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Tips & Tools Weekly (Vol. 16, No. 5)

7 Feb, 2011 By: Cadalyst Staff


This Week's Software Tips

What's Your Favorite Time-Saver?
Do you have any tips for using AutoCAD — or any other CAD software tool — more effectively and efficiently? Send them to us! If we publish your tip, you'll earn a gift card you can use to purchase a T-shirt or other prizes in the Cadalyst Store. Use the "Submit Tip" button below to send us your tip today!

Quickly Rotate the UCS
Hank Graftenreed contributed an AutoCAD tip that lets you rotate your UCS very quickly and precisely. "This works very well when you want to rotate the view in a viewport," said tip reviewer Brian Benton. View the complete tip and post your feedback.

Macro: Edit Hatch Boundaries
Tipster Cindy Dangles sent us a custom command that she uses to edit hatch boundaries in AutoCAD. "I add this handy macro to a tool button on a ribbon (or anywhere) to edit hatch boundaries or any plines." View the complete tip and post your feedback.

Edit Dimension Text
CAD Technician Murray Clack shares an AutoCAD tip about editing text in dimensions. "One of my all-time favorite techniques that I still use today is placing text below a dimension line so that it is part of the dimension object itself." View the complete tip and post your feedback.

Insert Text Using PasteSpecial
Frequent tipster Leonid Nemirovsky explains how to quickly transfer notes or other text from Microsoft Word (or any other word processing program) into AutoCAD. As tip reviewer Brian Benton says, "There are many ways to get text into your drawings. One method is to type it in, but it's better to just copy text." View the complete tip and post your feedback.

Revit Tips: Define Rooms and Create a Roof
These video tips from Autodesk software training provider CAD Gorilla explain how to section off and label rooms and add a roof to a building in a Revit Architecture project.


Submit Your Tip

Review Cadalyst's Tip Submission Guidelines, then Submit Your Tip for your favorite CAD software. If we publish your tip, you'll earn a gift card you can use to purchase a T-shirt or other prizes in the Cadalyst Store. Please remember to submit only code and other tips that are your original work (or provide the original source so we can include proper credit) and to 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.

Got Feedback? To share feedback about one of today's tips, navigate to the tip using the link provided above, then click Comment. The Comment tool is available to registered users of Cadalyst's CAD Tips site.

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. 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 for assistance with AutoLISP and other AutoCAD customization questions.

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

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Resources

Planet GvSIG Site Compiles Community Blog Posts
Planet gvSIG — a web site that aggregates all the blogging activity around the gvSIG open-source geographic information system — is now available. The site enables visitors to consult in a single portal all the information provided by the users and developers of the gvSIG community through their blogs. 

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Deals & Freebies

Okino Offers Fully Functional Demo of PolyTrans Conversion Software
Visitors to software developer Okino's web site can download a demo version of PolyTrans, its SolidWorks CAD conversion system. Okino recently released the 2011 version of the software, which enables users to convert native SolidWorks BREP CAD assembly, part, and presentation files to all major animation and authoring packages, 3D downstream file formats, and VisSim programs.

Autodesk Promotes Engineering Careers with Free TinkerBox App
Autodesk has released its TinkerBox app for iPad, a free game designed to spark teens' interest in mechanical engineering. The app allows players to experience the fun and excitement of invention, while gaining confidence in their ability to excel in engineering. In addition to this new app, Autodesk provides free access to its software and accompanying curricula though the Autodesk Education Community.

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Opportunities & Honors

FormZ User Wins Lightworks Image Competition
Lightworks, a supplier of rendering solutions for developers of 3D graphics software, has announced that Andrew Parks is the winner of the latest Lightworks Image Competition. Parks used FormZ software to create his winning image of a house in rural Arkansas. Entries are now being accepted for the next competition, which features a Nikon D3100 camera as its prize.

Computer Aided Technology Recognized at SolidWorks World
Computer Aided Technology, Inc. (CATI), a provider of design and manufacturing solutions, was acknowledged for its expertise in SolidWorks Solutions with the President's Club Award. The award is given to members of the SolidWorks reseller community that demonstrate a commitment to providing customers with a comprehensive solution to their design, engineering, and manufacturing challenges.

