Ok, this is an old post resurected for the occasion of a recent discussion on ellipsis. I still like it, so let’s run it again.

It recently occurred to me that Autodesk has no CNC or CAM solution.  I know that should not surprise me, and it doesn’t, but it does make me stop and think. Why not?  Have you ever looked at the list of software applications on the Autodesk products page?

There are many companies that have good standalone offerings that get the job done.  These companies have a large following of loyal customers. You might also consider all the companies that are integrating extensions into Inventor, Mechanical Desktop, and AutoCAD.  This I am sure aids in Autodesk annual sales.

Autodesk, however, has a good track record of purchasing product rights and integrating them into AutoCAD.  Remember DCA and Softdesk?  The product line is now Civil 3D.  But that is AutoCAD, not others.  No? hmmm.  How about Inventor and the acquisition of ALGOR for FEA alongside Inventor.  I think it’s time to purchase someone else.  In fact, I think a couple of companies are due theirs.  Let’s see….

imageFirst, InventorCAM.   That is SolidCAM’s Inventor plugin.  I want it! The integration is great.  I think probably the best integration I have seen.  I think this might be a good backbone.

Next, GibbsCAM.  There is a lot said about it, and it has an interesting interface.  Kind of a drag and drop Object oriented process interface.  We might be able to do something with that scheme.

image Ooooooh, we need to get MasterCAM too.  Not the interface, dear lord no.  Just the toolpaths.

Then get the guys in Lake Oswego beat the snot out of interfacing the toolpaths, and get Elena Fadeeva’s bunch to work over exactly how users would make he most out of the new product.  No..on second thought…



I’m thinking Kanazawa Japan.  Hey! Get somebody into a language class pronto! Herr Schneider and Доктор Fadeeva might like another language on their resumes.  And you know I’d be there; with one thing on my mind, to make the best AND MOST INTUITIVE CAM solution available.  If  everyone is too busy to step up, I could be persuaded…Yeah……(big smile on face)…..OH! Sorry.  I slipped of into some daydream there.  Anyway…

There are many good CAM solutions out there, both standalone and integrated.  None of them are perfect in their own right.  One is better at this, and others are better at that.  Many people will accept differing limitations, just to stay with an interface that doesn’t suck.  Let’s face it, if you have to use it everyday, you want it to be comfortable.  (I feel another article coming on).

There is no reason (except time, money, and politics) that we can’t get Inventor packed with a solid CNC solution; one that has a great deal more usability than what is offered.  Even another Autodesk product that works along side Inventor.  Ooh, we’ll include extensions for Solidworks and Brand X.  We don’t want to leave anyone out.