Solid Edge University came to the UK last week and more than 200 Solid Edge users came together to share their knowledge, find out what’s new in Solid Edge ST7, and learn new techniques.Users I talked to at the end of the event were really enthusiastic about their experience and I have to say credit for planning the event goes to our two UK channel partners Majenta PLM and Prion Cutting Edge who did a terrific job in executing the event, packing in a full day of presentations, round tables and hands-on training. The event was held at the Silverstone UTC, a new school for 14-18 year olds with a focus on a more technical education to nurture future engineers, and being right next to the Silverstone race track (where the British Grand Prix will be held in a couple of weeks time) it is natural that “high performance engineering” is a focus for this new school. All the students have access to Solid Edge to learn CAD techniques and to run their design projects, so the UTC was also a natural place for Mike Brown to talk about the continued expansion of our Solid Edge academic program and to encourage UK manufacturing companies to engage with their local schools on specific engineering education projects like Greenpower.
I think one way for us in the CAD industry to connect with young engineers is to offer our software, or specific variants of this, on the tablets and other mobile devices that rarely leave their hands. We already have Solid Edge viewing, collaboration and standard parts applications running on mobile devices but a recent development is being able to run full Solid Edge design sessions on the Microsoft Surface Pro that operates both as a tablet and as a workstation. Dan Staples flew over from the USA to present Solid Edge ST7 and afterwards I had a brief chat with him about how the Microsoft Surface Pro can be used for running Solid Edge. You can see the interview with Dan below, I was particularly interested to learn that when we had a classroom full of Surface Pro 2 devices at our Atlanta event, the users reaction was very positive and several commented that they are looking seriously at the Surface Pro 3 that starts shipping next week as their next CAD platform.
You can also watch a short demonstration video from Matt Lombard on the Solid Edge community site of running Solid Edge on the Microsoft Surface Pro 2. Matt demonstrates the ability to use both a stylus to input location data for commands, and using finger gestures for view manipulations, two techniques that are second nature to the next generation of engineers.