incorporating the Effective Engineering Management Newsletter



Sherpa Corporation (San Jose, CA) has announced that John Moore, previously Sherpa's Vice President and Director of European Operations, has been appointed President and Chief Operating Officer. He will report directly to Steve Schopbach, Sherpa's Chairman and CEO. Since 1989 John Moore has grown the company's European business from one to 56 customers. The appointment is intended to free Steve Schopbach 'to direct more fully his attention to the growth of the company and the PDM market'. (+1 408/433-0455)

Strengthening its strategy to develop a broad data-management product family, Autodesk, Inc. (Sausalito, CA) announced AutoCAD VQ software, which lets users query and view (read-only) AutoCAD drawing files, and the acquisition of Sirlin Corporation, a private developer of data access technology. AutoCAD VQ, in conjunction with Sirlin's product line and technology, bring data access capabilities to Autodesk's data-management product line. Autodesk research revealed that for each CAD engineer in a typical enterprise nearly a dozen non-technical individuals need access to AutoCAD files. AutoCAD VQ is designed to let these users read and query AutoCAD files quickly and easily. Sirlin Corporation is a developer of `viewing' technology which can be used directly by end-users or by software developers. Autodesk has already incorporated the Sirlin viewing technology into its Autodesk WorkCenter technical document and workflow management system. (+1 415/491-8778)

PDES, Inc. (North Charleston, SC) and ProSTEP GmbH (Darmstadt, Germany) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to define the desired level of cooperation between them to contribute to the accelerated development and implementation of the Standard of Exchange of Product Model Data (STEP) - ISO 10303. PDES, Inc. is a consortium of aerospace, automotive, defense and computer companies that is advancing the development and deployment of STEP in the US. ProSTEP GmbH is a joint venture of BMW, Bosch, Daimler-Benz, Opel, Siemens, Volkswagen, and the ProSTEP Association for the advancement and support of international product data standards. ProSTEP serves as a commercial STEP center in Europe coordinated with other related activities in Europe and world-wide. (+49 6151/92870)

Anyone interested in product and process design would find Toyota's Annual Report 1994 of interest. Headlined `How we saved $1.5 Billion' the Report contains 13 pages showing six ways in which Toyota has been making really big changes. Examples are given of Toyota's activities to: Among the examples is a reduction in the number of turn-signal switches used for one model from twenty to seven. There's also a reduction in the number of model variations - one main model comprised 97 model variations at the end of the 1980's, of which less than half accounted for 95% of sales. With average reductions of 30% in kinds of parts, and 25% in model variations, the aggregate cost savings will become immense. In the white-collar area, 20% of employees are removed from everyday operations and put into project teams to carry out new work. The everyday operations maintain output, and with a 10% reduction in working hours, effectively increase hourly productivity by about 30%.

Bull Worldwide Information Systems has selected PDM technology from Metaphase Technology (Arden Hills, MN) as a core element of its Enterprise Information Management (EIM) solutions. Also in the applications portfolio are Baan Triton, SAP R/3, and IMS/HDMS. (+33 1/30806090)

FORMTEK, Inc., (Pittsburgh, PA) has entered into a distribution agreement with OMC Computers Limited (Secunderabad, India) to market, resell and license FORMTEK's information management and workflow products and services in India. (+1 412/937-4948)

Deloitte & Touche and Siemens Nixdorf (Burlington, MA) announced a joint venture for Siemens Nixdorf's SIFRAME enterprise-wide process management system. According to Mark Cavallo, Deloitte & Touche's Director of Product Development Consulting Services, Deloitte & Touche have increasingly seen the need for a technology that enables clients to implement and sustain re-engineered business processes. He says that SIFRAME is the kind of technology that every product development intensive business - including automotive, aerospace and defense, electronics-high technology and consumer products - must evaluate. (+1 617/273-0480)

Softdesk, Inc. (Henniker, NH) a leading developer of AEC technical software for AutoCAD, has signed an agreement which gives Ideal Scanners and Systems (Rockville, MD) worldwide distribution rights for SCAN Overlay, a portable, low-cost scanning solution for large format drawings and grayscale images. The SCAN Overlay system includes a patented overlay grid, an interface card, a high resolution scan head, and a set of tools. The high-resolution B-size or C-size overlay grid is used to pinpoint the relative coordinates of every pixel in the drawing. SCAN Overlay includes dynamic thresholding and erasing capabilities for image cleanup, raster format conversion, zoom-in capabilities for user defined areas, and viewing and printing capabilities. The end user list price for the SCAN Overlay C-size scanning system is $2495. (+1 301/468-0123)

