I first earned my SolidWorks Professional certificate (CSWP) at SolidWorks World 2011. Attendees of SolidWorks World are able take the CSWP exam if they specify such when they register for the conference.
Between SolidWorks World 2011 and 2012, I joined the DS SolidWorks Corp on the Product Definition team. This is a busy job. There was quite a stretch before I attempted any of the advanced certification exams. There are several advanced exams, covering various areas of SolidWorks functionality. You need to pass any four of the five CSWP advanced certificates in order to qualify to take the Certified SolidWorks Expert exam.
My path to earning my CSWE
As shown in the above chart, I took most of my advanced exams this year: Mold Tools, Surfacing and Weldment, after having the Drawings Tool certification for awhile. I’m excited that I just earned my CSWE this week; a Christmas present to myself. Just in time for SOLIDWORKS World 2015 and its secret CSWE event. Jeff Mirisola wrote about his first CSWE event a couple years ago. This year will be my first, having missing out for two years.
Here’s my badges of honor:
Even though I’ve earned my CSWE, I may still attempt the final advanced exam for Sheet Metal at some point, plus any new exams that may come out eventually.
The number of CSWE’s worldwide is still less than 1950 as of today (December 22, 2014), according to the Certificate Virtual Tester database. Being a CSWE makes you stand out. As an employee of SOLIDWORKS, it shows that I have a thorough understanding of how to use the software that I help design. For users, it is a clear demonstration that you have excellent understanding of SOLIDWORKS and its various tools.
The General Session for Wednesday was as entertaining as ever. Most the details from Wednesday General Session have already been well covered by other blogs and online outlets. I’m going to focus on Bruce Holway’s presentation instead. It is important to me because he’s describing the his group (Product Definition of which I am apart) and past years SolidWorks World Top Ten enhancements list. He states that the vast majority of past year’s Top Ten have been implemented. He covers many of recent examples.
- Default to Concentric Mate when two selected faces are cylindrical
- Default to Parallel Mate when two selected faces have other geometry that prevent coincident mating
- Lock Option for Concentric Mates so that additional mates are not required to stop rotation of a cylindrical part
- Slot Mate
- Center of Mass reference geometry
- Fix Edge Bleed Thru display, where thin walled features sometimes displayed fragments of obscured features
- Don’t Delete Child Features, Dangle them Instead when deleting a parent feature
- eDrawings for Android
Also mentioned is the fact that we visit hundreds of customers each year at their sites to understand how they are using SolidWorks. This is extremely valuable in determining how we plan to improve our product offerings by giving us first hand experiences from our customers.
This year’s SolidWorks World Top Ten list:
- Auto-hide components
- Draw a line segment starting from the mid-point
- Equal spacing option for linear patterns
- Ability to rename a part or sub-assembly in the feature tree
- Unlimited undo/redo
- Pressing the ESC key should immediately stop the current calculation and return control to the user
- Fillets and chamfers should be managed by the same feature
- Ability to flip angle dimensions after they have been placed
- Hole callout should include all instances on the same face
- New Purge command
User Community and Beta Highlights from General Session
Tuesday General Sessions tends to focus on the user community. Richard Doyle has become a fixture on the big stage as he gives us the SolidWorks User Group Network updates. This year he announced the following awards.
- 2013 User Group of the Year is San Diego SolidWorks User Group, awarded to leaders Phil Sluder and Jim Boland
- 2013 Wayne Tiffany Group Leader of the Year is awarded to Jeff Holliday
- 2013 Michelle Pillers Community Award is awarded to Deepak Gupta
The SolidWorks Beta program for SolidWorks 2014 is the most successful yet. Here are this year’s winners for the program
- Bettina Walker, SolidWorks
- Yoshihiro Dobashi, Simulation
- Masanobu Higashino, EPDM
- Muneki Okano, Composer
- Michael Malov of SolidWorks Russia, SolidWorks
- Charley Saint of Hawkridge Systems, EPDM
- Andrey Aliamovsky of SolidWorks Russia, Simulation
- Ludmila Staroverova of SolidWorks Russia and Scott Woods of Hawkridge Systems, Composer
My Hands-on Presentation
I conducted my first Hands-on Session of this year’s conference on Tuesday evening, covering the topic of drawing views. This is a new presentation at SolidWorks World. Though the presentation is intended for beginners and novice users, by going through all of the view types, even experienced users learned something they have forgotten or missed before. Several attendees showed (by a raise of heads) they learned something new from several of the exercises throughout the presentation. I may expand the presentation to cover additional topics, such as the new Replace Model in SolidWorks 2014.
SolidWorks World 2014 is going strong. Sunday was a great time to catch up with old friends and meet a lot of new people. Many people are lucky enough to have joined the Bacon Brotherhood, including yours truly. For more details, see Twitter and search #baconbrotherhood.
This year’s SolidWorks World reached the record of 5600+ attendees on Monday! That is a new record, which is especially important since Monday (though technically Day 2) is really the first full day of the conference (often the number goes even higher by Tuesday).
The Monday General session was well reviewed by Brian McElyea of CAD Fanatic. Briefly, the morning was largely dedicated to SolidWorks Mechanical Conceptual (SWMC) with a great presentation by Aaron Kelly, VP of User Experience and Product Portfolio Management and Kishore Boyalakuntla, Director of User Experience and Product Portfolio Management. They demonstrated a case where customers and vendors can work collaboratively to quickly develop new mechanical concepts on a common CAD model using social interaction and advanced design software. Brian then notes,
Representatives of four of the lighthouse companies (TriAxial Design and Analysis, Kennedy Hygiene Products Limited, Karl W. Schmidt & Associates, and J.G. WEISSER SÖHNE GmbH & Co. KG) that have been using the product over the last few months were then brought out and gave their thoughts on the software.
“Lighthouse” is a term that refers to real customers who are earlier adopters by invitation. They get a preview of functionality while an application is near completion but before it is made available to everyone. Lighthouse customers use the application in their real world enterprise on actual projects, and provide important feedback for further improvements.
Additional news is SolidWorks Industrial Conceptual was announced with a brief teaser. This generated a lot of excitement.
For a preview of Tuesday, see Michael Lord’s photoblog.