CAD Data Management, Globalization, Cloud Services and Amazon S3?

I’d like to figure out several trends – CAD Data Management, Globalization and Cloud Storage Services.


Trend: CAD vendors are investing into development of data management satellites. Most of this data management packages are focusing on managing metadata around CAD documents as well their revisions. I can see definitely situation where each CAD manufacturer will have best in class data management tool dedicated for their CAD solution. In the end, these data management packages becomes standard add-in for CAD, allows to manage revision and share CAD files between designers.


Trend: Cloud computing is ramping up and we can see reliable and very attractive from economical standpoint cloud storage services. One of the examples is Amazon S3. This services can be used for backup solutions as well virtual storages.


Imaging CAD-Save/Open command allows you to store files directly on cloud. It will resolve problem of global teams looking how to make design data available everywhere in global company. Such ‘global file vault’ can be used by data management packages focused on management of metadata and file revisions. Since cloud storage have efficient business model allow you to pay only for traffic cost of such solutions can be compared to globally established WANs. 


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  • I am no expert on S3 and the concepts of cloud storage, but is intellectual property security at risk in the scenario you describe? Inherent to the cloud storage concept is the notion that you do not control the storage location. Although your data would not likely be at risk from casual inspection, it seems like committed IP thieves would find you data more accessible in a cloud than in proprietary/localized storage. Perhaps encryption is a sufficient enough answer to this, but I wonder if it would be.

    On the topic of trends, I’d like to look at another possible outcome from the first trend you mentioned. In the same way that leading PLM vendors have had success with multi-CAD PDM integrations, will vendors have good success in the future with multi-PDM integrations. In other words, instead of integrating to CAD, will SAP and other enterprise software players (Oracle, SharePoint, Documentum, etc.) choose to create integrations to PDMWorks, Vault, Insight, and Intralink?

  • On S3 and Cloud Services: it will take time, I agree, there are 3 top issues with cloud service and SaaS in general – security, reliability and liability :). But, I believe technology will take over. Like most of us don’t worry when put cc number on web (until https:// prefix is there), you will feel safe with your CAD models in the future. I think first will take this option individuals (like architects and constructors) and SMB companies. For them cost and IT is critical. As soon as they will have good answers on 3 top issues they will come.

  • On “integration topic”: This is actually complex one. Integration technologies today still like space shuttle programs – very expensive. Until breakthrough technologies will come it will continue to be in the hands of “services”. I will try to address this topic in the future blogs…. oleg.

  • Jonathan, you can see more examples of Amazon S3 or EC2 in this blog note –

  • Joseph Jebasingh

    Can you explain how plm working
    how the datas are store in a particular location or server? pls

  • Joseph, PLM (as any other system) can put set of data (blob or whatever else) on Amazon S3 storage. Similar systems today for backup successfully manage your storage on S3. Amazon have multiple data services tuned for archives of large data sets (i.e. video, can be also used for CAD data) as well as transactional data sets.

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