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The High End: What is it?

I mentioned before that these two industries are different. In fact, I believe that they are, in the final analysis, more different than they are similar. An understanding of these differences will lead to a deeper appreciation of what approach we should take to displacing the turnkey vendors. In the following few pages, I will provide an in-depth discussion of the world of high-end CAD/CAM. My purpose is not to honor it, but to show how different are the fundamental factors which influence it, both from within the turnkey companies themselves, and the companies and individuals which buy and use

When l refer to ``desktop CAD,'' I am of course referring to products such as AutoCAD; products which were first offered on desktop machines, and which gradually evolved into what they have become today. I am not referring to transplanted technology.

By turnkey CAD, I refer to products variously termed `high-end'' or ``full-function'' CAD/CAM/CAE/CIM/... products which contain a wide range of applications bundled within them, often packaged with a workstation and priced as a single unit. These are generally still big ticket items, and the companies which produce them are limited in their business outlook by the ``traditional'' view of CAD/CAM.

Editor: John Walker