One-to-One: Big Blue’s Unprecedented Mechatronic Design Opportunity

I had the chance to talk with … a number of IBM executives at their Rational Software Conference (RSC2009) over the last two days. I have heard some great talks on the role that software plays in developing a smarter planet, and how IBM can help companies develop smarter products. I have heard them talk about instrumenting the physical world to monitor, analyze, and improve the way it operates (a whole topic unto itself, really). I have learned a lot and shared ideas with some dynamic, passionate IBM’ers and my peer analysts. My key takeaway is not new, however. I have felt for some time (and my experience at the Rational conference furthered this belief) that IBM has an unprecedented opportunity to bring a systems engineering focus to developing mechatronic products, and unite the disparate mechanical, electrical, and software design processes.

One-to-One: SmarTeam Customers Talk About PLM for SMB

I had the chance to talk with … several ENOVIA SmarTeam customers during my recent research. I talked with them for my paper on how mid-sized manufacturers have leveraged product innovation and PLM to get through challenging economic times and come out better during the recovery. See my Research Rap: Small to Midsize Manufacturer in an Economic Downturn? Innovate! for an overview of

One-to-One: Teamcenter Express – Expressly for Small to Midsize Manufacturers

I had the chance to talk with … Bruce Boes and the team at Siemens PLM Solutions about their Teamcenter Express offering for small to midsize manufacturers. The Express solution is a a part of what Siemens calls “The Velocity Series,” which is a full PLM offering for the small to mid-size business (SMB). The Velocity Series includes complements to Teamcenter Express that supports computer aided design (CAD, SolidEdge), computer aided analysis (CAE, FEMAP), and computer aided manufacturing (CAM, CAM Express). Teamcenter Express, either as a part of this suite or on its own, provides the base PLM capabilities, primarily collaborative product data management (CPDM).

One-to-One: NovaQuest – On a Quest for Better PLM Implementations

I had the chance to talk with … Joel Lemke and his team at NovaQuest recently about their business plans and their strategy to help companies gain value from PLM. NovaQuest is a relatively new company, formed by IBM and Dassault Systemes veteran Joel Lemke (along with a host of other talent). Their quest is to help Dassault better implement Enovia PLM solutions, particularly in under-served markets such as small to midsize businesses (SMB) and “non-traditional” industries. This company has a lot going for it, and fills an important role in the Dassault Ecosystem.

One-to-One: Search is Shaping Up with ShapeSpace

I had the chance to talk with … Drew Sherlock of ShapeSpace a while back, and then had the opportunity to meet him in person at COFES. We talked about the importance of search in in engineering and product development, and how searching by shape is adding another way for companies to find (and hopefully easily reuse) parts. Search has received a lot of attention over the years – particularly as companies are trying to consolidate search across multiple data sources using enterprise search. In design and engineering, search has evolved to include parametric search (search based on attributes, typically on metadata that describes a part) to complement more basic text search techniques. But can a company have too many ways to search? Given the potential benefits of reuse – and the tendency for most people to reinvent the wheel when they can’t readily find a good starting point – I will say “not yet.”