Wayland, MA – Vuuch, creator of the first enterprise social system (ESS) for manufacturers, today announced the availability of Vuuch™ 3.5. Vuuch is social technology for manufacturers of tangible products – everything from airplanes to toasters. By applying social technology to the product development process, Vuuch revolutionizes the way products are designed and manufactured. Following closely on the recent release of Vuuch 3.0, Vuuch 3.5 leverages software-as-a-service (SaaS) to respond rapidly to customer requirements. SaaS also makes it possible for customers to easily employ Vuuch, even for product development projects already under way.
“Vuuch is an enterprise social system that understands products, people and how they interact. As a result, Vuuch allows product teams to work together in ways that traditional collaborative extensions to product lifecycle management (PLM) products do not,” said Chris Williams, CEO, Vuuch. “Much of today’s existing manufacturing technology is focused on record-keeping – recording the final decisions about the design or manufacture of a product. By contrast, Vuuch is focused on the decision-making process, which helps manufacturers reap sustainable competitive advantage. With Vuuch, design, finance, production, marketing and sales decisions are made faster and more accurately than ever before.”
New and improved features in Vuuch 3.5
Import of product assemblies and parts from SolidWorks®.
The Vuuch 3.5 SolidWorks plugin now allows designers to automatically populate Vuuch with the entire CAD product structure. Thereafter, the complete set of social technology features of Vuuch 3.5 are available to manage tasks, issues, discussions and the deliverables associated with the product structure.
Once imported to Vuuch 3.5, the CAD model becomes a “decision-based” bill-of-materials (BOM) that helps the product development team manage the product through all phases of its development. Each activity in Vuuch can be directly represented in the CAD model, linking the product design with all the metadata about that part and/or assembly. Vuuch maintains the representation of items in the SolidWorks model without requiring any change in CAD file management, a major convenience for users.
A Vuuch page represents something the team cares about and/or wants to track. In previous releases, Vuuch pages could represent Microsoft® Office® items, including Microsoft Word®, PowerPoint®, Excel® files as well as parts, products and CAD files. A “generic” Vuuch page type allowed users to represent answer common questions like, “What Word files am I working on for this project?” “What issues are there with a specific part?” and “Who has been invited to follow this SolidWorks file?”
In Vuuch 3.5, users can now create Vuuch pages that represent anything they choose. Examples of custom pages include an engineering change order (ECO) page or a company-specific page to track a unique product feature or process. Custom page types can also be created to represent an entire product.
Each custom page takes advantage of the ESS’s full capabilities: activities can be created on that custom page, users can be dynamically invited to follow it, and it will appear in users’ lists as a new Vuuch page that can be sorted and searched. With Vuuch custom pages, the ESS’s power to represent items the team cares about is now unlimited.deliverables other these. By sorting on the type of deliverable, users can quickly
Domain management and administration.
Vuuch 3.5 now offers authorized users the ability to view and analyze information about Vuuch usage across their company. Once properly authorized, domain administrators may access useful statistical and analytical information including the number of Vuuch pages that have been created, the types of Vuuch pages that have been created and domain-wide usage. With domain management, Vuuch users can easily determine where problems and issues are being created and can roll up this information for reporting and analysis. It is important to remember that Vuuch domain administration does not impose a user administration burden on the domain manager, as is customary in legacy collaboration systems. Vuuch users still “friend” and “follow” Vuuch pages dynamically, using the system’s social features, all without the need for pre-defined access control lists.
New activity types.
Three new activity types have been added to Vuuch pages. Info and FAQ activity types permit invited participants of the activity to develop content designed for public consumption, while limiting uninvited participants to viewing the conclusions and outcomes of that activity. In this way, social technology can be used to unite the development of content that has both public and private aspects. A Requirements activity has also been added that allows product development teams to specifically flag an activity as something that impacts the product design or manufacture.
In Vuuch 3.5, users’ home pages have been enhanced to automatically display three sets of graphs. One of these graphs shows the number of pages the user is following by status. Another displays overdue Vuuch activities, categorizing the overdue work by the number of days it has been outstanding. The final graph displays the due dates of upcoming Vuuch activities, again categorizing them graphically by the number of days until those activities are due. Clicking any of the bars in these new graphical widgets produces a list of the selected activities, allowing users to focus on the product development tasks and issues that need their attention the most.
Pricing, availability and supported systems
Vuuch is available as an annual subscription. Users who create Vuuch pages require a paid license. Other users may access those pages and update those pages without a paid license. With the launch of Vuuch 3.5, the company is offering special introductory pricing of $250 per year per Vuuch page creation license.
Vuuch 3.5 is delivered as a service, so there is no installation or setup needed. The Vuuch 3.5 web UI supports major browsers, including Microsoft Internet Explorer®, Mozilla Firefox® and Google® Chrome®. Optional Vuuch add-ins allow team members to access the ESS directly from within Microsoft Office 2007, SolidWorks®, Autodesk® AutoCAD®, Autodesk Inventor® and Pro/ENGINEER®.
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