This is my first experience as a blogger. Ever. No idea if it will work out or not. Let's see together.
I had been working at Open CASCADE for 7 years till 2004, before moved to Intel where I am now. These were fantastic years, that gave me invaluable experience in software development and project management, customer relationship, and working across multiple geos and cultures.
My path started in 1997 as a software engineer in the CAD Data Exchange team, and this proved to be lucky as it allowed to learn much of the OCC code, as data exchange employs multiple OCC algorithms. If you ever happened to look into the source code of IGES, STEP, or Shape Healing modules you have probably noticed either my full name there (e.g. in IGESToBRep_IGESBoundary.cxx) , or an acronym 'rln' (e.g. in ShapeFix_Wire.cxx). Every Open CASCADE employee has an acronym, widely used internally (I remember meeting minutes containing something like "Attendees: ABV, PDN, GKA, SMH, SZV, ..."). RLN was mine. By the way, it was funny not to find this system in Intel which is overwhelmed with TLAs (Three Letter Acronyms), people use first names here (sometimes with a first letter of a last name - for example, Roman S - if there are several Romans in context).
I'm still in quite close touch with the Open CASCADE team, we are friends with many guys there. Even at Intel from time to time I dive into OCC to check what is new there, and take a chance to develop something(a few weeks ago I prototyped a framework for multi-threading in OCC).
So why a blog ? What is it for ?
- To share my inspiration. Sometimes I cannot resist to reply being caught by some question on the forum or to break for a lunch in the middle of some started prototype. Can you imagine a crazy guy who would develop a corporate product at home because his job did not imply his doing that in working hours? Well, that was about me in 2001 when I switched to full time management. Despite all its deficiencies, I believe OCC is a great product but substantially undervalued, imho. It does not have recognition it could have.
- To share knowledge and help others. There are people struggling on the forum asking same questions again and again, which I could answer in a matter of seconds. Reference documentation is not always enough, sometimes an overview would be a better option.
Is there anything in it for me ? First off, to learn more about who and how uses it. Visiting customers in the past, I saw impressive OCC-based apps so that I was ready to shout 'how did you do that ?'. So, if people would like share their tricks, I will be happy to learn with others. Software skills are important to maintain.
I am thinking to put my notes into the form of short (or not so short) articles that would be interesting for a community. So, if you already have some particular interest please advise what you would like to see.
A few clarifications:
- This blog is not supposed to be a one-way channel. Comments are encouraged and appreciated. Opinions and experiences are welcomed. If anyone will be ready to add his/her own article, then it will be great.
- I don't know all tiny details of OCC (and doubt there is a single person to meet that expectation). There are shadow areas, which I am not ready to comment upfront. But I can dig into it or share some insights as needed. Again, if there are people with deeper knowledge, their contribution will be invaluable.
- And yes, this blog is my personal initiative, in no way is it sponsored by Open CASCADE or any other parties.