June 20, 2005
Autodesk Announces RealDWG 2006 for Application Development … and What That Might Mean
Please note that contributed articles, blog entries, and comments posted on AECcafe.com are the views and opinion of the author and do not necessarily represent the views and opinions of the management and staff of Internet Business Systems and its subsidiary web-sites.
Susan Smith - Managing Editor

by Susan Smith - Managing Editor
Each AEC Weekly Review delivers to its readers news concerning the latest developments in the AEC industry, AEC product and company news, featured downloads, customer wins, and coming events, along with a selection of other articles that we feel you might find interesting. Brought to you by AECCafe.com. If we miss a story or subject that you feel deserves to be included, or you just want to suggest a future topic, please contact us! Questions? Feedback? Click here. Thank you!

Autodesk, Inc. announced that it has completed the acquisition of Colorfront Ltd. for $15 million USD. On April 18, 2005, Autodesk announced a definitive agreement to acquire Colorfront -- the leading developer of color correction technology for film studios and digital film laboratories. This acquisition positions Autodesk for long-term growth in the digital film industry and is expected to be neutral to Autodesk's earnings in fiscal year 2006.


Meridian Systems, an enterprise solution provider for optimizing the plan, build and operate phases of real estate, construction and other infrastructure programs, announces that ENR Top 200 ranked firm Hathaway Dinwiddie has signed a three-year, enterprise-wide agreement for ProjectTalk, Meridian's online project management solution. Hathaway Dinwiddie first implemented the solution in 2001. As the Hathaway Dinwiddie corporate standard, ProjectTalk has improved executive decision making and enabled strict cost control for negotiated construction contracts.

Primavera® Systems and MRO Software announced that they will sponsor an oil and gas industry webcast, "Optimizing Asset & Resource Utilization", to take place Thursday, June 16, 2005 at 1:00 p.m. EDT. The event will examine how oil and gas companies are increasing productivity by using an integrated software solution.

For more detail or to register for this webcast, visit

More than 100,000 AutoCAD® software users have downloaded a free software component from SolidWorks Corporation, enabling themselves to work with any DWG file, regardless of the AutoCAD software version that produced it.

The DWGgateway™ data translation tool, which may be downloaded from
www.dwggateway.com, enables any AutoCAD software user to open and edit any DWG file. This capability may eliminate the need to upgrade the AutoCAD software to new versions simply to work on files created by users of newer AutoCAD products

Pearson Prentice Hall, the world's leading educational publisher, has selected Mathcad® from Mathsoft® Engineering & Education, Inc. as the solution engine for Hibbeler, Statics & Dynamics OneKey - a Web-based support system for teaching and learning resources with more than 3,000 customizable statics and dynamics problems.

Graphisoft has revealed wide-scale productivity gain and workflow improvements among architects who have implemented a 3D modeling approach using its Virtual Building solutions. The sheer impact on the bottom line from designing in a virtual environment became clear following a global survey intended to gather the data necessary for its Return-on-Investment (ROI) calculator.

Within the 512 respondent companies (a 17% response rate from those surveyed), ArchiCAD delivers an average productivity boost of around 38%, and its contribution to profit averages 12%! Some 77% of respondents said that projects completed in ArchiCAD led to fewer problems in the construction phase compared to their previous CAD system, and 82% claimed ArchiCAD influenced their client's overall satisfaction.

The American Institute of Architects (AIA) announces the results of its first-ever Home Design Trends Survey. Reflective of an aging population and the "baby boomer" generation approaching retirement, the survey results highlight an increasing demand for greater accessibility and single-floor design which promotes easier mobility within the home. Fueled by a strong housing market, architecture firms working in the residential sector have reported favorable business conditions; with 44% of respondents indicating that their overall billings increased by more than 5% in the first quarter of 2005, while only 10% reported declines in billings from the fourth quarter of 2004.

@Last Software announced that HKS, Inc., a top-ten national architectural firm headquartered in Dallas, Texas, has signed a company-wide agreement to purchase 3D conceptual design software, SketchUp. Under the agreement, architects, interior architects and designers, engineers, and other professionals within HKS can take advantage of SketchUp's features.


Autodesk, Inc. announced that Autodesk DWF Composer has won the Codie Award for Best CAD/CAM/CAE/Electronic Design Automation Product, presented by the Software & Information Industry Association (SIIA). Autodesk was singled out for achievement and vision in software amongst hundreds of nominees. DWF Composer took the prize as the best-of-the-best in design automation products against four other finalists at the annual presentation of the SIIA Codie Awards.

Contract Awards

Oce announced that Oce Business Services has been awarded a multi-year contract by the City of Houston for document process management services. Oce Business Services will design and manage an on-premise centralized Imaging Solution center, for Houston City Hall. The center will provide complete print, copy and scanning services for the City's black and white, color and large-format requirements.


IMSI®, developer and publisher of consumer, business and precision design software solutions, announced that Robert O'Callahan has been appointed Chief Financial Officer effective July 1, 2005. O'Callahan, an attorney and certified public accountant as well as the former CFO of Salon Media Group, Inc (operator of Salon.com and other related media websites), brings over 25 years of experience in transaction analysis, accounting, financial support and operations to IMSI.

New Products

GiveMePower Corporation, a provider of next-generation computer-aided design (CAD), digital blueprint management and graphics development software for "anytime and anywhere" use across all Windows® desktop, laptop, tablet and handheld/wireless computing platforms, announced that PowerCAD® Classic™ 6, a new professional-grade, AutoCAD®-compatible 2D design and 3D viewing system is available for immediate purchase at a suggested price of $299.

