Autodesk looks at cloud and mobile as future of AEC design tools

Autodesk announced its 2013 product suites in San Francisco last week. While the biggest change was that all three versions of Revit will now be available to subscribers who purchase the premium and ultimate editions of Autodesk's Building Design and Infrastructure Suites, there were some significant enhancements to the programs in those suites as well. Autodesk's senior executives also laid out their strategy for expansion in the increasingly segmented computing market.


Jeff YodersAutodesk announced its 2013 product suites in San Francisco last week. While the biggest change was that all three versions of Revit will now be available to subscribers who purchase the premium and ultimate editions of Autodesk's Building Design and Infrastructure Suites, there were some significant enhancements to the programs in those suites as well. Autodesk's senior executives also laid out their strategy for expansion in the increasingly segmented computing market.

CEO Carl Bass reminded the assembled media thatt he and the senior management at Autodesk have been preparing for the disruptive change of mobile devices and cloud computing since 2010.

"The computing platform is becoming one of social, cloud and mobile," Bass said. "This is much bigger than the shift from DOS to PCs. This the biggest thing we've seen since the shift from mainframes to workstations. Mobile and cloud bring possibilities to solve customer problems that did not exist before. The things we’re doing in our personal lives are setting expectations for what we do in our professional lives."

Autodesk's revenue actually grew by 14% in fiscal year 2012. “Mid-teen results in not-so-fantastic times,” Bass said.  He also noted that 75% of Autodesk's customers come from outside the US and that the company's diversity  (makes AEC, manufacturing and media/entertainment software) makes Autodesk results a good barometer of the global economy.

Bass credited Autodesk's new software suites, which went on sale in Spring of 2011, for the 24% increase in deals over $1 million in 2012. The additions to the suites this year for the building design and infrastructure markets make them even a bit more attractive.

Autodesk CEO Carl Bass reminds us that Autodesk CTO Jeff Kowalski told us all about mobile, cloud

and social platforms waaaaaay back in 2010.

Autodesk BIM for Civil Infrastructure Suite

In the infrastructure suite, AutoCAD Raster Design 2013  has been added to all three editions of the suite and Autodesk Infrastructure Modeler 2013 has been added to the premium and ultimate editions of the suite. AutoCAD Utility Design 2013 and Autodesk Revit Structure 2013 have been added to the high-end ultimate edition fo the suite. The versions of Navisworks in those suites also now have 5D simulation as well.

Autodesk Map 3D 2013 in introducing the use of linear referencing systems in this version. Customers can now manage data in their native workflows with the new referencing capabilities.

Using new functionality in Autodesk Infrastructure Modeler, customers can automatically export from Autodesk Civil 3D to infrastructure modeler. One worfkflow that this allows is taking an infrastructure project modeled in Infrastructure Modeler to Autodesk Civil 3D to create a presentation using 3ds Max Civil View (formerly dynamite VSP) and push it back into infrastructure modeler to finish it, all with accurate design information throughout.

Native Revit Support has been added to all versions of Autodesk Navisworks, as well, further tying Autodesk's design and design review products together.

Autodesk BIM for Building Design

Autodesk Revit 2013 is a new application exclusively available in the premium and ultimate editions of the Autodesk Building Suite that combines the capabilities in Autodesk Revit Architecture 2013, Autodesk Revit Structure 2013 and Autodesk Revit MEP 2013 software in a single, comprehensive application to help users support multidiscipline workflows.

Autodesk Infrastructure Modeler 2013 and Autodesk Robot Structural Analysis Professional 2013 have also been added to the ultimate version of the Building Design Suite.

The new suites are available to current subscribers and the new versions of individual products will be released this Spring. To become a subscriber visit www.autodesk.com/purchaseoptions.

Cory Dippold, an associate at Hatch Mott MacDonald, explains how Navisworks was used on a major

water treatment project at the Autodesk Media Summit in San Francisco.