But if it cannot do so, TCP makes at least those pictorial suggestions from which the salesperson can then choose. TCP is particularly powerful when it is necessary to make rough changes to the planning afterwards. After e.g. TCP independently re-calculates wall length or wall angle changes and corrects the entire planning. But that’s what TCP does, too, when entire sales planning from trading planning systems are imported via EDI; here, any inaccuracies that happen to the seller in the trade before, are automatically recognized and compensated. This considerably simplifies handling at the furniture manufacturer.
The basic software is the same today for all customers, no matter whether home furniture, kitchen or bathroom furniture. Thus TCP takes the hurdle of the constant updating ability. All product-specific properties and tests of the planned furniture are customized on-top to the TCP standard by means of configuration and data conditioning. This means that TCP is extremely flexible and can be quickly adapted or extended at any time – even on “call by telephone”.
TCP is used today both as a single-user system as well as in large clusters, e.g. also in Citrix environments, which may extend across many locations across the country. Depending on the application, TCP can thus be found as a POS system or as part of the order processing with connection to a PPS system. In the latter case, TCP also provides data for manufacturing and assembly that no one has to manually calculate. This alone avoids many mistakes, cuts costs, and leaves more time for communication with customers. All this is very important for the image of a furniture manufacturer. Over the years, TCP has already been used in many countries, such as Australia, Netherlands, England, Switzerland, Brazil and others. At the same time, many software companies have dealt with the difficult subject of an ERP system for the production of variant-rich furniture.
The TCP GmbH has certainly come and see 30 or more such systems. Today, there are successful, active connections to the well-known systems of SAP, iff consulting, PCS Strakeljahn, 2020 Technologies and ESS GmbH Falkensee. There is also data exchange with customers’ special manufacturing systems and major industry players such as Cobus Concept.
TCP also supports its customers in planning entire sales areas with many subareas. This so-called large-capacity planning is made possible efficiently despite the enormous amounts of data handled by TCP. There are also other TCP GmbH products based on the capabilities of the main program TCP. On the one hand, the web configurator offers the possibility to play through a multitude of variants online on Internet sites just-in-time – ie without waiting for the calculation – in a photo-realistic manner. Thousands of stencils and photorealistic drawing files are generated automatically. The advantage of the finished product is not only the speed and the photorealistic quality, but above all the fact that the user can make no mistakes except a taste aberration. Thus, this marketing product differs significantly from web planners.
Another product is the Scalermixer (internally “Schönschubser”) with which a scene rendered photorealistic with TCP can subsequently be changed in many facets such as Brightness Factoring, Ambient Occlusion, Gamma Correction, Radiosity (Global Illumination), etc., until the result can’t no longer be distinguished from a photo. The technology used here is unique in the world, as settings are changed in retrospect, which otherwise can only be selected before ray-tracing. The goal here is that, even with poorly selected settings, the computing work of many minutes to hours must spend only once, no matter how ugly the result initially was.
Although the basic capabilities of a product such as TCP have long since been implemented, TCP GmbH is surprised by the ever-changing challenges faced by the product.
Many ideas come from active users and are often implemented by the development in a generalized way, so that as many customers as possible benefit by means of appropriate configuration. Therefore, one thing is sure, there will be enough potential for further development and improvement of TCP in the future as well. 40 years is just a beginning.