Last time I worked for Cadence in the early 2000s, Adriaan Ligtenberg ran methodology services and, in particular, something we called Virtual CAD. The idea of Virtual CAD was to allow companies to outsource their CAD group to Cadence. In effect, we would be the CAD group for the design company.
In 2000, Synopsys had launched DesignSphere Access with Avant! (this was pre-acquisition so Synopsys didn't have physical design tools). There was a big press conference but it didn't get off the ground.
I would say that this was an idea before its time. It is hard to recall now how primitive the internet was in that era, cable modems and ADSL were just starting to be introduced. It was still another 6 or 7 years before the iPhone would be introduced. Google was two years old. Mark Zuckerberg was a 16-year old teenager. Mark Benioff had just become CEO of salesforce.com but nobody had come up with the term SaaS, or software-as-a-service.
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