AU2017 Technology Keynote – Data at the Center

AU2017 Technology Keynote – Data at the Center

I attended Autodesk University technology keynote yesterday. The keynote was led by Amy Bunszel and covered few interesting topics such as Autodesk agile customer development and support, technology strategy and many others.

Amy Bunszel, SVP Design and Creation Products, will reveal how the products you use every day are evolving to fit the way you work today and into the future. She’ll be joined by a few of your peers who’ll highlight their work with these solutions, providing inspiration for your own projects. You’ll leave understanding how Autodesk is approaching the Future of Work with product and platform innovations today.

The topic that caught my special attention was about “Data” or how Autodesk executives said many times – “Data at at center”. It was mentioned by Amy Bunszel at the beginning of the keynoted and repeated by Andrew Anagnost at the end

Here are few pictures I captured during the presentation. In a nutshell, Autodesk will make data travel and re-use much easy between applications – Fusion360, Autodesk Inventor, Revit and others:

It will not only improve data communication between Autodesk products, but also will improve re-use of data coming from competitors’ products such as Solidworks, CATIA, Creo, NX and others.

It is not absolutely clear how data will travel between other business applications provided by Autodesk. However, it is something that I found resonating with the topic I previously discussed in some of my articles such as PLM overlays here and here. Even Autodesk is not speaking about overlaying other applications, by focusing on data, the focus is clearly how to make data flowing between applications. The data duplication is not clear in such case. Will data be copied between apps or linked. It wasn’t clear.

What is my conclusion? Our world is very much data oriented these days. The data is more important then software. Data, not the software, at the center of customers’ design. Data lifecycle is much longer and customers are focusing on data first. For most of companies, the insure data is preserved and available even applications are changing and replacing is first priority. It looks like Autodesk is getting it right by placing data at the center. However, the devil is in details. And how it will be done can impact application of solutions for customers. Just my thoughts…

Best, Oleg

Want to learn more about PLM? Check out my new PLM Book website.

Disclaimer: I’m co-founder and CEO of OpenBOM developing cloud based bill of materials and inventory management tool for manufacturing companies, hardware startups and supply chain. My opinion can be unintentionally biased.



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  • Robert Ferrone

    Hi Oleg. I would go one step further and say that people should be at the centre. Yes we need to be able to communicate across systems/teams/ and yes data (and the data carrying systems) enable that to happen right now. System agnostic is definitely a step in the right direction but until the world of PLM become people-centric we’ll all continue to be slaves to satisfying the needs of systems rather than the systems working for us.

  • Mustafa Salaheldin

    Can you please post the Technology keynotes of AU 2017 with the introduction video?

  • beyondplm

    I don’t have video recorded. But Autodesk usually post videos some times later. I will keep an eye on it. You can also try to search #AU2017 hashtag on twitter, there is a possibility somebody already posted.

  • beyondplm

    Autodesk was talking about “automation” and “data at the center”. I think, the point about people was clearly made by Andrew saying that we will experience scarce of skills. I think, it means some of these data / automation software will redefine the role of people. Can we say it means to put people in the center? Yes, I think we can… But this is just my opinion, as always :). Thanks for your comments!. Best, Oleg