fact, I cannot say anything at all. But I am going to flirt with danger here, drop a few hints and let you read between the lines.

Autodesk has hired a Product Manager for AutoCAD called Guillermo Melantoni whose sole job in life is to focus on advanced 3D functionality in AutoCAD. Do keep in mind that going by their self-imposed three year cycle, AutoCAD 2010 is when Autodesk changes the DWG file format. And that gives them a chance to completely rearchitecture certain portions of the software. One thing is for sure, AutoCAD 2010 is not going to be one of those casual upgrades.

Going by recent versions of AutoCAD, many of us got the feeling that Autodesk was working towards killing off AutoCAD and moving customers to Inventor and Revit. I am now convinced that AutoCAD is here to stay. I have seen the AutoCAD roadmap and I simply love the direction in which AutoCAD is headed.

It is my prediction that a version of AutoCAD in the not so distant future will have 3D direct modeling capabilities equivalent to (or probably better than) what we see today in SpaceClaim and Solid Edge ST.

Here is my advice to AutoCAD users who are thinking of dumping AutoCAD for a 3D solid modeling system – parametric or otherwise. Don’t sign that check yet.

  • Sachin R. Nalawade

    Good news from Autodesk for 2010. Many time i use to advice my friends working on AutoCAD to move on to SolidWorks or CATIA, Pro/E. for brighter future in 3D ahead.

    But if your predections come true leaving with AutoCAD would really be nice!

    S N

  • Sachin R. Nalawade

    Good news from Autodesk for 2010. Many time i use to advice my friends working on AutoCAD to move on to SolidWorks or CATIA, Pro/E. for brighter future in 3D ahead.But if your predections come true leaving with AutoCAD would really be nice!S N

  • Rajeev Lochan

    Interesting article…
    Living on the edge !!!

  • Rajeev Lochan

    Interesting article…Living on the edge !!!

  • Brian Benton

    Deelip, Interesting article, and yes I feel you are flirting with danger!! Regardless, this is an interesting subject, the future of AutoCAD. It is my opinion that a 2D drafting tool with minimal 3D tools will be needed for some time. I feel that AutoCAD and AutoCAD LT will eventually morph into something that is in between what they are now. To get there, Autodesk will make AutoCAD more and more like their Verticals (Inventor, Revit, Civil3D, etc.) until users are comfortable with their basic concepts, 3D modeling, BIM, styles, constraints, etc. Once “hooked” Autodesk will “regress” AutoCAD to LT as a Price reducer for 2D use and force the rest of us to use the Verticals. It is several years away, maybe five or so, but seeing what I am seeing, I feel that is the eventual course.

  • Brian Benton

    Deelip, Interesting article, and yes I feel you are flirting with danger!! Regardless, this is an interesting subject, the future of AutoCAD. It is my opinion that a 2D drafting tool with minimal 3D tools will be needed for some time. I feel that AutoCAD and AutoCAD LT will eventually morph into something that is in between what they are now. To get there, Autodesk will make AutoCAD more and more like their Verticals (Inventor, Revit, Civil3D, etc.) until users are comfortable with their basic concepts, 3D modeling, BIM, styles, constraints, etc. Once “hooked” Autodesk will “regress” AutoCAD to LT as a Price reducer for 2D use and force the rest of us to use the Verticals. It is several years away, maybe five or so, but seeing what I am seeing, I feel that is the eventual course.

  • R. Paul Waddington

    “I am now convinced that AutoCAD is here to stay. I have seen the AutoCAD road map and I simply love the direction in which AutoCAD is headed.”

    Gota luv that sales pitch, eh!

    Direct editing of 3D has existed for a long time in AutoCAD and as crude as it is it should not have been ignored by the Autodesk channel; Solid Edge has meant it’s importance may be re-assessed.

    A more important point tho’ continues to be lost in the argument about 3D and in particular Autodesk’s suite of software. It is important to all industries that there is a path of learning and migration – forwards and backwards – using both 2D and 3D tools. Autodesk are in a very fortunate position in this regard but their marketing is working overtime at destroying this privileged market position and it will be to their detriment if they lose that advantage.

