Connecting dots between 3DEXPERIENCE, Zero Files and Solidworks Xdesign

Connecting dots between 3DEXPERIENCE, Zero Files and Solidworks Xdesign

I’m slowly digesting news from Solidworks World 2016, which took place last week. You can take a look on some of my earlier notes here. For the first time after 2010, Solidworks introduced browser based development work – Solidworks Xdesign based on 3DEXPERIENCE platform. I captured the following napkin chart made by Josh Mings of SolidSmack.


What caught my special attention is a combination of File-based paradigm of Solidworks Connected applications, browser-based Xdesign online and 3DEXPERIENCE platform. Based on my previous understanding, one of the differentiation factors of 3DEXPERIENCE platform is to shift away from painful file based experience into data drive future without files. More about it later in my blog.

Solidworks Xdesign is based on 3DEXPERIENCE Xdrive

Based on the slides I captured, 3DEXPERIENCE Xdrive is a data management paradigm used by Xdesign application and other (maybe new Solidworks eDrawing app in a browser). You can see it below – customer is running into hierarchy of files from Dropbox or 3DEXPEREINCE Xdrive.

3DEXPERIENCE Xdrive is file-based



3DEXPERIENCE Xdesign app together with other zero-file based app



I captured the information about 3DEXPERIENCE Zero-file from few online presentations and videos provided by ENOVIA. You can see one of them here – Data-driven Architecture and Target Zero Files with ENOVIA. In this video, Jeff Cloud – Bell Helicopter, Jeff Erno – GE Power & Water, and Jim Brown – Tech Clarity are discussing how adopting a data-driven architecture and zero files approach can improve product development, quality and time to market. Few slides that related to this discussion can be captured here. Another source of information – Dassault 3D Perspective blog – The power of Zero.


3DEXPERIENCE and File-based strategy


History and evolution of 3DEXPERIENCE platform


File and Data driven architecture co-existence?

Cloud is transforming existing data management paradigm. One of them is usage of files in design and engineering applications. File management is a core PDM challenge for the last 15-20 years. The need to design and use data on all platforms (desktop, web, mobile) is driving force to make a change and go beyond file-management paradigm. You can read one of my blogs about it here.

Initially, I thought 3DEXPERIENCE is all about to move from file-based architecture to data-driven architecture. It makes sense and it was long term goal announcement by Dasault Systems back at the time of building CATIA and ENOVIA V6 architecture. Read one of my old blogs here. However, it seems like Solidworks browser-based developing is transforming some of fundamental roots of 3DEXPERIENCE.

What is my conclusion? It is hard to jump from desktop file-driven to cloud-based environment. My hunch, we are going to see many examples of companies and technologies going through this transformation process in the next few years. Dassault’s 3DEXPERIENCE and Solidworks Xdesign are examples of newer platform(s) that experience challenges of transformation. Will Dassault Systemes connect dots between existing Solidworks customers, browser-based Xdesign experience and 3DEXPERIENCE platform powered by MatrixOne platform is a good question to ask. Just my thoughts…

Best, Oleg

Photos credit: Enovia, Solidworks World 2016 and SolidSmack 


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