Management

Tips & Tools Weekly (Vol 11, No. 13)

10 Apr, 2006


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What's New at Cadalyst.com

Cadalyst Daily Update
For all the latest news and new products, subscribe to Cadalyst Daily e-newsletter. Plus, every issue includes a feature you won’t find anywhere else -- hardware and CAD software reviews, success stories, AutoCAD tips and much more! Here’s a sample of what you missed in the past week:  

Hot Tip Harry Forums
Have you been to visit Harry lately? He has two new discussion forums on the Cadalyst Web site. In his Requests forum, Harry helps AutoCAD users locate those favorite but long-lost routines for speeding up tasks (AutoLISP, VBA and more). In his Help! forum, Harry and friends offer answers to problems and questions related to CAD programming and customization. Check it out!

 
 

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Resources

Peer Inside AutoCAD 2007
Thank you to reader Ed Jobe, who wrote to remind us that you can find in-depth previews of many of the new capabilities of AutoCAD 2007 in the New Features Workshop, available free on the Autodesk Web site.

New CAD Standards vBook
RetrieveMedia has released United States National CAD Standard vBook ($250 members, $350 nonmembers). In it, users can access the official National CAD Standard v3.1 rules and regulations. The digital book’s content is presented in a combination of narrated screen capture videos, audio narration and traditional text and diagrams, with full search functionality.

Business Intelligence Web Seminar
Meridian Systems, a provider of enterprise project management software, has made available a Web seminar titled Using Business Intelligence to Optimize Capital Projects, Programs and Facilities. Users can download the seminar from Meridian’s library.

New Open Source Web Site
Software provider OpenMFG has made available a new community web site that offers mail, forums, blogs, a public bug tracker, expanded documentation and downloads for the open source community. The site is free and open to everyone; registered users have access to enhanced services.

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This Week's Software Tips

A 2D Take on AutoCAD's Align Command
Ronald K. Yahr writes with a tip he describes as an AutoCAD oldie but goodie, which he says he still uses all the time.

"One of my favorite commands is Align. Traditionally it's used to move, scale and rotate entities from one UCS to another by defining three source and destination points. The command has been around a long time and is a 3D operation found on the Modify menu. I use Align as a basic 2D tool to align JPEG, TIFF or any other image or entity to line work.  Align asks for three sets of source/destination points to define a plane, but providing the third set of points is optional. When you press Enter at the third prompt, Align becomes a 2D operation, moving, scaling and rotating the entities only on the plane where they reside. Align is more basic than rubber sheeting, but gets the job done quickly under most circumstances."

Follow Up: Block Redefine Without Exploding
Stephen F. Crosley wrote to follow up on the Block Redefine Without Exploding tip in last week's Tips & Tools Weekly. "The tip involved AutoCAD's Wipeout command. This procedure can also be done quite easily using AutoCAD’s Refedit command. It works with both blocks and xrefs."

More About Osnaps
The March 20 and March 27 editions of Tips and Tools Weekly presented tips about setting and resetting osnaps in AutoCAD. A few more readers wrote to chime in on the subject:

Stephen Rien wrote, "In the March 27 edition, a tip explained how to set osnaps to F keys, something I'd been doing for the past 18 years or so. However, the tip as listed works only through AutoCAD 2005.  With the release of AutoCAD 2006, the CMU file replaced the MNU file, and you have to enter this information differently. Perhaps someone could show this new process, which is a bit more involved?"

Brent Stewart and Greg G. Tattersall each sent a short LISP routine, providing readers with two more options for quickly setting osnaps. Click here to download both sets of code.

Stewart says of his osnap preset routine, "We wrote the code back in AutoCAD R10 days and update the snap values with each new version of AutoCAD. We use several preset object snap quick commands, run using either Command line or toolbar. Commands run silently, so you have no flashing up of lines on the text screen."

Tattersall writes, "Our company has multiple disciplines and many operators across a network and everyone likes their settings a little different, so I added an icon in our company standard toolbar for everyone to use. The icon loads a LISP routine that retrieves the user's login name or initials and runs a script file with the same name. Users just have to create their own custom script.

"The code I developed is for everyone else. I myself have the LISP code (minus the alerts) at the end of my ACAD.LSP file. This ensures my script runs every time I open a drawing."

Send us your tip or shortcut for your favorite CAD software. If we publish it, we'll send you a “Cadalyst: CAD the Way You Want It” t-shirt.

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Books & Training

Autodesk Land Desktop Book
Cadapult Software Solutions has released the training book Digging Into Autodesk Land Desktop 2006. This update of the 2004 book is intended for three-day, instructor-led training; however, it also works well for classes of any duration, as well as for self-study, according to Rick Ellis, the author and Cadapult CEO.

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Opportunities & Honors

GeoWeb Call for Papers Deadline Extended
The volume of requests has prompted GeoWeb 2006 organizers to extend the call for papers deadline to April 17, 2006. GeoWeb 2006, a conference addressing Web-based geographic information systems, is organized by Galdos Systems and supported by GITA (Geospatial Information & Technology Association). It will be held July 24–28, 2006, in Vancouver, British Columbia.

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The Week's New CAD and Related Products

For all the latest new products, delivered daily to your desktop, subscribe to Cadalyst Daily e-newsletter. Here are last week’s highlights:

Hardware: Laser Tracker X and Xi
FARO laser trackers offer improved distance accuracy.  Read more >>

General Software: RxViewServer v8
Rasterex software enables users to view, print, measure, mark up and collaborate on more than 250 different file formats via the Web.  Read more >>

General Software: DaylightRIP
SCP Software offers enhanced productivity for reprographics and CAD.  Read more >>

General Software: Motion Graphics for Flash
Inovartis offers video and animation clips for use in presentations and creative design.  Read more >>

GIS: Pushpin LE
Placebase releases Google Map-like product for commercial applications. Read more >>

MCAD: CADFind for SolidWorks
AST's add-on lets SolidWorks users search, retrieve and reuse parts based on simple sketches.  Read more >>

MCAD: Solid Edge Wire-Harness Design
New add-on from UGS facilitates creating, routing and organizing wires, cables and bundles in assemblies.  Read more >>

MCAD: Collaboration Suite 2006 v2
Hosted collaboration suite supports sales quotation process.  Read more >>

MCAD: 3Data Expert v7.1
DeskArtes releases update for data transfer and repair for 3D printers.  Read more >>

PLM: NX 4 for Linux
UGS ships digital product development software for open source operating environment.  Read more >>

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Mark Your Calendar

Cadalyst's complete list of upcoming industry events is always available on our Web site.

SMMA Spring Management Conference
May 10-12, 2006

Palm Beach Gardens, Florida
A four-hour workshop, presented by James Chan of the consultancy Asia Marketing and Management, will kick off the SMMA (Motor & Motion Association) spring conference. Topics to be addressed include negotiating with the Chinese, recruiting, training and managing people, Chinese business practices, safety, security and intellectual property rights and marketing.

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AutoCAD Tips!

Lynn Allen

Autodesk Technical Evangelist Lynn Allen guides you through a different AutoCAD feature in every edition of her popular "Circles and Lines" tutorial series. For even more AutoCAD how-to, check out Lynn's quick tips in the Cadalyst Video Gallery. Subscribe to Cadalyst's free Tips & Tools Weekly e-newsletter and we'll notify you every time a new video tip is published. All exclusively from Cadalyst!
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