SoliidWorks World 2010 (Day 3) – Jeff Ray on Settlement with Autodesk

I just wrapped up my one-on-one meeting with SolidWorks CEO Jeff Ray. The purpose of the meeting was to discuss (to the extent that we could) the recent settlement that SolidWorks had with Autodesk on the law suit regarding DWG, orange rectangles and a bunch of other related stuff. The settlement is confidential. So I knew that I would not be able to learn much more than what was available in the public domain. This is how the chat went:

Deelip: From what I gather SolidWorks has agreed not to use “DWG” in its product names and marketing. Am I correct?
Jeff: That is correct. We will come up with new products with new names. Those products have served their purpose and we believe that we need to move on to better things.

Deelip: So what is it that Autodesk is going to lose?
Jeff: As you know the settlement is confidential and I cannot disclose more than what you already know. But I will say that I am glad that it is over, even though I believe that we would have won. A settlement is anytime better than winning a law suit.

Deelip: Yeah, I read about the last minute fiasco regarding the settlement.
Jeff: Oh boy, that was quite a scene. The judge was pissed. He even made both counsels apologize to the jurors and reimburse their expenses. Actually, there was really no need for all that to happen. Are you aware of the earlier incident when the judge made the Autodesk counsel disavow any claims regarding using DWG as a file extension?

Deelip: Yes, I am (read this).
Jeff: After that happened Autodesk came to us for a settlement. I am not sure why arriving at a settlement took so long, but it did.

Deelip: There is a view that Autodesk was really after DWG, but added all the other stuff about orange rectangles to fill your plate. Do you share that view as well?
Jeff: Well, you will need to ask Autodesk why they did what they did. As far as I am concerned I am just glad it is over.