Tips & Tools Weekly (Vol. 12, No. 37)14 Oct, 2007
This Week's Software Tips
Intelligent P&ID Symbols
NOTES FROM CADALYST TIP PATROL: That's a lot of information! This tip describes most of the options and settings found in AutoCAD's Data Extraction Wizard. It is very useful when a user is setting up a template or extracting the block data in a file. The layer data given at the beginning of the tip is an example of some of the layers used by the tip provider. Any layering system works. This wizard can be used for any drawing that has blocks or attributed blocks in it.
In a nutshell, start the wizard as described and follow the prompts. Choose whatever type of data you need. The data can be created either in a table in the CAD file or in a spreadsheet format. This function is very useful in creating bills of materials, asset tracking, or any other type of list. As long as the block data in the file is correct, the table is correct.
Be careful: If a block is copied and sitting on top of another (giving the appearance of one block when there are actually two) then both are counted, visible or not. If a block is exploded (Gasp!) then it appears on the print but isn't counted by the function. This function can help prevent counting errors and save time.
NOTES FROM CADALYST TIP PATROL: Undo is definitely our friend and one of the commands that sets computer-aided drafting apart from board drafting. A mark to the Undo command is a notifier to the command. A user marks an instant in time telling the Undo command to start here. This mark in time tells the Undo command to group the following actions. When you invoke Undo, and you use the Back option, all work done is undone until the mark is reached. This prevents you from having to undo numerous times. LISP programmers often start the routine with a mark so that the users wanting to undo what the routine did can do it with one command. This macro routine works as stated and could save you several keystrokes or clicks -- and this is always good.
Follow-Up: Xref Overlay
"It's important to maintain some layer properties:
"For elements that are always the same, these blocks have their own layer and object properties and are inserted or xref'd in their special layers, such as 0-BLOCK and 0-XREF. For elements that must have the properties of other objects, they're inserted in their own layer, such as floors, main plan grid, and electrics.
"We use this with AutoCAD 2000, although it may work with newer versions. Using it in IntelliCAD is more difficult because the use of hide lines is difficult in that system. But it's also possible when drawing in a different way but from the same system."
MicroStation Tip: Control AutoCAD File Translations
Axiom offers many MicroStation Tips on its MicroStationTips.com Web site.
White Paper: 3D Drives Top-Line Growth in Manufacturing
TraceParts Offers Parts Library to Alibre Customers
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Opportunities & Honors
Fiatech 2008 Conference Call for Speakers
AUGI Opens Voting for Annual Software Wish Lists
CADCIM Releases AutoCAD LT 2008 Textbook
The Week's New CAD and Related Products
Hardware: OpticPro A320 Scanner
General Software: progeCAD 2008
General Software: MicroGDS v10
General Software: Astroid Drivers for Solid Edge
CAE: VA One 2007
CAE: CAESAR II v5.10
CAE: FLUENT v3.1 for CATIA V5
CAE: COMSOL Multiphysics v3.4
Mark Your Calendar
Webcast: How to Solve Eight File Management Problems
For a complete list of CAD meetings, conferences, training sessions, and more, check out our calendar of events on Cadalyst.com.