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Release Management Feedback

adrian_vlzkzadrian_vlzkz Member Posts: 132 PRO
edited August 27 in Data management
Based on another closed discussion, wanted to create a space to share our experience, ideas, concerns and everything Release Management. Per @philip_thomas comments on that other thread, I started to think why is it so challenging to accept the proposed irrelevance of Document level versioning; well I believe is because everything about Onshape currently is Document-Centric. From the UI at the home level, to the training content and so on.

In order to accept/embrace this approach, IMHO we need some drastic updates that are Release-Centric. My first idea/proposal is to add a "Releases" home tab at the forefront of Onshape, that would let use visualize in a "Contains" and "Where-Used" basis. Additionally, from the Documents tab we should be able to navigate the Document Structure without having to open the Document, in there, you should also be able to see Release Status for the elements contained.






Please chime in...
Adrian V.
Sr. CAD Engineer

Comments

  • adrian_vlzkzadrian_vlzkz Member Posts: 132 PRO
    edited August 27
    Additionally in the Document details pane, we could see. What external Documents are linked (referenced) to the selected one, and what any outgoing links to other Documents. 


    Adrian V.
    Sr. CAD Engineer
  • michael_bromleymichael_bromley Member Posts: 106 PRO
    Thanks for putting all the time into this and I agree that this is a topic that needs some more attention.  I'll think on this some more and read through it again later to provide more valuable feedback. 
  • brucebartlettbrucebartlett Member, OS Professional, Mentor Posts: 1,878 PRO
    Definitely needs attention, I really want improvements in this area. So much potential. Thanks putting up your idea's, not an easy topic. 
    Engineer ı Product Designer ı Onshape Consulting Partner
    Twitter: @onshapetricks  & @babart1977   
  • tim_hess427tim_hess427 Member Posts: 147 PRO
    @adrian_vlzkz - I really like the mockup you put together! Good stuff.

    One additional bit of info that I would add to your suggestions is more prominent part numbers in the UI. I need those unique identifiers visible so that they can be useful. I can only come up with so many different variants of "axle" or "wheel" before the names stop being useful and just add to the confusion. 
  • adrian_vlzkzadrian_vlzkz Member Posts: 132 PRO
    edited August 29

    One additional bit of info that I would add to your suggestions is more prominent part numbers in the UI. I need those unique identifiers visible so that they can be useful. I can only come up with so many different variants of "axle" or "wheel" before the names stop being useful and just add to the confusion. 
    Agree, I believe this goes with my Idea of a more Release-Centric UI, in your case Part-Centric, but same concept. It difficult to digest the idea that Version "Don't Matter", when they are the only way we have to access our Parts, Drawings and Assemblies. In a Managed Environment I believe Documents need to take the back seat, maybe something like what be get when you search for Parts, Assemblies and Drawings only:


     
    This is better in my opinion, but currently there's no way to add columns to the results. We need to be able to see more Metadata in this results.
    Adrian V.
    Sr. CAD Engineer
  • Michael_CoffeeMichael_Coffee Member Posts: 48 ✭✭
    I'm a little confused about what you mean. Are we talking about improvements to the current system of release management inside of Onshape, or are we talking about a change in the system itself? Changing the system itself was discussed recently (see link below), so I'll leave my two cents in that thread and not rehash it here.


    I wouldn't say "Versions Don't Matter", because obviously they are important, but they are simply a means of capturing the data (model, drawing, etc) in a document at a particular point in time. What is done with that data is when releases come in, when manufacturing begins, and so on. Saying otherwise implies they aren't important, when they are, but I can see why it was said. It has less to do with the mindset of "I need to keep track of this" and more of it being the "nature state" of the program. It's meant to imply that it is a log of your data. Just like how one checks out a book from the library, a log is kept of when and whom. Whether we do anything with it is up to us.

    I do like the idea of a "Releases" tab being implemented. My thought process is if you click on the document, the detail view would list the releases, when they were done, and by whom. Maybe also a preview capacity where you click that release and see it. It'd be clean, straight forward, and not require us to complete open the document. 

