Tag Archives: Fusion 360

Autodesk Enters Terminal Captive Rental Phase, Leave While You Can.

I enjoy reading Ralph Grabowski’s posts. One of them arrives every Sunday Evening and it is called Upfront Ezine. Today there was a reference from a blog I had pretty well forgotten about since my primary focus regarding Autodesk products has been HSM which apparently is not used by Steve Johnson.

He is a long time yearly maintenance Autodesk customer who is like myself feeling the customer love oozing out from the portals of Autodesk. Well at least one portal for sure. Here, have a read.

http://www.blog.cadnauseam.com/2016/12/06/autodesk-perpetual-license-owners-to-get-screwed-big-time/#comment-152761

While you are there read a bunch of other stuff from real life customers and users of Autodesk products. They keep up better than I do with what all is going on or being said regarding Autodesk. It is interesting to me to see that independently of influence from Steve’s blog I was reaching the same conclusions about the future for permanent seat holders and Autodesk.

One of the things that has disturbed me recently has been the encroachment of psychobabble adspeak words into the HSM forums. Offered primarily in support of why links do not work on new and IMPROVED web sites and why features are not finished years after first being presented and the pace of improvements drops considerably. When I start reading Autodesk people using words like “leveraging” in relation to failed websites and stuff never finished it alarms me. It is a clear sign of things going wrong. People who used to use plain English and were concerned about things being right for customers become supplanted by those who thrive on Autodesk first and only and customers are meant to be BSed to. Look people, when someone starts all this adspeak stuff who do they really relate to?

So I think of this verbiage tossed around now and what I have seen and heard in regards to the atrophy of new user improvements and functionality regarding HSM.  I think real hard about all the utter garbage from Autodesk I read today at Blog Nauseum.

There are signs in life that tell forward-looking people it is time to consider what is prudent and wise for themselves.

First and foremost I am loyal to my own company. Then I am loyal to fellow CAD CAM users who also for better or worse have to use software to earn a living by. I am not loyal to software although I am a big fan of good useful software. It helps me earn a living. But there comes a time where what was once good can become a bad thing. Or a thing not worth the price of admittance anymore since scant improvements do not justify yearly expenditures.

This leads to a couple of comments. Permanent seat software is the only type to consider at any time. Like right now with the customer unfriendly Autodesk ecosystem. As a permanent seat holder I can register my immense   dissatisfaction with the way things are going by simply not giving them any more money. Only with permanent seats can a corporation be held accountable for lack of new user benefits. I can and will work for years without spending another dime. You get suckered into subs only and you pay forever and over time pay more and more for less and less.

Let me ask you something. If you were a greedy corporate type and you wanted to have a captive customer base who had to continue to send you money just to work. If you were a greedy corporate type who wanted to do away with the onerous burden of having to spend money for provable new benefits to entice customers to buy and stay. If you were a corporate type who wanted to squeeze your customers (captives) for more and more and get paid before their light bill’s were what would YOU choose as your modus operandi?

Autodesk has clearly made the choice that you subscription customers are to be ATM’s. They apparently are also going to force permanent seat customers out of their safe zones and into the slave zones which saddens me but somehow does not surprise me.

The handwriting is on the wall. At this time I can’t think of a single Autodesk product I would recommend to anyone. It is not that there are no great products there. I like HSM a lot and intend using it for years to come. I can’t in good conscience recommend it to anyone though because the only way you can now buy it is  the subscription chattel model. I do not and will not ever support a company that goes there nor recommend that a business become captive to an uncontrollable  cost structure where the overlord can just decide they need more money from you but you never get more from them in return.

People all I can say is if you are thinking of going there don’t. If you are there as a permanent seat customer as I am it is time to make a move towards an alternative so you can make an orderly transition. It bother me a lot to read the stuff I read today at Blog Nauseum but it did connect more dots for me with info from long time Autodesk product users.

