One of the enhancements in SolidWorks V6 is the fact that it is crash resistant. OK, not exactly crash resistant. Every man made program will crash. But the real enhancement is that you will never lose your work. Ever.
We were shown a demo of this in the general session. They deliberately crashed SolidWorks and when it started back on everything up to the last modeling operation was intact. Here, take a look at these pictures. Click the links for larger views.
So what’s the trick here? Is SolidWorks constantly saving your file to disk after every modeling operation or key stroke. Clearly that would be an insane thing to so for large models. Actually, the trick is very simple. The model is not on your computer at all. It’s it the cloud. SolidWorks V6 is in the cloud, remember? So every time you complete a modeling operation, I guess your the changes are incrementally tracked on the server (or something like that) which automatically takes care of things in case of an eventuality on your side.
Moreover, if SolidWorks V6 on the cloud allows more than one person to edit a model at the same time (which should not be that big a problem), you could make a change and it would instantly show up on the computer of someone else, who could make another change and you could go on back and forth. This would give PTC’s concept of Social Product Development a whole new meaning.
I fully understand the huge problems in putting something like SolidWorks on the cloud. But when I started my career in software development (which was not very long ago) I used MS-DOS which had a memory limit of 64K and used a dial-up connection. Before I even turned on the modem I had to say a quiet prayer that I would be able to actually connect. Can you imagine the world that our kids will grow up in? As engineers, we need to try out crazy things for them. The engineers who came before us did exactly that. That’s why we are living the life that we are. We simply need to continue the tradition. Maybe this whole concept or implementation of cloud computing will not work. Maybe something else will. Frankly, I don’t care.
A balloon cannot inflate on its own. You need to blow air into it and push its limits. At times the balloon may burst or it leak out air if it has a hole. but unless you start blowing the air in, you will not know. All you will have is an empty deflated balloon which is hardly as exciting.
Remember one thing. We are not doing this for ourselves. This is for our children. And they will do the same for theirs. That’s just that way we are and will continue to be.