3D CAD program for Linux - Survey Request

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3D CAD program for Linux - Survey Request

Postby mpa2 » Mon May 02, 2011 4:52 pm

Hello Everyone,

I'm new to the forums, though I've been using LinuxMint for about eight months now. For all you mechanical engineers out there who are using Solidworks, Inventor, Solidedge, etc., I just wanted to make you aware of a survey that I've set up to gauge interest for a similar program for Linux. (Mods, I hope this doesn't count as spam; if it does, please let me know. Also, if you think there is a better sub-forum for this post, please feel free to move it).

I've looked all over to try and find a good 3D mechanical design package, and the closest thing I've found is VariCAD, which uses an interface that is somewhat foreign to those of us trained in Solidworks and Inventor. That's not to say it's a bad program; it just requires learning another interface. For businesses that want to switch over to Linux desktop machines, the lack of a robust, mid-level 3D cad package with a familiar interface can be a major obstacle.

So here's the bottom line: I'm considering launching a company to develop a full-blown 3D mechanical design package for linux with an Inventor-like interface (using sketches, constraints, model tree, etc.), and having much of the same capability as Inventor or Solidworks. The survey is basically to judge interest and/or potential market size.

Unfortunately, it would not be an open-source program, as this would be a full-time gig for me and several other people, but the price to the user would be considerably less than what Solidworks or Inventor are going for.

Here is a link to the survey: http://kwiksurveys.com?u=linux3dcad
The password is linux3dcad

For privacy reasons, I've set it up so that I'm the only person that can view the results.

Please pass it on to anybody that you think would be interested. The more responses I receive, the more likely it is that I'll pursue the project.


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Re: 3D CAD program for Linux - Survey Request

Postby harrison » Wed May 11, 2011 10:34 am


Have you ever had a look at blender? I know it's more a 3-D modeler rather than a designer but it's pretty good from some of the art I have seen. plus you can texture it to see a general idea on how it will look post machining. It does have a bit of a wonky interface but you'll fall in love with it after a while. (I honestly though "yeah right" when i heard someone say that to me but trust me it's the best!)

As for your development why not Open Source it and let everyone develop it, that way the devs over at Solidworks and Inventor can't tell who to sue over copying there design/interface. That's why there isn't a Linux alternative that looks like a commercial project because the companys wouldn't think twice about trying to shut you down because they might lose business! It's a sad world I know but if you really feel like you want to do it go ahead, I'm not stopping you, but with popularity comes threats, (that's why there is a secret service in the US).


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Re: 3D CAD program for Linux - Survey Request

Postby sdibaja » Thu Jun 02, 2011 9:13 am

mpa2 wrote:<< snip >>
Here is a link to the survey: http://kwiksurveys.com?u=linux3dcad
The password is linux3dcad
<< snip >>

all I can get is this:
Error processing form. Please try again
Click here to return

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Re: 3D CAD program for Linux - Survey Request

Postby carol33 » Fri Aug 12, 2011 3:33 am

Three things to think about:

1) Free software users generally don't trust proprietary software and won't pay for it.

2) The hard part about CAD is reverse engineering dwg format. Only buy levitra online the solidworks folks have done it and they won't tell the secret. There are many half-built CAD programs for linux and none of them support dwg so it must be supremely difficult to reverse engineer.

3) Solidworks just recently released a free (as in gratis) 2D version of their program that runs on linux. It is called Draftsight and you can get it from their website. They are hoping people will pay for an upgrade to Solidworks.

So where does that leave you? You would have to one-up them somehow. Make a free 3D cad that is good enough for most linux users and then figure out some way to make money from it. It will have to be GPL and support dwg or no one will use it. Good luck.

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