Steve Johnson this morning makes very good arguments against porting AutoCAD to the Macintosh (at Why AutoCAD for Mac is a bad idea), but I disagree with him.
Mr Johnson argues that Windows has its roots infecting (my word) too much of AutoCAD; in any case, Autodesk's $250 million worth of personal and other cuts should prevent it from spending the manpower and dollars on coding a Mac version.
He summarizes, "Reversing or working around that [Windows->Mac] process is a very substantial undertaking."
I disagree. Creating new CAD programs is trivial these days. Even one-man programmers do it, like the touchscreen-oriented MoI. 'Nother example: small CAD company IMSI/design produced the better-than-LT DoubleCAD in under two years (I think that was the timeframe). An example from Autodesk Labs: the new Project Dragonfly online "CAD" program.
I suspect that Autodesk would not port AutoCAD/Win to the Mac. They would start from scratch, linking code modules to create something fresh that happens to use AutoCAD's command structure/APIs and reads/saves in DWG format -- all wrapped in the OS X interface.
They would... they would be reading a Mac version of Deelip Menezes' book, "OpenCAD: A Step by Step Guide to Developing a Professional CAD Application." But instead of using ODA's APIs, Autodesk'd use their own.
(On the other point: Autodesk is not just firing employees; Autodesk is also hiring in some areas.)
The tough one is whether Acad/Mac would sell, and here I agree with Mr Johnson, who writes, "Any Mac user with any sense wouldn’t touch the first new Mac release with a bargepole." While today's Mac market is hundreds of times larger than when Autodesk made its original attempt 20 years ago, a brand-new Acad/Mac today must compete against established vendors -- VectorWorks, Graphisoft, Ashlar Vellum, and so on -- who spent the last 20 years improving their Mac-based software.
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At time of writing this, the Macheads must still be asleep; 67% of the comments are begging for AutoCAD/Linux.