What do you think about standards and PLM? For the long time, I thought about standards as toothbrushes. Everybody needs one, but nobody wants to use somebody else standard. My observation – standards in PLM are not very popular so far. STEP is one of the standards that materialized and widely used by many companies – vendors and customers. Early this week, attending Eurostep 2011 event, I was learning how standards can play a role of a cost saving factors for commercial software. To delivery some standard compliance in fundamental PLM functions such as data modeling can play a positive role in the development of future PLM solutions. Navigate to the following link to see my Eurostep 2011 presentation. Now, let’s turn to May Top 5.
Aras is definitely moving towards crossing paths with PLM like Windchill, Enovia, TeamCenter. Is it possible to displace large PLM system with Aras today? My answer – it depends. The PLM implementation scope is varied, and every implementation can be different. Therefore, I specially liked the community oriented approach of development. This is something that can make a difference. On the side of platforms and integrations – time will show if Aras will find a balance between throwing resources and effective delivery. This is a big challenge.
Combining PLM and SharePoint raises many questions. Initially proposed as a successful combination to attract small manufacturing companies, it was discontinued by PTC. Here are my initial 5 lesson learned: (1) SharePoint is a technological platform that requires implementation and services. To use it for small manufacturing companies can be dangerous and depends on deployment configuration can be problematic. (2) Microsoft business interest is to deploy SharePoint to bigger companies, and it can be asymmetric with the interest of PLM companies to solve PLM SMB problem using SharePoint. (3) There are alternative ways to solve PLM usability problems rather than re-use SharePoint UI patterns. PTC just released new version of Windchill (10.0), which probably delivers better user experience. (4) Maintenance of multiple PLM products is probably way too complicated. (5) PLM for SMB is probably not only about better user experience and subset of functionality
To find a reliable way to make the information available downstream is critical for many organizations. 3D PDF seems to be as an option. The file-orientation paradigm helps current users to achieve their goal in an easy way. However, the “packing” a whole system into set of files seems to me problematic. The synchronization, run for updated information can become a nightmare.
I think we can see a very interesting dynamic. Both Autodesk and Dassault are playing with the power of free options on the competitor’s side. Known as a strong provider of 3D CAD (both CATIA and SolidWorks), Dassault released 2D CAD for DWG files for free to attract AutoCAD users. On the other side, the introduction of 3D CAD free downloadable 3D design tool, by Autodesk – a king of 2D draft package (AutoCAD) is another interesting step, which is probably has an intent to disrupt 3D CAD business on the low end. I hope to learn more about 123dabc as well as about future Free CAD products in 2d and 3d.
Cloud has a potential. However, as every new technology (and not only technology) it can be over-hyped and diminished by wrong implementations. It is important for companies experimenting with the cloud technologies not to be trapped into using “the cloud” as a marketing term as well as to apply “old software projects” under a new sauce.
Have a good weekend!