By Anthony J. Lockwood
Dear Desktop Engineering Reader:
Slaying infrastructure monsters at your small- to mid-size business is a Herculean effort. Take the Lernaean Hydra called CAD project collaboration and management. These systems can seem like a maintenance mission: Installing updates because somebody released a new CAD system, clunky FTP sites, and the quest for yet another costly add-on module to access a client’s files. As soon as you lop off the head of one problem, another one with equally bad breadth for your capital pops up. You’re supposed to be an engineering outfit, but you’re maintaining computers and software a quarter of your time. This adds maddening work, expense, and little value to your end product.
Put the broadax down and take a good look at the links on the other side of today’s Pick of the Week. They take you to a thing called TeamPlatform that I think you’ll really want to know about.
TeamPlatform is a cloud-based service offering a bevy of CAD project collaboration and management tools. You need a browser to use it. It keeps current on all the stuff that’s been driving you nuts, so right off the bat you can eliminate installing updates and forking over dough for add-ons.
TeamPlatform starts with file sharing and viewing and mark-up. File sharing takes FTP to the next level for 3D models: You can zip assemblies, set access dates, and track visits/downloads by user or location. Viewing and mark-up: It seems TeamPlatform supports every file type known to CAD, including the majors natively and 2D SVG files. You can do all the neat stuff: explode and rotate views, take measurements, annotate, highlight with arrows, and create discussion threads within the context of your model and/or project.
TeamPlatform then keeps going: You can search meta data and export files in STL format for downstream applications like 3D printing. There’s automatic versioning, video streaming, raw-resolution previews, and APIs to link TeamPlatform with your enterprise systems. You can create private web pages for ad hoc exchanges or for customer service. You can develop and reuse workflow templates. Today’s write-up looks at how TeamPlatform links with Excel, giving you technology for building instant quotes, whelping out a BOM or an RFQ, or building and sharing analytics.
TeamPlatform also seems cost-effective: You, your engineers, and your clients can use it beginning at $25 a nose per month (up to 25 of you). And you can try a personal account for yourself for nothing.
From what I can see, TeamPlatform is a collaboration and data management system for 3D product design projects with the flexibility to be much, much more. So if you need such a system to get a handle on your CAD design projects to get with the century — but recoil at the expense — or if you blanch every time you need to install an update on your current set-up, TeamPlatform could be the answer. Hit the link and learn more. Good stuff.
Thanks, Pal. — Lockwood
Anthony J. Lockwood
Editor at Large, Desktop Engineering
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