2022 was a good year for the Onshape Community. Onshape users were treated to some great feature releases: PCB Studio, Render Studio, Simulation, and Publications

There were also scads of improvements to the overall product, in fact, too many to mention here. Even harder would be picking out my favorites, so I applaud Greg Brown and Michael LaFleche who gave it a shot with their top 10 picks, which you can read about here.

rendering, simulation and pcbOnshape released Render Studio, Simulation, and PCB Studio last year.

The Onshape Community also saw ample opportunities to learn, share, and even have some fun. User Group meetings provided technical content and a chance to network with fellow engineers and designers. 

The Onshape Forums were alive with helpful information, but also the source of fun challenges initiated by the community. Holiday Ornaments and Render Battle #2 are some recent examples. 

rendering of a christmas ornament

And another 2022 treat was perhaps an overlooked addition to the Onshape website: The Customer Home page. Log in with your Onshape user account and explore your own customer page, a sort of information superhighway for all things Onshape tailored especially for you and your account.

As we head into the new year, I’d like to peek back at 2022 and look forward to what I think will be some of the highlights for 2023.

A Peek Back – Onshape Live ’22

The second annual online user conference got a new host in 2022 – Product Marketing Senior Director Loretta Faluade. You could tell from the outset (her opening remarks?) that she was excited to welcome the thousands of virtual attendees for a day full of practical tips, tricks, and advice from Onshape product experts and customers about how you can accelerate your design process. 

The special sneak peek at what was ahead on the product roadmap was also a huge hit. And who could forget the Onshape Design Competition that pitted expert professional and student Onshape users in a battle for top part design, top assembly design, and top FeatureScript. 

Overall winners Hans van de Burgt and Jan Bouwman were awarded the championship belt, below, for their complex diesel locomotive. Take a look at the winners for some inspiration! 

championship belt

(You can still review all the sessions from Onshape Live ’22 here on our YouTube channel).

A Look Forward – Onshape Live ’23

Onshape Live ’23 is coming up fast and will once again be emceed by Loretta. On March 1 for the Americas and March 2 for Europe, you will hear from some of the top executives at Onshape about the year past and the year ahead. 

You can also look forward to learning new product design skills in engaging breakout technical sessions. There will also be tracks focused on providing valuable content for educators and students including product demos, curriculum, research, and resources to support learning and innovation. And, of course, the design competition will be back with a big surprise this year. For more information, click below!

Onshape Live '23

All sessions are available on demand! Catch
up on the latest from the Onshape team.

A Peek Back – BattleBots Team Ghostraptor

Onshape made the foray into the world of BattleBots in 2022 by sponsoring Team Ghostraptor. And I still can’t believe I was lucky enough to live in Las Vegas where the taping of BATTLEBOTS WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP VI took place. 

Visiting the pits and sitting in on a four-hour fight session was amazing, and meeting and getting to know the team was a highlight of the year for me. They have decided to take a break this season, although I hear that one of the former members might have something up their sleeve.

ghost raptor battlebotsA render of last year’s Ghost Raptor design.

A Look Forward – BattleBots Team Switchback

But we’re not done with BattleBots just yet! This year, we’re sponsoring a new team – Switchback. I met several of the members here in Vegas recently. 

We chatted awhile about how important Onshape’s built-in collaboration tools were to the robot design process, and how the branching and merging capabilities allowed the team to iterate many different design ideas. Then, I just stood around quietly in the pits for a while watching them hustle to get ready for battle. You will hear from Team Switchback soon on an upcoming episode of the Innovator’s Insider podcast.

switchback swag
Some BattleBots swag from my last visit.

The new season of BATTLEBOTS WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP VII has started, and we are excited to watch. Catch Team Switchback and all the other contestants on the Discovery Channel Thursday nights at 8 p.m. EST.

A Peek Back – Onshape User Groups

Dozens of online Onshape User Group meetings were held in 2022 and we saw some great presentations from Onshape users Alnis Smidchens, Evan Reese, and Sam Holland among others. 

Onshape Technical Services Engineers also stepped in to share their knowledge and expertise. 

One of the most popular meetings – “The Speed Meeting” – was hosted by Onshape Ambassador Bryan Lagrange, who got the idea from the Onshape-designed Perrinn F1, and featured some awesome models from Greg Brown and Jay Tedeschi, and gave a bonus presentation on Onshape Frames capabilities. Thanks Bryan, it was a great meeting indeed!

the beginnings of a racer
Not an F1 car, but a replica of an actual racer my father built when I was seven.

Check out the public model and get some ideas for your own design!

A Look Forward – Onshape User Groups

We’ll continue to provide a hosted online meeting every two weeks in 2023. We’ve decided to hold meetings on Thursdays for no other reason than it isn’t Monday, and it isn’t Friday. 

Most meetings will be held during lunch hours, and we’ll stagger time zones to give folks as many opportunities as possible to attend. 

We are already lining up a series of meetings into February featuring Onshape Technical Services Engineers, and I plan to use my charm and powers of persuasion to convince some otherwise hesitant Onshape expert users to host a meeting of their own and/or offer to share their knowledge and skills. 

We will also continue to start every meeting fifteen minutes early for networking, model sharing, and great conversation.

A Peek Back – ‘Innovator’s Insider’ Podcast

Who woulda thunk? When Michael LaFleche and I started the Innovator’s Insider podcast in October of 2021, we didn’t know what to expect. Sure, we’ve been around the CAD industry for a long time. Yes, we were sure we could book some great guests. 

But would anyone really want to hear what we had to say? Turns out the answer was yes. We ended up posting 26 episodes in 2022, with a YouTube viewership of over 100,000 along with some 2,000-plus audio downloads.

richard and michael on the innovator's insider podcastMichael and I talking design.

A Look Forward – ‘Innovator’s Insider’ Podcast

If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. How many times have you heard an engineer say that? 

We will continue to book guests that are of interest to Onshape users, we will continue our live streams every three weeks when an Onshape upgrade is released, and we’ll continue to be extremely grateful to the people who are watching or listening every two weeks. If you would like to be notified when a new episode has been posted, subscribe to our feed.

2023 is shaping up to be another terrific year in the Onshape Community and I am very proud to be a part of it. I look forward to seeing you at future User Group meetings or interacting with you on the Onshape Forums or chatting with you and others on the podcast live streams. Let’s all get together and have a great year!

Innovator's Insider Podcast

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