SWW12 Attendee -> Press -> Presenter -> Employee

The first SolidWorks World that I attended was 2008 in San Diego, as an attendee.  My schedule was full of breakout and hands-on sessions, from which I learned a lot.  I also remember attending focus groups, the beautiful San Diego days, seeing lots of cool stuff at the Partner Pavilion, fun at special event in the Gaslamp District, the free iPod (still using from time to time), General Sessions, and meeting a lot of new friends.

For SolidWorks World 2009, something strange happened.  When you are a regular blogger of SolidWorks and CAD related topics, there’s a chance you’ll be invited to come to SolidWorks World as Press.  You don’t get “press credentials” or anything.  You simply get a badge that says “Press” and the right to go just about anywhere at any time in the conference.  This happened to me.

Being Press at the conference was somewhat surreal in 2009, 2010, and 2011.  The experience is completely different.  I never had time to attend more than a couple of breakout and hands-on sessions.  Instead, my time was spent at news conferences, interviewing important SolidWorks employees, quickly meeting special keynote speakers (Gene Kranz [smart guy], James Cameron [loved the campy Dark Angel show], Dr. Mike North [so sad his show got cancelled]), actually blogging, visiting historical locations, press events and other socializing.

At SolidWorks World 2011, I did double duty as a presenter.  Presenting a breakout session isn’t as hard as it might seem.  Being a great presenter isn’t the expectation that most people have of you.  Knowing your material is most important.  Being a presenter also gives you a new and unique experience at the conference, though arguably attending as Press is the most unique of all for people who are not employed by SolidWorks.

Well, this last year, something else strange happened.  I was hired as a SolidWorks employee and started my job in June.  Not only that, but my position has a significant number of responsibilities at SolidWorld World.  So, this year, I’ll be attending SolidWorks World 2012 as a working employee of SolidWorks.  Yet again, this will afford me the opportunity to see SolidWorks World from a completely different perspective.  To complete the circle, the conference is again in San Diego.

I’ve gone from presenting one breakout session to now presenting 3 sessions (1 breakout, 2 hands-on).  As if I wasn’t social before, I’ve got to be even more so now, talking to as many customers as possible, I’ll be running two focus groups, conducting product tests, and other behind the scenes tasks.

Unlike Mike Puckett, who has had a similar experience with changing rolls at SolidWorks World, I will not be presenting on the main stage during the General Session.  However, I will have a chance to see the response to my changes to SolidWorks by attendees during the What’s New for 2013 presentation.

If you are attending SolidWorks World 2012, try to find me.  My cell is 40…hmmm, yeah, just try to find me instead.  I’ll be looking for you to talk to! 🙂

Name in lights (or ginormous LCD)

As mentioned within a previous article, Jeff Ray quoted one of my comments about SolidWorks 2010.  He has been using this quote and others by other bloggers for a few months.  It was an honor to have my particular quote appear at SolidWorks World 2010 on the big screen.

Jeff Ray quoting

I was kinda bummed though.  I didn’t have the camera on my phone ready to take a photo, nor did I think about taking a photo until it was too late.  Well, even if I had been able to take the photo, it wouldn’t have been that good.  Several of us bloggers where sitting in the front row, too close to get Ray and the quote in the same frame.

Yesterday, I put out a call on Twitter to see if anyone had taken a photo of the quote.  Gabi Jack almost immediately tweeted that she might have one.  Within 15 minutes, she send over a picture of my name in lights next to Ray.  Thank you, Jack.

Matt Lorono name in lights

Ray stated the quote during the Monday General Session.  This can actually be seen on the video of the Monday General Session (@ minute 47:35) available at their website here.

SolidWorks World 2010 Presentations are now available online

SolidWorks World 2010 presentations are now available online via the SolidWorks World website.  Details about every presentation can be found there.  Videos are available for many of the sessions.  Where videos do not exist, the PowerPoint presentations are usually available for download.  Anyone can view the basic presentation descriptions.  Viewing of the videos or downloading of the PowerPoint presentations requires the visitor to sign in through the customer portal.  Browsing the presentations may be done with four tabs: Presenter, Title, Category, and Weekday.  If you are interested in just videos, there’s an option to filter for those.  There is no search function, though that isn’t needed as far as I can tell so far.  I’ve been able to find sessions fairly quickly.  Also, fortunately, the SolidWorks World 2009 presentations are still available.

