Innovation as a Practice: Dagaa’s Experience
Adolfo Cota, director of development for Dagaa
head designer for Dagaa
Dagaa is more than a traditional design studio; it is a company focused on the invention, design and development of new products for clients. For the founders of the company, innovation is not merely an idea, but also a practice. Adolfo Cota and Ricardo Ponce began their business just three years ago, but they have quickly learned many lessons, the most important being that they never stop learning and they can always improve a product through its design.
Dagaa’s client base is diverse, requiring designs for metal-based products, electronics, advertisements and furniture. The company is most recognized for its work in the videogame industry and has adopted solidThinking to aid in the development of its concepts. Using solidThinking, the Dagaa team was the first to create a design for a street-operated videogame machine with an LCD monitor for use in Mexico.
Since its adoption, solidThinking has been instrumental in Dagaa’s design process. During the design process, the Dagaa team is required to produce several distinct product concepts for clients. They need to model, detail and present their ideas in a realistic, yet striking, manner—and they must do it quickly, with precise attention to detail and quality. solidThinking helps Dagaa to achieve these goals swiftly and with ease.
“It is common that, during the conceptual and presentation portions of the design process, our clients change their minds and modify their plans or even our proposal; solidThinking allows us to quickly change the design, forms or final presentation,” said Adolfo Cota, director of development for Dagaa. “solidThinking offers great versatility in generating free forms with the ability to make changes quickly, sometimes right in front of the clients while they make suggestions. Its high rendering quality and its compatibility with both Mac and Windows were very attractive to us. Our clients work with different operating systems as well as with various software programs, so solidThinking has made it possible for our team to be flexible and work seamlessly with our clients.”
Primary benefits solidThinking provides Dagaa include:
- Fast creation of free and complex forms
- ConstructionTree history for reworking and refining designs quickly and easily
- High-quality rendering for presentation
“The software’s high capacity for rendering and its diverse material library are instrumental in making rapid changes possible,” Cota said.
“Ultimately, all of our projects must balance three main elements: time, quality and cost, with the most expensive resource in our projects being time,” added Cota. “We need to develop results quickly, with good quality, and we need to be able to make changes fast. An excellent feature of solidThinking is the capacity to import and use parts designed in other software environments and incorporate all of the different ideas and requirements in our final development. solidThinking helps us maintain balance between being creative and innovative and meeting our clients’ needs.”
The designers at Dagaa now are expanding their use of solidThinking by leveraging solidThinking Inspired to incorporate more variations and organic concepts into their designs. They have already used the software’s morphogenesis form-generation capabilities for various design experiments, simulations and research. For examples of Dagaa’s work and for more information, visit www.dagaadevelopment.com.
Calling all Designers: Know Those Engineers Down the Hall? Encourage Them to Let Their Ideas Take Shape with solidThinking
||We asked James Dagg, solidThinking senior vice president and our fearless leader of product development, to provide some insight into exciting new happenings at solidThinking and a closer look into his world, where design and engineering harmoniously collide.
When I was in high school and considering career choices, I had it easy. I only considered one option: becoming an engineer. My brothers and I spent our early years imagining, designing and building model planes, boats, go-carts, robots, furniture, electric motors, telescopes, ventriloquist dummies—you name it. Equipped with our father’s drafting equipment, basement workshop and unbounded encouragement, we spent countless hours learning that it takes a lot of creativity and redesign to turn a concept into a reality. I eventually earned engineering degrees and entered the CAE world, where I spent two decades using and creating CAE tools. I love CAE. Simulation and optimization are amazing stuff. And CAE truly makes our world better. Engineers with the right tools can do real magic.
But I have to confess that, in the world of CAE before I began working with solidThinking, I often missed the satisfaction I felt at my father’s drafting board and in his workshop. We all get new design ideas we want to see come to life. Whether you’re a tried and true designer, a designer trapped in an engineer’s body or an engineer who is only in it for that math and physics buzz, you ought to have the tools to explore your design ideas effectively when a flash of inspiration hits you. Alas, for CAE specialists, the options often are limited. Even if you’re a whiz with your CAE tools, your inner designer needs to d-e-s-i-g-n, darn it.
