How BricsCAD Evolved Over the Years: New Features in Last 5 Releases
The best barometer to measure the performance of any CAD software is to correlate management speak and compare it with what actually evolved on the ground: updates, fixes and feature growth delivered year-on-year. If you look at the life-cycle of BricsCAD over the past many years, you can see a clearly pre-defined roadmap (management speak) and ramp-up of features that is meticulously executed & delivered as promised.
Every year, during the Bricsys Conference, the CEO Erik de Keyser and his team show-case what they have done in the past year and also lay out the vision for the next 12 months. And these goals are met diligently.
Bricsys never takes shortcuts to reach a goal. They did not compromise on API compatibility or try to copy a look-and-feel of the big CAD company to reach out to users faster than others. Instead, they delivered on the promise of stability, compatibility and created a UI that was very easy to understand and use, innovating and often different and never one that was copied.
Having been in BricsCAD sales and support for the last 12 years, I have seen Bricsys and the team go through various phases. There were long periods, especially the slog years of 2007-2010-2012 when Bricsys did not seem to do anything that showed up as ‘features’ in the software but were strengthening the under-belly significantly. The move to break away from IntelliCAD and the move to platform-agnostic code that ran on Windows, Mac and Linux were early examples how Bricsys built a foundation for a very strong case going forward.
Application Programming Interface (API) compatibility is another area where Bricsys programmers did a lot of work behind the scenes. End-users did not see much on the surface but a bunch of third-party vendors kept Bricsys programmers busy until all of their requests for an equivalent Lisp, Visual Lisp, ActiveX, Express Tools, ARX or .NET API function was available in BricsCAD.
We clearly see the results of this mammoth exercise today. Including the marquee news of last year of Intergraph CADWorkx, BricsCAD boasts of the highest number of add-on software today, after AutoCAD. No other .dwg vendor comes even close. I was told that a few European CAD developers are now developing some of their applications only for BricsCAD, completely giving the AutoCAD platform a miss. And there is a good reason for it. With a growing number of AutoCAD users refusing to move to forced subscriptions, there is a huge middle-tier of AutoCAD perpetual license users who are not upgrading, not moving to subscription, and have vowed that they will stay with their existing AutoCAD versions or simply make the switch to BricsCAD. It only makes sense to build applications on BricsCAD first, and AutoCAD later, or never.
This background of information is only to tell you the historical view of how BricsCAD has evolved and where it is heading.
So, what are all the new features in the last 5 releases of BricsCAD? This is a question many users asked, especially when we go to an old version user of BricsCAD and ask them to upgrade to the latest version. Here is the cheat sheet:
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