Time to let the Autodesk ship of corporate greed lose their food source and be starved into submission or bankruptcy. I would prefer they recant this ugly future for the duopoly of subs and permanent seats your choice. At this time I sadly concur with the fed up Blog Nauseum people who believe untrammeled anti customer greed is the way Autodesk is going to be.

Hey just for giggles go here.

http://schnitgercorp.com/2016/11/30/autodesks-fq3-shows-upsides-downsides-change/

And from this article I will leave you with this quoted paragraph from Carl Bass.

“Mr. Bass said that in Q3 the company “made progress on our two major initiatives: growing lifetime customer value by moving customers to the subscription model, and increasing adoption of our cloud based solutions. Given that this quarter was the most uncertain when we started the year, these are fantastic results.” He noted that “product subscriptions drove the vast majority of the new model additions. The launch of industry collections, the next generation of suites that include many of our cloud services, contributed to our strong growth this quarter. Collections are a great example of how we’re simplifying our offerings while increasing lifetime customer value.”

So you dear customer are now nothing more than an ATM and you will pay up and shut up.

 

My How Time Flies!

I was reading the Novedge aggregation today and was reminded how things can change. It is hard to imagine that at this time four years ago when SW World 2012 was going on it was with amusement I regarded SW user futures. Idiots with Dassault were frothing about the cloud and producing vaporware after vaporware and boasting of those achievements. It was quite amusing. Over on the SE side of things we had rapid product improvements of tremendous utilitarian value. Leadership committed to positive changes and the Universities looked like they were going to grow to big events in short order.

At that time Autodesk was not on my radar and quite frankly I did not seek much information on them. I had seen a few examples of Inventor work and users. Without fail when I took their models and edited them in front of them with SE easier and faster than they could and the old eyes bugging out thing invariably happened. To me Autodesk was a company that did not much register and the chief competitor to #1 which I believed SE deserved was SW not Inventor.

As an aside here. Inventor does not offend me as much as it used to. But I still find way to many complications to simple part creation compared to the purely Synchronous editing and part creation I by choice have been using for some time now. With SE for instance I can draw a circle on the end of a cylinder and when I click on it extrude remove on either side of the circle and darned if I could find a way to do it in Inventor this weekend. It may be there but even if it is why are the methods of doing so hard to find or convoluted? In SE you click on it and straight forward simple intuitive commands pop up. Some of the issue is me not spending the time to learn Inventor and some of it is the weird or counter intuitive way Inventor wants me to work that prevents my desire to want to learn. I have yet to decide which is the bigger problem. HSM which was not configured by the people who decided how Inventor was to work is so well thought out and logical it reminds me of SE on steroids. So I lean towards some cubical guys who wrote code for a living and did not design parts for a living being the problem and not me. Anyway.

So SW World 2016 is here and hardly any bloggers talk about it. The few that do most are employed in one way or another by either Dassault or VAR’s selling Dassault and most of the true independent bloggers who were there because they loved what they used to earn a living with are long gone. People like Devon Sowell and Matt Lombard who were passionate and independent have either quit in disgust or been subsumed into the belly of one beast or another. SW has alienated most of those with passion and love of the product who were willing to talk well of them or indeed at all. SEU comes and goes and the same thing. You who have been readers for years think back about how it used to be and Novedge was cluttered with commentaries from “fanbois”.

Autodesk as far as I can tell is the same and the blogs I have run across so far most are all affiliated with VAR’s or Autodesk. By the way, any blogger who is not or even if you are I guess send me a link to your site and I will have a look. I am searching for sites of interest to provide links to. But my main point is that the whole CAD industry has largely alienated itself from users who were willing to spend uncompensated time on their own to talk about something they felt passionately about. Through stupid things like Dassaults desire to kill this SW thing they can’t quite figure out how to stab to death yet without causing undue harm to themselves. Through the stupidity of Siemens UGS taking SE a killer design product with a future and instead of making it so smashing it into obscurity once again because some political back stabbers from UGS just don’t happen to like it.

