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Everything posted by altoids

  1. 12.5 had a free trial. It is what convinced us to upgrade.
  2. Dworks, Am I being thick? How on earth did you move things? We use the selection tool, click on the object, drag it somewhere and drop it. The video for the new move by points shows almost exactly this, though it is click-move-click (and a pretty rubber-banding line) instead of click drag. I must be missing something because I find it hard to believe that this is toted as a new feature. Petri, My complaint is not about how many features a package has, but once claiming them, providing usable tools. There has been a long list of VW infuriating tool implementation. I'l tackle just a few here to make my point, but I am sure you have your own pet peeves (stair-maker anyone)? AutoCAD never claimed to be a 2 or 3d parametric object modeler (and it vanilla version still doesn't, as far as I know), but their 2D drafting tools are superb, quick and efficient. Not flawless, but it never got in my way. I had no trouble reshaping a polygon, referencing layers, clipping referenced layers, rotating them, setting pen table for drafting, etc. I never hit a wall with AutoCAD, there was nothing that it wouldn't let me do. True WYSIWYG? Doesn't everyone use the color for line weights technique, as screen resolution is to low to precisely discern line thickness? Do you remember how VW couldn't plot correct thickness diagonal lines until the last release? Basic stuff that is fundamental to CAD, remained lingering for years. And 12.5 couldn't generate pdf without significant error until the latest 12.5.2 patch. And I wouldn't shout too loudly about VW polygon tools, if you include their Ceiling Grid tool as part of this set. It is almost useless, as upon resizing an area, everything but the area disappears - nothing to snap to. 3D tools, while capable, are (were?) laborious. Editing in 3D is/was puppy-kicking awful. Even the 2 and 3D on the same screen is cumbersome. ArchiCAD has sever limitations, is expensive, but it can produce almost any 3D building model at break-neck speed, and rarely endangers puppies. Play with a true 3D modeling/animation package, and VW 3D manipulation seems broken. 2D snapping best in class? Even Katie wrote in another thread that in VW12.5 selecting the correct object was difficult. How many times do you click on a selected item, only to have VW grab some other object? VW feature list commendably long, but using them is at time tedious. Again, as I said, and Katie reiterated, I should try VW13 before moaning. I would stop grumbling if this release has the simplicity and fluidity of Illustrator or SketchUp, and no new features. Just fix the usability, nothing new needed.
  3. I'll save my judgement until I use 13, but: Christiaan,the workflow and management, true file ref, etc seem like improvements. My gripe is that many of the features are so far behind the competition, that it is hard to see them as new. Two way worksheets new in 08? Dashed line control, drafting in 3D, design layer viewports, adjusting flipped text (!), interactive open GL shadows, features that other packages have had for years. Dworks, can you explain a little more about the move tool. How is it different from moving in 12.5? Peter, I take your point, but AutoCAD and Microstation have had drawing rotate since at least since 2001-ish when I started using them. While no doubt a timesaver and a great feature, it is disappointing that this is what NNA is delivering as new. And have they done anything to fix the awful snapping and selection in 2d?
  4. Having just read and watched the VW13 promo & movies, I am a little underwhelmed. Anyone think this an update worth springing for? BTW, can someone explain what is new about the move by 2 point? VW currently moves by two point. I understand that you can also distribute objects, but the new move seems to function just like the old move, at least in the movie where you click on an object to drag it, then click to drop it. Perhaps Click-click instead of click-drag is a big deal. Should a diagonal line qualify as a new feature? 3-point move would be new (object, origin, destination) allowing measured offsets.
  5. We're off topic here, but the problem is that 12.5.1 rev.2 was a general release version, not a Beta Test. NNA has two different version of 12.5.1 running around in the wild. What was the harm of labeling the rev.2 as 12.5.2, which, beyond the obvious advantages, would have prevented us wasting our time debating dot revision naming conventions.
  6. We had corrupt files with 12.5.1 which disappeared when we threw away the associated back-up files. Any BU files that had been created with 12.5.1 (rev.1) would subsequently generate corruption in 12.5.1 (rev.2). After deletion, this errant behavior ended. Separately, why is 12.5.1 (rev. 2) not called 12.5.2? The rev. numbers are universally used to distinguish releases, with the first digit indicating a major change including new features, new file formats, etc (such as from VW 11.5 to 12.0), the 2nd digit is increased for changes that do not alter file compatibility, and the 3rd digit for bug fixes. This is why the jump from 12.5 was called 12.5.1. no new features but bug features.
