Sorting in Sheet Set Manager Model Tab


adesk answer day

Alright then… Back from an extended writing hiatus. I’ve not been terribly busy but seemed to need a break from writing.  Today, I am doing some help desk coverage while other members of the team are headed to training at an Autodesk event. This happens every year coinciding with the new releases of the software/applications. So, to get myself warmed up a bit, I took a stroll down to the Autodesk forums and found something called Autodesk Answer Day. The idea is that it is a live Q&A session hosted on a certain forum page. The first answer day was an AutoCAD Answer Day hosted on this board this past Friday on May 7th, 2015. The people responding ranged from community managers and customer service to product designers and analysts.

One of the first topics I noticed was about the sheet set manager. If you have no idea what that is, PLEASE take a minute to educate yourself about the most underused power tool in the AutoCAD platform. Now that you’re familiar, let’s find out what problem is being asked. “Jarsky” wanted to know why the drawings and folders on the model tab did not sort alphabetically. See below for what was happening to him. Read more of this post

Vault Christmas Present


At least it is for me…  Smile

Suppose you have been running Vault Basic or Pro using MS SQL Server Express 2005 or 2008, depending on when you started using document management. One of the primary limitations of Express was the database having a size limitation of 4GB. With Express 2008 R2 and newer, that limitation is expanded to 10GB of data. Seriously? 10GB of metadata, data about the data? That is lots of data.

Now, if you’re using replication, you are forced into a full version of MS SQL Server. For those not using replication, here the two main reasons:

  • Manage a central file database across multiple offices, Site ‘A’ and ‘B’ listed below
  • Disaster recovery, where Site ‘B’ is simply an off-site server hosting your backup data.

Merry Christmas!

A Christmas Hellelujah


Everyone has heard a version of Leonard Cohen’s Hallelujah at some point in time. Thanks to Shrek, even my daughters have heard it. And from what I’ve read, Mr. Cohen wrote approximately 80 verses over the course of a day. I can only imagine what some of them may have said. What we do know is the popular version goes like this:

I’ve heard there was a secret chord
That David played, and it pleased the Lord
But you don’t really care for music, do you?
It goes like this
The fourth, the fifth
The minor fall, the major lift
The baffled king composing HallelujahHallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, HallelujahYour faith was strong but you needed proof
You saw her bathing on the roof
Her beauty in the moonlight overthrew you
She tied you to a kitchen chair
She broke your throne, and she cut your hair
And from your lips she drew the Hallelujah

Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah

Baby I have been here before
I know this room, I’ve walked this floor
I used to live alone before I knew you.
I’ve seen your flag on the marble arch
Love is not a victory march
It’s a cold and it’s a broken Hallelujah

Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah

There was a time when you let me know
What’s really going on below
But now you never show it to me, do you?
And remember when I moved in you
The holy dove was moving too
And every breath we drew was Hallelujah

Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah

Maybe there’s a God above
But all I’ve ever learned from love
Was how to shoot at someone who outdrew you
It’s not a cry you can hear at night
It’s not somebody who has seen the light
It’s a cold and it’s a broken Hallelujah

Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah

You say I took the name in vain
I don’t even know the name
But if I did, well, really, what’s it to you?
There’s a blaze of light in every word
It doesn’t matter which you heard
The holy or the broken Hallelujah

Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah

I did my best, it wasn’t much
I couldn’t feel, so I tried to touch
I’ve told the truth, I didn’t come to fool you
And even though it all went wrong
I’ll stand before the Lord of Song
With nothing on my tongue but Hallelujah

Hallelujah, Hallelujah
Hallelujah, Hallelujah

But did you know of all the cover versions out there, there is a recent cover that re-wrote all of the verses?

Read more of this post

Civil3D Zero Screen–No Vault Option


Just a quick note… For those that might be using Vault already, this will not be news. For those contemplating / testing Vault for your firms, this will help you past a stumbling block.

image

First, the issue… Some firms like to have Civil3D startup at what’s called the zero screen as shown above. It’s a clean place to start your work effort. You’ve got a list of Recent Documents front and center. You’ve got templates available to start new drawings, and so on. What you don’t have is:

  • Open File from Vault
  • Open Sheet Set from Vault

Read more of this post

Working with Civil 3D templates


[Update: Civil 3D 2015 Service Pack 2 has been released (11-24-2014) and resolves the issues related to using acad.dwt as a basis for a new Civil 3D template. Currently, this update is apparently only availble through the Autodesk Application Manager. I would suspect that will change over the next few weeks.]

