CAD Manager's Newsletter (#202)

26 Aug, 2008

Special Alert: Take the CAD Manager 2008 Survey

I'd like to thank the readers who've completed the survey. I've already had more than 350 responses, but I'd like to shatter that number. Can you help?

Please participate in the survey or forward this newsletter to a colleague or friend who performs CAD management functions. It takes only 10 minutes to do the survey, and we'll all benefit by better understanding the CAD management job market and compensation.

Here's the link:

Results will be published in the November issue of Cadalyst magazine, and more detailed analysis will be included in the CAD Manager's Newsletter in October and November, so be sure to check back!

The Part-Time CAD Manager, Part 2

Here are more strategies for coping with full-time CAD management responsibilities and only part-time resources.

The past several years have shown a continuing trend toward CAD management as a part-time position. Even many large companies seem unwilling to fund a full-time CAD manager position.

In this edition I'll pass along some efficiency and coping strategies you can use to maintain your sanity as you manage your CAD environment part time. Here goes.

Make an Action Plan
Note: If you didn't get a chance to read the previous installment of the CAD Manager's Newsletter, please do so now because I will to allude to the planning I asked you to do.

Let's take all the good ideas that you catalogued from your planning conversations with users and management and turn them into a CAD management plan. The plan is simply a sorted list of all the good ideas that you have for making your CAD operations run smoother and better, if you only had the time. Here's how you turn ideas into a plan.

Set rough priorities. This is the order in which you would work on implementing your good CAD ideas if you had adequate time to do so. Read more »

:: CAD Manager’s Toolbox: Cool Utilities Continued

To make your work life easier, snag this little gem of a utility.

In previous editions of the CAD Manager's Toolbox, I've told you about low-cost utilities I use to make my day easier. Now I'll add another one to the list.

Graphics Capture/Edit Utility
One of the utilities I couldn't live without is SnagIt from Techsmith. This utility does so much that I can't begin to cover everything, but I'll share a few of the features I use SnagIt for to make creating training materials easy.

SnagIt started out as simply a way to capture graphics from your screen (say a model in Revit) and paste those graphics into Word documents (like a training manual). SnagIt still performs these tasks but has grown to include the following cool functions for graphics capture Read more »

Got a cool utility or tip I should know about ? Send it to me at If I use your tip in the newsletter, you'll receive a cool Cadalyst prize!

:: Resources

Benchmark Updated for Systems Running AutoCAD 2008-2009
The Cadalyst benchmark is designed to test and compare the performance of systems running AutoCAD. Cadalyst recently updated the C2008 benchmark to reflect the new 3D capabilities of AutoCAD. The previous benchmark ran the 3D models through four types of rendering: 3D Wireframe, Hidden, Flat, and Gouraud. The new version, C2008 v5.1, matches the four visual styles used with the 3DRotate command: 3D Wireframe, Hidden, Conceptual, and Realistic. C2008 v5.1 is designed to work with AutoCAD 2008 and later. (C2008 is still available for systems running older versions of AutoCAD.) Learn more and download the Cadalyst benchmark at

:: Events

AUGI One-Day CAD Camps
Various U.S. Cities
September 18 – November 5, 2008
AUGI CAD Camps offer a full day of training, expert advice from top instructors, networking opportunities, technology updates, and more. Read more »

GITA 2008 GIS for Oil & Gas Conference
September 21-24, 2008
Houston, Texas
The 17th annual GIS for Oil & Gas Conference and Exhibition will include targeted educational sessions, a forum for best practices, a sold-out exhibit floor, networking events, and much more. Read more »

GITA GIS for Oil & Gas Conference — Calgary
November 6-7, 2008
Calgary, Alberta, Canada
Canada and the United States have significant differences in rules and regulations, and this event promises real solutions to Canada's biggest oil and gas challenges. Read more »

Ecobuild Fall and AEC-ST Fall
December 8-11, 2008
Washington, DC
Ecobuild Fall and AEC-ST Fall covers green building, sustainable design, renewable energy, environmental planning processes, and more. Attendees include AEC professionals, owners, developers, and facility managers. Read more »

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