Management

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

13 Apr, 2009


This Week's Software Tips

Extract a List of Layers
Dawn Pearl sends this tip showing how to extract a list of layers from an AutoCAD file. "I was able to produce a quick, printable list of layer names and properties from an AutoCAD drawing by copy-clipping them from the Layer dialog box into a Microsoft Excel worksheet." View the complete tip and post your feedback.

Find the Area of a Shape With a Hatch
Lynn McCann shares a tip for finding areas of oddly shaped lots and properties.  "Instead of creating a temporary polyline along all the boundary edges (especially a pain if it includes arcs) and using the Area command, I hatch the area and list the properties." View the complete tip and post your feedback.

Easy Attribute Edit
Richard Wenner offers this great tip showing how to easily edit attributed text. "Many of us have blocks that we give many attributes with extensive information. An example is a title block I use that has 32 attributes. Most times I do a global edit, but to change a single attribute quickly in this block is a little time consuming till you scroll thru the dialog box to get to your attribute." Here’s a faster way. View the complete tip and post your feedback..

And More Tips!
Through the weeks, Cadalyst receives a number of tips that we don’t publish -- perhaps they don’t pass Tip Patrol inspection or they duplicate previous tips. In other cases, tips are valid but are really just reminders about an existing function in AutoCAD or they offer just a few tidbits of useful information, so they don’t warrant being published as a full tip. We’d like to pass along the reminders and tidbits, as well as other helpful comments and updates from the Tip Patrol. Because of their nature, they’ll appear occasionally in Tips & Tools Weekly but won’t be published on the CAD Tips site -- a little bonus for all you dedicated newsletter readers .

Here's a trio of tiny tips for this week.

Find command. Use this AutoCAD command to search a file for specific text. It will zoom to the text you are searching for. (AutoCAD 2009 lost this ability, but it is back in 2010).

LAYERNOTIFY variable. Set this variable to 0 (turn it off) so AutoCAD won’t ask to verify new layers added to a drawing or xref.

Polar tracking. Press F10 to toggle this on/off. It provides a “soft” ortho at incremental angles that you can define.

Submit Your Tip

Submit Your Tip for your favorite CAD software. If we publish your tip, we'll send you a Cadalyst T-shirt, and each month Cadalyst editors will randomly select one published tip and send a $100 gift card to its author. Please remember:

  • Submit only code and other tips that are your original work (or provide the original source so we can include proper credit).
  • Tell us which software version you use.
By submitting code, you grant Cadalyst the right to print and distribute your code in print, digitally, and by other means. Cadalyst and individual authors retain all rights to the code; published code is not to be used for commercial purposes.

Tips & Tools Weekly software tips for AutoCAD are reviewed by Cadalyst staff and the Tip Patrol before publication. Use all tips at your own discretion, please. To share feedback about one of today's tips, locate the tip using the link provided, then click Comment. The Comment tool is available to registered users of Cadalyst's CAD Tips site. We're sorry, but editors and Tip Patrol members cannot provide assistance with technical problems; please refer to Cadalyst's Hot Tip Harry-Help discussion forum.

Sincere thanks to our volunteer Tip Patrol members: Brian Benton, Don Boyer, Mitchell Hirschklau, R.K. McSwain, Kevin Sawyer, and Billy Wooten.

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Resources

Autodesk Offers Help to Displaced Workers
Recognizing the impact of today's economic challenges, Autodesk is launching the Autodesk Assistance Program. The program, also available through some resellers, will provide customers and partners with design software tools, education, and resources to help develop and maintain 3D design technology skills and remain competitive in the marketplace.

Free SolidWorks Software, Training, and Certification
SolidWorks activated a program to give displaced designers and engineers a chance to learn new career skills. The SolidWorks Engineering Stimulus Package offers free SolidWorks 3D CAD software licenses, training videos and tutorials, networking, certification, and potential job leads to any job seeker living in the U.S. or Canada.

