CATIA xGenerative Design

So Looks like Dassualt is finally entering the graphical scripting realm.

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The interesting thing is looks like it can build the script in the background based on what you do to the model kind of like if “history” built it’s own grasshopper script. Which could either be a plus or minus depending on what you are trying to accomplish.

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I wonder how it manages to interpret constraints and geometry defined by Catia plugins. Or is there no such thing?

We use catia and have tested the xGenerative design. Not impressed, maybe in 10 yrs it will be productive, but GH now will still run circles around it.

I’d say no such thing. Usually if someone develops a useful plugin for 3DEXPERIENCE(CATIAv6) soon becomes part of Dassault :smiley:

I bet xGenerative Design was developed as plugin then integrated (after company aquisition).

About the geometry, I believe all data is being saved to/read from the database.

xGen has very much improved since the beta and is an extremely powerful and welcome addition to the 3DExperience platform providing a much faster tool set for development of wireframe driver geometry.

The key benefit over grasshopper IMHO, apart from being browser based and on cloud ehich is in itself impressive, is its bi-directional relationship with the CATIA tree/model. That is, what you build in the graph is modifiable in the tree and vice versa — no baking!

I wouldn’t understimate it… It just may be the tool that makes CATIA more accessible to designers, specifically in the AEC sector.

Have a look at the demo below…


does it give access to modules like ISD? Or is it just a GUI clone of Grasshopper, exposing functionality which is part of the COM Library anyway?

It does not… It is essentially a graph editor for CATIA’s modelling core allowing you to create and modify geometry in a 3DShape. Does not let you create whole product structures or access specialised apps (e.g. sheet metal, simulia, etc).

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Can it do fillets, trims ?

Is it included with 3d Experience? What does it cost?

Catia accesible? For designers? Which designers? Designers and companies in the AEC sector must be doing very very well to afford such tools. Who are they? Do these companies buy seat for all designers? How many of them can run it at once? Do they also have any money left for competitive salaries? Health insurance? 40h work-weeks?

We are running an industrial design studio here, so far things are healthy, profitable, and with good budgets to give people very good compensation, and buy very good software, hardware, training for the team. Still… there’s absolutely no chance we could ever afford Catia, or NX.

I really don’t understand comments like yours Guido. I don’t see how anyone except a few giant companies can afford such software. The only people I know that use NX (similarly priced to Catia, a bit cheaper actually) are either:

  • multi-billion dollars enterprises
  • solo operators who specialize in NX/Catia consulting.
  • people who steal software (not making a dime for Dassault/Siemens)

Am I missing something here?



Even with an expert and several proficient users we still have to outsource custom coded items ($$$$). What i’m starting to produce after 2 years in Rhino Grasshopper is immeasurably more productive than Catia. Granted, its held its weight on several large and complex projects but GH/Rhino will prevail due to its usability and flexibility.

All Dassault products are too expensive! I think that is their greatest drawback.

I don‘t understand that as well. However, since its rather engineering software you should not underestimate the spread of legal licenses. Especially in Central Europe there are thousands of companies using Catia and many of them do not earn billions. Even freelancer get access to it because they get a temporary license from bigger companies.

I think its not bad to demand a high price for a very powerful or specialized software, its just not right to demand annual fees without any real benefit! But this is not only a Dassault specific problem.

In addition to that, I think the biggest problem of a „designer“ is the acceptance for the complexity and difficulty of his/her work. I mean there are millions of self declared designers out there :wink:
At least many don‘t see this equally demanding as engineering. I believe this lack of acceptance is one reason why designers and architects have so much trouble nowadays; why they having trouble enforcing high salaries for design services and as a consequence cannot afford overpriced software.

Another aspect, since „cheaper“ CAD progresses day by day, the return of investment for highend software gets smaller and smaller. There are so many examples: Rhino - Autocad, Solidworks - (basic) Catia. Alias - Icem Surf with Modules, Affinity - Photoshop/Illustrator, Blender - 3dsMax/Maya etc…

Same for XGenerative or Dynamo. The only reason to switch over as a design engineer would be when having a real benefit. One reason: having access to a better geometrical kernel, but that means having access to all advanced functionality. In my current specialisation it might be an attractive alternative. I‘m just pretty disappointed by Dynamo for Alias…

Hi Gustavo

I think no, as far as we only speak about ‘pure’ design of new products.

But NX etc. AFAIK are often used (I’d say ‘required’) for suppliers of large automotive/aerospace companies.
If you make production equipment and the like for, say, FCA you are usually required to, at least, read and write NX/Catia/etc. file format.

Yes, these licences are not cheap, but if you are, say, a mould maker, you usually spend much more money for things like machining centers, tools, raw material (steel), other components (screws, springs etc.)


The cloud-based collaborative nature reminds a little of what was trying to do. It will be interesting to see how speckle and other efforts will compare to xGen Design

Hi @gustojunk,
:smiley: thank you for your comment it is hilarious. By that I don’t mean not true.

  • French Government-funded corporations.
  • DS Partners
  • DS Resalers
  • DS subsidiaries.
  • Some very knowledgaeble and successful (legit) freelancers.

Porsche uses Rhino and grasshopper along with Catia and Alias.


You should really differentiate between CATIAv5 and CATIAv6 (3DEXPERIENCE)!

It’s going to be v6. v6 is cloud-based and v5 is local. They are the same price but v6 is locked to a user and v5 is locked to a seat so multiple people can use it.

That is not correct. v6 on premise and v6 on-cloud are two quite different things.

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