Image courtesy flickr user  Rebecca L. Daily

While you’re out buying flowers and chocolates for your Valentine (you did remember to, didn’t you?), others were making news.

First off, Rand Worldwide announced results for the quarter ended December 31. Total revenue was down 4% year/year to $21.6 million, even as the company’s overall gross margin percentage rose from 47% to 50.5%. The company didn’t explain much in its press release (and has not scheduled an earnings call), so we have to infer what happened, but commission revenue increased nicely, from $4.5 a year ago to $5.5 million last quarter, so it would appear that the Autodesk-related business is doing well. Indeed, CEO Marc Dulude said that the company has been awarded “several specialization designations from Autodesk based on our demonstrated expertise in the areas of PLM, Simulation, Consulting, Plant and MEP Systems Engineering.”  Product sales took the biggest hit last quarter,  dropping 18% year/year to $10.5 million. Even so, President and CFO Lawrence Rychlak said that he is “very confident about the prospects for our archiving business, as sales levels have exceeded our expectations and the pipeline of new opportunities continues to grow.” I’ll update if more information becomes available.

Do you remember that at last year’s user conference PTC’s Brian Shepherd teased a preconfigured Windchill for small deployments? It’s here! PTC Windchill PDM Essentials, about which you can read much more here, to be sold only by PTC’s channel partners and, according to the company, will be installed and configured via wizards, “providing customers with greater value in less time and at a much lower cost”. It’s interesting to note that PDM Essentials will “vault and revision control of CAD models, their structures and relationships” for PTC Creo, AutoCAD, SolidWorks, Inventor, Pro/ENGINEER, PTC Creo Elements/Direct, and PTC Mathcad — but not Solid Edge, NX, or CATIA. Hmm. I’ve asked for a demo, so will update soon.

Finally, for those who forgot all about Valentine’s Day (or aren’t crazy about its commercial aspects), here’s a lovely way to express your feelings: make an origami heart with instructions from Make magazine.

Image courtesy flickr user Rebecca L. Daily.

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