Tinkercad 3D Printed Logo
After the 'we're closing' announcement from Tinkercad back in March there was an outpouring of collective grief from the Tinkercad community, as well as an awful lot of praise for what the team behind Tinkercad (all engineers) had achieved. After a couple of months of what one can only imagine to be frantic searching for something, anything, that offered half of the experience of 'Tink' and like a knight in shining armour atop a steed of cash comes Autodesk.
Autodesk will purchase the Tinkercad site — and the core technologies behind it — and has already made it's mark by 'Supercharging' the free plan, meaning that anyone that had a free account before the 'tragic news' now has the opportunity to create unlimited designs, the import/export functionality that was previously locked out, and 'ShapeScripts'.
If you were going to be very cynical (and with Dan on holiday I feel duty bound to be as cynical as possible) you could imagine that, with Autodesk increasingly moving towards 'The Cloud', comments like this from CraigTheCoder have something to do with it...
As someone who develops in the Software as a Service (SaaS) space, you guys are doing a fine job with this in validating all of peoples’ fears about keeping their applications, yet alone their data in the cloud. Everything is there one minute and then – POOF! – gone. No install CD’s to pull out of the drawer. No Oracle database to go rescue data from using the local backup tapes. Nope. Just….gone.
It's a fair point, and something that a number of users commented on. With so much of our lives now on the cloud the questions that Tinkercad's decision to close raise are far greater than a good service no longer existing. In rescuing the product Autodesk has also rescued a number of Software as a Service users opinions of cloud-based systems... of which it is a major purveyor.
Like I said, if you wanted to be cynical.
See the full blog post from Kai Backman below:
I am happy to announce that we have just signed a deal where Autodesk will purchase the Tinkercad site and core technologies. This is a great day for all Tinkercad users, Autodesk is a very enthusiastic and capable steward. There are two main impacts of this deal: the site is fully operational and Autodesk has some very exciting plans for Tinkercad.
The shutdown plan has been rolled back and effective immediately new users are again able to sign up for the site. Even better, at the request of Autodesk, we have supercharged the free plan. You can now create unlimited designs, all import and export functionality is enabled and ShapeScripts are turned on for free accounts. We have automatically upgraded all existing free accounts to this new powerful plan. This account will be offered for a limited time only so make sure you sign up as soon as possible.
Before signing the deal the we spent a lot of time talking to Autodesk engineers and product people about their vision for Tinkercad. We were impressed by the deep insight the Autodesk team had into the Tinkercad interface and the underlying technology. There is also a strong alignment on topics like furthering education and the vision of making design more accessible. But most of all we are very excited about the roadmap Autodesk has drafted for Tinkercad.
As our team continues working on Airstone I’m pleased to see Tinkercad find a safe and welcoming home. I can speak for everyone when I say that we are looking forward to using Tinkercad for a long time to come.
Founder & CEO