you're concept of "play" is exactly how I teach my FIRST robotics teams Creo in the off-season. I encourage the kids to pick something cool or interesting...phone, bike, skate-board, whatever. Usually I get a ton of questions on creating funky features and I'm often learning new things from them as they learn.
My dream is to have a 3D printer in each of the schools that I work with, so they can actually print out their projects once they are done. There's nothing like creating something on a computer and then holding the real deal in your hand. Many of my robotics kids get the real deal out of sheetmetal, off a lathe or a CNC Mill, but we try to reduce frivolous items due to cost.
In the UK the Design & technology Association set up a network of funded 3D printers that could be used by schools to create their 3D products. Details on the Digital Design & Tchnology website.
I have been using one of the UP! 3D Printers marketed by Denford, which costs £1500 GBP - easy to use and produces quality outcomes. Could any of your schools afford one? May cost less in other countries.
Have you schools willing to do the same in whatever country you operate in.
Also have you considered using 123D Make - a free download from AutoDesk as a way of making 3D items using a laser. Can produce great results and you don't have to use any particular software for the source files just save as STL files.
I think I've seen that printer in MAKE magazine, very cool! Since I work with robotics teams, my hope is really to have the kids design their own printer. Just haven't gotten there yet
It sounds like education is going in the right direction in the UK!
So I have given this program 6 months and I have come to the conclusion that it is officially the worst piece of software I have ever used in my life. That's it. No explanation needed. It's garbage.
After the bajillionth crash, the decision has been made.
Funny thing is...I tried to tell them, but how they have their Case Logger and eSupport Portal set up, I do not have access to tell them these things since I don't have administrative rights to the SCN (which is further proof of this whole ecosystem being terrible).
I could go through my CAD admin, but he is already well aware of how I feel about this system. He hears my euphemized WTF!!! each time it crashes as his cube is adjacent to mine.
I really tried to like it and have gone through hoards of online tutorials, but I just cannot deal with a program that seems to hate me for some reason. It can't handle how fast I go through things...it's always stalling or unresponsive, or just gives me a fatal error message.
'Maybe I'll like it tomorrow.' That's what I have to keep telling myself.
Wow. The way PTC released Creo with all the pomp and circumstance, I was really hoping it would be a great thing. I'm still on WF5 but we're thinking of moving to Creo 2 soon. After reading all this, I'm hoping we stay on WF5 for a while longer...
Big words, nice looking package and customers' hopes/wishes that new product will solve their problems and frustrations, is what sells the product. Like I said before, software is the only product you can start selling before it's even finished.
Currently, we have an issue with Creo when one workstation cannot open the part, even you can select it in File-Open window,, while other stations can open the same file just fine. Also, it loks like Creo has mind of its own. You get used to something in one way and then all of sudden you cannot do it that way and you have to find new way.
For seasoned users, it is not nearly as bad as all that. Yes, you need to relearn pretty much all the commands in where to find them and where to find your prompts... if there are any. Face it, advanced functions have -always- been criptic! This is not a Creo induced issue.
But I have to admit, after nearly a year, I've ventured a lot further in Creo than I would have in earlier versions.
If all you do is make sheetmetal or machine parts and assemblies, literally any version of Pro|E will work just fine. When you start to stray from the fray, so to say, you might like Creo after a while.
Again, the stipulation for "seasoned users" is a significant distinction here because you already know the limitations of the software. These have not changed. There is a much steeper learning curve if you're coming from another platform all together.
As for stability, the Creo 2.0 releases have been very stable. I've lost a file to corruption that I traced back to using images as 3D underlays, I still have license issues on occasion, and the learning connector fails every so often on a Java update. But if your hardware is robust (read: approved), it seems to work much better today than Creo 1.0 F000 did. My workstation is a Dell M6600 laptop with the Nvidia 3000M. Graphics drivers is another story... Just don't update to the Nvidia drivers, only Dell drivers seem to work correctly.
And for a user to not have access to CS is -criminal-! I don't know how this works but every user should have access to the support pages. Without that, problems will never be vetted. And you have to drive these issues. CS does everything they can to -not- have to report a problem. Somehow it either reflects on them or it is simply too difficult to get a SPR submitted. Regardless, I don't let issues drop. If it is a problem, I need a solution. So if your company policy it to drive issues through an IT guy, make it happened. But I highly recommend reconsideration of this policy. There are already too many layers between you and a solution.
Thanks for the response Antonius...very in depth.
I have calmed down a bit from this morning after speaking with a nice woman from eServices who sent my everpresent qualms to the Global Support team and set up a case for me with a Tech Support engineer.
I am driving on a Dell 4600 with an Nvidia 1000M (which should be approved). I am hoping that the Tech Support engineer is able to modify my configuration or settings so that it does not have these recurring issues.
If the Global Support team reads my frustrations and suggestions for improvement, I am hoping that the next release becomes more of a friend than a foe.
Maybe I'll like it tomorrow.