Chewing the CAD

Cadalyst Manufacturing has a thought-provoking viewpoint article written by J. Paul Grayson, CEO of Alibre, that suggests “the CAD software market is stuck in time, somewhere in the late 1970s or early 1980s, when mainframes and minicomputers were the primary platform of professional computing”.

Despite the advances in personal computing in other fields, including the emergence of new business models such as application service providers (I would add Software-as-a-Service (SaaS) here too), open-source, advertising-funded free products, and freemiums), Paul argues that:

“CAD software today is a lot like those old corporate computers: expensive and tightly controlled, with access granted only to employees for approved activities. By and large, CAD is purchased by companies (rather than individuals) that decide how and when it is used.”

He continues:

“Imagine the possibilities if CAD software truly went the way of the PC. What if state-of-the-art 2D and 3D CAD became so pervasive that the hundreds of thousands — even millions — of engineers, designers, machinists, technicians, and hobbyists who don’t have access to CAD or only have access at the discretion of their employers were able to own their CAD software to use when and how they saw fit?”

It is just this sort of vision I have been discussing in my repeated ruminations on CADaaS (see CADaaS again just last week, for instance).

(Thanks to TenLinks Daily for the Cadalyst link).

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  1. […] Alibre’s J Paul Grayson (see Chewing the CAD), David argues that there are “vast, untapped reserves of potential customers for 3D tools in […]

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