  7. Is there a command to clip a Work Group Reference in a design layer, similar to AutoCAD's Xclip? On sheet layers we successfully use viewports, but is there a command for clipping the referenced drawing in the design layers? Our referenced design layers typically contain collections of old designs and variations and when we WGR them in, we'd like to clip the view to just the relevant drawing so that the referenced drawing doesn't sprawl across the screen. How do you create the equivalent of viewports for design layers?
  8. Christiaan is 100% right on this one. Apple is largely a closed shop as they sell both the hardware and software that constitutes a Mac. If you want to sell software for Macs, then you first need to ensure that your application works on Apples standard hardware and follows Apple's guidelines. Apple's copious technical documents give ample opportunity to allow programmers to ensure that their software will be consistent with the standard Apple user's experience. Go dig around Apple's Human Interface Guidelines and see how it should work. When followed, the guidelines, ensure that copy, cut, paste and undo are all executed with the same keystrokes in all programs, for instance. VW should support Mighty Mouse as well as any other app does. Illustator 11's failures do not excuse VW. A mouse has been part of a Mac for more than 2 decades, and I believe VW has the worst scroll/zoom/pan mouse support of any app I have used during that time. If there is a worse app in this respect, please list it. To see how the track ball should work, download a copy of SketchUp and use the track ball a little. Human Interface Guidlines
  9. The long launch times are opening just VW, just clicking on the VW icon. No file, just VW.
  10. No other programs running. 1.8 MHz G5 iMac, 768 MB RAM. It happens on both of our machines, one w/ Arch and one w/ Arch & RW. We did a standard install, so whatever libraries are installed, we have. If I temporarily remove all the items from the library folder, the launch times are about the same (+/- 45 secs during the splash screen, and +/- 20 secs after it finds the license name.) We upgraded from 11.5. Installed 12 from the CD, then allowed the installer to update over the net. After double clicking the VW icon, the splash screen comes up, and I get a spinning beach ball for 30 to 50 seconds. Then the license information suddenly appears, and then over the next 19 seconds, the program loads. Is the delay due to time spent looking for other users on the network or license? Thanks
  11. Since upgrading to 12.5, my VW launch times in OSX have become horrendous. VW 11 used to take a few seconds to open, but 12.5 takes about 40 seconds from opening the program, to finally being able to use it (from first to final bounce in the dock.) Is this just my machine, or does everyone have to wait? The delay is the same even if VW is the only program open.
  12. Couldn't agree more that VW interface is poor, but most CAD programs are. I've used AutoCAD, Vellum, PowerCAD, ArchiCAD, MicroStation and VW and not one of them comes close to Illustrator-like simplicity. Every few years we shop around for a better alternative. Some packages have better interfaces, but do much less. We settled on Vectorworks as the least-bad option, though ArchiCAD's version 10 is a great improvement and it's 3D is very quick.
  13. Either the ceilnig grid tool can't multipy, or my forth grade teacher lied to me. If I draw a box that is 10ft x 10ft, the obj. info. window reports the area as 100sq.ft., just as Euclid and my 4th grade teacher, Mrs Raglin, would have predicted. However, when I use the ceiling grid tool to place tile on exactly the same 10x10 box, the obj. info window reports the area as 200 sq.ft. Who knew Euclid could be so wrong, or am I missing something.
  14. Thanks for letting us know Laurence, I'll be on the lookout for it. While I am happy that NNA monitors and contributes to this message board, I have to be critical of NNA for this release. Not so much for the bugs, they can happen even with the best testing, but for the horrible error message. Good error messages are concise, accurate and diagnostic. This one in next to useless, and might just as well say "File open error" as my 1988 Mac Plus used to. If this is the level of error reporting that NNA deems suitable, why not release your software engineers from the burden of error messages altogether, and have them spend more time on debugging their code. Back in the days when I used to write code, each major routine had to set a error message variable that was little more than an ID tag of the offending routine, which was provided along with every error message. Even better, why not give the file & path name, so that the end user might have a chance of discovering what the problem is. Had the error message said, "Cannot open '.../back-up/plan 12.mcd' (er:12345)." the offending problem would have been more obvious (if indeed that is the problem.) (wander off topic) I know that it is easy to criticize and hard to do, but NNA has an almost great product, and I keep wanting them to clean up the interface inconsistencies so that I can look forward to using the software, or at least have it disappear into the back-ground and let me get on with my design. As a former software engineer and a current architect, I well understand the difference between software that is designed by engineers and software designed by designers. If anyone at NNA would like a list of interface inconsistencies, I'd be happy to supply it. The 12.5 release was a huge improvement over 11, and I hope the next release is better again. (/wander off topic) I hope we get a fix soon.