    As for a "Where-used" capacity, I feel this is long overdue. I imagine how it will work will probably not mesh with every company, and that might be the reason for the delay. Ultimately, however, Onshape needs one. It will be appear simple, I have no doubt, but the code may be extensive.

    I believe we can all agree, by virtue of our professions, we are detail orient individuals. Par for the course when it comes to forums such as this, we must be that with our words, and so, for-your-information, if I don't understand what you are saying, I'm going to ask you to clarify. By that same extension, we should all do that with each other. If we don't understand, ask.
  • owen_sparksowen_sparks Member, Developers Posts: 2,387 PRO
    edited August 30
    Ok, I don't have much to say on the specifics of RM, but have a tangentially related question...

    Statements:-
    Onshape Is built upon a database.
    Featurescript is an open source language used to implement part studio features.

    Question:-
    Could we have an open source language, similar to featurescript, that allows us to run queries against our data and build graphical user interfaces?

    End Goal:-
    We build our own custom UI elements, including whatever we care to see on our release management summary page.

    Regards,
    Owen S.
    Production Engineer
    HWM-Water Ltd
  • adrian_vlzkzadrian_vlzkz Member Posts: 132 PRO


    Question:-
    Could we have an open source language, similar to featurescript, that allows us to run queries against our data and build graphical user interfaces?

    Yes please!  :)
    Adrian V.
    Sr. CAD Engineer
  • adrian_vlzkzadrian_vlzkz Member Posts: 132 PRO
    @owen_sparks but that I think about it, that already exists... the Analytics in Enterprise are powered by looker. If I remember correctly they (Onshape) had mentioned Analytics would be customizable, so we just need access to that.

    https://looker.com/solutions/operation-logistics


    Adrian V.
    Sr. CAD Engineer
  • tim_hess427tim_hess427 Member Posts: 147 PRO
    @owen_sparks - Yes! I want that! I was thinking that I would be happy if I could just use my own SQL type queries to pull data into tables. I'm sure there are many technical challenges in setting something like that up, but the end result of being able to query my data in a format that makes sense for me at that time would be very powerful. I like your analogy to FeatureScript, since it could function in a similar way - allowing users to experiment and develop features that could later be refined and implemented into the product. 
  • tim_hess427tim_hess427 Member Posts: 147 PRO
    @adrian_vlzkz - I went back to see what Onshape is pitching for the enterprise level and I see the analytics you're talking about.

    What's a little worrisome to me, is it appears they're blending the lines between analytics about "activities" and analytics about "CAD data". I don't much care how much time has been spent on which model, but I very much care where the most recent revision of a certain part number is. The former makes sense in a large enterprise perhaps, but the the latter is very much a core CAD/Data Management functionality that should be available to Pro users, at least. 

    This blog post shows the enterprise release dashboard, which looks like it would address many issues discussed in this thread (and others):
    https://www.onshape.com/cad-blog/5-examples-of-engineering-reports-that-can-improve-your-business
  • adrian_vlzkzadrian_vlzkz Member Posts: 132 PRO
    @owen_sparks - Yes! I want that! I was thinking that I would be happy if I could just use my own SQL type queries to pull data into tables. I'm sure there are many technical challenges in setting something like that up, but the end result of being able to query my data in a format that makes sense for me at that time would be very powerful. I like your analogy to FeatureScript, since it could function in a similar way - allowing users to experiment and develop features that could later be refined and implemented into the product. 
    We need DataScript! (Not sure id that terms is used already in Development)
    Adrian V.
    Sr. CAD Engineer
  • brucebartlettbrucebartlett Member, OS Professional, Mentor Posts: 1,878 PRO
    With release management as I am using it I am finding heaps of things I'd love to see improved, I've discussed a lot of these here on the forum and appreciate others input too and hopefully, this will help the developers get release management to where it needs to be. @lougallo what's the best way we should we be adding feedback and improvement request for release management?  I have not added been adding improvement request in for voting but will do if this is helpful. 
    Engineer ı Product Designer ı Onshape Consulting Partner
    Twitter: @onshapetricks  & @babart1977   
  • adrian_vlzkzadrian_vlzkz Member Posts: 132 PRO
    With release management as I am using it I am finding heaps of things I'd love to see improved, I've discussed a lot of these here on the forum and appreciate others input too and hopefully, this will help the developers get release management to where it needs to be. @lougallo what's the best way we should we be adding feedback and improvement request for release management?  I have not added been adding improvement request in for voting but will do if this is helpful. 
    My intent is also to provide "Real-World" feedback on how a team would interact with the tool. From my perspective it feels that everything in Onshape is very well though out from the technical (software) side of things, and works really nice for a single-user or few users collaborating where there's plenty of communication outside of the tool (in-person).

