CAD file viewers

I’d almost forgetten Whip!

Most vendors of construction collaboration technologies (sometimes called ‘extranets’) will recommend third-party applications to use with their collaboration solutions in order to view, mark-up and comment upon CAD files. Among the pure collaboration vendors, only my employer, BIW Technologies, offers its own integrated file viewing technology, but I sometimes forget about the solutions available from vendors who also develop CAD software, notably Bentley and Autodesk.

A post on Scott Sheppard’s Beyond the Paper Autodesk blog reminds us just how many CAD viewer products there have been. Apparently every subscriber to Autodesk’s Buzzsaw collaboration package is entitled to a free copy of Autodesk Design Review, and one of Scott’s colleagues tells users to “uninstall Autodesk DWF Viewer, Autodesk WHIP!, Autodesk Express Viewer, Autodesk DWF Composer, Volo View, Volo View Express, or anything else you have that looks like an Autodesk viewer”. And these are just the ones from Autodesk.

I don’t think the recent announcement regarding Microsoft Vista compatability for DWF will make a lot of difference in the near future, so may well see yet more new viewers and viewer upgrades over the months and years ahead.

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