TEC Talk Boston 2015 –  hardware, makers, IoT and future CAD platforms

TEC Talk Boston 2015 –  hardware, makers, IoT and future CAD platforms


I attended TEC Talk Boston organized by TechSoft3D. The event is invitation only. Here is how Ron Fritz, CEO of TechSoft3D explained what is TEC Talk in his blog from a previous event in Boston back in 2013. His blog article TEC Talk the second hottest event in Boston is here:

First, what the heck is TEC Talk? No, it’s not really about technology and it’s not a take on TED Talks. Well, maybe just a little bit of a riff on TED Talks…..TEC Talk is a gathering of leaders in the engineering software industry – ranging from retired company founders who “cashed out,” major company CEOs and senior leaders, young heads of well-funded start-ups and a sprinkling of industry investors.

Yesterday event lined up an outstanding list of presenters from Autodesk, Dragon Innovation, MIT and Onshape. It was very inspirational, so I decided to share few bits of presentations as well as couple of comments that caught my special attention.


Scott Borduin, Manufacturing group CTO talked about the intersection of hardware creators with cloud, mobile and social technologies. All together it creates a complete new environment to manufacturing products.



Dragon Innovation

Thos Niles, COO of Boston based Dragon Innovation shared experience of scaling manufacturing from a prototype to mass production. Dragon Innovation is providing consulting to hardware startups related to DFM (design to manufacturing) and contract manufacturing selection in China.



MIT Bits and Atoms Lab

Absolutely mind blowing presentation by Prof. Neil Gershenfeld – Director of MIT Bits and Atoms. He talked about FAB Labs, Kicstarters for hardware projects, new digital manufacturing methods, CAD research projects and future of digital production. A very interesting perspective of future production in a way of “sending data” that will be “materialized” or 3D printed (not sure this a right terminology to use in this context, since it will be micro-assembled to get a final product)





Jon Hirschtick, founder of Onshape, new full-cloud CAD tool talked about platform shift to cloud, web and mobile. In a nutshell, Onshape is doing two things: (1) moving CAD system into browser and (2) solving a huge mess of PDM CAD file data management. The future of CAD applications belong to browser based integrated applications seamlessly managing data and integrating partner apps.




What is my conclusion? The things are going to change. It is confirmed by large software vendors, startup and academia. The ways we will manufacturing products tomorrow will be different and transition already started. It will require new type of tools – in CAD, PDM, PLM and related disciplines. And there is a tremendous opportunity to leverage cloud computing, open source, data management for that. Just my thoughts…

Best, Oleg

Picture credit: A custom-built milling machine at the Center for Bits and Atoms at MIT. (Jamie Bologna/WBUR)


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