Now we have Autodesk trying to force users to be chattel subscribers only and long time passionate CAD CAM users hate that kind of corporate money-grubbing suppression and so this great forward-looking thing Autodesk was a short time ago becomes just another neccessary evil to people who don’t have permanent seats but still have to use these tools to earn a living with. Of the three major software companies out there I ever run into I still hold out hope for Autodesk to change its mind as being the last great hope for forward-looking design build software that would acknowledge that the success of its users is just as important as the authoring company. ProE who? No comment as I just never run into anyone or any file from them. I know they are out there and that is it.

Quite frankly I think the whole face of CAD CAM is changing and not for the better. My last big hope is that somehow Autodesk recants from their book-keeper chattel model and goes back to offering seats and subs for whomever and letting the buyer be the chooser as to what is picked.

Is it not amazing the difference between SW and SE? One company driven by a visionary multi-year plan dedicated to the idea of growth and community and utilizing the two to work together toward a common goal of market domination. Look at SE which has been around just as long and as far as I am concerned is superior for 90%+ of all MCAD over SW. Relegated to sucking hind teat forever by capital venture company flipping people or ignorant individuals afraid of competition who happen to work however for the same corporation. Siemens is too bureaucratically ossified to be able to fight counter productive things so these guys who sabotage overall corporate profitability get away with it. But look at SW! In spite of internal Dassault interference it still reigns supreme and it is a huge testimony to those who drove SW for so long before Parisians decide to “improve” upon it.

Hats off to SW today for the legacy it has. They have earned it and I wish the users the best and hope it all works out to their benefit.

Update today 2-1-16
Entering into the first full week of the end of new permanent seats for Inventor Pro HSM we have an announcement from Dassault SWW 2016 today that there will be no end to permanent seats for SW. I have no idea how this is going to work with HSMWorks for new customers. At this time Delcam products still offer permanent seats and talking to a sales rep last week Autodesk has no intention of ending this. Solid Edge of course is offering permanent seats along with rental, you choose.

Personally speaking I think someone(s) somewhere inside of Autodesk started a policy that will backfire. One has to remember though something I learned first hand when I knew Karsten Newbury. The person in charge does not have free will to just do whatever they want. There are conflicting opinions and agendas and back stabbers and people of authority who will oppose you for whatever reason. I am certain the same is true for Carl Bass. What I am hoping is that this has been allowed to go on because opposing it would have meant fighting a big chunk of mercenary upper management that does not understand buyers can and will buy from others if you force them to. You do NOT own them. This whole chattel serfdom thing is not the same philosophy I perceive as coming from Bass who has spent so much time assembling a manufacturing ecosphere and is himself a chip maker. I think a turf war was big enough that he was forced into saying OK. But my hope is that he is standing there with a pink slip in hand once these plantation owners are proven wrong and out the door they do. Gonna be real hard to make this stick when your major opposition is going to shoot you down through the concept of customers are first.

The Autodesk Juggernaut Picking Up Speed

It was a couple of years ago when I gave up on Solid Edge ever getting the market share it deserved. One of the chief reasons was what I perceived to be a new ploy by Autodesk to assemble pieces of the complete manufacturing puzzle together to smother competition. This first really began with the acquisition of HSMWorks and continued with the purchase of Delcam lock stock and barrel. Today I was perusing the CNC Cookbook site and specifically this area. http://www.cnccookbook.com/CCCNCSurveys.html

Reading the CAD and CAM surveys was a bit of an eye opener. Now there is a section in here where they talk about how they generate the data used if you are interested. I was not as I figured with a couple of million visitors a year the surveys probably had a pretty good representation of what is reality in shops earning a living with software.

As a CAD side note here go through the years and see how poorly Solid Edge fares here. This has been my personal experience also for years as I have heard “you use Solid Edge? you are the first person I have met to do so” so many times it makes me ill. This is true by the way 60 some miles north of the SE headquarters in Huntsville. It fully explains why there are fewer than 500 users at the annual convention which ought to draw many more with its bargain rate pricing. The users just are not out there to begin with and CNC’s surveys are the first independent effort at generating market share data I have found that appears valid based on my own experience. It is what happens to a fine product whose future is determined by people who would just rather it went away.

