RAPID OUTPUT began developing Computer Assisted Manufacturing (CAM) Software on a fold-out table in Don Ball's Silicon Valley den in 1985. Back then, we called ourselves VISUAL N.C. and our first product was named GEOVISION. By the end of 1986, dozens of San Francisco Bay Area machine shops were using GEOVISION. People as far away as Munich, Germany were beginning to appreciate the productivity benefits that could be achieved with customized, conversational software.
By tailoring software to output precisely the G-code our customers needed, we soon gained a reputation as a competent, honest and service-oriented company. When one of our early customers (a shop specializing in large quantities of small parts) asked us to find an easier way to put 100 small parts on one plate of magnesium, we developed a single command that multiplied a one part program into hundreds -- even on a horizontal machine with the tombstone turned 12.5 degrees!
Of course, even a system ideally suited to your shop is useless if it takes a rocket scientist to run it. So our programmers took the 'computerese' out of the system. Commands to move the quill up and down are simple - we use shop words like MILL and DRILL. To turn cutter compensation on, you call up COMP. This conversational machinist's language, along with the people who created and support it, are what set G-ZERO apart from other CAM systems. Today, we employ several full time programmers and support personnel in California, Salt Lake City and Munich, Germany. Much of our business has been 'virtualized' by employing the talents of programmers in California, Texas, England, Italy and India. This best-of-breed approach to software development has helped us to create the best quick-turn programming system on the market.
Since 1985, G-ZERO has sold over 4,000 seats worldwide.
As most other CAM companies continue to develop systems that look more like engineering tools than machining tools, the future for conversational CAM has never looked better!
To develop and integrate PC-based software that produces safe, efficient and customizable G-code for CNC Mills and Lathes