    Being able to continue to use and apply 2D drawing methods, using software, is extremely important to the complete development of (young) new staff in all design fields; 3D is where some may end up but 2D is where all should start, some should stay and to which some may return for various reasons.

    The company with (one) tool that facilitates this level of mixed skill and migration has to be the company/software of choice and the one of most value to the design industry.

  • R. Paul Waddington

    “I am now convinced that AutoCAD is here to stay. I have seen the AutoCAD road map and I simply love the direction in which AutoCAD is headed.”Gota luv that sales pitch, eh!Direct editing of 3D has existed for a long time in AutoCAD and as crude as it is it should not have been ignored by the Autodesk channel; Solid Edge has meant it’s importance may be re-assessed.A more important point tho’ continues to be lost in the argument about 3D and in particular Autodesk’s suite of software. It is important to all industries that there is a path of learning and migration – forwards and backwards – using both 2D and 3D tools. Autodesk are in a very fortunate position in this regard but their marketing is working overtime at destroying this privileged market position and it will be to their detriment if they lose that advantage.Being able to continue to use and apply 2D drawing methods, using software, is extremely important to the complete development of (young) new staff in all design fields; 3D is where some may end up but 2D is where all should start, some should stay and to which some may return for various reasons.The company with (one) tool that facilitates this level of mixed skill and migration has to be the company/software of choice and the one of most value to the design industry.

  • Anonymous

    Deelip, I have been running an alpha of 2010 for almost a month now and have been very impressed with performance and stability. I can say that some commom commands are getting a much needed makeover. Increased usability and speed being key to some of those commands.

  • Anonymous

    “Going by recent versions of AutoCAD, many of us got the feeling that Autodesk was working towards killing off AutoCAD and moving customers to Inventor and Revit. I am now convinced that AutoCAD is here to stay.”

    But here to stay as what? An advanced, mature CADD tool that you can actually use, or a marketing tool and ‘demo platform’ to demo functionality of other products that are targeted at the user?

    If you ask me, Autodesk has been migrating AutoCAD towards a product marketing tool that can be used to market other products.

    My opinion on that largely comes from the fact that 3D modeling is realistically not usable for real work.

  • Anonymous

    “Going by recent versions of AutoCAD, many of us got the feeling that Autodesk was working towards killing off AutoCAD and moving customers to Inventor and Revit. I am now convinced that AutoCAD is here to stay.”But here to stay as what? An advanced, mature CADD tool that you can actually use, or a marketing tool and ‘demo platform’ to demo functionality of other products that are targeted at the user?If you ask me, Autodesk has been migrating AutoCAD towards a product marketing tool that can be used to market other products.My opinion on that largely comes from the fact that 3D modeling is realistically not usable for real work.

  • Anonymous

    I am skeptical about content compatibility.
    Still would like to see network management of palettes improve dramatically.

  • Anonymous

    I am skeptical about content compatibility.Still would like to see network management of palettes improve dramatically.

  • Earl

    I too was tempted to migrate towards direct modeling with SpaceClaim. The SpaceClaim/sketchup system of pushpull has one problem though: The command options are not explicit. I need the powerful options and mouse actions for each command clearly indicated at the command line, especially when I am using rarely used 3D commands. Only AutoCAD (and it’s clones) offer this. And no matter what cad modeling software I use, I tend to do the base sketch or profiles in AutoCAD. It’s just the fastest way. Might as well do it all in the same program. But the expense of upgrading is going to kill me.

  • Earl

    I too was tempted to migrate towards direct modeling with SpaceClaim. The SpaceClaim/sketchup system of pushpull has one problem though: The command options are not explicit. I need the powerful options and mouse actions for each command clearly indicated at the command line, especially when I am using rarely used 3D commands. Only AutoCAD (and it’s clones) offer this. And no matter what cad modeling software I use, I tend to do the base sketch or profiles in AutoCAD. It’s just the fastest way. Might as well do it all in the same program. But the expense of upgrading is going to kill me.

  • Anonymous

    Deelip, I have been running an alpha of 2010 for almost a month now and have been very impressed with performance and stability. I can say that some commom commands are getting a much needed makeover. Increased usability and speed being key to some of those commands.

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