Of even greater interest to me were the CAM surveys done here in 2010,2012,2014 and 2015. Go there and read in full these various years for CAD and CAM but in a nut shell here is what they had to say about CAM market share.

2010 2015
HSMWorks all Inventor and SW 1% 17%
Camworks I assume SW and SE 2% 5%
NX 6% 5%
Powermill 2% 5%
Featurecam 5% 3%
Mastercam 29% 27%

Basically Autodesk has gone from nothing to 25% of the higher end CAM per CNC Cookbook criteria.

In the “low-cost” category per CNC cookbook data we have Fusion 360 going from 0% in 2012 to 55% share in 2015.

I have been fascinated with the well planned multi-year conquest of Mid Range Manufacturing started by Carl Bass a few years ago and this survey was the first time I could see quantifiable results coming in. It does not look good for the competition. It is not my intent to hammer on the subscription thing here but with these stellar numbers I wonder why common sense has not overtaken the agenda at Autodesk. It is time to rethink this and stay with the seats and subs and let users choose. You guys are whipping the market as it is far better than I had imagined so don’t get greedy and keep winning customers just the way you have been by earning it with superior products and prices. Clearly it has been successful to date and market share is accelerating.

The other amazing thing here is the stark contrast to Dassault. SW has been famous for vaporware and grand visions from the bizarre mind of some French guy who could care less about reality. For years they have trotted out one cloud based thing after another just to watch them crash and burn. Autodesk on the other hand has Fusion 360 and the only thing that has crashed here is Dassault’s abortive plans to be first and foremost with the cloud for manufacturing.

I just sit here and think about SE as I write all this. Here longer than Inventor with 8% current market and here as long as SW with 22.7% bringing up the rear with 1%. It really makes a difference when the guy in charge has a plan. There was a brief period of hope under Newbury Cooper but they were run off for the cardinal sins of competency and caring about the future. Things not valued at Siemens who is struggling financially and can’t figure out why. SW’s share by the way has declined from 25% in 2013 and that is the result of mismanagement also. SW has had to work really hard to run off their long-suffering and amazingly loyal customers but they have begun succeeding.

Here is my vote for Autodesk to not change things as they were at the end of 2015 and continue on the way they were with a proven method for conquest.

Is It Worth It To Go?

Today I was reading Novedge as I frequently do and up pops this post. http://cadcamstuff.com/4942/advanced-manufacturing-is-on-top-at-autodesk-university-next-week/ Now I had no intention of going because the price tag is way to high for a one guy shop. Solid Edge’s convention is more my type in dollars and cents. After reading Lar’s post though I had to reconsider relative values. Of course Solid Edge has nothing much to speak of in the way of CAM partners and with the exception of Cam Express (which is funded and run by those UGS types who unfund and despise Solid Edge) there is only one integrated program. CAMWorks for SE and while much better than it was is still cumbersome and overpriced. You can achieve a much better yield on your CAM investment then this both up front and in daily use efficiencies with other programs even though they are not integrated. Cam Express is not integrated by the way while CW4SE is.

Autodesk BOUGHT and owns some of the finest CAM products out there. They are integrating them into and with each other. They don’t have to ask or whine or cajole another company to be partners. They own them and can do as they wish.

This is what struck me today in reading Lar’s post. The sheer volume of actual making things with machinery sessions was a bit dumbfounding to an ex SE guy. There were two if I remember right in SEU2015 and the guy who ran them knew Cam Express but never has cut a part in CW4SE. Somehow I have a feeling that the incredible variety of topics covered at AU 2015 will be with people who have done things with the programs and not just be someone roped in to flesh out a conference.

As an aside here I know the pace of integration of HSM into Inventor and the addition of robust turning and wire and laser type stuff has been a source of irritation for many existing users but at least Autodesk does hire more people to fix this. While it takes time to do this I am falling into the camp that feels they have been slow to put enough manpower and talent into this. Part of this feeling is due to a nearby shop that has been and still is a huge fan of HSM but has had to do all sorts of things to try and make their new turn mill lathe work and this still below it’s capacity. For crying out loud they use their old One CNC seat for turning if that tells you anything.

