Feedback on Use of the PLM Grid, What PLM Looks Like, UDEF - A Framework to Integrate Data Across Domains, 10,000 km on the Indian Highways


2PLM Newsletter

John Stark Associates                                                                                                                                               December 5, 2011 - Vol14 #18

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Feedback on Use of the PLM Grid
by John Stark
Mention of the PLM Grid in the November 21 issue of 2PLM brought feedback from several readers who have been using it in recent years. (It was introduced in a PLM Webinar series in 2005.)

They say it's been useful in many circumstances, ranging from high-level, broad-brush communication of the scope of PLM down to very specific issues such as:

  • differentiating between PDM and PLM
  • explaining the difference between Product Development and Product Lifecycle Management
  • calculating ROI for PLM
  • explaining the difference between Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) and Product Life Cycle Management (PLCM)
  • defining organisational structures in the PLM environment

The Grid is the best tool for communicating about PLM and for progressing with PLM implementation and application. It underlies PLM methodologies and provides a great framework for :
  • increasing PLM awareness
  • discussing with PLM project team members
  • communicating with business executives
  • describing the current situation of PLM
  • defining the PLM Vision, Strategy and Plan
  • discussing with vendors of PLM products and services

If you're looking for ways to progress with PLM, the PLM Grid 2012 Workshop will help you learn about PLM and the PLM Grid, and understand how to apply the Grid in your company.


John Stark can be contacted here.

What PLM Looks Like
by Roger Tempest
The PLM Grid is a proven tool to help visualise PLM. Armed with this tool, people from a wide range of backgrounds can align their thinking, and take decisions about the way to progress their implementation. It is useful for anyone who has an initial understanding of PLM, but is it "What PLM looks like"?

This issue was raised at the PLM Standardisation Workshop in London this week, in the context of: "How to encourage SMEs to adopt PLM". The previous workshop in Milan produced the PLM Handbook for SMEs, which is a tool that enables SMEs to relate to PLM from their own viewpoint. However, it does require that the SME is receptive to the idea of PLM in the first place.

The group at the IMechE worked on the question: "How can we paint a picture of PLM that will show SMEs (or any other size of company) what PLM is?"

This is a picture of a car. It is instantly recognisable, and you can step out into the street and see lots of them. Even if the car that you see is not the same, you can still tell that it is "a car" and see how it compares to the one in the picture.

This is a picture of an SME. It happens to be a small business, in a small town near the Milan Workshop, but it could be anywhere. It competes in the open marketplace, and trades with some very big customers.

What picture would you show to the owner of such a company that would enable him or her to understand PLM at a glance, and to recognise it when seen in action?

The group in London did not succeed in generating the picture, but felt that some kind of brochure of perhaps 3-5 pages would be the best format. They also felt that, collectively, PLM vendors have an immense amount of experience in this area, but present it (for obvious reasons) with a commercial slant.

Maybe it is time for the vendors to work together to help the industry by generating a neutral, powerful, yet simple picture of "What PLM looks like". The Workshop at the IMechE showed that there are many ways that this could be used to educate companies around the world.


Roger Tempest is co-founder of the PLMIG. Membership of the PLMIG is available via

UDEF - A Framework to Integrate Data Across Domains
by Ron Schuldt and Roberta Shauger
The Universal Data Element Framework (UDEF) is an enterprise-centric framework for describing data in a manner that improves understandability for enterprise decision makers while simplifying integration across functional domains.

Data residing in a data store is often cryptic and typically few people have access to it. Those people who do have access to the stored data need to understand the underlying data model, and the data is difficult to find without custom-written applications. For the most part, the data is not available or accessible to decision makers within the enterprise.

Once enterprise data has been indexed with the UDEF, the data is enabled for simpler interoperability with any other data that has been indexed with the UDEF. The time and effort to integrate data between any two applications or any two data standards indexed with the UDEF is substantially reduced; thereby substantially reducing enterprise integration costs. The effort to tag data with the UDEF is a one-time effort. Once application system data has been tagged with the UDEF Name and the UDEF Identifier, it becomes understandable, discoverable and more interoperable. If the data is both understandable and discoverable, decision makers are able to make more timely and informed decisions.

The UDEF categories are intuitive. Categories such as Product, Process, Person, Asset, Liability, Enterprise and Document are categories that require little additional explanation. Most enterprises throughout the world manage data within these categories.

An important feature of the UDEF is the language-independent indexing key that enables automated data discovery across languages. The UDEF open standard is available in English, Dutch, and French with the addition of other languages in process. 

When using the UDEF for indexing enterprise data, it is analogous to using the Dewey Decimal System for indexing books in a library.

No single data standard is sufficient to address all data integration requirements for all enterprises. Data standards are typically based on data models that are constrained to specific domains such as product definition, manufacturing, logistics, human resources, finance, health care and procurement. Since there are numerous points of intersection between domains, the need exists to reduce this vocabulary integration effort with a framework that transcends domains. The UDEF satisfies this requirement since it is not a data standard but rather a framework capable of integrating data standards.

The first published book about the UDEF, "UDEF - Six Steps to Cost Effective Data Integration", is now available and can be purchased at

The simple Six Step process described in detail in the book will enable UDEF adopters to substantially reduce the costs associated with the integration of application systems while improving data quality and enabling data interoperability.