Graphisoft has launched its online Return-on-Investment (ROI) calculator, designed to allow architects to assess how effective ArchiCAD. 3D modeling could be to their bottom line once implemented.

The architect can input data specific to their practice, allowing the ROI calculator to consider their variables and build an accurate picture of the expected financial benefits, time savings and profitability which can be achieved by integrating ArchiCAD into their workflow and design process.

Entourage Arts announced the availability of the Wang Wang Collection of NPR (Non Photorealistic Rendering) Trees & Plants Volume 1 as well as a re-release of NPR People Volume 1 and NPR Trees & Plants Volume 1 with over 3 times the previous content. A Mini Pak of 3 watercolor skies is also introduced. Wang Wang is a Shanghai Illustrator with a bold, loose watercolor style. The rest of the collections, consisting of more traditional hand rendered and masked entourage, were created by Entourage Arts, a Canadian-based firm specializing in content for architectural illustration.

ArchVision, Inc. announces the immediate availability of four new RPC (Rich Photorealistic Content) libraries—Bedroom Collection Volume 1, Dining Room Collection Volume 1, Living Room Collection Volume 1, and Patio Collection Volume 1. Each RPC combines low poly-count geometry with photorealistic textures to add the most realism to renderings and animations. Published in the RPC file format, these furniture libraries also allow users to take advantage of RPC Mass Populate and Mass Edit Tools for ease of placement and editing.

Autodesk Inc., announced the release of the new Autodesk DWF Toolkit, a software development kit that enables developers to create applications that read, write, view, print and query DWF files. This version of the DWF Toolkit, which for the first time supports multiple operating systems including the Mac OS from Apple and Linux, also includes the latest in DWF technology, such as 3D support, easier access to 2D APIs and the ability to access DWF Composer markup data as well as object properties from AutoCAD 2006-based products. Free to developers.

myVR Software, announced the release of a secure high-resolution and high-speed 3D real-time interactive streaming solution for streaming of 3D models across any network.

Applied Spatial Technologies, Inc. announced Version 6.0 of FMDesktop, its industry leading CAFM software application. FMDesktop delivers comprehensive CAFM capabilities at an affordable price and is ideal for all types of facilities including hospitals, schools, manufacturing facilities, and financial institutions.

Upcoming Events

Date: June 20 - 23, 2005
Place: Disney's Coronado Springs Resort

Orlando, FL USA
Ecobuild, with a long standing success in Asia, is proud to announce the the debut of its' newest event...Ecobuild America, the world's foremost green conference and exhibition. Ecobuild America 2005, the environmental systems technology conference and exhibition.

Ecobuild America will address the estimated $15 billion worth of green buildings currently in design or under construction in the US, representing 12-15% of total public construction and 2% of private sector construction. Although the $15 billion is less than 5% of the total $315 billion US annual construction for commercial, industrial and institutional buildings, this category is growing at a rate of about 75% annually.It covers the breadth of commercial, industrial, institutional and residential green building techniques, construction products, renewable energy resources, and sustainable growth design
and planning processes. Ecobuild America will be accompanied by product educational sessions for design and construction professionals will feature the latest innovations in green building materials and energy and technology, with particular emphasis on sustainable growth, green building, and environmental design. This gathering promises to feature the most comprehensive congregation of green building programs and technologies ever assembled — a showcase for this rapidly expanding and dynamic industry.

Delphi Inc., a leading research, publishing company and event producer in Tokyo organizes the Japanese event which is sponsored and supported by the Japan Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, and Transport; Japan Ministry of Economy, Trade, and Industry; Japan Ministry of the Environment; Tokyo Metropolitan Government; The Japan Institute of Architects; Architectural Institute of Japan; the Building Contractor's Society; The Institute for Environment and Energy Conservation; New Energy and Technology Development Organization (NEDO); and the Japan Ecology Foundation.

Date: June 23, 2005
Place: UW College of Architecture & Urban Planning

Seattle, WA USA
The AIA Seattle Diversity Roundtable, in partnership with colleagues at the UW Department of Achitecture, Pomegranate Center, and Fremont Public Association, have big ideas for the 2005 Summer Solstice Procession - with a series of events that commenced with a late-March visit to Marra Farm, in Seattle’s South Park neighborhood.

Date: June 26, 2005
Place: Kansas City, MO USA
The Concrete Home Building Councils' Plant Tour is a multi-day event featuring educational programs and behind-the-scenes tours of cement-based building materials and manufacturing facilities. Attendees have the opportunity to network with colleagues from across the country while learning the inner workings of the concrete industry as a whole.

The Plant Tour gives attendees a broad view of the regional differences in production and building trends, a working knowledge of all types of cement-based materials, and an understanding of how to implement the most up-to-date industry trends into their own businesses.

This two day event will leave you with a superior understanding of the residential concrete construction market. The event will start on Sunday, June 26 with a Golf Touranment at the St. Andrews Golf Club followed by a Concrete Reception at 6:00pm at the Hyatt Regency Crown Center. Don't miss out on this great event and tour. Take a look at the week's activities!

Date: June 27 - 29, 2005
Place: The Westin Seattle Hotel

Seattle, WA USA
Tunneling is both an art and a highly scientific endeavor, requiring a broad range of capabilities and experience and a willingness to try state-of-the-art materials, equipment, and techniques.

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You can find the full AECCafe event calendar here.

To read more news, click here.

-- Susan Smith, AECCafe.com Managing Editor.


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