But this conference session listing reminded me of the scope of capabilities residing in Autodesk and the tremendous things that can be done over anything SE ever dreamed of doing. That after all is my back ground and my yardstick for comparison. Would I personally spend twice the yearly cost of my permanent seat to go there? No. But I can see bigger companies doing so with solid benefits for them.

WARNING WARNING WARNING
If you are considering a rational approach to Autodesk Inventor CAD and CAM ownership you now have slightly over two months to avoid slipping into subscription only serfdom Hell. If you are at all interested you must act or consider going elsewhere. Personally I use inventor Pro HSM almost daily and would not be without it. But I will not EVER use it if it was under subscription only and I recommend the same for you prospective buyers. Subscription only is the only fly in the Autodesk ointment but it is a show stopper as far as I am concerned. The whole CADCAM market is undergoing upheaval where we the buyers are going to be subjected to fewer choices and over time higher prices and if these companies can get away with it really bad lockin serfdom. Act now while you can.

CAD CAM Software Subscription Only, Unforeseen Complications for YOU

Recently I received an update to my HP printer. It ended up telling me that I could not run without buying more ink from HP. Now in the user manual it clearly states, that is the user manual and the conditions under which I purchased their printer to begin with, that I could run on black ink only. Furthermore there is a setting under printer properties that clearly states select grey scale to run in black ink only. So as a contract to me by virtue of the conditions I bought under and the properties which confirm the grey scale black ink only to run settings were intended I get this crap from HP. Extortion would be another way of stating this. The warning from HP I had from the printer after I installed much cheaper ink cartridges stated that any warranty would be voided by their use but did not prohibit their use. Legally I am sure they can’t since as a condition of buying this Officejet Pro 8600 I did not have to sign or commit to HP only ink.

ScreenHunter_139 Oct. 07 19.48

OK today I get this email from the ink cartridge people. HP sends you an innocent looking update which does not specify what is in there and does not allow you to select what parts of it you might want like Microsoft does. You get the whole chilona. Today I and every other HP 8600 printer buyer are being told we HAVE to do things we never signed up for and did not ask for. Arbitrarily and after the sale HP decides they want to make more money and make it in ways customers can’t run from. It is the capability to squeeze their customer base for more money that is just something no company seems to be able to resist over time no matter what the promises if they can do it. You see if you give people this kind of power over you it WILL be used sooner or later.

Is it to much of a stretch for you to see how this type of thing will come your way too if you cede the idea of permanent seats of software for rental? Where the conditions can and will change over time and there you are. Stuck with something that won’t work if you do not pay to play. All the power and might of legal hostage taking will be underlying your rental plans. When you have data created and locked under chattel securities and usable only with further payments that are subject to change with benefits to you subject to change why would you even go there? Here is one for you. You think data storage is free? You think there wont be a day where with cloud run software your stuff won’t be held to a cloud server and they wont charge you for the use of your data each month for the program and then the new server farm rental fees? Where they will force updates on you that will change the conditions to be different from when you signed up and you can blow it out your rear end if you don’t like it?

I want you to sit down and think about the ways you can come up with to screw customers over if you were in charge of a situation where where you could force pay to play. And change the rules to your benefit whenever. The company you signed up with today may well mean all the good things they say. Then like with Solid Edge the good guy leaves and utter junk takes their place. Or they get sued and now have to raise lots of cash. Or they get bought out (don’t think it can’t happen to whatever you currently use) and the new guys have saddled everything with more debt that has to be paid for. Just as soon as corporate leadership determines they need to change how they deal with you and in direct proportion to how much power you have given them over you, you are their hostage with no recourse. Except to leave entirely and if you have years of data locked up with these mercenary companies will you ever be able to?

Gee Dave it’s just printer ink don’t blow it all so far out of proportion. I mean after all no software company will EVER change the rules on you like HP did.