SolidWorks Training Program Extended
FISHER/UNITECH announced an extension of its No Engineer Left Behind retraining program. The program offers candidates the opportunity to gain industry skills through a three-day SolidWorks 2009 course, an evaluation copy of SolidWorks 2009, and a potential FISHER/UNITECH internship.

PTC Launches Social Product Development Blog
PTC’s new blog, Social Product Development, addresses the role of social computing and networking in the manufacturing world. Blog contributors Robin Seitz and Rob Gremley have discussed topics such as embracing the power of social networking and the aging engineering workforce.

Z Corporation Launches 3D Printing Webcast Series
Challenging economic times make a compelling argument for using 3D printers to reduce prototyping costs and speed time to market. But how do you justify a capital equipment investment now and select the right product for the application? Join Z Corporation's webcast series as senior design professionals discuss the 3D printer selection process and ROI.

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Opportunities & Honors

CIMdata Report Recognizes Siemens PLM Software
Siemens PLM Software, a provider of product lifecycle management (PLM) software and services, announced that a report by PLM industry consulting and research firm CIMdata recognized the company as a PLM leader and as the vendor with the top market presence in the collaborative product definition management (cPDm) and digital manufacturing market segment.

Avatech Wins Autodesk Award in Visualization
Avatech has been inducted into the Autodesk Platinum Club 2009, an honor that recognizes top software sales and growth in the Americas. Avatech was recognized for Top Media & Entertainment Visualization Product Sales Growth in North America.

Autodesk–Citrix Partnership Wins Award
Autodesk announced that its partnership with Citrix has been recognized with the 2009 Emerging Alliance Excellence Award by the Association of Strategic Alliance Professionals. In 2008, the two companies launched a program to provide customers with on-demand access to Autodesk's AutoCAD Map 3D software through Citrix XenApp software.

Sescoi 3D Viewer Wins Top Trophy in France
CAD/CAM software developer Sescoi has received the Application Innovation trophy for its high-speed, 3D viewer, WorkXPlore-3D. This trophy was a top prize in the new Software Excellence competition organized by international market intelligence group IDC and a French IT partnership development agency.

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Books & Training

Carlson Software Expands Carlson College
Carlson Software expanded its expert-level training program, Carlson College, and started the Carlson College Training Program, an international program dedicated to providing training on Carlson products. Individuals can get training direct from Carlson Software or through the members of the Carlson College Training Program.

MicroStation V8i User Update
For current users moving to MicroStation V8i, MicroStation V8i User Update ($65) is new courseware from The Envision Group that focuses on the new features and changes in this latest version of MicroStation. The 270-page manual includes a dataset CD that provides civil engineering lab files to facilitate learning.

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Mark Your Calendar

Webinar: Being BIM Aware
April 27, 2009
You have probably heard the term BIM or building information modeling, but are you sure what it means? Read more

AVEVA Viewpoint Americas 2009 Users Conference
May 3-5, 2009
Galveston, Texas
This year's conference is built around the theme of "Getting Down to Collaboration." It offers tips, insights, and testimonials designed to help attendees make the most of AVEVA's integrated software. Read more

2009 Washington GIS Conference
May 4-6, 2009
Bellevue, Washington
Workshops will be presented on open source GIS, designing web maps, creating fast web mapping applications with JavaScript, and cartography and map production. Read more

For a complete list of CAD meetings, conferences, training sessions, and more, check out our calendar of events on Cadalyst.com.


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What's New at Cadalyst.com

Mastenbroek Unearths Secret to Optimized 3D Modeling
Heavy equipment maker combines ATI FirePro graphics accelerator with Autodesk Inventor to improve the design process and support sales efforts. Read more

CAD Manager's Journey into 3D, Part 2
Reader uproar indicates that CAD managers have wildly differing views about adopting 3D.  Read more

Spring Cleaning for Computers (CAD Manager's Toolbox)
Speed up your workflow by clearing out the clutter and getting those machines operating at peak performance. Read more


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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