Tips & Tools Weekly (Vol. 17, No. 1)9 Jan, 2012 By: Cadalyst Staff
Editor's Note: Tips & Tools Weekly will take a hiatus for the Martin Luther King, Jr. holiday and will return on January 23, 2012.
New Tips for the New Year
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!
Mask Dimension Text
Tipster Sam Lucido writes about how to set and control background text masking for dimension text in AutoCAD and its verticals. "Did you know that you can mask the background of dimension text? You can add a background mask to a single dimension or all dimensions within a drawing file." View the complete tip and post your feedback.
Add RSS Feeds to Infocenter
Tipster Ronald Maneja sent in a tip about using Infocenter in AutoCAD and its verticals to keep up with current events. "Aside from the default RSS feeds, you can add other RSS feeds to quickly update yourself about anything." View the complete tip and post your feedback.
Tool Palettes in Three Steps
Tipster Carol McKeough demonstrates how easy it is to create a tool palette from Design Center in AutoCAD (and its verticals). "First, in Design Center, navigate to the file that contains the blocks you want to show in your tool palette, and double-click." View the complete tip and post your feedback.
Inventor Tip: Turn Off Parts in Views without View Reps
David Gaskill, a CADD designer, shares with us some tricks for making parts visible in Autodesk Inventor. "Have you ever wanted to turn off parts in a view without setting up a new level of detail or view rep, only to find that the Visibility option in the menu is grayed out?" View the complete tip and post your feedback.
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'sCAD 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.
Bentley Releases Annual Infrastructure Yearbook for 2011
Bentley Systems has published a digital version of The Year in Infrastructure 2011. This 240-page book features the more than 300 project nominations recognized and 20 winners honored at the 2011 Be Inspired Awards ceremony, held in Amsterdam, the Netherlands, on November 9.
Mercury Publishes Two AutoCAD 2012 Guides
Mercury Learning and Information, which publishes print and digital content on science and technology topics, has released two new AutoCAD titles by Munir Hamad: AutoCAD 2012 Beginning and Intermediate and AutoCAD 2012 3D Modeling. The former includes 50 exercises that cover small projects from concept through plotting. The latter explains procedures for creating and modifying 3D models, and more.
Deals & Freebies
Maplesoft Launches Free Maple Player Technical Computing App for iPad
Engineering software provider Maplesoft has released the Maple Player for iPad, an application that lets users view and interact with documents created in the Maple technical computing and documentation environment. The free app provides an interactive interface where users can perform calculations and visualize results.
Luxion Updates Free Plug-ins for KeyShot Rendering Software
Luxion, a rendering and lighting technology provider, has updated its free 3D CAD plug-ins for direct import into KeyShot 3. The new plug-ins link Creo v1; Pro/ENGINEER Wildfire v3, v4, and v5; Rhinoceros v4; SolidWorks 2011 and 2012; and SketchUp v7 and v8 with KeyShot 3, allowing users to transfer data directly from their modeling sessions into KeyShot's rendering environment.
Opportunities & Honors
Coordinate Metrology Society Announces Call for Conference Papers
The Coordinate Metrology Society, a membership association for measurement professionals, has announced a call for papers for the 2012 Coordinate Metrology Systems Conference in New Orleans. Suggested topics include industry best practices, scientific research and developments, and successful applications of 3D coordinate measurement systems.
AIA Invites Entries for Building Information Model Awards
The AIA (American Institute of Architects) Building Information Model Awards honor projects that highlight proven strategies and the latest trends in design and technology in the building industry. Categories include sustainable design, delivery process innovation, and more. Entries must be submitted by January 17, 2012.
Kenesto Opens Process Automation Beta Program
Kenesto, developer of a process automation system, is searching for manufacturing companies and industry value-added resellers to participate in its beta program. The cloud-based system allows users in all departments of the manufacturing enterprise to create processes and manage workflows. Kenesto automates common manufacturing processes including engineering change proposals and requests for quotation.
Green Structures Named Autodesk Inventor of the Month
Autodesk named UK-based building design firm Green Structures the Autodesk Inventor of the Month for December 2011, citing the company's use of Autodesk Inventor software and a range of other Autodesk digital prototyping technology in transforming the way energy systems are planned, designed, constructed, maintained, and operated within the built environment.
Books & Training
MAXON Relaunches Cineversity Training Web Site
MAXON, a 3D software company, has revamped Cineversity, its online training and education resource for CINEMA 4D users. The redesigned site provides users with an intuitive interface, improved search and filtering capabilities, the ability to create custom playlists, and an interface for teachers to interact with students. The new site also features new tutorials and webcasts.
Mark Your Calendar
April 2–4, 2012
This year, the theme for Fiatech's Annual Technology Conference and Showcase is Fiatech Heat: Innovation that Builds the World. Read more
NVIDIA GPU Technology Conference 2012
May 14–17, 2012
San Jose, California
The third annual GPU Technology Conference will showcase breakthroughs in computational science with the GPU (graphics processing unit). Read more
Coordinate Metrology Systems Conference
July 16–20, 2012
New Orleans, Louisiana
This conference will focus on technical education via practical and academic technical presentations, workshops, and seminars. 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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
What's New at Cadalyst.com
CADspeed Blog Post:
Mobile vs. Deskside: CAD Workstations Don't Follow Conventional Rules
A disconnect has been emerging between the perception and reality of mobile workstation sales and usage. Read more
CADspeed Blog Post:
Technology Makeover Supplies CAD Hardware/Software to Deserving Small Business
Autodesk awards Alan Mascord Designs with eight seats of Autodesk Building Design Suite 2012 and more. Read more
IMAGINiT Tricks Tutorial: Recognize and Simplify Features
The Find Features and Simplify tools can improve your productivity in Autodesk Inventor Fusion. Read more
User Profile: Designer by Destiny
Looking back, Dawid van Rensburg's unpredictable journey into architecture was always in the cards. Read more
In her easy-to-follow, friendly style, long-time Cadalyst contributing editor and Autodesk Technical Evangelist Lynn Allen guides you through a new feature or time-saving trick in every episode of her popular AutoCAD video tips. Subscribe to the free Cadalyst Video Picks newsletter and we'll notify you every time a new video tip is published. All exclusively from Cadalyst!