Isn’t it just peachy that software companies are doing this to secure their stable future? Without regard to your future or care for your expenses or profitability or your secure stable future? Where you better pay them before you pay your light bill or lose accumulated years of work and the ability to use that work? Am I wrong about this? Can you prove me wrong about this?

CAMWorks CW4SE Stress Relieved Profit Center Completed

Made the decision Saturday morning to remove all vestiges of past woes from my life. CAMWorks for Solid Edge has been completely removed and will not be re-installed. Sorry for those of you who were interested in me doing direct comparisons between Volumill and HSM Adaptive but HSM has won every contest so far and I don’t see the point in scraping old wounds open again by inflicting CW4SE upon myself to help you out. Do it yourself if you wish.

It is time for a status report on CW4SE and CAMWorks and HSM. CW4SE and CAMWorks still have strategies for turning and wire and laser cutting that HSM does not have. In truth there are more capabilities with CAMWorks than with HSM. How good they are I don’t know as I only cut parts in milling. I had lathe but if you have followed my story you know Geometric never provided a post for what I had paid for. Never trust Geometric to do what they promise and get everything in writing so you can force Geometric and your VAR to live up to what they said. HSM is in use at a shop close by. They have a lathe with a live axis and do not use HSM for turning. They swear by HSM for milling as I do but use their old seat of OneCNC for turning. Burning and wire and worthwhile turning are still yet to come for HSM but I believe that these are on the way. In the mean time on the SW side of HSM there is grumbling about how long some promises have lingered undone and the Inventor side wants what the SW side has already. On the big plus side for CAMWorks if you can get it to function right is permanent seats now and for the forseeable future to new customers. On the big negative side for HSM is the end of permanent seats coming up within a few months. This is a big deal as far as I am concerned and If I was not the possessor of a permanent seat now I would make darned sure I was before the deadline. You don’t want to make your business’s core functions rely on anyone for pay to play for a ton of reasons.

There is not one single CAM program out there that does not have shortcomings.Some are really serious and pervasive others are irritating. Being a relative Newby to Inventor HSM I have not yet learned to get mad over promises not kept because I came here knowing it was a work in progress. These guys have had a lot on their plate as the integration with Inventor and stuff going on with Fusion and Delcam products has made their days very complex. But I see progress and I believe they will deliver and what is there simply works well and without any big problems. Of course I can remember the halcyon days of CW4SE and smile today at how easy life has become. The HSM guys are closed mouthed about what is coming. From what I see though the indications from various places tells me we are right around the corner from a lot of good changes. In the mean time I make more money per hour and spend less to get the program that does so compared to CW4SE. Fieldweld is a CW4SE free stress relieved profit enhanced job shop now and this is good.

There is a huge philosophical difference between Geometric and HSM too and it is worthy to note it one last time. I know some of the guys at HSM now and they are dead serious about their product and making it right. I have known some of them for years prior to becoming an actual user and their stance on HSM has never varied. Sometimes things go slower than we all wish but they have serious intent and desire to make HSM the very best. HSM Adapative is right now the single best high-speed machining program out there. I base my statement on real life research between current versions of Volumill and Adaptive and Volumill has never won. Compared to Geometric and CAMWorks where they have been around a lot longer and have perfected the arts of stonewalling customer solutions and misrepresenting their products and had to hire an external source for high-speed machining. With intent to save money while charging more and to see just how much they can get away with not doing. Geometric is run by short-sighted individuals whose sole desire in life is to charge as much as they can and spend as little as they can to do it. Your profits and efficiencies are not of great concern to them.

Sometimes going to the Geometric CAMWorks site is funny and at other times seriously aggravating. Since I don’t have to rely on them for anything now it is mostly funny now and then sometimes puzzling. Puzzling because I just don’t understand how a concept that could be so good if implemented right is buried by a company that has no desire and or no technical ability to see it succeed. The Tech Data base is a case in point and the complaints and problems predate Geometrics purchase of ProCam now CAMWorks. To add to it from what I gather reading the SW guys complaints there are changes that take the broken TDB which yields daily problems anyway that are added to with new versions. New versions that apparently require you re-do your TDB once again. And again and again and again. This is not trivial and is terribly time-consuming. It is the basis for which the program is supposed to work from and it fails all the time. You can’t read these things unless you have permission to access the closed forums for a reason. They do not want potential customers to read this stuff.

