29 Apr 2019

Improve efficiency and scale with the Design Automation API for Inventor

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When elementary school coding class students ask me if they should be computer programmers (like me) when they grow up, I tell them "No." In the future, programming is not going to be a specialized skill. Everyone will know how to program to some degree. Programming will be taught like reading, writing, and arithmetic. So instead of asking yourself whether or not you want to be a programmer, ask yourself "What problem do you want to solve?" and then select a career that helps you use programming to solve that problem.

We're not to that state where everyone is a programmer, but more and more businesses are using programming to solve their problems. Rather than change their workflows to match off-the-shelf solutions, they are tailoring the solutions to match their workflows. That's where Autodesk Forge comes in. Forge is our collection of Application Program Interfaces (APIs), documentation and sample code, and a community of developers that use programming to get the most out of their design, make, and use (e.g., IoT) data. Optimizing workflows around their own data allows companies to remain true to "This is how we do things around here."

Forge consists of collections of APIs:


Forge has developed over time. For example, the Design Automation API gives you the ability to run scripts on your design files, taking advantage of the scale of the Forge Platform to automate repetitive tasks. The API originally supported AutoCAD but now works with AutoCAD, Inventor, Revit, and 3ds Max files. For example, this is a handy way to publish thousands of drawings to DWF or PDF. Ordinarily, you would have to download all the files, run a script on them in Inventor desktop software, and then potentially upload them all back to the cloud. Your efficiency would be bottlenecked by the processing power of your computer and your network bandwidth. In addition, you would have to instrument logging and retry logic in your code to ensure that the entire job completed. With the Design Automation API, you can offload all that processing to the Forge Platform that can process those scripts at a much greater scale and efficiency.

Given that Design Automation API for Inventor is a new addition, there is an upcoming Webinar on this topic:

Learn more about the webinar

You may wish to learn this API now. Here's your chance:

Workers of the future who are school children today wouldn't have it any other way.

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