Saturday, 26 June 2010

DraftSight - Is this the Google of CAD?

Dassault Systemes recently announced FREE Download of DraftSight - an alternative to popular 2D CAD Software to create, edit, manage and share DWG Files. It sure is exciting that the 2D CAD users got an alternative that helps them get their drawings done with no investment but for internet download time !

This event is significant in more ways than one. Firstly, it emphasizes the fact that 2D CAD technology is no longer a serious choice for Design Engineers when 3D CAD, such as SolidWorks, is available at affordable costs. Secondly, the price of any product drops when demand is not there! Rightly so.

I happened to download the Beta version of DraftSight and am impressed on many counts:
1. Opening very large DWG Files is done in a fraction of the time taken by other 2D CAD software.
2. Installer is just 42 MB in Size !
3. Interface is akin to popular 2D CAD that professionals are used to.
4. Support upto Version 2010 of DWG format
5. Virtually no training is required to get started.
6. Good online documentation
7. Simple process of license activation
8. Community login based support. Online enhancement requests reviewed by developers.
DraftSight is a trendsetter for lowering the cost of ownership of 2D CAD. Costly upgrades can be avoided resulting in money saving.
Pricey 2D CAD software just became redundant. While LISP and network licensing schemes for professional users is still chargeable, these functionalities are seldom a mandatory pre-requisite. Why a network license when the license is FREE ?

For large and small organizations spending huge amount of money in buying and upgrading their existing 2D CAD software, DraftSight is an alternative worth considering seriously.

With Mac OS and Linux support coming in the near future, DraftSight is going to be OS independent. Is this the Google of CAD? While Google with its search engine has changed the lives of millions in their quest for information, knowledge and e-commerce, this CAD initiative is bound to create goodwill among CAD Engineers for continued patronage and development of a superior product at a fraction of the cost. Customers just pay for the services rendered ! Is this not Pay per use policy?

While there are many flavours of DWG editing software available, none of them comes close to DraftSight in terms of cost of ownership and above all community based support.

A Truly Appreciable initiative from Dassault Systemes indeed - CAD just got Googled !