The amazing, fantabulous, bewildering world of cloud CAD: Infrastructure

"Cloud" is now a household word in today's engineering software landscape. That's both good and bad. Good in that new technology is actively being sought and aggressively adopted for CAD applications, bad in that the term places a whimsically diverse range of development, delivery, infrastructure, and virtualization technologies under one fantastically generic umbrella. So when it comes to cloud CAD, there's naturally quite a bit of consternation over whether your particular flavor of cloud-enabled CAD software might be pure, true, or perhaps even fluffy enough. Read more

Announcing GrabCAD Print

Here we are, at long last. Three months of teaser blogs is enough by most standards. More than a year of whiteboarding, customer interviews, site visits, and board presentations is enough by any standard. Your continued, sometimes fervent, interest and curiosity is very much appreciated. So without further ado, let me tell you about what we’ve built over the last year. Read more

10 interesting CAD models from the last couple of weeks

It's been about six weeks since we last did one of these posts. While it technically qualifies as "the last couple of weeks," the truth of the matter is that we've been a little busy with other really cool stuff. If you subscribe to our newsletter (which hopefully you do - sign up using the form to the right on the blog), you'll notice we rebranded it and started to include a handful of awesome CAD models from that week. That should tide you over. Still, you can't beat a bonafide round up of interesting CAD models from the last couple of weeks. Without further ado, here it is. Read more

Where 3D Printing fits in the automotive sector

Previously, I have considered, generically, where 3D printing fits in the manufacturing enterprise — where it is used daily, where it could be used more, and some of the great potential it holds. In this post (and in upcoming posts), it seems fitting to examine specific vertical markets where 3D printing technology has disrupted the status quo. I’ll start with the automotive industry — mainly because it was one of the first sectors to seriously embrace the tech back in the early 1990s. Read more

How design democratization leads to graphical commoditization

When you associate the state of CAD graphics to an alien conspiracy it just might incite a cheer, conversely perhaps a bit of rage, or in the very best case thoughtful commentary from a lagomorph well versed in computational geometry. The crux of my original article was not to convict or condemn, but rather to warn that the continually evolving CAD universe, and by association professional CAD graphics, is on the precipice of something here unto unforeseen and unimagined. It might seem like the end of all things. Something disconcerting enough that a forlorn and distraught Samwise Gamgee might longingly implore, "Don't professional graphics matter, Mr. Frodo?" For which our brave hobbit might reply: "They do Sam, they do. But not for me." Read more

FEA and 3D printing – challenges and potential workarounds

3D printing is challenging the ways that Finite Element Analysis (FEA) methods are traditionally employed to assess the structural adequacy of engineered components. Thanks to 3D printing technologies, it is no longer a safe assumption that materials can simply be modelled in FEA software as uniform homogeneous solids. Indeed, a 3D printed cube of material is not what it appears to be on the outside, as it can be built from the ground-up, piece by piece and may actually possess a complex internal cross section composed of intricate void spaces such as complex hexagonal honeycomb structures. Read more

The cloud isn’t scary, is it?

Today we’re going to talk about why the cloud is great. It’s convenient, safe, and probably better than whatever you’ve got going on now. Even companies with the world to lose have come to the conclusion that “yeah, the cloud is the best way to achieve our goals.” Most people who object to the cloud have something to say about purported security vulnerabilities. If it feels like we’ve had this conversation before, it’s because we have. A couple of times, actually. Read more