    In my experience larger teams tent to talk less to each other and expect the system to provide enough information to not have to talk to each other, with Onshape I'm seeing a lot of room for improvement with Release Management in terms of being intuitive and for users to be self-sufficient finding what they need.
    Adrian V.
    Sr. CAD Engineer
  • Michael_CoffeeMichael_Coffee Member Posts: 48 ✭✭
    adrian_vlzkz said: My intent is also to provide "Real-World" feedback on how a team would interact with the tool. From my perspective it feels that everything in Onshape is very well though out from the technical (software) side of things, and works really nice for a single-user or few users collaborating where there's plenty of communication outside of the tool (in-person).

    In my experience larger teams tent to talk less to each other and expect the system to provide enough information to not have to talk to each other, with Onshape I'm seeing a lot of room for improvement with Release Management in terms of being intuitive and for users to be self-sufficient finding what they need.
    Onshape can only work with the information we give it. The term "real-world" is subjective with each industry, but the process of extracting information out of Onshape sounds more akin to a data management program than a modeling software. That's just my two cents after reading everything so far, and that might be the answer for some people. 
  • brucebartlettbrucebartlett Member, OS Professional, Mentor Posts: 1,878 PRO
    One of my frustration after switching a document over to release is losing the ability to navigate a document from the tree while remaining as working in progress, I use this all the time to find things rather than navigating tabs but once we change to a release there is no way to quickly open on the main. I would like to be able RBM and open a part at the main. 

     
    Engineer ı Product Designer ı Onshape Consulting Partner
    Twitter: @onshapetricks  & @babart1977   
  • brucebartlettbrucebartlett Member, OS Professional, Mentor Posts: 1,878 PRO
    Another improvement I'd like to see is a black triangle on drawings. 


    Engineer ı Product Designer ı Onshape Consulting Partner
    Twitter: @onshapetricks  & @babart1977   
  • michael_bromleymichael_bromley Member Posts: 106 PRO
    @brucebartlett ; I absolutely agree on both accounts.  I understand why the navigation is the way it is, but it is definitely cumbersome to use.
  • owen_sparksowen_sparks Member, Developers Posts: 2,387 PRO
    edited September 5
    Hi All.
    Ok, so Documents have Revisions and Components have Versions, right? Wrong...
    To this day I still get these wrong :(  Frequently.
    How about we make this a clearer distinction? 
    To our company "Version" and "Revision" are already in our day to day vocabulary and are interchangeable... 
    I propose a document save point be renamed to something different.  A "History Node" or some such. 
    Cheers, Owen S.

    Production Engineer
    HWM-Water Ltd
  • brucebartlettbrucebartlett Member, OS Professional, Mentor Posts: 1,878 PRO
    Another one for me is, when working with released parts in an assembly, the black triangle doesn't tell you it comes from a different part studio to the one you are working, this could be a handy bit of info when attempting a switch back to main node. 
    Engineer ı Product Designer ı Onshape Consulting Partner
    Twitter: @onshapetricks  & @babart1977   
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