A Note from the So Cal RUG Treasurer

The So Cal Rug community loves Las Vegas for many reasons; the obvious reason being it is within driving distance and its Vegas! This year’s PLM World presented Siemens’ product offerings in the usual impressive manner. Clearly a world class offering, the mechanical CAD products are giving up the center stage to everything Team Center. This trend has been taking place for the last two years. It’s expected, but a somewhat alarming trend as well.


Clearly the larger company gets, the greater their need to manage vast amounts of data. So it is natural for PLM World to take advantage of this opportunity and showcase Team Center’s very capable data management offerings. As companies become increasingly global their demand for a comprehensive data management solution across the globe will follow and Siemens is position well to answer this call.


I must admit my bias for the Siemens CAD and CAM offerings has me wondering if the CAD and CAM products will continue to take a lesser role. If NX 8 is an indicator of what’s to come, we can all be happy knowing that this has not happened. NX 8 continues to stand on the previous achievements of earlier releases. Just like NX 7.5, it too has addressed the needs of the users by maintaining an emphasis of context sensitive application tools (showing only the set of buttons needed for the task at hand while minimizing button over-load). This is a challenge anytime there’s a robust capability to customize the GUI and while simultaneously increasing the base capability of the software; which is exactly what is happening with NX8. There have been marked enhancements across the application.


I work within an emerging engineering company, wherein the emphasis is to get the products produced quickly and efficiently. Our size would have us place more importance on the product and less on the managing the product data produced in the development cycle (the follow-on product life data); however this still remains important just not to the extent that we are interested in the all the nuance features being added to Team Center across the application horizon. This explains my concern about the expanding dominance of Team Center in the conference at the expense of the CAD and CAM product offerings.


The conference has lost some of its early appeal with a variety of things no longer being done; such as great door prizes just for showing up or a unique theme along with matching shirts and so on. To no fault of Siemens, this is likely a direct consequence of the attendance numbers. It is very hard to get back that early feel when the conference head counts were 300 to 500 people as compared today’s attendance exceeding 1900 people. Any perceived loss of fun was certainly short lived, as Las Vegas is biggest adult playground on the planet.


The RIO Hotel and Resort is famous for the Poker Stars on TV playing Texas Hold’em, so there was no shortage of things to do. A spectacular view of all of Vegas could be had from the open air lounge on the hotel roof top. This was a popular place to get a drink and draw-up plans for the rest of the night with your new found friends.


In closing this year 2011 PLM World Conference remains a good value and served up the attendees a tasty entrée of what’s to come from the Siemens offerings. And once again solidified any doubts one might have about whether the software tools were doing what they were suppose to do.


Bravo PLM World!


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