Baltimore Gas & Electric Company (BGE) will install a FORMTEK data management system to improve access to engineering documents used in maintaining and upgrading power substations. The electric interchange and transmission division of BGE uses more than 100,000 E-sized drawings, which currently exist in paper format or as CAD files, to build and maintain substations. BGE's document management system, based on FORMTEK:TDM, will initially store and maintain approximately 30,000 drawings and associated documents. A Hewlett-Packard UNIX workstation will be used as the TDM server for PC, HP, and DEC clients. (+1 412/937-4948)

The OcÚ Group (Venlo, The Netherlands) develops and markets an extensive range of products and services for the reproduction and presentation of information on paper in both the Engineering Systems and Office Systems markets. The range comprises copying, printing and plotting systems as well as related imaging supplies. To address the EDM market, OcÚ Engineering Systems has decided to cooperate with a number of EDM suppliers (such as Cimage, FileNet, GTX, Intergraph, PAFEC, Rasterex, and Trimco). This allows OcÚ to respond to the requirements of any customer, no matter what their implementation decision. (+31 77/592764)

Zuken, Inc. (Yokohama, Japan) will resell Myriad, Informative Graphics Corp.'s (Phoenix, AZ) viewing software for integrated document management. The three Japanese character sets - Kanji, Hiragana, and Katakana - will be available. Zuken is a major supplier of CAE/CAD/CAM systems with a reputation for PCB design software. It has recently entered the PDM market with an OEM relationship with Workgroup Technology Corporation (Lexington, MA), reselling a Japanese version of Workgroup Technology's CMS product family and Myriad. Informative Graphics also report that a German-language version of Myriad is available as a result of their cooperation with PlanNet GmbH. (+1 602/971-6061)

Wang (Lowell, MA) announced new features to its OPEN/image User Objects for PowerBuilder software, a client-server imaging solution that allows application developers to add imaging to new and existing PowerBuilder applications. OPEN/image User Objects for PowerBuilder enhances the flexibility of Powersoft's PowerBuilder environment by providing application developers with a set of add-on imaging tools which appear in the form of user objects. OPEN/image User Objects provide image display and manipulation, advanced image annotation, print, scan, OCR, fax, and client/server access to image files and documents across multiple platforms. The product eliminates traditional imaging software requirements for Application Program Interfaces (APIs), providing speed and ease in developing imaging applications in the PowerBuilder environment. (+1 508/459-5000)

Xerox Engineering Systems (Herndon, VA) has introduced DocuPlex Virtual Printroom, an integrated digital solution to manage and distribute information, including archived documents of all sorts. Virtual Printroom software marries document mass-storage, on-line viewing and work management services with document scanning, digital copying and printing devices. The DocuPlex Virtual Printroom automatically receives and files documents from document and aperture card scanners, CAD systems, and other Virtual Printroom nodes. It delivers desired documents to industry-standard printers, aperture card printers, other Virtual Printroom nodes, and document viewing software, as well as to engineering printers and copying equipment. (+1 703/787-2088)

According to CIMdata, Inc., the 1994 worldwide PDM market is estimated at well over US$ 400 million, up 30% from the US$ 352 million in 1993. Market and technology information as well as selection and implementation guidelines and experience will be presented at CIMdata's fifth PDM Conference to be held on April 4-6, 1995 at the Pointe Hilton Resort on South Mountain in Phoenix, AZ. PDM Conference '95, which is expected to draw 400-500 delegates representing over 150 manufacturing organizations, consists of one day of tutorials followed by two days of conference sessions. Exhibits of commercial systems by PDM suppliers will be featured throughout the three days. Conference co-sponsors and exhibitors include Aspect Development, Autodesk, CADIS, CAP Gemini America, Computervision, Control Data, Documentum, EDS Unigraphics, Eigner + Partner GmbH, FORMTEK, Hewlett-Packard, IBM, Intergraph, International TechneGroup, Inc. (ITI), Matrix, Metaphase Technology, Parametric Technology Corp., SDRC, Sherpa, Silicon Graphics and Workgroup Technology. Also on show will be some of CIMdata's publications, such as their PDM Buyers's Guide ($995) containing comprehensive reviews of 49 PDM systems, and their $395 PDM Implementation Survey Report. (+1 313/668-9922)

A/E/C SYSTEMS '95 takes place this June in Atlanta, GA. This automation exposition for the design and construction industry features speciality shows and exhibit areas. EDM'95 will be focusing on the management of technical/engineering documents and drawings. (+1 203/665-0153)


Copyright (c) 1998 John Stark