GrabCAD Workbench for SolidWorks:
This podcast covers the updates and new add-in for SolidWorks for the evolving GrabCAD engineering platform. Every year when I come back to revisit what GrabCAD is up to I am amazing to their expanding offerings to the engineering community. Topics covered:
- An overview of GrabCAD Workbench
- The GCWB web UI
- Overview of the SolidWorks Add-In
- Use cases and workflow from within SolidWorks
- SolidWorks format support and integration with GrabCAD web service
- Overview of pricing plans and capabilities
- Overall thoughts.
The first time I mentioned GrabCAD on this show it was July 3rd, 2011 when they broke onto the scene with an engineering community and 3D CAD sharing site. Since then we have kept an eye on their evolution over the years and last year they introduced their Workbench product which was a shift in their previous offerings.
Workbench was focused to tackle sharing and collaborating on private 3D data and provide browser-based viewing (WebGL), markup, measure and comment threads around design teams and their data. A year ago I covered the newly launched Workbench and at that time it was primarily a web service, requiring upload of data via the web and somewhat disconnecting the CAD authoring tool from the collaboration service.
As Workbench began to get traction, they launched GrabCAD Toolbox which is a listing of partners they work with through add-ins, and other cloud service connections like with Lagoa. With the launch of their SolidWorks add-in, GrabCAD has narrowed the barrier between desktop and cloud, allowing Workbench to become an in-process tool as well. Versioning, file locking and auto sync with upload/download support give light PDM to any SolidWorks user. I'm excited to see what else the folks at GradCAD will do next! ~Lou