This past fall PTC released the latest iteration of Windchill SocialLink, a product focused on bringing Web 2.0 concepts to PLM to benefit product teams.
Windchill SocialLink 2.0 exemplifies “social product development” and continues to separate itself from generic social software by focusing on product development processes and engineering use cases.
Windchill SocialLink is highly integrated with the Windchill PLM system and brings many of the great core concepts of Web 2.0 like communities, activity feeds, microblogging, wikis, and people profiles, to product development teams. But, Windchill SocialLink 2.0 does much more. There are tight ties to product development which make this system very different from generic social software. For example:
- Access to communities via the embedded Social Toolbar
- Windchill Product Event notifications appear in your activity feed (i.e. PLM events appear along with community and colleague events and posts in a single newsfeed)
- Deep access to product information from a Product Community for product teams (i.e. ability to see metadata, viewables, and BOM’s in Windchill from the team’s Product Community collaboration space)
- Ability to search the Windchill PLM system to quickly find product info from a team’s Product Community collaboration site
- Crowdsourced ideas for new products and product improvements link to product data in Windchill (enables the front end of New Product Introduction (NPI) managed in Windchill
As you can see, there is a real focus on creating a “social product development” platform with deep ties to product development and support for engineering processes with Windchill SociaLink 2.0 (released in October 2011). If you would like to see some of this in action, you can check out the Windchill SocialLink 2.0 overview video.
PTC is very excited about these capabilities, but we are only just getting started. There are an incredible number of Web 2.0 use cases for product development PTC has on the drawing board and under active development. The best is yet to come.
Do you have any ideas on how to use Web 2.0 for product development? We would like to hear your thoughts.