By Anthony J. Lockwood
Dear Desktop Engineering Reader:
In—what?— 2002 when Apple released dolled-up UNIX in the form of OS X, a chill ran up the spine of Mac mavens. The hope was that MCAD, CFD, FEA, and all that other real engineering software would join LabVIEW and a few others with native code versions for the Mac. And indeed, that has happened. Too slowly. And MCAD mostly has been a laggard. Until now.
Graebert, a developer with a long history, has announced that Edition 1.0 of its low-cost ARES Commander 2D/3D CAD software for Mac OS X. Three cool things to know about ARES for Mac OS X.
The first is that this is native code for the Mac and not a Windows program prettied up to run on the Mac or something just for architects. Two, it complements an ARES line-up that is proven on Windows and Linux platforms already. This means that you can have a multi-platform CAD system and leverage the efficiencies, features, and capabilities of each operating system.
The third cool thing might be the coolest for some of you: ARES for Mac OS X is AutoCAD-compatible with all that that implies—simple file exchanges, for example. And—I got to hand it to Graebert here—on the company’s website, they tell you where AutoCAD has them beat on functionality and where they have functionality that AutoCAD might be needing. Full disclosure so that you can make an informed decision is commendable.
OK, a fourth cool thing. ARES for OS X Mac is inexpensive. It’s going to cost you $995 come October. But since native code, multi-platform, AutoCAD-compatible CAD software for Mac OS X is such a novel concept, the company is trying to gain your business with a short-term $495 deal. And there’s a complimentary, no-registration-required 30-day trial version linked off today’s Pick of the Week write-up so that you can try it without buying it. Not much to gamble here, dear Reader.
So, there you have it. ARES Commander Edition 1.0 for Mac OS X. An intriguing product I’d say. Mac users have waited a long time for something holding its promise. Give ARES Commander a try and let us know what you think.
Thanks, Pal – Lockwood
Anthony J. Lockwood
Editor at Large, Desktop Engineering