Going to the Recent Topics post section 10-3-15 shows 17 posts the last two months for CAMWorks. Three are Tech Data Base related and seven are post problems. Geometrics web site is particularly amusing today regarding the posts on the forum.Wonderfull post promise

“Complete Post Processor Support” as a claim by Geometric has such a tenuous relationship to the truth that the kindest thing I could label it would be willful misrepresentation of customer reality. What else can you call what I am showing here today? 41% of the last two months posts are post processor problems where users struggle to help each other on what should be a mature product. Where not one time do you see anyone from Geometric show up and help. Part of the “Complete Post Processor Support” claim made in the splash page I suppose. Geometric has no shame where outright misrepresentations of their products are concerned and will tell you whoppers all day long to get into your cash. Go to http://camforum.autodesk.com/ and see what real support looks like for post processors which are free and support which is real and free. Geometric makes the claim but Autodesk HSM of the two is the only one who lives up to it. Check out the last few months and see for yourself.CAMWorks  forum 1

CAMWorks forum posts 2

CAMWorks forum posts 3

Here is a resounding endorsement of Geometric’s commitment to customers. Regarding CW4SE and Solid Edge they were given the chance to be the first true integrated CAM program with SE. Unknown to the SE guys myself included we had no idea that Geometric had such a terrible philosophy towards delivering a capable qualified product. The failure here is partly to blame I believe on the Siemens UGS kill the SE red headed stepchild group who had no desire to see things work well but based upon the sorry track record with SW I have to believe the majority of the issues are solely due to Geometric’s disdain for customers. Lets have a look at the SE CW4SE forum shall we.Solid Edge CW4SE forum 10-3-15

Clearly there are numerous happy customers here. Don’t you wish you could be one to?

For a shop that cuts parts for a living what you choose can make you or break you. If a Geometric sales rep or VAR shows up the best thing you can do is say show me from A to Z how to set up the TDB on my complex parts and assembly part I am providing you now and not ahead of time. Show me how to then cut the part and don’t you make it a simple one either. Demand in writing a working to YOUR satisfaction post processor for every machine you own and intend to use with CAMWorks and the functions they want to sell you prior to your maintenance time beginning. Load the trial on my workstation and do this TDB work here and show me the proof in MY environment. Then see a real life rendition of a fish out of water gasping for air as the sales dude hits the door protesting your unreasonable demands.

If the HSM dudes show up expect to cut parts and be happy with the caveat of course that there are some capabilities like wire and laser missing. If you need these today you will have to go elsewhere.

Autodesk CAD CAM Self Autonomy End In Sight

There is only one thing I don’t like about the Autodesk business model and it is a very serious one. As a matter of fact after 1-31-2016 it would be a terminal deal breaker for me no matter the price. Received an email this week and it stated that the cut off for permanent seats for most offerings will be four short months from now. Tried to find the email announcement regarding this from this week but I had deleted in disgust so it is gone.

To me this sub model is all about following the dollars and the winner is not the customer. Even Autodesk admits that over the course of five years or so permanent seats are cheaper. Fact is that once you are in this business how many of us leave after four years? I have been in it for twelve now and many of you for decades. I stayed with Solid Edge the longest of any and it was for eight years. So we have the loss of control of our dollar flow with pay to play and we have the loss of autonomy to decide just how and when our paid for software is deployed. The warm feeling you as a subscriber would get in the future as you have to pay every time you want to use your intellectual property will be it’s own reward. I wish I could forcibly rent the equipment I produce to a captive audience to so my hat is off to the robber barons. I mean my customers continue to use it so why shouldn’t I get money each time they do eh?

This week gave me a perfect example of how the initial costs and the control over your affairs through this new Autodesk paradigm will accrue important advantages to the seller.