At this website, there’s also a SolidWorks blog portal, photos from SolidWorks World 2010, Partner Pavilion information, a convention highlight video.  Have fun exploring:

SolidWorks World 2010 presentations

It should be noted (disclaimer)

As noted in my FTC 16 CRF Part 255 notice on the sidebar of this website, the authors who contribute to this site are sometimes included in events where DS SolidWorks Corp. pays for expenses (such as conference passes or accommodations).  We receive no payments (quid pro quo or otherwise) for any content of this website.  In the case of SolidWorks World 2010, I (Matthew Lorono) received a Press Pass (which gives me access to most areas of Conference, including meals) and hotel accommodations, which allowed me to cover this event.  However, it should be noted that I did not receive compensation for all of my normal experiences.  Chris Saller, who also wrote about SolidWorks World 2010, did not receive anything directly from SolidWorks Corp., and only attended with a Guest Pass that he procured via a third party on his own.  Each contributor is solely responsible for the content they add; at no time are we obliged to others for that content.

I did forget to add this information as a reminder during the SolidWorks World 2010 event this year.  These types of notices are something that are now being enforced per FTC 16 CRF Part 255.  This type of notice will now be integral to any blog postings where disclosure is necessary.  As my long time readers may know, I am a believer in disclosure and I attempt to be almost painfully forthright about these kinds of details.

SolidWorks World 2010 short photo log

Photos really don’t do SolidWorks World justice.  As James Cameron said last week, “I believe in the physical present of the observer”.  Well, that doesn’t stop us “observers” from providing photos of our experiences.

Dassault Systemes and SolidWorks leaders
These are Dassault Systemes and SolidWorks leaders having their moment and taking some heat at the press conference following Wednesday's General Session announcements about the company's new cloud computing approach.
Alex and his new friend
Alex and his new friend
Some late evening good times
Some late evening good times
ESPN Disneyland Downtown
ESPN Disneyland Downtown
Infinite Z showing off their new toy
Infinite Z showing off their new toy
Dr. Mike North, Alex and I at the CSWP event
Dr. Mike North, Alex and I at the CSWP event
Solido proud of their new 3D plotter rapid prototyping device
Solido proud of their new 3D plotter rapid prototyping device

SolidWorks World 2010: other (non-cloud) annoucements

General Session audience
General Session audience

With all the news and promotion of SolidWorks, Enovia and cloud computing, some other announcements might’ve gotten lost in the background.


SolidWorks World 2010 had a higher than expected attendance of over 5000 people.  This despite a cut of the number of SolidWorks employees who attended.

Certified users

There are now over 25,000 certified SolidWorks users.  This includes both Certified SolidWorks Associates (CSWA) and Certified SolidWorks Professionals (CSWP).

The new weldment exam was promoted.  Additionally, a new level of achievement was announced, called Certified SolidWorks Expert (CSWE).  This new certification level will require several other advanced certifications before being eligible to earn this recognition. More information about this exam may be found at its new webpage.SWR415_th_bottle

Shop online

Another interesting announcement was that of a new online SolidWorks store.  There’s not a whole lot of stuff there right now.  It’s still worth at least a look.


A comment about SolidWorks 2010 made by some guy named Matt Lorono was quoted by Jeff Ray during the General Session on Monday.

There’s something different about SolidWorks 2010.  It’s hard to put my finger on it.  It just seems to be a little …oh I don’t know… snappier or peppier.

Profiled companies

Because so much time was spent talking about cloud computing, there was less focus on customer success stories this year.  Skyventure, Cummfy Banana, Infinite Z, and Canon Mixed Reality where all profiled.  All of them are very interesting, if not outright entertaining.

SWUGN Awards

  • User Group of the Year – New Hampshire SolidWorks User Group, award accepted by their leader, Cindy Berend
  • User Group Leader of the Year – Anne Yust, leader of Twin Cities Simulation User Group
  • SWUGN Lifetime Achievement Award – Rodney Hall, of Catawba Valley SolidWorks User Group