Cadalyst

CAD Tech News (#38)

31 Mar, 2016 By: Cadalyst Staff


▶ Viewpoint: The Future of CAD Graphics

The industry veterans heading Jon Peddie Research weigh in on the relationship between CAD software and graphics hardware, integrated and discrete options, and the role of the cloud.

By Cyrena Respini-Irwin

Jon Peddie Research (JPR) is a name familiar to many who work with computer graphics hardware or software. The marketing and consulting firm publishes reports on the CAD, graphics hardware, and gaming markets, as well as the GraphicSpeak site for CAD and digital content creation professionals.

JPR President Jon Peddie and Vice-President Kathleen Maher have more than a half-century of computer graphics experience between them, giving the duo a rare perspective on the history of the technology — and its likely future.

Old Code Meets Bold Hardware

“When you talk about basic CAD, you’re just drawing lines, which is the simplest thing in the world for a computer,” said Peddie. The real complexity of CAD lies instead in the database management and attributes associated with the drawing. The addition of a third axis makes 3D modeling a bit more difficult than 2D, but most modeling processes do not involve parallel operations, which is where the power GPUs really shine. Tasks such as rendering, simulation, and analysis can take advantage of GPUs.

“People need graphics processors if their workload includes rendering, analysis, database processing, encryption, data conversion, etc., and their software has been optimized to take advantage of graphics processing units (GPUs),” said Maher. “A look at the machine requirements for your software will tell you if your system workflow will be improved by the addition of a GPU.”

Some CAD users believe that their graphics hardware is the bottleneck in their graphics workflow — but the reality is that their software can’t fully exploit the hardware’s capabilities, because programs have to be substantially rewritten to be threaded and take advantage of multiple CPU and/or GPU cores. “It’s kind of a dirty little secret that the software companies have not taken more advantage of multi-core processing to take advantage of new processor architectures,” said Maher. Read more »

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Cyrena Respini-Irwin is Cadalyst's editor in chief.

▶ IMAGINiT Tricks Tutorial: Use AnyCAD to Import Files into Autodesk Inventor

Autodesk Inventor 2016 introduced a new CAD interoperability solution: AnyCAD. Learn how you can use this feature to collaborate with users of various CAD applications.

By Imran Bhutta

IMAGINiT Tricks Tutorial: Use AnyCAD to Import Files into Autodesk Inventor

Read more »

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Imran Bhutta is a manufacturing solutions consultant IMAGINiT Technologies.

▶ WHAT’S NEW


AutoCAD Video Tips: Customize the AutoCAD Status Bar
Is your AutoCAD Status Bar set up to work the way you work? Or have you chosen to leave it in its default state? See how easy it is to personalize the status bar for maximum productivity. Watch the video »

Autodesk Releases AutoCAD and AutoCAD LT 2017
New release includes PDF import tools and bundles AutoCAD 360 Pro mobile app with AutoCAD. Read more »

Herrera on Hardware: Will AMD Challenge Intel's Dominance in CAD Workstation CPUs?
In the CAD workstation market, Intel is the undisputed processor provider — but an opportunity may be opening for AMD to re-enter the arena. Read more »


About the Author: Cadalyst Staff

Cadalyst Staff

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