How do you start creating a new Civil3D template? As most people know, Civil3D ships with a few templates as shown below:

Default Templates

Default Templates

Basically, the choice boils down to either “acad.dwt” OR “Civil 3D NCS.dwt.” Of course, acad.dwt is completely empty of any style or setting including no layers, text styles, etc. While Civil 3D NCS.dwt contains the national cad standards with several styles and settings pre-defined.

If you use the national cad standard layers, then that template would be a great starting point. But what if you don’t use those cad standards? Do you start with the blank acad.dwt and add all of your content? Do you start with the NCS template?

The answer you chose could very well create undesirable results down the road. Let’s take a look at your options after the break…

Read more of this post

Infraworks Model Location


Just a quick tip to keep track of the roller coaster that is Infraworks 360.  When you use Model Builder to generate a quick model OR are using the collaboration aspects of Infraworks, the application will download a model to a default location on your hard drive.

Infraworks download model

Infraworks download model

For most people this default location (C:\Users\<username>\Documents\Autodesk InfraWorks Models) might be satisfactory. For me, I need to manage the location and subsquent models without having to dig too deep on my hard drive. I prefer to use my secondary drive and a specific folder, in this case D:\Autodesk InfraWorks Models. That defines the requirement. You might prefer to use a folder in the root of your hard drive as well. How do you set a new location? Read more of this post

Maryland Considering Digital Signatures


Maryland Digital Signature

Hey… I just read (i got it almost 3 months ago in the mail…) the quarterly newsletter from the Maryland State Board of Engineers. An article in this newsletter caught my eye simply because every firm and government agency I visit is talking about how to streamline plan delivery and recording of said plans.

Here’s a snippet of the newsletter:

Regulations Allowing Digital Signatures to be Published
For several years, the Board for Professional Engineers has been discussing how to implement the use of digital signatures on engineering documents that are submitted to clients and public authorities for permit purposes. This spring, a set of proposed regulations has been formulated, and the Board intends to have them published in the Maryland Register shortly.The regulations are intended to allow for, but not require, the use of digital signatures by professional engineers. They do so by clarifying the definition the definition of “original signature” in Md. Code Ann., Bus. Occ. And Prof. §14-4A-02(a)(1). If a professional engineer opts to sign and seal documents with digital signature instead of a handwritten one, the digital signature will be acceptable in Maryland as long as it satisfies the following four requirements:

  1. It contains identification unique to a licensee using it, such as the licensee’s name and license number;
  2. It is under the exclusive control of the licensee using it;
  3. It cannot be repudiated and is independently verifiable; and
  4. It is linked to the document in such a manner that the digital signature is invalidated if any data in the document is modified.

After the proposed regulations are published, there will be a comment period for the public to respond, followed by final action to adopt them at the next open meeting of the Board.

The question is more around defining authenticity it seems. We all like to DIGITIZE our signatures for letters and other transmissions. In this case, it seems the Board is looking more for a DIGITAL signature. What’s the difference? Wikipedia says…

digital signature is a mathematical scheme for demonstrating the authenticity of a digital message or document.

What do think, is this a digital signature?

MDpeseal

Me thinks this would meet three of the four requirements mentioned above. The difference is the fourth requirement – invalidating the signature if the file is modified. To get that level of authenticity, we can create our own PKI or self signed certificate. But this can be duplicated by anyone. What may be a solution is for a firm to create a Coporate PKI. Many states already have a requirement that the firm maintain a Certificate of Authenticity to practice Surveying/Engineering in a given state. Interestingly, Maryland is also implementing this requirement in October 2015. They are terming it a FIRM PERMIT.

So, it seems that the onus of authenticity may shift from the individual to the firm in order to manage the digital stamps. What say you community?

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