A lot happened while I was on vacation, and I’m still trying to catch up. A couple more headline-y bits from the overflowing inbox:

Spaceclaim 2011+
Spaceclaim last week announced the 2011+ release of its eponymous software. This release has a heavy focus on building out the sheet metal offering as the company leverages its partnership with TRUMPF, a global leader in sheet metal fabrication machinery. Blake Courter, SpaceClaim’s Director of Customer Development, told me that the 2011+ release gives sheet metal users the vast majority of the tools needed to get the job done and puts SpaceClaim far ahead of its competitors. They’ve put online the sheet metal demo (here) and you can see the hinge, double wall, gusset, bead and notch capabilities. Also in the release are model prep enhancements for CAE and integration with COMSOL, Optimus, modeFRONTIER, and Enmesh; and performance improvements.

Spaceclaim is an interesting little beast. It started with a big splash, then got more modest as it grew a bit and wanted to coexist with the other CAD players. But now it seems the gloves are off, as Spaceclaim starts to talk about competitive displacements departments of large enterprises.

Delcam reports revenue up 13% so far in 2011
Delcam, the UK CAM company, reported results for the first six months of 2011 while I was away. Sales increased 13% to £20 million, continuing the trend of record performance for each of the last three six-month periods. Software revenue was up 17% to £10.5 million while maintenance revenue was up 10% to £9 million. The company says that it has seen “improved performance in most of the territories in which we operate”, with strongest overall sales is the US and Germany, and fastest growth in new software licenses in China, Korea, Indonesia and India. Pre-tax profit for the period was £1.51 million. up a very healthy 87% over last year. The company believes that the second half of 2011 will continue the trends set in the first half. Delcam says that the high level of machine tool sales that were reported for the year so far are typically followed by higher levels of software sales, which the company hopes will lift it to it traditionally strong fourth quarter. But Delcam did hedge its bets a bit, telling investors that “the impact of the current global financial markets on our performance remains difficult to judge with certainty”.

Autodesk acquires Numenus ray tracing technology
Numenus is a 2 year old German company that sought to commercialize the founder’s PhD thesis work. RenderGin creates creates photorealistic design renderings for designers, engineers and marketing professionals. With this acquisition, Autodesk believes users will see higher fidelity surface visualizations while spending less time preparing quality visualization data.

Autodesk typically buys a technology for a specific vertical or use and then makes it more broadly applicable and available. RenderGin is originally intended to the automotive design workflow — but don’t be surprised if it crops up elsewhere in the offering.