IMSI/design may be best known for TurboCAD, but now they branching off to something a little bit different: plug-ins for AutoCAD. Their new IDX division has one now in public beta, the Variable Constraint System. It lets you do the following with AutoCAD:
-- draw something, automatically apply constraints, and then adjust the constraints to force dimensions and geometries.
-- modify constrained objects, maintaining design rules for proportionality, centering, and so on.
-- embed intelligence in drawings, such as controlling how linkages move.
-- adjust 2D drawings, and then use them to create 3D models.
-- have parts drawn in different sizes and configurations by changing their parameters.
The plug-in uses the 2D dimensional constraint manager from D-Cubed, and this is the same technology used by Inventor, CATIA, SolidWorks, and Solid Edge. Free for now from IDX-design.com, but once it starts to ship, the plug-in'll cost you $499.
IMSI/design -- er, IDX -- has already pre-announced several other plug-ins:
* Renditioner for Google SketchUp
* A/CAD Viewer for the Mac