When you download a technology preview from Autodesk Labs, you need to log in first. Why? Because when you do, the Labs download process captures your email address. Unlike the NSA, we really don't care what else you do in life, we just want to be able to contact you to ask you about the technology preview. You are free to browse the Labs site at will without logging in. It's only when you download something that we want to know who we're working with.
This process allowed me to email the users who have downloaded the Design Checker for Inventor technology preview. Design Checker for Inventor provides instant feedback on the adherence to company and customer standards. It can be configured to define not only what type of features are checked, but also the standards that dictate if a check passes or fails. Custom checks can also be defined. These configurations are stored in a Profile and can be separated into different work environments (Parts, Drawings, Assemblies). This allows Profiles to be created that define different checks for different product types, different customers, or any other end user variances. By changing profiles, Design Checker checks the models based on the rules defined in that profile.
As this is a new technology preview, there were 453 unique email addresses associated with downloads. I used Survey Monkey to collect the responses. In my email request for users to complete the survey, I promised to share the results, So here goes. There were 6 questions. As of June 11, there were 61 responses.
Have you successfully downloaded and installed Design Checker?
The most common reason for not doing so was that respondents had upgraded to Inventor 2104, and the technology preview is collecting feedback from 2013 users.
We have standards that apply at the following levels (check all that apply):
Although I thought project-wide standards might be the most prevalent in the manufacturing industry, company wide standards are quite popular.
We have created separate Design Checker profiles for (check all that apply):
Standards seem to be applied fairly equally.
Please describe your success or failure with the technology preview
A sampling of answers included (good to bad):
- "I like the overall concept of the design checker and it appears to do a good job of checking design files for compliance to a configurable standard. I think that the automatic check is the only way that this will truly be successful."
- "Works perfectly; even in Vault environment. Mapped the results field for Vault's compliance check."
- "We would like more 'internal' CAD checks. - Constrains inside Tube & Pipe Runs not allowed. - Sheet metal, unable to unfold. - Tube and Pipe, runs could not be created. - check if library parts contain correct properties."
- "The performance of our assemblies (mid to large) took a negative turn when using the Design Checker."
- "I looked at the way to make custom rules, but dismissed it when I discovered you need to do VB to write Inventor iLogic rules. I guess I could go look up books from the '80s but it seemed pointless."
Please provide your email address if you would like to be contacted to discuss your survey responses (optional):
Thanks to the 29 respondents who opted to do so. I will email you for follow-up comments.
My overall satisfaction with the technology preview is:
Between pleased and ecstatic, more than half of the respondents view this technology favorably. Though technology previews aim to please, Design Checker for Inventor failed to meet the expectations of 3% of the respondents.
Thanks to everyone who responded to the survey. Your experience shapes the future of our technology. If Design Checker for Inventor was a sure thing, the Inventor team would have gone straight to Beta. Feedback like the kind in these responses helps teams decide what to do next.
Feedback analysis is alive in the lab.