Fusion360 has hiked its prices once again. Brace yourselves, CADfugees are coming

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obelisk79
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Re: Fusion360 has hiked its prices once again. Brace yourselves, CADfugees are coming

Post by obelisk79 »

Roy_043 wrote: Sat Jul 02, 2022 2:51 pm There is also the Workarounds page that may help these, and other, CADfugees. Please add any workarounds that you may know.
Thanks for pointing that out. I've updated the sticky thread, adding that to the 'official' resources.
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Kunda1
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Re: Fusion360 has hiked its prices once again. Brace yourselves, CADfugees are coming

Post by Kunda1 »

obelisk79 wrote: Fri Jul 01, 2022 6:17 pm Sure, I need a wiki account though. Do you want me to just have mostly just mimic my post or something more?
PM me with an email address and I'll set you up with a wiki account
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Re: Fusion360 has hiked its prices once again. Brace yourselves, CADfugees are coming

Post by Jee-Bee »

I expect that this is not the last time that there are users from other software that start looking here because their software is depreciated, to expensive, ... whatever else reason. Since i came from other software too i follow this kind of situations always with some interest.
I have read this topic fast (and thus partly). It is great that there is some discussion on how to make it better for new users(Information, how to's, etc). But I miss one point almost always.... That point is we are quite busy explaining how an user should use FC. But FC is quite difficult compared with other CAD software! Why aren't we looking into how WE as users / Programmers/ ... can change FC so that the adaption to FC goes more smoothly?
I'm quite sure that every FC User that use also other CAD software can point to one ore more functions within FC that are (way )too complex, work but not with all Workbenches, Inconsistent (selection )methods within a WB / in different WB's, Yes the function that you are looking exist but you can find it in (an unexpected )WB ..., Feature request in one WB while it is basically lack of functionality in another WB (Or in both WB's), etc.

I know that i sound now like a grumpy old men... I don't want to sound like one, but i have sometimes the feeling that Users that are here for some time don't see the weaknesses of the system anymore.
I like to trigger also the long time users here to open your eyes and really spot for improvements and speaccially for users that work with other CAD software too how do i use it in software x, y, ... are there improvements based on what you see there ?
obelisk79
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Re: Fusion360 has hiked its prices once again. Brace yourselves, CADfugees are coming

Post by obelisk79 »

Jee-Bee wrote: Sun Jul 03, 2022 2:56 pm Why aren't we looking into how WE as users / Programmers/ ... can change FC so that the adaption to FC goes more smoothly?
I am looking into exactly that. I just don't usually advertise it, because like most changes to freecad, it's done when it's done. I've been working on some completely from scratch stylesheets, using a popular color palette which is conducive to both a light and dark theme. I'm doing this to optimize the use of screenspace, layout and orientation of ui elements to present a modern and professional appearance which doesn't use overly stylized colors so they should look good with default or custom icons.

Once complete I intend to also bundle them inside a preference pack that also adjusts other default UI elements, to include panel placement, custom toolbars and other settings that both complement the stylesheets as well as changing some default settings that I believe would be better suited towards newcomers.

I started a more public initiative on the forums a few months ago and rather than get a bunch of constructive input it devolved into the standard forum squabbling so I let those threads die and have been working quietly on my own in the background. These things might not amount to a whole lot at the end of the day, and others might argue that it's merely "lipstick on a pig" but I also have minimal skill in programming so I chose to do 'something' rather than 'nothing'.

It is a rather daunting and thankless work of passion that's taking a lot of effort.
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Re: Fusion360 has hiked its prices once again. Brace yourselves, CADfugees are coming

Post by Jee-Bee »

obelisk79 wrote: Sun Jul 03, 2022 3:41 pm I am looking into exactly that.
I meant more FC it self. A nice UI is great, but you can't fix a bad workflow with a nice UI.
obelisk79
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Re: Fusion360 has hiked its prices once again. Brace yourselves, CADfugees are coming

Post by obelisk79 »

Jee-Bee wrote: Sun Jul 03, 2022 3:50 pm you can't fix a bad workflow with a nice UI.
To an extent, you actually can, so I respectfully disagree with that statement.
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Re: Fusion360 has hiked its prices once again. Brace yourselves, CADfugees are coming

Post by drmacro »

Jee-Bee wrote: Sun Jul 03, 2022 2:56 pm ...But FC is quite difficult compared with other CAD software!
Hmm...I don't agree that FreeCAD is hard to use. I think it is different than other CAD offerings.