Well, I have good news for our design customers and enthusiasts as they work with their engineering counterparts. Our parent company, Altair, has quietly slipped solidThinking 8.5 and solidThinking 8.5 Inspired into its HyperWorks open architecture suite of CAE tools used widely by corporations all over the world. Here are a few highlights to share with your friends in engineering:
Concept Geometry Modeling and Rendering: solidThinking is a 3D industrial-design and conceptual- modeling application you can employ to create geometry quickly and easily using your HyperWorks license. You can create, render and share surface and solid models, from furniture and electronic devices to watches, jewelry, product packaging, yachts and more.
- solidThinking has a construction history, so it’s an ideal tool for quickly developing and iterating concept designs. You can freely experiment with new designs without having to reconstruct your model each time you make a change. You can sketch curves in 3D and construct surface and solid NURBS geometry using extrusions, revolves, skins, lofts, sweeps, blends, Booleans, trims and more.
- You can create photorealistic renderings of geometry and meshes using the real-time renderer and ray-tracers in solidThinking. You can import geometry and H3D results into the same model and apply appearance properties from the solidThinking material library. Render jaw-dropping images and animations of deforming meshes in realistic environments and use them in your presentations. Wow.
Inspired: Basic Topology Optimization Made Easy: solidThinking Inspired is the second product from solidThinking that is now available in HyperWorks. solidThinking Inspired makes setting up and running basic topology optimization easy.
- Import design-space and non-design-space solids into solidThinking Inspired and apply boundary conditions directly on the geometry. Graphically define shape controls, such as parting directions and symmetry, and use part-instancing to create pattern repetition on parts that are repeated in an assembly.
- You can run topology optimization with a few clicks and automatically retrieve results from the run history. You don’t even have to deal with a mesh.
- You can also do quick mass summaries and static weight calculations on assemblies. When you have a result you like, you can export the STL shape directly to solidThinking or HyperMesh.
- solidThinking Inspired is a great way to perform really quick, coarse concept-level topology optimization in minutes instead of hours or days. When you want to get sophisticated, just send your design-space geometry to HyperMesh.
Both of these tools are available in HyperWorks 11.0. So go ahead; encourage your colleagues to get creative, release their inner designer and let their ideas take shape. Oh yeah, then analyze and optimize the heck out of them if they want to!
solidThinking at the New Designers Show
solidThinking and its U.K distributor, Cadsoft Solutions, participated in the New Designers 2011 Show, July 6-9 in London. With its longstanding reputation for bringing young design talents and businesses together, New Designers partners with prestigious, forward thinking and innovative organizations to highlight inspiring, fresh and exciting new work and ideas. It is the only design event that brings together more than 3,500 graduates from all major design disciplines.
“New Designers is one of the few shows that focuses specifically on the academic design community, so it offered us a great platform to expose our solutions directly to the future designers who will help shape the industry,” said Jim Hassberger, vice president of business development for solidThinking. “The show presented not only an excellent opportunity for young designers to share their talents and work, but also an ideal venue for us to collaborate and work closely with the educational community in the U.K.”
As a long-time supporter of experienced designers, students and new graduates, solidThinking promoted its student design competition at the show. The solidThinking Design Competition 2011 is open to all college and university students worldwide (entries will be accepted now through Nov. 30, 2011).
On Day 2 of the conference, solidThinking product specialists presented the new features of solidThinking 8.5 and solidThinking 8.5 Inspired™. Attendees were able to try the software at the solidThinking booth, giving them firsthand insights into the use and capabilities of the software, including its expanded approaches to modeling, data exchange and CAD collaboration, rendering, presentation and form generation.
“The solidThinking booth offered new and emergent young designers, teachers and members of the educational community a unique opportunity to familiarize themselves with our software,” said Adel Matar, senior product specialist for solidThinking. “We had a very encouraging turnout, with many attendees intrigued and engaged by our demos and presentation of solidThinking’s improved capabilities. Highlights included ‘wows’ from attendees who provided very positive feedback to our examples of real-time rendering and compatibility with other software, including our SolidWorks plug-in. We are thrilled with this positive feedback and are looking forward to working with these designers in the future and collaborating with them to bring valuable features continuously to our customers.”