SolidWorks 2013 First Impressions

icon_solidworksOne of the most anticipated events at SolidWorks WORLD each year is the Wednesday morning General Session when all of the attendees get the first public sneak peak at the next major release.

This year was no different (other than that I didn’t get to see it live).  Introduced thru a Back to the Future skit that including a guest appearance from Jon Hirschtick, one of the founders of SolidWorks, that SolidWorks 2013 enhancements were sent out to the masses.  It is always good to keep in the back of your mind that not all of these enhancements make it to the first release but for the most part they do.

The complete list of 2013 enhancements along with some pictures can be found here at Ricky Jordan’s blog.

Here are some of the enhancements that I am most excited for / interested in (in not particular order).

  1. Revision Cloud – as someone that loves the idea of going paperless, I get excited about new features that can help assist in this.  One of my biggest annoyances at my job is document control when you have to print everything off so that they can get reviewed and marked up.  Hopefully, this will make this much better.
  2. Quick Filter in File Open – for anyone that has worked on a large project that has assembly, part, and drawings in a single Windows folder you will be able to appreciate this as much as I will.  I wish I could have seen this demonstrated so I had a better idea of how it will work.
  3. New Favorites Folder – I love my Windows favorites so I am excited to see what this is all about.  I am always a fool for UI changes.
  4. Hole Wizard Dowel Holes & Dowel Annotations in Drawings – because of my background of designing stamping dies we use a ton of dowel holes.  I am excited that SolidWorks will finally accommodate these better.
  5. Copy & Paste From DraftSight to SolidWorks – Dassault Systemes products talking together???  I love the idea and as someone with a ton of legacy data left in AutoCAD this will be very helpful.
  6. Backwards Compatibility – well, it sounds the start to something good but I am afraid that this is just a marketing ploy unfortunately.  I still can’t understand why a full backwards compatibility can not be available, if nothing else for just 1 release back (2013 –> 2012, 2014 –> 2013, etc.).  I understand the new tool argument but I can build a full feature tree off of an imported part, so why can’t SolidWorks do all of the work for me on existing functions and ask me how I would like to build features that were created with new tools.  However, this is a start so I am keeping my fingers crossed that this will be expanded in the future.

Well there are my Top 6 new enhancements that I am looking forward to seeing in Beta and then in the first 2013 release this fall.  What are your thoughts on these or you most anticipated new enhancements?

2 thoughts on “SolidWorks 2013 First Impressions

  1. On the backward compatibility option does it not simply point to the fact that Dassault are no longer developing any significant model creation enhancements within SolidWorks and are happy for user to stagnate ?

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