The Process Aspect of CAD

  • José Encarnação
  • Ernest G. Schlechtendahl
Part of the Symbolic Computation book series (SYMBOLIC)


CAD provides computer support for the design process. Hence, if we want to talk about CAD, we must first talk about the process of design; that is, we must construct at least a crude model of the design process. The problem, however, is that design processes are quite different from one another, depending on the product (a bicycle versus a nuclear power plant), on the company’s size and organization (a large architectural engineering firm versus a specialized engineering bureau), and on the type of design (the restatement of a basically fixed design versus the completely original design of a new product). The purpose of establishing modelling concepts for the design process is to provide the system analyst with means of describing the global system into which a CAD system must fit (and to set forth a basis for the terminology used in the subsequent chapters). Both the designer of a CAD system and its potential user must be able to agree on a description of the interfaces of the computer- aided part of the design process with the remaining part of the process. Such interfaces will be easy to describe if the design process can be adequately represented by a sequence or chain of actions where each action passes its results on to its successor. We will see, however, that the design process is far more complex, and that neither a chain nor a tree is sufficient to represent its essential characteristics, even though it may sometimes look like a chain or a tree in certain respects. In view of the complexity of the design process, it is perhaps not very surprising that there have been many attempts to establish a systematic description of design, resulting in a number of proposals, which are similar, but without complete agreement in detail (see [1], for example). The complex structure of the design process will have to be reflected in the structure of CAD systems, if such systems are to support the design process as a whole and not only isolated parts of it.


Design Process Conceptual Schema Environment Process Schema Planning Weight Analysis 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 1983

Authors and Affiliations

  • José Encarnação
    • 1
  • Ernest G. Schlechtendahl
    • 2
  1. 1.Institut für Informationsverwaltung und Interaktive SystemeFB 20 — TH DarmstadtDarmstadtGermany
  2. 2.Kernforschungszentrum KarlsruheKarlsruheGermany

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