SAN FRANCISCO, CA — June 5, 2002 — Today at the A/E/C SYSTEMS tradeshow in Anaheim, CA, CADENCE editors awarded Show Stopper Awards to the 10 CAD-related products exhibited on the show floor that they felt were the most innovative and exciting for CAD professionals. The Show Stopper announcement was delivered via CADENCE’s A/E/C SYSTEMS email newsletter, the only CAD industry newsletter reporting from directly from the show floor, providing CAD professionals, both at the show and those who could not attend, instant information about the winners of this award.
Show Stopper Awards were given to the most eye-catching and attention-grabbing CAD-related products at the show, exemplifying innovation, trend-setting, or a leap forward in technology. Awards were given by the senior CADENCE editors after they reviewed the products on the show floor in the same manner as other CAD professionals attending the show would – by wandering the show floor, demo-ing products, reading marketing literature, and talking to company employees in the booths. By reviewing products in a more anonymous manner, the editors of CADENCE feel they are genuinely able to give awards to the products that will be attention grabbing for all CAD professionals visiting the show.
The editors of CADENCE magazine give Show Stopper awards at two major industry tradeshows every year – at NDES in March and at the A/E/C SYSTEMS show in June. As only 10 products are awarded Show Stoppers at each show, these awards provide recognition helping to establish credibility with show attendees and other vendors. Being awarded a Show Stopper from the leading magazine in the CAD industry is an objective indication to CAD professionals of an innovative product with the potential to evolve the future of CAD. CADENCE congratulates the entire team behind each of these products, from development to marketing.
CADENCE is pleased to present this year’s top 10 selections (in alphabetical order by company name):
Autodesk Architectural Studio
This product spent years in the development stage and was demonstrated in prototype to solicit as much feedback as possible from potential users. The shipping product, demonstrated at this year’s show, is impressive indeed. Now design principals can no longer complain that CAD gets in the way of creativity. With a UI that very much resembles the top of a designer’s studio desk, the product uses various drawing icons to enable an intuitive approach to sketching, doodling, and fleshing out designs even to the extent of moving them into CAD drawings. With the advent of the pen tablet PC, this product is sure to draw increasing interest, and the product was ably demonstrated at the Autodesk booth on Wacom digitizer displays.
The BLIS Project is an outgrowth of the International Association for Interoperability’s IFC project, a consortium of many different CAD vendors who firmly believe in object-oriented CAD and the importance of attaching metadata to all the parts of a building—enabling better interoperation among design and analysis tools, as well as providing a database-enhanced model that can be used to reduce operating costs. The BLIS Project earned this award because of its practical steps to help vendors implement the many different products now supporting IFC 2.0, including Graphisoft’s ArchiCAD, Microsoft’s Visio, Solibri’s Model Checker, and Timberline’s CAD Integrator, among others.
Mechanical engineers have long used finite element analysis (FEA) to determine how their parts react to strain, but architects have not had a similar type of analysis tool—up until now. Fluent’s Airpak is a computational fluid dynamics (CFD) program that analyzes the airflow from the model of a building and its HVAC system, enabling a user to see if the HVAC system will work properly.
Remote Printing for AEC
When people think of collaboration these days, they often think of architects and other team members crowded around a PC with remote linkups to other PCs over the Internet or a local network. But there are many more times during the life of a project when you’d just like to print out the drawings, spread them out on a conference-room table, and have a team look them over in detail. With HP’s new product Remote Printing for AEC, team members can now look at the same drawings in disparate locations. Drawings can be printed remotely through the Internet and local networks with networked HP DesignJet printers, providing the kind of detailed look at stages of a project that a small PC screen just can’t equal.
Infrasoft gave an impressive press presentation last year at A/E/C SYSTEMS about a collaborative civil-design product that was then in the concept stages. This year the product has shipped, and it’s just as impressive in real life as it was as a prototype. An Arenium project requires at least one client PC connected to a gateway server that serves as the project hub (a typical project would have several client PCs). Then multiple designers, civil engineers, drafters and the like can share data from MX ROAD, for example, working simultaneously on aspects of drawing files pertinent to their disciplines. Updated files are checked in to the server and all participants are notified of updates and changes.
KIP America has been the underdog of the wide-format market, but the brand new KIP 8000 wide-format copier/plotter/scanner impressed CADENCE in a number of ways. It integrates all three products together well, with an improved user interface on the controller. It also claims to be the fastest LED plotter—at 22 D-size drawings a minute. For the office that always seems to be finishing the design with barely enough time left to plot all the needed sets, this speed alone will likely sell the unit.
KM-P4850 Wide Format Imaging System
For those offices that have neither the space nor the thick wallets for the large, fast KIP 8000, Kyocera has recently entered the U.S. plotter market, and its first all-in-one unit is petite enough to fit into almost any nook or cranny (it will fit in the same space as a DesignJet). It can scan, print, and copy—and at about $35,000, its 6 D-size-a-minute speed should also meet most smaller architectural shops’ needs.
PDF is a wonderful way to distribute electronic copies of paper documents, but it isn’t always easy to convert CAD drawings into PDF files. Layton Graphics’ CAD2PDF changes that. The program runs on a server, making it possible for anyone on your network to batch-process hundreds or thousands of AutoCAD or MicroStation drawings (or HPGL, CALS, or TIFF images)—without tying up their workstation. The end result is fully text-searchable and can be seen and searched by anyone with the free Acrobat viewer.
Professional speakers, salespeople, and business majors have long used PowerPoint to entertain their audiences, but architects haven’t had a similar tool designed for their needs. Now QuadriSpace Presenter is coming to their rescue. It uses interactive 2D and 3D graphics to make it easy to present a slick, scripted tour of your proposed building that is realistic and easy to understand. The program also makes it extremely easy to create these impressive productions.
Developers at Web4, an ASP specializing in collaborative solutions, have released eReview.Pro, an affordable product ($495) that allows smaller shops to set up a server-based collaborative network with capabilities to view more than 150 different document formats, markup and annotate drawings, hold real-time online meetings and concurrent design reviews, and participate in whiteboard and application sharing. Based on Web4’s more robust eReview Enterprise Edition, eReview.Pro packs plenty of power into a relatively inexpensive out-of-the-box solution.
Established in 1986, CADENCE magazine is the most requested computer-aided design (CAD) publication, with the tagline, “Leading Design into the Future.” CADENCE reaches CAD professionals working in architecture, mechanical engineering, civil engineering, industrial design, GIS, and other related industries. CADENCE educates CAD professionals on the latest industry trends, informs subscribers of up-to-date developments in the fast growing PC-based CAD market, and delivers hands-on solutions to meet computer-aided design challenges. More information on the Show Stoppers and CADENCE is available at
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