Review: An ADT Book for Everyone

22 Mar, 2006 By: Patrick Davis

Goldberg's tutorial is an excellent resource for Architectural Desktop users of all levels

Author: H. Edward Goldberg
Publisher: Pearson-Prentice Hall (2006)
Pages: 601
Price: $60

Highly RecommendedADT (Architectural Desktop) is Autodesk's popular drafting and BIM (building information management) program built on the AutoCAD platform. ADT expands on AutoCAD's toolset by adding intelligent objects, drafting aids and BIM tools.

One of the drawbacks of ADT is the daunting learning curve you might need to overcome for productivity. Many books written about ADT will help you overcome its steep learning curve, and Autodesk Architectural Desktop 2006: A Comprehensive Tutorial is one of them.

Autodesk Architectural Desktop 2006: A Comprehensive Tutorial
Autodesk Architectural Desktop 2006: A Comprehensive Tutorial differs from most ADT publications because author Ed Goldberg -- an architect and Cadalyst contributor -- focuses on learning the basic tools necessary for productively using ADT, rather than trying to cover every tool and feature available. He offers a thorough explanation of each selected tool or feature and how you can use it in your ADT projects.

Text is broken into three sections and 29 chapters. "Part 1 -- Getting Started" provides a general overview of ADT, the user interface and some general tools.

"Part II -- Sections and Tutorials: Palettes and Exercises" consists of 27 chapters. Many of these chapters focus on a single topic, such as Walls 101, Doors, Curtain Walls and so forth. Each chapter begins with an overview and some basic information about the command, tool or topic discussed. Hands-on exercises walk you through the process of using the command or tool. This section is followed by more information and hands-on exercises.

I was particularly impressed with "Section 17 -- Drawing Management." To fully exploit ADT, you need to understand how the software manages the drawings that it creates for a single project. ADT provides the Project Browser, which you can describe as something like a very sophisticated Xref Manager. The Project Browser is one of those key features that everyone should use, but it is often overlooked. The author provides a good, quick explanation of why and how you should use it.

"Part III -- Putting It All Together" is the tutorial project -- a multistory home that requires use of all the tools previously discussed in the book.

Autodesk Architectural Desktop 2006: A Comprehensive Tutorial is loaded with ADT screenshots, graphics, illustrations, tips and tricks to guide you. More than 150 short, hands-on exercises help you learn new tasks and build your skill level. The book is fully indexed, which makes it very useful as a reference as well.

Goldberg employs easy-to-follow examples and hands-on tutorials to discuss complex topics rather than page after page of text followed by a chapter review. His tutorials and projects demonstrate real-world application of ADT by someone who uses the software to earn a living. This book is suited for anyone who needs to learn the basics of ADT, from CAD technician on up. This book is available online.
Highly recommended.

Autodesk Architectural Desktop 2006: A Comprehensive Tutorial

Table of Contents

How To Use This Book

Part 1 -- Getting Started
Questions and Answers About Architectural Desktop 2006
Installing Architectural Desktop 2006
The Autodesk Architectural Desktop 2006 Interface
Tool Patters
The Properties Palette
The Content Browser
The Open Drawing Menu

Part II -- Section And Tutorials
1. Massing/Mass Elements and Mass Groups
2. Space and Space Boundary Objects
3. Walls
4. Windows
5. Doors
6. Curtain Walls
7. Door And Window Assemblies
8. Stairs
9. Railings
10. Roof and Roof Slab Objects
11. Slabs and Slab Objects
12. Structural Members, Column Grids, Grids and Anchors
13. AEC Dimensions
14. Elevations
15. Sections
16. Drawing Management
17. Callouts
18. Detail Components and The Detail Component Manager
19. Property Set Definitions and Property Sets
20. Schedules and Schedule Tags
21. Sheet Sets
22. Mask Blocks
23. Multi-View Blocks
24. The Design Center
25. AEC Project Standards
26. Display Themes
27. The Viz Renderer

Part III. Putting It All Together -- The Small Country House

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