Management

Tips & Tools Weekly (Vol 11, No. 14)

17 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:  

 
 

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Resources

New AutoCAD Blog and Feed Channels
Cadopolis.com has developed an online meeting place dedicated to the AutoCAD community. Five new feed channels lead visitors into distinct areas of interest. The most active area is Selected Web Feeds, which receives all articles and entries from featured AutoCAD blogs worldwide. Cadopolis.com is an independent online provider of AutoCAD-related products and services.

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This Week's Software Tips

April Tutorials Now Live Online!
The latest editions of all your favorite Cadalyst tutorials for AutoCAD as well as SolidWorks, Solid Edge, Inventor, Alibre Design, ArchiCAD, MicroStation, Revit and more are now live on Cadalyst.com.

Get the Code for April!
Cadalyst’s April code from Hot Tip Harry is now available for download. This month's
$100 winner is AutoCAD Excel Interface from Q.J. Chen,
a routine that transfers text information stored in a grid layout (table) into an Excel worksheet by just locating the corners of the table.

Cut Out Layer Filters and Cut Down File Size
Timothy C. Doyle sends this reminder about an oldie-but-goodie routine to trim AutoCAD file size: "AutoCAD allows you to build and save layer filters. These filters increase file size and migrate from drawing to drawing when you use simple commands such as Wblock, Cut/Paste and Copy/Paste.  A small LISP routine deletes several or all layer filters easily -- using it, my office is experiencing drawing file size reductions from 10% to 80%." The original routine, Delete Layer Filters I (by R. Robert Bell, July 2003), is available from Cadalyst's Get the Code! download site. Thank you, Robert Bell!

More Follow-up on Block Redefine
R.K. McSwain follows up on the recent Block Redefine Without Exploding tip with another option: "Starting with AutoCAD 2006, the Block Editor (Bedit) command can also be used to redefine internal block definitions."

Setting F Keys in AutoCAD 2006
Billy Wooten writes in response to Stephen Rien's recent request for help with setting osnaps to F keys, which in AutoCAD 2006 requires a different approach than in previous versions. Wooten answers: In 2006, the Help file contains almost all the information you need to customize the F keys. The problem is that the Shift key automatically precedes any assigned F key. To overcome this, just follow the steps listed. When the dialog box asks for an F key to assign, hit the space bar in conjunction with the desired F key. This should show the assignment without any modifier key."

Temporary Override Keys in AutoCAD 2006
And finally this week, Mitchell Hirschklau sends this bit of advice: " With respect to the temporary override keys, we've found that if you are in the new CUI and are trying to create what Autodesk now calls shortcut keys (the old ***Accelerators keys), if you highlighted the shortcut keys and right-click to bring up the menu, an option for New appears, and the New option automatically defaults you to the creation of a new , temporary override key -- not a shortcut key!

"We found two workarounds to this for shortcut key assignments:

1.  Drag (copy) a command up to the shortcut keys, then edit the copied item for content, key assignment and so forth.

2.  Edit the MNU files of your old, pre-2006 AutoCAD or AutoCAD LT software, import via the CUI and drag your old ***Accelerators keys over as new shortcut keys. Note: If you thought you would pull out just the old ***Accelerators part of the menu, you're going to have to rename it as ***MENUGROUP=SKEYS for the CUI to read it. (See the
AutoCAD 2006 white paper, "Customizing the User Interface Through the CUI Editor (PDF)," by Lee Ambrosius, page 18.)

"By the way, importing an old menu allows you to assign some shortcut keys, which the 2006 CUI doesn't otherwise permit.  For example, you cannot create NUMPAD shortcut keys in the CUI, but you can import old ones!"

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

Two New AutoCAD eBooks
upFront.eZine Publishing has released two more e-book titles for users of AutoCAD 2007. The fifth edition of Tailoring AutoCAD 2007 ($30.20, 302 pages, PDF file) shows how to modify AutoCAD’s user interface; create aliases, keyboard shortcuts, toolbars and tool palettes; and more. Tailoring Visual Styles ($11.10, 74 pages, PDF file) is the new PDF mini-e-book about how to work with the new visual styles feature in AutoCAD.

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Opportunities & Honors

CoCreate Announces 2006 Co-Design Competition Winners
PLM developer CoCreate Software recently named eight companies as winners of its 2006 Co-Design Competition, a contest that aims to recognize collaborative design efforts. Contest entries were placed on the CoCreate Web site, where the public could vote for its favorites. German company Liebherr Werk Ehingen’s design for a mobile crane operator cabin received the most votes in the contest.

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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: Oce TCS500
Digital document solution provider unveils large-format print/scan/copy system for color CAD. Read more

General Software: CAD Content 2007
Design and Drafting Software releases shareable visual library. Read more

Design Visualization: AccuRender 4.0
Robert McNeel and Associates ships new versions of high-end rendering system. Read more

Design Visualization: Civil Starter Pack
Populate 3D scenes with ArchVision's RPC pedestrians, shrubs and SUVs -- and maybe even your own likeness. Read more

Design Visualization: Foreground Plants Zones 8-12 Foliage
Realworld Imagery releases CD with plant elements for enhancing architectural renderings. Read more

Design Visualization: Power Translators Pro
nPower Software releases software for importing large CAD models to Autodesk 3ds max, Viz. Read more

AEC: Crystal Reports XI for Prolog
New reporting tool from construction project management solutions provider Meridian Systems. Read more

CAE: ABAQUS 6.6
Dassault Systemes releases new analysis software suite under SIMULIA product line. Read more

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Mark Your Calendar

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

Enabling Productivity and Innovation with GMD
April 18, 2006, 10 a.m. PT
Dassault Systemes Web seminar on the advantages of GMD solutions.

Speeding Product Development with DMU
April 20, 2006, 10 a.m. PT
Web seminar by Dassault Systemes about using V5 DMU software.

Part Modeling for Productivity
April 25, 2006, 10 a.m. PT
Web seminar sponsored by Dassault Systemes on part modeling tools.

Optimizing the Product Development Process with Integrated Design Analysis and Advanced Simulation
April 27, 2006, 10 a.m. PT
From Dassault Systemes, Web seminar on how to develop processes that best use CATIA V5 integrated design analysis tools.

Accelerate Your Ideas -- Autodesk’s 2007 product release for MSD
May 2, 2006
Santa Clara, California
Autodesk and Ideate will demonstrate the newest Autodesk Inventor 11, Autodesk Vault, AutoCAD Mechanical 2007 and AutoCAD Electrical 2007.

PTC User Conference
June 4–7, 2006
Dallas, Texas
Technical presentations and hands-on training for Pro/ENGINEER, Windchill and Arbortext software users.

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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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