HP printers are coming out with a new way and it will be “subscription” for future models. When I say subscription in this case I mean internet connected and controlled by others and it will order ink even when you don’t want it to in order to function. I have an Officejet 8600. In the manual it says that I can run without full cartridges in black ink only. Right there in the manual HP printed for the machine. Sadly this printer has internet access and even though I turn down updates I still get one. Now my printer says that I MUST buy new cartridges before I can use the black ink which is all I needed for invoices. You know what HP, I have my generic ink on order and that is the way it is going to stay. I could stomach the high price of your ink with regrets each time I paid but to be forced or extorted into having to buy when your own manual says I should not have to stinks.

See this is the kind of stuff that happens when you relinquish your control over those who sell to you. In the future when Autodesk updates you will too like it or not and whether or not it makes sense for your company to do so. Unless you have a permanent seat. Autodesk was pretty blunt about saying that you better never be late with your yearly permanent seat payment or you lose the seat and become a monthly yearly whatever subscriber with all the joy THAT will bring over time.

It is a field day for VAR’s to. Some shops close by are getting hit on to “bank” more seats than they currently need for future use as the scare tactics kick in. Sadly the VAR’s do have a point and I will say that if you have a need for Autodesk products you better decide to buy in the next four months if you value autonomy.

It kind of reminds me of the Check into Cash and Title loan shops that have sprung up everywhere over the last eight years or so. Perhaps one of the largest “Growth” industries or services out there. The success of these jackals is based upon lowering income and higher expenses and people who have lost credit for whatever reason. So it preys upon those who need to save money the most and end up spending far more. This then is the selling tool for this model of Autodesks as far as I am concerned. It will take time but those coming in behind us are being trained to pay monthly fees for everything. To not own or control but to buy it again and again and for more money when it is all over. And with dropping wages and increasing expenses many will jump on this never understanding they can’t ever get off when they do.

Do I have to talk about data hostages again? Apparently so because no where does Autodesk tell you about the end of your choice to use your intellectual properties unless you rent them back from Autodesk. Now if you can’t use your data unless you pay Autodesk for that privilege just who really owns the fruit of your labors hmm? Better think hard before you go down this path of chattel subservience is all I can say.

I like HSM a lot. I think it is the best and the limitations it does have will soon be gone. Inventor is eh. I still do my modeling in SE ST8 with my permanent seat which expired in August. I expect to do so for some time and I don’t pay Siemens for SE anymore because they are not improving enough to justify the yearly fee. I have what I need and they are not providing new value to me so why pay? Think about that you monthly guys and your complete loss of control over product improvements and value to you as you pay to play. Forever no matter what comes down the pike. Suck it up and pay and pay and pay. As an added bonus I expect that for those holdouts there will be changes to modeling kernals that will prevent past users from communicating with current users even through neutral formats. These people can of course then get on the pay to play merry go round as the only solution. Not that this business model would ever evince any avarice towards it’s customers.

I bought Inventor Pro HSM as a permanent seat because I think it is the best value out there for a design build entity. I have no regrets being here and I know over time Inventor will become better and easier for me to use. It is the value leader in the industry and I sure do wish they would just leave this current model alone.

Be forewarned people, your time to choose if you wish to is quickly coming to and end. I trust the permanent seat promise from Autodesk enough to have bought into it. I suppose someday in the future it could go away. My assumption is that this would happen only when their competitors are doing the same and the market is moving to full bore enslavement because they can. Don’t get me started on the cloud either or the idiocy of cloud based products with all the data breaches that occur all the time at companies that have far more resources than you do to prevent hacking. They can’t do it, you can’t do it and Autodesk can’t prevent it either over public networks they neither own or control.

I don’t intend to say much more about this sad day with Autodesk. You have time to prepare if you wish to use their products. It saddens me that future users will not have this choice though so many younger people are so oblivious to owning over renting I am not sure they will miss permanent seats at all. Autodesk may be right and maybe those who want control over their destinies and expenses are a dying breed. Time will tell.