For those of you who have followed me over the years regarding Solid Edge you know I believe in the product. I believe also that there is a deliberate policy by the UGS people before and after being subsumed by the Siemens bureaucracy to stifle SE because they fear competition for NX.
Solid Edge has had the misfortune of bouncing from place to place and never getting a real chance. Venture capitalists never cared about it and SE went through two versions of this mess. UGS bought SE just to get their hands on Synchronous tech which their talented developmental staff could not create. Of course after purchase there is still a red-headed step child to deal with. Now just what is the classic way of doing so you might ask? That’s right, when company comes over you hide him in the spare room with admonishments to never dare show his face. In public where you must on occasion be seen with this embarrassment make sure he never talks and walks at least five feet behind you.
The moment of hope for SE was under people like Newbury and Cooper who took it serious and they have been forced to leave. The replacement was John Miller. In the almost two years he has been token place holder he has hardly bothered to even convince people he is gainfully employed as head of SE. The stealth manager never communicates with users. Never asks them what they need or want meaning it in sincerity.
Six months have come and gone since SEU 2015. There was a brief flicker of hope by those who attended this event when Miller said the right things and went to the right places and made the right forward-looking promises of greater things to come and we are listening and bigger better community blah blah blah.
I see that there is a tiny user group effort started. Recently a meeting in Huntsville at a group I helped start that was done in spite of silly things from PLM World. There is also a first time ever user group being started in Cincinnati and hosted by Matt Johnson who is a super fan of and a super user of SE. There are promises of more to come. But can I ask this question?
The talk in SEU2015 was all so promising but it became clear month after month that no plans had been laid. Miller must have a mountain of time on his hands because he darned sure spends none with users or publicity or any other thing anyone can identify. He just is and no one seems to be able to tell me just what he is doing to earn his wages. So big ol Siemens and Miller’s stellar proactive user commitments have produced precisely ONE new user group in six months.
Of course with the incredible productivity black hole Siemens is perhaps by their metrics one new group every six months is blazing speed. I can see that even if Miller actually did care it can take twenty meetings just to be able to derive a date for the first initial user group planning meeting. Probably sixty past that to figure out what city to pick next. Combine having a leader that does not want to be there and the stultifying environment Siemens forces decent productive individuals to labor under and you get precisely what we SE users have now. Basically nothing once again and forever. Remember that the touted SE numbers I see most often are claims of around 500,000 users and squat for interactive behavior from Siemens to them.
All talk and no walk Miller. The pace of improvements has dramatically slowed also and while I have no idea what they are going to do for ST9 I suspect the major things will be more “Surface Pro” window dressing and no fundamental serious improvements to the program itself in ways that really matter to CAD output. (SE has been losing some of their top developers to NX for three years now and I doubt highly they are replaced with equal talent.) This is why I stopped my maintenance by the way. I offered to pay what another year was worth to me since I call for support maybe once a year. Ally PLM laughed at me when I said $750.00 and asked how were they supposed to make a living off that. My question was since it is MY money you want and I have to make a living off of it what are you going to do for me since I don’t need support and Siemens is doing nothing of real merit to the product? Funny how their income as a company trumps (Go Trump) my desire to control outgo to worthwhile productive things as a company. Ally figures their position is fiscal reality and mine as a company is not.
No joy or future in SE ville beyond the red heads place in the closet. Once again I will recommend SE to you if you do not already have it. Get it for a year or two and drop it. Use it for the next four or five years or more as I intend to and you will do just fine. (Something Dassault has shown the world with SW when they pissed their users off. Tons of them are making a living with versions years old.) A real big plus besides the inherent power of Synchronous is that as of right now they have no intention of doing the stupid subscription only thing Autodesk has sadly begun.
People if you go for this subscription model for your core design/machine seats you are a fool who will soon discover the joys of larger expenses. Expenses that will never end and can’t be contained because you gave up the only method of containment which is permanent seats. Inventor Pro HSM is the best all round CAD CAM value only if permanent licenses can be acquired. 2015 was not a good year for this user as SE went full red headed step child mode again and Autodesk went subscription only. Both show contempt for users of their products and it saddens me. Talking with a prominent blogger last week and he was of the opinion that he and I grew up in the golden age of CAD CAM and the best user days are gone. I tend to agree