Call for action. Building CAD/CAM/CAE development resource index

by - 16:06

After I have started this blog there were a few inquiries from people asking to share resources that would help novices to better understand the CAD/CAM/CAE (CAx) world. I shared what I had (well, some links got broken over time), and thought this could be of a broader interest, virtually for anyone in the development community.

Can we all together try this out and build some useful list ? Let's think how to make and to maintain it manageable. For instance, is there any ready-to-use rating mechanism that visitors could use to rate the usefulness of every resource ? Please advise if you know such.

Anyway, let's start with something simple and see how it goes.

As a first step, I suggest a simple one-level classification. Let's first focus on CAx.

- Theory (books, papers, articles, courses on mathematical apparatus and models)
- Software (geometric kernels, libraries, components, etc)
- Developers communities (forums, blogs, wiki's etc dedicated to CAx development)
- Informational resources (portals, newsletters, etc)
- Models (2D or 3D models in neutral or proprietary formats that can be freely used)

Provide your links using comments to this post. Include category, brief description and advantages of the resource (up to 50 words). The goal is not to have it exhausted but to contain most useful links. So, if there are resources that outshine others, we will not hesitate to remove some.

If you have any ideas how to make this most useful, please speak up.

So, let's try...

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  1. A few links to start

    - Gerald Farin, Curves and Surfaces for CAGD: A Practical Guide Among frequently referenced books on geometric modeling. Did not read personally.
    - Jean Gallier, Curves and Surfaces in Geometric Modeling: Theory and Algorithms Among frequently referenced books on geometric modeling. Did not read personally.
    - Interactive tutorial on geometric modeling in CAD
    - a collection of links on NURBS theory from opennurbs

    - VTK (Visualization Toolkit). Open Source visualization library with wide adoption (including Salome)
    - Open NURBS. Open Source library for manipulating B-Splines, from Rhino3D creator.

  2. I'd started a set of OCC-based links on the qtocc links pages, with some simple comments.


  3. Hello Roman,

    IMHO, the Right Place is

    By the way, recently I recognized existence of - some people use it to host documentation for their software projects


  4. Blogs

    A list, mostly CAM papers:

    One guy's publications, some of which are CAM related.

    CAD and CAM programs - "a community driven resource for open source software"

  5. Another bunch of links:

  6. All my OCC bookmarks.
    *Fixes for OCC
    *CAD-CAE products
    *OCC/SALOME modules


  7. Hey folks !
    Thanks for putting this stuff together.
    For future posters: for common convenience it would be helpful if you provided brief annotations to your links (or groups of).

    2 Andrey:
    Yes, good point. Though entry points for CAD, CAM and CAE you can find other theory references. As an example, an article on NURBS ( seems quite educating.
    I recently came across which seemingly lacks contents (yet).

  8. General blogs:
    Matt Writes:

    2D CAD:
    Not Onpen Source "Must Have":
    Pure python:
    Win32 only:
    FRONTIER geometric constraint solver

    An other (?) Heeks product (see previous post for CAD-CAE):

  9. The obvious place is to set up a wikiproject machining under one of:

    I've discussed what I can do here:

    Using Wikipedia is a very clear choice (if I can persuade anyone here) for the following reasons:

    (a) It's an extremely powerful set of on-line collaborative tools for organizing links, summaries and topics.

    (b) The current information on CAM is a mess and we can hold open chats on the discussion pages to work out the structure we think is right.

    (c) More people are going to find information there than on any blog, so it will get more views and more recruits willing to contribute

    (d) Anything put there will persist and be available for revival, unlike so many crufty old catalogues on the net that get out of date when the people running them get bored.

    If you want to starting with some familiarity, drop me a note on my user/discussion page if you need help with improving:

    Here's the article I made for my former employer. Admire all the *very* obscure citations used to build up the final paragraph!

  10. Well, it's not wikipedia, but I requested a wiki at wikia. It was approved, and is at

    The reason I chose wikia is that wikipedia has been known to delete content that they didn't like. I prefer subpar data over no data, myself.

    Julian, I know you suggested "machining", but to me anything related to machining software can go under CAM. And if data about machining hardware needs organized, well, it is related to machining software. :-)

  11. PLT: Wildcat CAD is Graham Hemingway's. I made a WxWidgets front end for it, so we could build it for Windows. HeeksCNC is my open source CAM project. has got too many adverts. How about ? Somebody's already requested a book called CNC in

  12. " has got too many adverts."

    I have Adblock installed on Firefox, I don't use it much but apparently it was blocking the banner ad which was from I didn't realize they had ads, other than the mini-banners linking to their other wikis. So far, I have only seen an ad on the main page - looks like it doesn't show ads on other pages. I did check to make sure that I wasn't blocking other adservers.

    To me, it's only about as annoying as the "A Personal Appeal from Wikipedia Founder Jimmy Wales" banners that appear on Wikipedia. IMO, these banners come with much less excess ego than the Wales ones. :)

  13. IRC channel #cam

  14. Thank you . To all participant, please have a look at our updated contest post.
    more templates easy to download

  15. Hi,

    why isn't there any wiki avaible for OpenCascade knowledge collection and exchange? The OCC forum is, imho, awkward (very simplistic).
    Maybe someone should start one!

  16. In a brief moment of megalomania, I set up a wiki for OpenCascade myself at

    My personal motivation is to organize the knowledge about OCC in a more centralized form than it is currently avaible (Roman's blog, user guides, doxygen excerpt, ...). For example, there should be a place to collect all those useful code snippets avaible. So I would be glad if someone would join me in this attempt. :)

  17. Hi Fabian,
    Thanks for your effort! I have never had cycles to set up wiki and we did not manage to convince the OCC team to establish it on the site. I once tried to setup wiki on but did not have time to pursue it.
    What I think the wiki format would be good for is FAQ that would be enriched by individual contributors. So if you could pre-setup that, this could be a small tangible start.

    Thanks again for your effort.