I’ll tell you who put the “dumb” in “dumb geometry”: It was someone who only used history-based CAD, that’s who. It must be frustrating to lose ALL of your power to edit parts when you exchange CAD files with someone who uses a different CAD system, isn’t it? Even if another user of your software saves out in a neutral format, and you read it in, you’ve got nothing. No features. No dimensions. No intelligence. No ability to make changes. You can’t even delete individual features. And that is a painful place to be. How many lost nights and weekends, how much money has your company literally flushed because you had to recreate data transferred data, or use “hack and whack” editing to cut away and rebuild areas of parts instead of just editing them?
Month – April 2015
I’m someone who has written a fair number of “Best Practice” lists. My CAD Administration book in particular was full of recommendations for everything from installing software to surfacing design. People assume that a best practice list is really a set of rules, but those people are wrong. Best practice is really a set of suggestions that are meant to serve the lowest common denominator in an engineering office. It’s a flexible attempt to standardize practices when you have people in your office who aren’t expert level.
The re-use of data is one of those huge time savers that we talk about a lot. Doing things faster is great, of course, but the fastest way to do something is to not do it at all, or to just copy it from something else similar you’ve already done.
Those of you who have been working in design for more than a couple of years, and I’d assume that’s most of you, already know that design is not a linear process. You may start in one place, and jump around, and eventually come back to where you started. You may revisit the same area of the design multiple times. Of course this isn’t the most efficient way to work, but you don’t get your information in perfect order, or you may not see a solution for a problem until you’re half way through. Or the requirements change part way through the design process. We all know stuff happens. Lots of things happen, and people are imperfect, so you never go through a project (at least in my experience) straight from top to bottom on each part.