The book is a "must read" for enterprise information technology decision makers who are looking for ways to reduce the costs of integrating data within the enterprise or across enterprises while simultaneously unlocking the data that resides in the enterprise applications.


The book was co-authored by Ronald Schuldt and Roberta Shauger of UDEF-IT, LLC. Ron can be reached at



10,000 km on the Indian Highways  
Ramesh Kumar usually writes about logistics issues, but on page 33 of the November 2010 issue of Logistic Times, he wrote about PLM. Having overcome that challenge, he's now written his first book, "10,000 km on the Indian Highways", which is available from AM Books. 

Overseas buyers can buy the pdf version at US$5 each copy. Hardcopy is US$8.50 plus actual courier charges. Order requests should be sent to They will provide banking details to remit money. On receipt of the same, book will be dispatched. 


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PLM News

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ESI Group announced the finalization of a 7-year 30 million euro syndicated credit line to pursue its growth strategy. Details

3D Systems Corp. announced that it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Z Corporation and Vidar Systems for $137 million in cash from Contex Group. Details 


aPriori announced results for its second quarter in fiscal 2012 completed October 31. Details 


EON Reality Inc. announced that Ken Swain has been appointed their Business Development Director in the United Kingdom. Details

Mentor Graphics Corp. announced it has appointed Michael Vishny as vice president and chief human resources officer. Details 


Autodesk, Inc. announced that Andritz has adopted Autodesk Vault product data management software. Details

Autodesk, Inc. announced use of a broad spectrum of Autodesk products by Metso. Details

Autodesk, Inc. announced use of Autodesk Design Suite by Marcello Martino Design. Details

AVEVA announced Nobiskrug has invested in the AVEVA Enterprise Resource Management product family. Details

Catalog Data Solutions announced that its SaaS Catalog and CAD download solution is live on Details 

Dassault Systemes announced that Tawazun Precision Industries disclosed its deployment of Dassault Systemes' ENOVIA Version 6. Details

Dassault Systemes announced that Pierre Fabre Laboratories has selected its ENOVIA Version 6 solution. Details

Dassault Systemes announced that Lumenis has selected ENOVIA Version 6. Details

Gerber Technology announced that Koi Design LLC selected Gerber Technology's AccuMark pattern design system and YuniquePLM product lifecycle management software. Details

INUS Technology Inc. announced that Hyundai Motor Company is using Rapidform XOR and Rapidform XOV. Details

MSC Software Corp. announced that JSC SNSZ utilized MSC Software's structural analysis solutions. Details

Tata Technologies announced it is providing PLM solutions implementation, and training in those solutions, to Fisker Automotive. Details 


Actify Inc. announced SpinFire 10.1. Details

Actify Inc. announced that Centro 5.0 will ship to customers in December. Details

ASCON Group announced the release of KOMPAS-3D V13. Details

Autodesk, Inc. previewed Autodesk 360 for PLM - a new solution designed to transform how manufacturers manage the entire lifecycle of a product--from its conception, through design and manufacture, partner and supplier management, procurement, quality, compliance, service and more. Details

CD-adapco announced the release of STAR-Cast v1.10. Details

Dassault Systemes announced the availability of CATIA Natural Sketch. Details

Lectra announced the launch of Versalis Auto. Details

Mentor Graphics Corp. announced the next generation of the FloEFD concurrent computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulation product. Details

MSC Software Corp. announced its new release of SimXpert 2012. Details 

 Product                         Lifecycle                         Management: Paradigm for 21st Century Product                         Realisation

Oracle announced Agile PLM for Process 6.1, a new release of Oracle's Agile Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) for Process. Details

Oracle announced a new release of Oracle's Primavera Contract Management, Business Intelligence Publisher Edition. Details

Rasterex Software announced the release of RxView & RxHighlight R13. Details

Tetra 4D announced Version 3.3 of 3D PDF Converter. Details

3D Systems Corp. announced availability of Accura Sapphire. Details 


Aras announced that Labyrinth Solutions has joined the Aras Partner Program. Details

Aras announced that Wideburg Solutions GmbH has joined the Aras Partner Program. Details

Dassault Systemes and Capgemini announced the signature of an alliance around the integration of Dassault Systemes' PLM Version 6 solutions. Details

Lightworks announced its partnership with ZWSOFT. Details

PRION GmbH announced it signed an Alliance Agreement with Siemens PLM Software. Details 


Autodesk, Inc. announced it named A-dec, Inc. as Autodesk Inventor of the Month for November 2011. Details

Centric Software announced that Vistage International has named Chris Groves, CEO of Centric Software, Inc., a finalist in its 2011 Member Leadership Awards. Details

Dassault Systemes announced the launch of FashionLab. Details

Delcam announced that its Delcam for SolidWorks system was presented with the Ringier Technology Innovation Award for CADCAM software by International Metalworking News for China. Details

MSC Software Corp. announced a new Research Assist Program. Details

QUMAS announced that it has been honored with the 'Sustained Excellence Award' by IT@Cork. Details

Zuken announced that it has developed an Electronic Design Interchange Format (EDIF) writer for Intel Schematic Review based on its electronic design automation (EDA) solutions. Details 


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