Wow, where did 2012 go? Months flew past like weeks and now it’s nearly is 2013*. Time to look back at the past year from a (not just CAD) blog perspective:
Best Blog Event:
Usually it is Autodesk University but I didn’t get there this year. However, I did see some of it on-line. It was a bit strange to watch the keynote, on the netbook, in bed at about 05:00am NZ time! I enjoyed the virtual event, enhanced by the live Twitter stream which accompanied it, but it wasn’t quite like being there!
Although I haven’t blogged about it much I think a new Meetup group also deserves a mention. EPIC is a local initiative to create a true cross platform, multi discipline forum for model based design collaboration. The impetus for EPIC was improving how 3D design data is created, used and shared between all the participants of a project. Although it grew out of experience, OK maybe frustration, with AEC industry projects that is not the only audience. EPIC events to date have seen participation from the design, fabrication, construction and education disciplines.
We get together to see actual demonstrations of how software interacts, and have real discussions about the pros and cons. All findings are publicly available, and everyone involved in this industry is welcome to participate.
Also see EPIC on LinkedIn
A post about Mindjet’s lousy handling of a change to its business model attracted the most comment this year. It was good to see Mindjet reacted (not because of my post I must add) with a revised offer a few weeks later. I’m not sure if part of that was due to the power of social media but one comment on my personal blog demonstrated this and was my favourite.
Back in February I heard a podcast interview from Radio Australia with Fairlight synthesizer inventor Peter Vogel (and Thomas Dolby). I wrote a post reminiscing how I first learnt about the Fairlight, and heard it on demo cassette, via an 80s Aussie science/fiction magazine. I was amazed when Peter found my post and commented on it offering links to the audio I had first heard decades before.
An old media memory made a new media connection.
I suspect my US readers know of Radiolab already but I was introduced to it by ‘Capt. Toast’ from Skeptics in the Pub. I love both the content and its unique presentation. Visit the website for subscription info or have a listen to the latest episode below.
Radiolab is a show about curiosity. Where sound illuminates ideas, and the boundaries blur between science, philosophy, and human experience.
I doubt Lynn Allen would have ever known I existed without this whole bloggie thing. Back in May I was delighted to get an invitation to dine with her in Auckland.
I was amused, given she was in NZ for the Autodesk 2013 and 360 Cloud launch, to see Berries with Vanilla Cloud on the dessert menu! It was part of their regular offer, not something Lynn had conjured up!
Having spent the day working on “cloud” presentations she decided it was just one cloud too many but I had to try it.
The verdict, Heavenly!
As seems usual March was busiest on the CAD Blog. It used to be annual Autodesk launch posts which drove this but for me that spread over several months. I was on holiday (cycling in Northland) so missed the international launch in March and the the NZ launches were in May. February was busiest on the Personal Blog, for some reason, due to an old Fiat X1/9 post.
Work and personal commitments meant fewer posts from me this year (~10/month vs. ~14 last year on both blogs). I have plenty of drafts and topics to cover in 2013 so just have to find the time!
Best Blog Tool:
I didn’t really change how I blog, hardware or software wise, this year so no radical new tools. One utility which was useful is VirtualBox from Oracle. Its a free virtual machine which allowed me, with some great tips from Ralph Grabowski, to try the previews of Windows 8 without needing a spare machine. Odd that it could do this better than Microsoft’s own virtual machine platform.
I have reserved my verdict on Windows 8 until I try it on real hardware and am contemplating upgrading my home PC over the New Year break. There is a discount, currently, offered till Jan 31 for on-line upgrades so it is worth considering before then.
“Doh!” of the year:
Nothing dramatic other than getting quite excited about two products only to find they would not be available in New Zealand. Hopefully this will change in 2013!
- Revit LT: First got my attention when Autodesk Labs Project Spark arrived. New Zealand has a large AutoCAD LT user base and it seemed Spark offered a path to BIM for AEC focused LT users. Although disregarded by many “full Revit” users I think it offered most the tools a lonely BIM’er needed to join the Revit’lution.
When Spark launched as Revit LT it was not offered in APAC! This is quite common for new Autodesk platforms, we rarely see V1 of anything, but LT is hardly that being based on the established Revit platform.
- Microsoft Surface: Although the RT version has got mixed reviews I think the Pro Surface and similar tablet/ultrabook combos will be the new default mobile computer form factor for those needing more than ARM processors.
Microsoft NZ have yet to launch Surface here although a few ‘parallel import’ units have been seen.
They are not alone as the established Wintel hardware manufacturers have been slow off the mark too. Finding touch enabled Windows 8 hardware, of any form factor, at retail has been a bit of a challenge.
Happy New Year!
Thanks for visiting, reading and coming back. Lets see what 2013 brings!
* OK, so it took a few hours longer than I expected to get this on-line!