Using Free and Little Known Resources to Maximize Your Investment in Autodesk Products and Subscriptions

The Autodesk Industry Report has been created for our many colleagues in the Autodesk Report Industry. We call it the Autodesk “Industry” because with over 170 Autodesk Products, the global collection of employees, end users, customers, suppliers, developers, consultants and consumers who use or benefit from products designed by Autodesk is growing rapidly.

The space defies a single vertical categorization and includes sectors such as architecture, engineering, construction, manufacturing, design, facilities management, innovation, R&D, modeling, BIM (building information modeling), infrastructure, media, entertainment, arts, illustration, simulation, 3D modeling, virtual reality, augmented reality, animation, renderings, gaming, etc.

This expansive group that uses one or more of the Autodesk products are defining the global future of sectors, countries, states, cities and in some cases lives.

At HingePoint, we specialize in Autodesk related platforms and have for over 20 years. It is what we do. And as experts on the Autodesk platforms, we are challenged to keep up with the furious pace of innovation and new products coming from Autodesk.

To help our internal teams, we have tools and checklists to quickly access necessary Autodesk resources required to teach, train, experiment, and engage with the Autodesk community. Topics range from automation and software integration to end-user “how to” questions on new features, releases and products.

As a member of the ADN (Autodesk Developer Network), we are keenly aware of the many resources available for those working in the industry. So we deconstructed, compiled, and packaged all of our favorite resources into a single “Autodesk Industry Report”.

Why compile the report?

Because we are engineers, architects, designers and practitioners just like you with a passion for following the engineering creed to put “service and public welfare” above all else. It’s part of our core values and why we hope it’s as valuable to you, as to us.

Note: We have certain Autodesk tools and resources that we favor. They work for us, we get a good ROI, and therefore we like them. So to keep certain recommendations objective, we commissioned independent researchers and editors to evaluate and rank resources to steer you quickly to the best options.

Photo-realistic 3D Rendering

Autodesk develops some of the most powerful and effective software in the AEC industry. For a novice or intermediate user, having a bit of outside help can make a big difference in how productive you are. From “how to create specific design elements” to locating the program control elements, Autodesk community forums help bring experienced professionals together to make the workflow process easier.  We put a list together of the best forums and scored them so that you can focus your time on the best forums. [Read the full chapter]

One of the most efficient ways to maximize the ROI on your Autodesk subscriptions is to leverage Application Programming Interfaces, or APIs, that come with many Autodesk products. We’ve curated a list of the best blogs out there and scored them based on post frequency, qualify of content, how complete the API is and how long the blog has been in existence. [Read the full chapter]

Autodesk products are not designed to be simple, they aren’t like iPhone apps. You need to invest time in learning their capabilities. You must then learn the way your company and clients need you to use them to produce work output such as CAD (computer aided design) drawings, Revit 3D models, BIM models and CAM (computer aided manufacturing) precision. As you can imagine, it is a big investment for companies to train employees up the learning curve. To help bridge the gap in quality training, there is a huge demand for free training and resources. If you are eager to learn and don’t have money to invest in further training, you’ll find this list of free training sources invaluable! [Read the full chapter]

Autodesk has been working hard to migrate apps to the cloud and mobile devices. This is a huge departure from their roots as the most successful desktop computing software for CAD. In years past, Autodesk acquired and developed mobile apps at such speed it was tough to track them all.  Today, you can find a clean and tidy summary of all the Autodesk Mobile Apps in this chapter! [Read the full chapter]

The Autodesk App Exchange is an impressive new innovation that showcases just how open and extensible the Autodesk products can be. The app exchange is full of plugins by 3rd party developers developed for all the Autodesk software. Chapter 5 provides a quick guide on what you can find in the Apps store. [Read the full chapter]

Autodesk uses a variety of social media profiles to provide users a wealth of up to date, real time, and free information. The challenge with having so many sites, is finding the time to locate, evaluate and bookmark each site.  Heck you may never find them all! We’ve helped by collecting an extensive list of the top sites to save you the time and hassle. These sites are a fantastic way to get a great return on your Autodesk investment. [Read the full chapter]

There are many industry groups that participate in, and contribute to the Autodesk community. Chapter 7 covers some of the unique ones worth bookmarking. [Read the full chapter]

Information about HingePoint, a consulting firm based out of Dallas, Texas providing results based BIM (Building Information Modeling) outsourcing, BIM Systems and Autodesk consulting and development. [Read the full chapter]