“simpler is better” is an opinion from the point of view of the observer. It applies to the user, not the creator of a product. If you look at the simplest of the things, there is a lot of thought process that goes into giving the simplest “appearing” solutions to a user, but under the hood the reality is extensively complex. That is simply because the real world is not simple.
I completely agree with you. “Simpler is better” is not the same as “simpler is easier” or “simpler is cheaper”, which are often what is being intentionally implied, and not the more often true “simple is hard”.
However, what I had meant in this case was that a document system will be more likely to be used, and more likely to be an effective solution, if it is simpler to use (users being e.g. a doc control admin managing a product change, a design engineer submitting new design files or researching an existing product’s change history, a manufacturing tech accessing the latest test procedure, etc.). From this perspective, it is essentially irrelevant how complex the system is under the hood, and continuing the analogy it is only the view from the driver’s seat that is important.
Fwiw, IMHO every additional degree of complexity under the hood will require 10x more effort to bring the product to market - more requirements to understand and communicate, more code to write, more testing to do, more team meetings, more bugs to fix, more beta testing, more, more, more…
There are a number of things that will not work with ncloud. ncloud to me is a just a fancy UI on top of rsync, and a few other tools, making things simple for the user… but it is limited at best in its capability to host PLM data, most of such data requires versioning, diff-change-visibility such as using images or pennable images for ECR/ECM, for CAE data, not to speak about meta-data extraction as soon as something is checked into the repository and saving that meta-data into ERPNext. CAE data could be CAD from several CAD systems such as what we have, several CAM systems such as what we have, a multitude of FEA tools, pre-post processors, CFD tools, optimization tools, internally written software, PDFs from customers, suppliers etc. etc. And we are a tiny engineering company, most small and mid sized companies are many orders of magnitude complex than us.
I’m not trying to minimize the product development process, which can be very complicated. I’m just saying complex software may not be a solution. Reported failure rates for ERP implementations are in the 30% range, and (IMHO) enterprise PLM is just as complex to develop as ERP. Of course, statistics depend on the perspective and goal of the survey maker, but this is in line with other reports (and lower than 10-15 years ago, when ERP was less well understood, implementation projects were less methodical and planned, and project failure rates of 70% were being reported).
“Bi-directional synchronization” would be great, but that is not what I intended, nor it is what we need, because it will come with even more complexity. And there is no intention to lead a bright young lad to a black hole. The idea is to guide that developer enough such that he/she can implement something that would work. One cannot create a “standardized” process for PLM, the availability of DocType is the reason I’ve gravitated to ERPNext, since it should be possible to give the basic framework of PLM including ECM and let the users configure it to their internal processes. We’re into ISO AS/EN9100 compliance and a few other standards that we follow, all of those require such a feature set which IMHO, DocType would be suited to provide.
Still in full agreement. Have you identified a suitable off-the-shelf plug-in for Nextcloud that provides a suitable approval workflow?
My experience is with PLM from Siemens/EDS called Teamcenter, and many research oriented solutions over the past 30 years or so. I was not even aware that Oracle has a PLM, can you explain a bit about how the Oracle PLM works?
See Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) Software | Oracle
All the major CAD/CAE vendors also have a PLM solution, they bundle or embed basic PLM with their design tools (e.g. Desault/SolidWorks, Autodesk Inventor) with separate “enterprise” PLM offerings. Personally, I wouldn’t say Teamcenter is particularly “research oriented”, but I’m also not surprised to hear a research organization is using Teamcenter. IMHO Oracle approaches PLM from a more general business process management perspective than product development, although “Agile PLM” was developed independently and was successful as engineering software before being acquired by Oracle.
It seems to be another truth that ERP and PLM enterprise software costs in the range of $100 per user per month, but this doesn’t include a significant implementation project (and the big ERP/PLM players are only seen in “large” enterprises with at least tens of users and have implementation projects measured in months and number of consultants).
Just my $0.02.
Mine too, and warm greetings to you too (although it has been -30 C here now for over a week!),
 E.g. ERP Implementation Survey Shows Real Facts About ERP