New Autodesk Releases for 2018

There’s exciting news in the Autodesk world if you regularly use their products, including AutoCAD and Inventor. The 2018 Autodesk updates to both products have been released from beta and are available to the public. Both AutoCAD 2018 and Autodesk Inventor 2018 contain user-enhancement upgrades and performance improvements that can advance your workflow.

Whether you’re an architect, engineer, project manager, graphic designer, or you work in another profession, these updates to AutoCAD and Inventor will help you achieve your goals more easily.

What’s New in AutoCAD 2018?

AutoCAD 2018 is the best version of the software Autodesk has created. It includes many major performance improvements, along with some necessary changes to the DWG file format. It’s now even easier to import PDFs into AutoCAD 2018. Autodesk has improved external reference file paths, making it easier to correct damaged paths and specify the correct path. Autodesk now supports high-resolution (4K) monitors in full resolution, allowing you to see your creations in the clearest way possible.

With all the improvements to object selection, text to mtext conversions, user interface, sharing, the AutoCAD mobile app, AutoCAD 2018 is one of the most comprehensive overhauls in recent years. Learn more about the advancements in AutoCAD 2018 on Autodesk’s website.

What’s New in Inventor 2018?

Inventor is the perfect tool to make your inventions come to life. Whatever you’re designing, Inventor’s 2018 updates will improve your workflow. Including under-the-hood updates and advancements to performance, Inventor 2018 offers a new measure tool, 3D annotations, ANYCAD for Inventor, and much more. Inventor 2018 also adds model-based 3D definitions, Top Inventor Ideas, all with improved performance to help you get your work done faster and better.

Take Your Autodesk Software Workflows to the Limit with BOXX Today

If you want a new powerful workstation to run the latest Autodesk software optimally, consider a custom BOXX machine. We also offer mobile workstations that provide the performance you need in a portable package. Run AutoCAD and Inventor on the go while you’re on the job and use the AutoCAD mobile app on your phone or tablet, for convenience.

A BOXX mobile workstation or desktop will optimize your Autodesk’s 2018 software workflows and reduce bottlenecks. Contact us today so we can help customize one to suit your specific use case.

SolidWorks 2017 comes with new tricks and new options

The latest SolidWorks has a little something for everybody, but mostly CEO Gian Paolo Bassi works hard to keep everyone happy.

bassi_sw17-300x225Dassault Systèmes rolled out the latest version of SolidWorks with a live stream and event for users, press, and analysts. Clued-in users were not surprised by much in the announcement, since SolidWorks has been walking their base through the changes to come for some time. In general CAD users hate big surprises.

But, whether they like it or not big waves of change have been transforming the CAD industry for the last five years. And, during times of change loyalties may shift. The users are up for grabs especially because CAD is becoming integrated into production and encompasses more functions than ever before. If the CAD model is to truly be the digital twin of the products it is describing, it has to have information about all aspects of the design.

SolidWorks claims more than 3.1 million users, which includes education. Dassault Systèmes is also claiming around 3 million registered users for its DraftSight drafting tool, which they now say is getting a user base of its own and not just as an alternative to AutoCAD.

As for SolidWorks itself, the company has, as always, focused on usability with more little tweaks to features like context-aware tool tips, improvements to breadcrumbs, and alerts for problems in the models that highlight the actual problem so users can go straight in and fix it. It has enhanced support for large assemblies, magnetic mates and improved tools for chamfers, fillets, and holes.

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On Site and On Target

With BIM on the rebound, Phil Simon of SB Ballard swears by his GoBOXX mobile workstation

By John Vondrak

“You know what would really be useful is a BOXX notebook, something like an iPad, but interoperable with Autodesk, displaying models and working with 360. It would obviously have less capability, but to do what a field machine does as well as this laptop does. . .that would be something, “ says Phil Simon, as he muses on the ideal “field portable machine.” For the time being, however, he’ll have to settle for that “laptop” he refers to (and greatly admires), his GoBOXX 2725 mobile workstation.  Philip K. Simon is the virtual construction manager for SB Ballard, the Virginia-based construction company that provides pre-construction services, general contracting, construction management, design build and concrete contracting services to an impressive list of clients throughout the mid-Atlantic and southeastern United States. From healthcare, government, and education industries to arts, entertainment and sports, SB Ballard has grown to become one of the largest general contractors in Virginia.


A veteran of the United States Army, Simon served as a plans officer, diagramming planning, coordinating relations, and the like. Upon his honorable discharge, Simon labored in the trades as a carpenter, heavy equipment operator, and pipe layer, steadily working his way through the ranks until he became the chief operating officer for a Colorado civil construction company focused on land development. When he relocated to Virginia, he began his career with SB Ballard first as a quality control manger, then as a project manager. After awhile though, he requested a move to project controls, which evolved into BIM. “I don’t really see scheduling and other controls as anything different,” he says. “They’re all part of the same process.”

Twenty-five years ago, Simon took college courses at night “just to keep myself entertained,” he says, and when he saw Autodesk AutoCAD in the university bookstore for only $200, he bought it and taught himself to use it. He’s been using AutoCAD ever since—first as a junior estimator for a subcontractor where he was required to do shop drawings for all projects. In civil construction and land development, he also used LDD (Land Development Desktop) a great deal, as well as AGTEK. So upon his arrival at SB Ballard, Simon already possessed the basics of 3D modeling. “I just didn’t know Revit,” he admits. “But this is a very technology forward company with all the tools, so I took some classes on it and learned. And being interested in project coordination, BIM was a natural for me.” Continue reading

GoBOXX 2725 released – 12 Xeon Cores In One Laptop

With 12 cores (24 threads) the GoBOXX 2725 is perfect for rendering, design visualization and simulation

The latest high-end workstation from BOXX was released this week. Only this workstation isn’t a “workstation” per se, it’s a laptop a that features a true workstation Xeon processor with up to twelve cores. The new GoBOXX 2725 is equipped to tackle the most demanding professional applications in your office, or anywhere one the road. Continue reading