Tips & Tools Weekly (Vol. 17, No. 8)12 Mar, 2012 By: Cadalyst Staff
This Week's Software Tips
Do You Speak LISP?
When it comes to CAD code, Hot Tip Harry knows a good tip when he sees it! Use the "Submit Tip" button below to send us your LISP routines. If we publish your tip, you'll earn a $25 gift card you can use to purchase a T-shirt or other prizes in the Cadalyst Store.
Interact with the UCS Icon
Engineering technician Hayden Clarke discusses the new features added to AutoCAD's UCS (User Coordinate System) icon. "The UCS icon in model space is usually just an indication of which view we are looking at. In AutoCAD 2012, however, the UCS icon is an interactive object that can be selected and manipulated without going to the ribbon or commands." View the complete tip and post your feedback.
Mask Hatch Pattern Backgrounds
Civil designer Sam Lucido talks to us about using the Background feature in AutoCAD hatch objects. "Did you know that you can mask the background of a hatch pattern? This can help when two areas are similar, but have one small difference that you need to graphically display." View the complete tip and post your feedback.
Manage Files with Cloud Tools
Frequent tipster Danny Korem explains how he uses Autodesk Cloud and the company's mobile and browser-based CAD program, AutoCAD WS, to manage his file history. "AutoCAD WS is a great tool — especially since it is free," said tip reviewer Brian Benton. View the complete tip and post your feedback.
Stop Exploding Blocks
Danny Korem also gives us a tip about managing blocks and other AutoCAD objects without exploding them. "For a few years now, I haven't been exploding blocks and polylines — there's really no need to. I make all my blocks non-explodeable when I create them." 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 in the latest version of AutoCAD by Contributing Editor Brian Benton. Use all tips at your own discretion, please. We're sorry, but Cadalyst staff cannot provide assistance with technical problems. Please refer to Cadalyst's LinkedIn and Facebook communities for assistance with AutoLISP and other AutoCAD customization questions.
Earthmine Launches Video Product Tutorials
Earthmine, which specializes in 3D street-level imagery, has launched a new video program called earthmine Feature Series. Each week, the company will issue several short videos highlighting new functions in its software. Topics of this month's videos include Cloud View for ArcGIS, catenary curve measurement, navigation, and visualization.
CIMdata Publishes Simulation Management Paper
CIMdata, a PLM consulting and research firm, has published a new whitepaper titled, "Simulation Management: A Vision of PLM-to-Simulation Workflow Supported by Customized Software Modules." The whitepaper highlights the body-in-white analysis and explains how conduction and computational fluid dynamics can reduce turnaround time and increase the number of simulations.
Deals & Freebies
Siemens Offers Free Design Modules with Solid Edge Purchase
PLM software provider Siemens is offering three free design modules with the purchase of the classic version of Solid Edge software, vST4, for 2D/3D CAD systems. The modules include Wire Harness Design, XpresRoute, and Solid Edge Simulation. This offer expires March 16, 2012.
Nanosoft Provides Free CAD Software for Commercial and Individual Use
CAD vendor Nanosoft has released nanoCAD, a free CAD application offering a classic interface and native DWG support. NanoCAD comes equipped with the tools need to create and edit 2D and 3D vector primitives, texts, tables, blocks, graphical technical documentation display, and print settings using either a model or a sheet.
Opportunities & Honors
Intergraph and DigitalGlobe Announce Geospatial Challenge 2012 Winners
Intergraph and DigitalGlobe announced that Priyanka Mehta and Allison Howard won the Geospatial Challenge 2012. The contest received more than 115 proposals from individuals who used ERDAS IMAGINE to exploit DigitalGlobe's WorldView-2 satellite imagery. The winners will present their papers on March 22, 2012, at the ASPRS Conference in Sacramento, California.
Green Structures Wins Autodesk Inventor of the Year
Autodesk has named Green Structures as the 2011 Autodesk Inventor of the Year for developing the Ventive energy-efficiency system for building retrofits. Green Structures uses Autodesk Inventor software to transform the way energy systems are planned, designed, constructed, maintained, and operated within the built environment.
Books & Training
Nemetschek Releases Vectorworks Landmark Tutorial
Nemetschek has published a new training guide for users of Vectorworks Landmark software: Vectorworks Landmark Tutorial Manual, Third Edition ($75). Written by Jonathan Pickup, the manual has been updated for use with the 2012 version of Vectorworks. The manual provides explanations of design concepts and techniques. Topics discussed apply to both residential and commercial projects.
Mark Your Calendar
March 13, 2012
9 a.m. CT
This webinar from Fisher/Unitech will discuss the capabilities of SolidWorks Flow and its companion modules for HVAC and electronics. Read more
BIM Collaboration for Revit, MicroStation, and Bentley Architecture
March 15, 2012
London, United Kingdom
In this one-hour training session from CadFaster, attendees will learn how to: export a model into a portable EXE file; use the multi-user, real-time, mark-up capability; and host a meeting to co-view the model with colleagues. Read more
Customer Success with Enterprise PDM
March 20, 2012
9 a.m. CT
This event is one a monthly series; in each webinar, Fisher/Unitech will feature a successful EPDM (enterprise product data management) customer implementation. Read more
March 23–24, 2012
Troy, New York
This conference from Bentley will focus on computational and parametric design tools, technologies, and methodologies. 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
Cast Your Vote in Cadalyst's New Poll
Do you wonder how much time your CAD peers spend working in 3D? Simply scroll to the bottom of the Cadalyst home page and vote in the latest Cadalyst poll to find out! You can even bookmark the results page and come back later, to see how the results change as more voters weigh in.
CADspeed Blog Post:
Optimize ArchiCAD 3D BIM Models to View on Mobile Devices
This blog post discusses optimizing textures and model size to get the most of out ArchiCAD models. Read more
Viewpoint: Could Crash Modeling Have Saved the Concordia?
Event simulation helps automobile manufacturers design safer vehicles — and it can do the same for shipbuilders. Read more
AutoCAD 2013 is (Almost) Here
Significant updates include improved mechanical model documentation, annotation options — and some cloud-based functionality that is still top secret. Read more
HP Refreshes Z Workstation Line with Three Upgraded Models
The HP Z420, Z620, and Z820 make their debut, offering new multicore options and increased expandability. 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!