COFES 2009 – Inventor Fusion is Coming

This morning I had an interesting conversation with Buzz Kross in the Scottsdale Plaza lobby. Buzz is the Senior Vice President of the Manufacturing Solutions Division at Autodesk, basically the man in charge of Inventor. I asked him about Inventor Fusion. “We are letting customers try it out in May“, he said. “We just released Inventor 2010. So this will be offered as as a separate application on Autodesk Labs, which will be later integrated into Inventor“.

So has Autodesk finally cracked the case? Is Inventor Fusion really able to do direct editing while maintaining the feature tree?“, I asked. “Yes“, he replied. “Frankly, I don’t find the approaches taken by other CAD vendors feasible. Users will always feel the need for parametrics in a solid modeling system”.

I asked Buzz whether this technology was developed in-house or was licensed/bought from some one else. “This is all our stuff“, he replied.

So this is how I understand it. We have Inventor 2010 and there will be Inventor Fusion on Autodesk Labs, two separate applications. Say an Inventor 2010 user creates a parametric model and saves it as a part file (.ipt). Inventor Fusion will be able to open the part file and let the user push/pull and mess around. When he saves his changes to the same .ipt file and opens it back in Inventor 2010, the feature tree will stay intact, as will the modifications made to the model when it was in Inventor Fusion. In time, this functionality will be integrated into Inventor.

If what Buzz told me is true or if I have understood this correctly, then this is AWESOME!! Now I cannot wait to get my hands on Inventor Fusion to see for myself.

Someone from Autodesk once told me. “We may not be very good market leaders, but we are damn good followers“.