PLM Roadrunner Baby

By Michael

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We always had the dream to access information when traveling and away from home. Thanks to pervasive Internet connection this is possible today.

In a second wave of user friendliness we now experience a next level of empowerment for mobile workers: the arrival of specifically designed applications which run on smart phones and mobile devices. The focus is on optimized ergonomics and efficiency, taking into account the form factor of those handheld terminals.

A great example has just been released for professionals looking for solutions in Product Lifecycle Management : the PLM MarketPlace iPhone Application: Go and get it here for free

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On the road again, PLM shopping, consulting your customer?

With a few strokes of your fingers you can search and find PLM solutions from Dassault Systèmes partners, check technical data sheets, view online videos. You can connect to social communities to discuss and ask questions, request a quote for the selected solution.

The future is in your pocket. Check it out!

Best,
Michael

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Gentlemen, we have a plane! Big Frog.

By Richard

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A few months ago, we welcomed a project with the strange name of Big Frog in the Passion for Innovation program.  Big Frog is an audacious project to compete in the Reno Air Races with a diesel engine and yet win thanks to faster, greener aerospace design. 

For a limited time Big Frog itself is on display at Dassault Systèmes Campus.  Boy was everyone surprised Monday morning when they saw the splendid, shiny, black carbon aircraft on display! 

Yes, using our CATIA and SIMULIA solutions, the Big Frog team integrated the diesel SMA engine to this 100 percent composite racer and brought several betterments to the aircraft.  All these operations were conducted with the help of our experts.

We were delighted when the Big Frog team decided to display the aircraft at Dassault Systèmes to celebrate this important step on their road to Reno.   We’re proud to have this “Formula 1 with wings” on site!

It seems that Reno Air Races organizers have also understood that something special was cooking here. As a matter of  fact, Big Frog has just just been moved up from Sport Class to Super Sport Class, a development that has fired up the team with even greater enthusiasm.

There’s still much work and training to do before the race in September 2010.  Reno Air Races are introduced by the ritual sentence “Gentlemen, you have a race” issued from the pace aircraft. Today, we cas proudly say “Gentlemen, we have a plane!”

Best,

Richard

Zaha Hadid: Vision to Reality

By Michael

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What a passionate life and career.

I’m lucky to have crossed the path of Zaha Hadid early on her way to become one of today’s most acclaimed architects.

Back in the mid-1980’s at the architecture department at the University in Stuttgart, Germany she gave an evening lecture and showed us stunning pictures of her visionary building designs and sculptures. I was there attending the presentation to build my culture and compliment a scientific education I enjoyed during the day.

One of the projects Zaha Hadid presented was her first internationally celebrated work, the 1983 first prize winner with the design of “The Peak”. It’s a luxurious leisure club in Hongkong, where she was quoted referring to it as “architecture as a knife cutting through the site.”

We were all blown away from the boldness of her work – so extremely advanced that until then these projects remained unbuilt images and models, as nobody dared to construct them.

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Around 1993 my wife, who’s also an interior architect, brought me along to visit Madame Hadid’s first fully constructed building.

The furniture and design firm Vitra had engaged her to build a fire station as part of a museum and seminar center in Weil am Rhein, close to the country triangle Switzerland, France and Germany. It was so much fun to walk through the building and to experience spaces at extreme angles and curves. I recall that being inside this building lent a particular sentiment far different from the usual 90° feeling in a normal room. I was impressed.

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Thereafter I lost track of Zaha Hadid and – poufff – by 2004 she had become the first female recipient of the Pritzker prize and transitioned to an architectural celebrity.

And she is still producing those visionary designs which now are realized into totally impressive buildings – one after the other. Her approach to architecture has been described as the one of a painter who uses computers.

Zaha Hadid Architects (ZHA), her London-based firm, was founded in 1980 and now employs 300 professionals. Their challenge is immense: taking Mme Hadid’s ideas into a reality made of steel, glass, concrete and composite materials, while taking into account physics and engineering constraints, within the economic boundaries of timing, budget and quality control.

You might have seen the recent press announcement about ZHA extending the use of Digital Project (DP). ZHA is using a Building Information Management solution with CATIA as the core design engine from Dassault Systèmes’ partner Gehry Technologies.

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What started as just a trial software usage at ZHA (offered by her friend and fellow architect Frank Gehry) to let her team explore the possibilities of 3D design has concluded in their decision to rely on Digital Project as the system to help them managing their extremely complex projects. This includes capturing original designs with extreme curves and surfaces into the CATIA modeler, building 3D assemblies fit for manufacturing, and managing changes efficiently all the way from idea to delivery.

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Why is this exciting news?

I believe that ZHA’s commitment confirms the trend that after leading architectural powerhouses such as SOM (e.g. Al-Rajhi Bank Headquarters in Riyadh) and ARUP (e.g. Birds nest Olympic stadium in Beijing) started to rely on DP as an end-to-end solution to support architectural project delivery, now even the explicitly artistic representatives of their genre such as Zaha Hadid select it as master tool and trust it to capture their architectural vision to become reality. Is this the resolution of antagonism between art and technology for architecture?

What do you think is next?

Best,
Michael

P.S.1.: Discover Dassault Systemes Digital Project Solution

P.S.2.: From the many videos presenting Zaha Hadid’s projects I selected this one

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