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Autodesk's opportunity

The history of the computer industry consists of the realisation of dream after dream initially dismissed as ``only science fiction''. The ability to place users in computer-generated three dimensional environments and allow them to interact with simulated objects will begin to break down the barrier between the user and the world inside the computer. This may usher in totally new ways to interact with computers, new applications for computers, and even new ways of thinking about computers.

Twenty years after Sutherland's prototype demonstrated the feasibility of computer simulated realities (cyberspace), the technology required to build cyberspace systems is almost in hand and can be expected to become widely available at low cost within the next several years. Development of cyberspace systems, driven by their near-term practical applications in control of complex systems, teleoperation, rapid presentation of information in aerospace environments, and more effective manipulation of three dimensional models, is underway in several laboratories and will soon move into the marketplace.

Autodesk is well positioned to be a leader in this new industry. Our fundamental core business is three dimensional modeling. Our products stand to benefit from having the most effective three dimensional interaction of any vendor's, and from being correctly seen as leaders in making the complex tasks they do widely accessible. Our relationships with application developers and hardware manufacturers permit us to cooperatively develop this technology without having to bear all the costs and risk.

Editor: John Walker