Stratasys Receives ISO 9001: 2008 Certification
Stratasys, which markets under the brands Fortus 3D Production Systems and Dimension 3D Printers, has received ISO 9001: 2008 certification. The ISO (International Organization for Standardization) 9000 family of standards relates to quality management systems and is designed to help organizations ensure they meet the needs of customers and other stakeholders.

Microdesk Irvine Operations Awarded Autodesk Gold Tier VAR Status
AEC industry consultant Microdesk has announced its designation as an Autodesk authorized Gold Tier value-added reseller (VAR) in the greater Southern California area, with AEC Systems authorization. Gold Tier partners compose an elevated level of the Autodesk VAR program, which incorporates Autodesk software solutions along with technical expertise in a specific industry or unique business.

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Books & Training

3DATS Publishes 3ds Max Guide for All Skill Levels
3D Architectural Training Solutions (3DATS), an Autodesk-authorized publisher, has released 3ds Max 2011 — One Project from Start to Finish ($99.95). The guide, written with the assistance of 3D visualization firm Cat-a-pult, is intended to show each step of the visualization workflow, and to illustrate every facet of the design and creation process.

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Mark Your Calendar

Webinar: BIM and Single-Family Residential
February 17, 2011
2 p.m. ET
"BIM and Single-Family Residential: Using Technology to Lower Costs, Speed Construction, and Improve Performance" is a webinar that will focus on the use of building information modeling on smaller projects. Architects will describe the benefits and challenges using of using BIM for residential work. Read more

Webinar: Top 5 Strategic Goals of PLM
February 23, 2011
11 a.m. ET
During this webinar from Aras, Kalypso, and Tech Clarity, attendees can learn how to create a PLM strategy with a clear vision and defined goals that can lead to improved innovation, better time to market, and greater corporate profitability. All attendees will receive the report, "The Top 5 Strategic Goals of PLM." Read more

Ecobuild 2011
March 1–3, 2011
London, United Kingdom
This event for sustainable design, construction, and the built environment focuses on emerging issues, new thinking, challenging ideas, and the new policy priorities of the coalition government responding to the need for budget cuts. Read more

GIS Program Management
March 14, 2011
Yakima, Washington
This workshop by the Washington chapter of URISA (Urban and Regional Information Systems Association) is designed to provide guidelines for managing a GIS (geographic information system) program in a government organization. Read more

Cartography and Map Design
March 15, 2011
Yakima, Washington
This workshop by the Washington chapter of URISA (Urban and Regional Information Systems Association) addresses the creation of an effective map — one that portrays a place, delivers a message, or reveals a pattern with representational accuracy and visual clarity. Read more

Webinar: Transforming PLM for the Economic Recovery
March 30, 2011
11 a.m. ET
This webinar from Aras, Kalypso, and Tech-Clarity will discuss how to transform your organization's approach to PLM (product lifecycle management) to anticipate changing needs, leverage the latest technologies, and thrive in a dynamic global market. All attendees will receive the report, "Transforming PLM for the Economic Recovery — Think Big, Start Small, Build Incrementally." Read more

Aras Community Event 2011 International
April 26–28, 2011
Dearborn, Michigan
At this event from product lifecycle management (PLM) software solution provider Aras, business and IT professionals from around the world can network and collaborate with other members of the Aras Community and gain insight about their enterprise open source PLM initiatives. Read more

PLM Road Map 2011
October 4–5, 2011
Plymouth, Michigan
At PLM Road Map 2011, presentations will cover simulation-based design, embedding simulation across the entire product lifecycle, mechatronics, transforming PLM (product lifecycle management) into a dynamic infrastructure for business decisions, and more topics. Read more

For a complete list of CAD meetings, conferences, training sessions, and more, check out our calendar of events on Cadalyst.com. Are you hosting an event that you would like to include in our calendar? Submit details at least two weeks in advance to news@cadalyst.com.

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What's New at Cadalyst.com

Circles and Lines Tutorial: AutoCAD for Mac Is Back!
After an 18-year absence, Autodesk reintroduces native AutoCAD for the OS X platform. Read more

At LEMO, 3D Is Not an All-or-Nothing Proposition
Manufacturer of popular connectors finds DWG data is still critical for internal communication and fast delivery of custom designs. Read more

First Look Review: Cintiq 21UX
Wacom's pressure-sensitive, interactive pen display fits the bill for creative professionals who want a leading-edge tool. Read more


About the Author: Cadalyst Staff

Cadalyst Staff

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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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