Autodesk is moving towards a Microsoft approach to product releases which they are calling ‘Flexible Software Delivery’. This approach will be based on two different components available after the initial product release. Product updates like they exist now will include service packs and hotfixes. They will also have available subscription bonus packs.
These bonus packs will be available to active subscription members only via the subscription website. The bonus tools will then be rolled into the following product release. This sounds like a good way to get some good feedback on new features before they are incorporated into the entire product, beyond the beta programs which has limited participation.
According to Autodesk, AutoCAD will be the first product this new software delivery model is fully available for. Following this approach, they now have available a subscription bonus pack for Inventor 2009. The bonus pack includes the following additional functionality:
- Drawing Manager Tools
– Arrange dimensions
– Dimension Selection Filters
– Directly open a corresponding drawing right from a part or assembly
– Refreshing drawing parameters
– Balloon snap and alignment on placement
– Project geometry works like part environment
– Edit dimension upon placement
- Part Modeling Tools
– Create parameters on the fly when dimensioning
– Specify iFeatures normal direction
– Create iFeatures from iParts
– Apply buttons on Scale and Rotate dialogs
– Simplified loft selection through right click context menu
- Assembly Design Tools
– Bill of Material Editor
– Shift or Control for contiguous or non-contiguous selection
– Find and Replace
– Cross highlight from the BOM editor and Assembly model
– Auto Save Reminder
You can read more about the new features in Autodesk’s
official Subscription Bonus Pack PDF.
I think the ability to open an associated drawing directly from the model environment will be a real time saver. Download your copy and try it out for yourself.