Recently a new user (in another online media haunt) has nothing but great comments on how easy to use and how powerful it is. This particular person is familiar with several commercial offereings and is confused by the "FreeCAD is hard to use" comments. (And, I'd note, he is not the only person to say it is not hard, in more than one online media...) So, why do some have difficulty and other not?
Why aren't we looking into how WE as users / Programmers/ ... can change FC so that the adaption to FC goes more smoothly?
I'm quite sure that every FC User that use also other CAD software can point to one ore more functions within FC that are (way )too complex, work but not with all Workbenches, Inconsistent (selection )methods within a WB / in different WB's, Yes the function that you are looking exist but you can find it in (an unexpected )WB ..., Feature request in one WB while it is basically lack of functionality in another WB (Or in both WB's), etc.
Please, fire up your compiler and show us how you would make all this improvement... ;)

Addressing inconsistencies is a great place to start. But, what is wrong with the workbench concept? Maybe, the right thing to do is make the customization front & center and encourage people to use the capability...in that sense, maybe it would be better to proffer FC as a toolbox, a "some assembly required" Ikea of CAD. 8-)
I know that i sound now like a grumpy old men... I don't want to sound like one, but i have sometimes the feeling that Users that are here for some time don't see the weaknesses of the system anymore.
I like to trigger also the long time users here to open your eyes and really spot for improvements and speaccially for users that work with other CAD software too how do i use it in software x, y, ... are there improvements based on what you see there ?
Hmm...there are those who simply attempt to help people use what is available. I don't think there are many long time users who don't see or won't admit there is plenty of room for improvement. Many are very proficient with FC, but, have no background in software development. (After all we don't see every user even making macros.)

A user asks a question, she is not interested in a response like "oh, let me get right on that and code it up for you". They are asking how to do their thing now, if there is a way...not after you get it coded up.

I wouldn't call that closed eyes. But, I also don't agree that just because "it works like this over there and it's so easy" should be a trigger to make FC do it that way (there may actually be more efficient or better ways already...if you ask and are told how).

Note: there ARE plenty of things that could be easier, are just plain missing, confusing, etc. And, there have been many things with similar descriptions that have been fixed over the years...by people who sat down and coded or fixed them. Unfortunately, there are no managers passing out work assignments with deadlines...
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Re: Fusion360 has hiked its prices once again. Brace yourselves, CADfugees are coming

Post by Jee-Bee »

drmacro wrote: Sun Jul 03, 2022 3:53 pm Recently a new user (in another online media haunt) has nothing but great comments on how easy to use and how powerful it is.
I don't know that usecase... I'm quite aware that there also big differences between different work fields and my work field is basically Mechanical engineering. And i probably speak more about them as for example architects...
drmacro wrote: Sun Jul 03, 2022 3:53 pm Please, fire up your compiler and show us how you would make all this improvement... ;)

Addressing inconsistencies is a great place to start. But, what is wrong with the workbench concept? Maybe, the right thing to do is make the customization front & center and encourage people to use the capability...in that sense, maybe it would be better to proffer FC as a toolbox, a "some assembly required" Ikea of CAD. 8-)
I won't do that... Not because i don't want to, but more of a i buyed the wrong latop issue(MacBook) and Compiling on Mac is in my opinion may more difficult than on Linux... Also dualbooting looks like it is not easy at this moment(https://github.com/Dunedan/mbp-2016-linux)

I didn't say that there is something wrong with the concept of Workbenches. I experience more or less the feeling that every programmer of a WB restart inventing the wheel.
- One WB request Pre selection, Another post selection and a third both depending on the function.
- In A2P I can Constraint 2 planar faces AND THEN Constraint 2 Holes. In A3 I can Constraint 2 Planar Faces Then I have tot do something and then i can constraint 2 (circular )edges.
- FEM WB ignores the existence of Part design( and probably any Assembly WB)
- For B-Splines i'm able to dimension control points, but not the vertexes that are my shape.
- There is a constant request(or at least for years) for a offset function in sketcher while it is in my opinion lack of thickness functions within Part designs Extrude / Revolve(I think that part is able to extrude a shell and create thickness in a next step)
For all above points there are workarounds, so there is no lack of a result but there is lack of structure and to some extends lack of usability.
drmacro wrote: Sun Jul 03, 2022 3:53 pm
Hmm...there are those who simply attempt to help people use what is available. I don't think there are many long time users who don't see or won't admit there is plenty of room for improvement. Many are very proficient with FC, but, have no background in software development. (After all we don't see every user even making macros.)
I know that (new )users need some help, and great that there is a userbase that is willing to do that! Also I don't expect that every user build a Macro, a external WB or add features to the Core of FC. I have tried and i know it is not easy...

