The year 2020 will likely be remembered as the year of COVID. A virus suddenly changed the lives of so many people and brought one of the greatest challenges the world has ever seen.
As a company, we have also felt this impact. These new challenges demanded a new thought process and approach for our company. Working from home, online meetings, and social distancing have presented us with a new working dimension. However, this crisis has shown as a team we can achieve our goals and therefore, have not only made it through the year, but did so successfully.
We would like to take the opportunity to present to you a company year-end review, and to also look back on great projects, events and achievements.
Dlubal’s Continued Growth
At the beginning of January, we opened a new office in Munich. We continued our course of company expansion. In addition to the Tiefenbach headquarters and the branch office in Leipzig, Munich is the third Germany office location. Initially, the new office was located in the "Design Offices München Nove" office complex in Arnulfpark, but now we have moved to a larger office in Arnulfpark. In the Munich office, we expanding our video marketing and focused on the creation of new e-learning videos, tutorials and online courses.
We also moved to a new office in the Czech city Brno in early February. The new location is located in the Sumavska Tower on the 18th floor with a wonderful view of the city. In addition to many student interns, one of our development teams mainly responsible for programming interfaces is also located in Brno.
In 2020, as a company we have grown to more than 280 employees. Every day, our expanding team does our best to continually improve the Dlubal products.
digitalBAU in Cologne
In early 2020, life was a little more normal before Europe and Germany experienced any impact from the virus. For example, digitalBAU took place for the first time in February. After many difficult years for construction software trade fairs, this was the first successful industry trade fair repositioning. Remarkably, this event focused exclusively on software and therefore, this industry focus was not lost among other unrelated manufacturer presence.
This was a highly anticipated gathering for all well-known software manufacturers in the construction industry with a focus on structural analysis and design in particular. We hope for a similar successful show in the next two years with an increasing number of exhibitors and visitors.
New Programs, Features and Modules
Although RWIND Simulation was released in late 2019, we strongly believe this product will revolutionize wind load calculations in structural engineering. RWIND Simulation is a stand-alone program for wind flow CFD simulation (digital wind tunnel) and generation of wind loads on buildings or other structures. RWIND Simulation is specially designed for unique structure wind application and other than the 3D model, requires only input wind velocity and other parameters.
Another popular trend among engineers is parameterized model, object, and shape creation. To keep up with demand, we implemented the Rhino and Grasshopper interfaces directly in RFEM.
To keep up with demand, we implemented the Rhino and Grasshopper interfaces directly in RFEM. With this standalone cross-section program, calculate cold-formed cross-section properties and stresses. In addition to this cold-formed development, the new RF-/STEEL Cold-Formed Sections add-on module was also released as an extension of the RF-/STEEL EC3 add-on module.
We have also integrated other unique features such as the camera flight mode, the transfer format glTF/glb and continued material database additions into our programs.
COVID, Working From Home and Online Training
In early spring, the virus impact had begun its toll on Germany and around the world. On-site events were canceled, employees began working from home and training took place exclusively online. The online trainings were a bit unfamiliar at first, but over time was became appreciated by both attendees and Dlubal employees. We were extremely pleased to see the participation outcome for this new service. In addition, we continued our ongoing support for students and universities with free online training sessions.
Within a very short time, we managed to prepare and present 6 different online training courses (RSTAB/RFEM Basics, Eurocode 2, EC3, EC5 & EC8) in 7 different languages. Each participant received a certificate, the training materials and access to the recording.
The Increased Importance of Online Training
In addition to the online training courses, we expanded our free online resources which includes independent software learning videos. In April, we published the first E-Learning online course in all languages, which offered beginners the ideal opportunity to begin modeling in the finite element program RFEM. More E-Learning video series have been added over time. The Infotainment series is also closely related to E-Learning. This video series provided an interesting mix of entertainment along with useful structural engineering information.
New Online Services to Directly Support Engineers
As a young engineer, I always wanted to know how experienced structural engineers create their structural models. As of May 2020, you now can find structural models for download on our website. Download a vast number of free RFEM/RSTAB models at any time. Utilize these models for a quick start in the program or as an added opportunity to practice modeling.
Released in June 2020, cross-section properties of standard cross-sections or parameterized cross-sections are available as a free online tool. Select standard cross-sections or define parameterized cross-sections from an extensive cross-section database. Display the calculated cross-section properties numerically or graphically with the ability to print this information (PDF).
Yes, you read that correctly. Launched in the Fall of 2020, we now offer our own company podcast. The enthusiasm for such audio formats has been increasing over the past several years. There are many exiting formats for news, politics or entertainment in general. And while a few podcasts related to technology are available, little can be found specifically for the construction industry. We therefore decided to begin our podcast focused on BIM and digitization in construction.
After finding our second voice, one episode after another was produced. We are very pleased with this successful start to the Dlubal podcast, which has received great feedback from our listeners. We look forward to producing additional episodes in the new year.
Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year
At this point, I would like to thank all fans, customers, users, friends and our team at Dlubal Software for the great cooperation.
I wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. Stay healthy!
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