What exactly is ZWSOFT’s all-in-one CAx? What does it mean to every one of you? There won’t be an answer until you break it down and delve deeper into the product lines that cover 2D (mobile) CAD, 3D CAD/CAM and CAE. Unveiling the logics and little-known stories behind them, this series of interviews will let you know why and how they can satisfy your needs.
To begin with, we talked with the leaders of the CAD Pockets team, Daniel Huang and Janet Du. Let’s hear them out!
To complement the video above, the following article will give you a more detailed account of CAD Pockets.
The Heroes behind CAD Pockets
Hi, Daniel and Janet. What a pleasure to have you here! Please tell us something about yourselves.
J: Hello, I am Janet. I started testing ZWCAD in 2007. And from 2012 on, I’ve been taking charge of the quality management and R&D of CAD Pockets. My job is not so abstract as Daniel’s. I mainly distribute and retrieve development tasks, while controlling the quality risks and time to market.
The teams led by you two have been working very closely. Would you say a few words about each other’s team?
When it comes to Janet herself, she used to be a tester. Actually, she seldom codes. But now, she’s gradually involved in making PRDs and product plans. In this regard, she is a developer who knows the product well. As for myself, I sometimes write codes. And that makes me a product manager who knows how R&D works. That’s why we can collaborate with and understand each other so well. We speak each other’s language. That’s a very important premise of good teamwork.
The course of the R&D management of CAD Pockets has seen our collaboration for 6 or 7 years. Our sole and shared value is making a useful mobile CAD application for our fellow engineers, architects and designers to view and edit drawings in the field. Based on this value, we have developed profound trust. Naturally, we’ve become comrade-in-arms in work and close friends in life. We often chat about some hot topics and parenting as well.
J: Daniel has already conveyed what I want to say. The boss is always right. In fact, product management is the bellwether of R&D. So, Daniel must give precise instructions. In my opinion, Daniel speaks and works with a logical mind. Hence, we can get his orders right away. Plus, he’s never arbitrary. He’d explain the meanings behind the tasks to us after every assignment, ensuring a common understanding.
Plus, I think like men. So, I don’t have much trouble communicating with our programmers who are mostly male. It could be an advantage. But it’ll soon turn into a disadvantage in the face of tough questions. I remember in particular when developing CAD Pockets V4.0, we were always arguing. Luckily, my teammates never hold grudges. They say that gentlemen keep harmony in diversity. I guess that’s the consensus of our team.
Could you share with us something interesting or memorable that happened during these 6 or 7 years of cooperation?
About CAD Pockets
Why did you name this mobile CAD app CAD Pockets?
As we kept upgrading and updating our product and became more familiar with concepts like mobile Internet and apps, we found that the connotation of touch outdated. Therefore, our whole team gathered together to brainstorm a new name that could last long and be widely applied. A big bunch of curious names came to our minds but were all rejected.
Until one day, one of our technical support engineers said, “Look, our intention is to make a tool for people to view CAD drawings anytime and anywhere, right? Just like reaching for anything you want in Doraemon’s pocket!” So, the concept of CAD in the Pocket came into being. And we decided to call it CAD Pockets.
Could you describe CAD Pockets in 3 words?
In the past, they had to carry the printed drawings as they moved around, which was inconvenient. Now that smart devices are widely used, they would naturally search for solutions to this inconvenience. It would be much more effective and eco-friendlier. The collaboration module is now available in CAD Pockets V4.0. It means that we aim to help not only individuals boost their efficiency, but also team and corporate users design and discuss drawings more efficiently. With that said, I’d describe CAD Pockets as fast, powerful and collaborative.
J: I’d like to add 3 keywords from the perspective of R&D. They are viewing, annotating and editing. CAD Pockets allows users to examine drawings by zooming and panning, which is the basic function of a mobile CAD app. Apart from that, users can browse through different layers with Layer Walk. They can also observe solids dynamically in a 3D view. Comparatively speaking, CAD Pockets supports more CAD file formats, such as DXF, DWF and the newly added PDF.
When it comes to annotating, users can generate a series of annotation objects. Examples would be revision clouds, sketches, Smart Voice, and the efficient multi-image annotation. Moreover, we’ve invested heavily in the editing functions. In addition to creating general CAD entities, inserting blocks, etc., users can also edit the text attributes of attribute blocks.
Could you tell us more about the aforementioned CAD Pockets V4.0?
Later on, we integrated CAD Chat the web app and CAD Pockets the mobile one. That is to say, you can now use the functions of CAD Chat on the web to communicate and collaborate, while editing and modifying your drawings in CAD Pockets on your mobile devices. After this integration, the concept of CAD Pockets has evolved from a tool for individual design to a virtual office on the Cloud.
A virtual office on the Cloud, nice concept! I wonder if the cloud storage of CAD Pockets could meet the user needs?
D: Janet has given a clear explanation. Users can choose from the mainstream cloud storage. Also, to make teamwork easier, we offer you CAD Pockets Cloud. In the collaboration version of CAD Pockets, a free 1TB of cloud storage is available for a team of 100 members. I suppose that’s more than enough for most teams. Even if they require more storage, they can always buy low-cost additions.
What about the safety of storing this large amount of data in the cloud?
D: The safety of cloud storage on CAD Pockets is guaranteed by the technical precautions Janet mentioned, and verified by millions of users from assorted industries worldwide. We’ve even customized private cloud servers for some of the customers who work closely with us. And the safety of cloud storage becomes much less of a concern for them.
Daniel has mentioned that CAD Pockets users are from assorted industries. Can all their needs be satisfied?
As for the collaboration module, it is mainly intended for AEC (architectural, engineering and construction) practitioners, such as constructors, surveyors and civil engineers. They often need to communicate long distance, cooperate with diverse professions, co-design, and go through the essential inspections. That’s when CAD Pockets comes into play. Therefore, we will not only keep strengthening CAD Pockets, but also provide customized services for regular customers. For example, we tailor-made a whole mobile CAD solution for a Korean corporate customer, EXCAD to streamline their road and bridge monitoring workflow.
J: As Daniel just said, the brand-new CAD Pockets is meant for a common workflow. We’ve sampled numerous companies to get this basic team model. In a team, there can be various projects in which project members can manage technical files and drawings that are exclusive to them. They can also annotate and discuss the same drawing as well as assign tasks to one another. They will be notified of all the statuses of the projects.
The Korean EXCAD project is a classic case. When their team members are surveying in the field, they can use CAD Pockets to locate the frames, make marks on the drawings, insert legends, fill in forms, attach photos of the scene and finally, export forms. Even better, they can perform this entire series of steps in one interface. Efficiency is hence boosted and the tedious follow-up data sorting avoided.
The Future of CAD Pockets
What role is the lightweight CAD Pockets playing in ZWSOFT’s all-in-one CAx blueprint?
As the mobile and online extension of ZWCAD, CAD Pockets shares its technologies, which ensures that the drawings produced via them are 100% compatible. Via CAD Pockets, users are able to access their drawings stored in the cloud and connect with their team members on their mobiles as well. One account can be used on multiple ends with the same data, workflow and functions.
To put it more plainly, the role CAD Pockets plays is to obtain the drawing data on PC and extend the capabilities of ZWCAD from PCs to mobile and web apps, from an office table to every corner in the world.
Is there an ultimate ideal of CAD Pockets?
One lightweight mobile application like CAD Pockets can carry considerable weight in the all-in-one CAx prospect and help with your DWG-related work. I hope that this interview with the leaders of the CAD Pockets team has given you the low-down on this product and its story behind the scenes.
More ZWSights into our other product lines will be presented in the near future. Stay tuned!