Where i have more difficulties with is that when i ask about something WHY something is done on method A and WHY method B is ignored there are always some answers like Mathematical better, Constraints or DOF this and that and sometimes it is just difficult , blah blah blah. I'm a mechanical engineer and i don't expect that CAD software is a perfect mathematical Tool. I expect that it gives me as Mechanical engineer the tools i need and has a good workflow(preferabele also stable, but the generator behind instability is most of the time the user).
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Re: Fusion360 has hiked its prices once again. Brace yourselves, CADfugees are coming

Post by adrianinsaval »

you bring up external workbenches, what are we supposed to do about those? those are controlled by their creators. For the rest, it always boils down to "who is going to write that code?" We are not blind to FreeCAD's faults, we constantly talk and debate and ask and wish about what would be better than the current situation but it's all just talk until someone does the work and codes it (and then someone reviews it), here we talk about being welcoming and provide info because it's the only thing rationally achievable in the short term for all of us, or should we tell them "working on it, wait 4 years and FreeCAD will be easier for you"?
Improvements in workflow and UI/UX are discussed elsewhere in appropriate threads but these are done around the idea of "how can FreeCAD be better?" not around "how can FreeCAD be more similar to X software to make it easier for migrants?", hopefully you understand why this is.
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Re: Fusion360 has hiked its prices once again. Brace yourselves, CADfugees are coming

Post by drmacro »

Jee-Bee wrote: Mon Jul 04, 2022 1:05 pm ...I don't know that usecase... I'm quite aware that there also big differences between different work fields and my work field is basically Mechanical engineering. And i probably speak more about them as for example architects...
That particular person is a mechanical engineer. (I'm a multi-discipline engineer, including mechanical, as well.)
...I won't do that... Not because i don't want to, but more of a i buyed the wrong latop issue(MacBook) and Compiling on Mac is in my opinion may more difficult than on Linux... Also dualbooting looks like it is not easy at this moment(https://github.com/Dunedan/mbp-2016-linux)
Actually, one area that is not addressed very extensively is FreeCAD on Apple products...so, maybe, you have the perfect machine to help in that area. ;)
I didn't say that there is something wrong with the concept of Workbenches. I experience more or less the feeling that every programmer of a WB restart inventing the wheel.
- One WB request Pre selection, Another post selection and a third both depending on the function.
- In A2P I can Constraint 2 planar faces AND THEN Constraint 2 Holes. In A3 I can Constraint 2 Planar Faces Then I have tot do something and then i can constraint 2 (circular )edges.
- FEM WB ignores the existence of Part design( and probably any Assembly WB)
- For B-Splines i'm able to dimension control points, but not the vertexes that are my shape.
- There is a constant request(or at least for years) for a offset function in sketcher while it is in my opinion lack of thickness functions within Part designs Extrude / Revolve(I think that part is able to extrude a shell and create thickness in a next step)
For all above points there are workarounds, so there is no lack of a result but there is lack of structure and to some extends lack of usability.
This situation is the result of FreeCAD's organic growth. I don't see that growth pattern changing. Some of what you describe above is the "toolbox" nature. Tools are in drawers that make perfect sense to me, but, you find them cumbersome. In addition, I've customized my drawers to make more sense to me. Other points you make are very valid. I used offsets heavily in Solidworks and AutoCAD. I don't think about them much any more though, so, apparently they weren't that important to my workflow.

Workbenches aren't overseen or managed, they are created, typically, by someone with a need and not because of a over arching design of FreeCAD. That may not provide you with a comfortable work environment, but, it is the reality we have. (And, I have noted many times that the lack of any "steering" is less than ideal.)
...I expect that it gives me as Mechanical engineer the tools i need and has a good workflow(preferabele also stable, but the generator behind instability is most of the time the user).
Here we finally get to the real issue. "I expect". It is as simple as, FreeCAD is not what you expect. Could it be at some point? Maybe. At this point it is a toolbox with drawers full of stuff, some of the drawers aren't complete, the wrench sets don't have all the sizes, some the wrenches are in other drawers and the user needs to make it work for themselves.

I, for one, think that what a handful of volunteers have created, in their spare time, is quite remarkable.
Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan: Spock: "...His pattern indicates two-dimensional thinking."

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