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August 23, 2006


Kent Elrod

It is a bit of an urban legend concerning the NASA pens and the Russian pencils. A private company developed the anti-gravity pen and sold them to NASA and the Russians. Prior to that the Russians used grease pencils.

John Burrill

I know it's a marketing gimmick, but suggesting that Russians don't know how to make things work, requires I bring up the story NASA's pen that would write in microgravity at tremendous cost in deveopment and design time and the cosmonauts using pencils. If Autodesk doesn't have a few Russian PHD's in their ranks, it's to the detriment of their software.

Geoff Briggs

Isn't ProE from PTC and isn't it PTC expats that created Revit, now the darling of Autodesk? I wonder how many of these evil Russians work at the factory.

Evan Yares

The main development team for DWGdirect (from the Open Design Alliance) consists of Russian programmers. Impressively talented ones too.

I know of several other companies (both US and international) with very innovative products that employ many Russian programmers. (I can't say the names of the companies, because of confidentiality agreements.)

One Russian company I can mention mention is Ledas -- because they've done a tremendous amount of foundation-level work to enable the possibility of functional design.

Functional design is more than a marketing buzzword. Unfortunately, I suspect that the term's going to become overused, misused, and marginalized.

While Autodesk may be on its way to functional design with Inventor, they've barely started -- and they're definitely *not* leading the pack.

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