I have been a software development manager for many years. I have been fortunate to work as part of teams that brought you HOOPS, Heidi, AutoCAD R14, WHIP!, Volo View, Buzzsaw, Design Review, Project Freewheel, Autodesk Freewheel, Project Draw, Boomless Chameleon, Wiimote Navigation, Project Showroom, and Project Twitch. Effective February 1, I have a new title: Program Manager.
At Autodesk, Program Managers are responsible for achieving the goals and objectives of one or more strategic business programs. A Program Manager develops and implements marketing and business strategies and tactics related to the program. Think of Autodesk Labs as a program instead of a product. A software development project is a balance between how difficult something is to build and how much value it provides a customer. Over the years as a software development manager, I have had lively debates with Program and Product Managers over the feasibility of satisfying customers. So now I feel like I have gone over to the dark side. I kid. I kid. Actually for the past two years one of my Labs duties has been to work with the various divisions in Autodesk to bring you technology previews like Inventor Fusion, Inventor Publisher, Project Butterfly, etc. So now I am taking one aspect of my work and focusing on it full time.
Towards this end, I am contemplating:
Reaching out to the Autodesk community to learn who you are, what you do, and where you work to get a better sense of your experience with Autodesk. Right now many of you are anonymous in that you visit the Autodesk Labs web site, try a service or download a utility, and I have no idea what makes you tick.
Publishing a monthly newsletter for people who opt in. This would peel back the covers on Autodesk Labs for those who are interested. I could share conflicting feedback we get, lessons learned, and what's on the roadmap down the road for Labs. Let me know if you hate this idea at [email protected]. I'd rather you tell me now that you wouldn't read it instead of after I take the time to write it.
Looking forward to sharing technology in the coming year is alive in the lab.