Graebert GmbH is known for its licenseable ARES CAD platform. It forms the core of:
- Graebert's own ARES Commander (3D, customizable offering, DWG compatible) $800) with available optional archectrual, mechanical, electrical and other extensions.
- CorelCAD from Corel ($700)
- DraftSight, a 2-D offering, DWG compatible, owned from Dassault (which focuses on manufacturing CAD, MCAD). There's a free and a pro version.
It's DraftSight that now can link to ArcGIS Online via a free plug-in from Graebert. And, it does what'd you'd think - presents ArcGIS Online maps as a backdrop for design.
Per the press releaese, Graebert hopes to get into the CAD/GIS market. Per CTO Robert Graebert:
This plugin release solidifies our entry into the Engineering and Design space as an Esri partner. The Graebert OnlineMaps Plugin for DraftSight is proof that we are offering great value to DraftSight users. We see this as a first step towards leveraging GIS technology in a CAD environment.“
Esri says this is the vision it's had for ArcGIS Online all along. Per David Totman, Esri Public Works, AEC, and Survey Industry Manager:
This application is precisely what Esri had in mind with the ArcGIS Online mapping platform. We want the mapping community to be able to use all the maps available in ArcGIS Online in their design and drafting projects. We see this plugin as a major benefit to both our customers and other DraftSight users.
I wish I was more excited about this relationship. All the CAD companies that have tried to partner with Esri with little to show for their efforts leads me to be skeptical of any such pairing. Moreover, by now any organiztions that need to link CAD and GIS have found a workflow. Could this be a play for BIM and/or geodesign users? Because DraftSight is 2D, that's unlikely in the short term.
I am curious to see if any additional links between the companies are built between now and Esri UC.