  15. Is auto-backup active? If so, disable it and see if it makes and difference.
  16. Thanks islandmon, but I think I found the answer. It seems to be coming from the auto-back up feature. When it is disabled the crashes disappear. I'm guessing that throwing away the old back-up files will cure the problem permanently.
  17. Since upgrading to 12.5.1, I've started getting "failure attempt to open file" error messages, after which, VW bombs. I have all my files on a server, and the bombing file has workgroup references, also in the same server and same folder. Any clue as to what is going on? The referenced files are all updating correctly when the document opens, and I can manually update the referenced files as well. The bombs happen seemingly randomly, but frequently, typically every 5 minutes or so when I am using the file. Servers and clients are running latest versions of OSX. Permissions are all repaired. No other apps running. No one else has the files open. Any thoughts, apart from downgrading back to 12.5?
  18. Can't find a list of fixes, but on the Mac, zooming seems faster, and thus smoother. The stair tool also lights up current run in red, just like the QT demo.
  19. I am trying to use the reference markers tool to create elevation tags. Nothing linked to sheets or viewports, just dumb text inside a marker object. Although I can set the text in the Obj. Info box, the text location is not controllable, such that if I half the size of the marker, the text moves *outside* the marker. Other Obj. Info check boxes move the text around almost randomly, but for love or money, I cannot move back into the circle, even if I restore the marker back to its original settings. Is there any way to control the text location using the object's parameters? Currently, I am stupidly setting the Obj. Info text to blanks, and then manually typing over the marker, which is slower than just ignoring the reference marker tool altogether. How do I adjust the text position?
  20. I am running VW11.5 and am not familiar with the V12 interface but it might be the same. Do you have a copy of VW11 you can run? In V11, from the menu "Organize>Layers..." a dialog box opens with the choices at the top of the window of "Design" or "Sheet." With "Sheet" selected, is there not a "Set Print Area..." button?
  21. Check your sheet layer setup. There is a "Set Print Area..." button which set the sheet size. Select a single page of 24x36. I find it is sometimes necessary to click on the grid to re-set the size to one page, even if it looks correct. Al
  22. What are the actual dimensions of the plot? 8.5"x11", or 11"x17" by any chance?
  23. If you can't generate previews, then the problem is likely within the iMac. As you can print using other software, the problem is likely to be within VW. But this seems strangely unlikely. You said that you select the plotter from the page setup. I take it you also select it from the print dialog box. Things to try: 1) Have you tried resetting the Mac's print system? You can do this from within the "Printer Setup Utility", select (Printer Setup Utility>Reset Printing System). You will have to add the printers to your printer list again, but this only takes a few minutes. 2) From your iMac, within VW select a working printer, print a document, but capture it to a PDF. Then open this newly minted PDF with Preview but send it to the plotter. Does it work? 3) Have a different computer (one that can plot normally) share the plotter. Select the shared plotter from your print dialog box, then print. Any better? 4) What protocol is used to connect the iMac to the plotter or how did you select the plotter from within the "Printer Setup Utility", using the default browser or via the "IP Printer" icon"? Al
  24. We use the Canon i9900 with its 8 inks and it works nicely for us. It is quick and very quiet. It turns on whenever you send it a print, then shuts off again after a short while after printing to save energy. Almost all our plots are black line 11"x17", with the occasional color photo or rendering. The black is very rich. Colors prints are excellent as are photo on photo paper. One reason we selected the Canon is that the ink is cheap. Unlike Epson (and HP?) they do not put chips on their ink cartridges, so you can refill them or use those made by others. We use compatible ink cartridges at about $3.50 each and not the Canon $12 ones. We can see no difference in the print quality with the cheaper inks. We do, however, have a box full of ink cartridges always on hand. If you run out of one color,the printer will warn you, but can be fooled to print with an empty cartridge, unlike an Epson printer we had that would not let us print when it thought it had run out of ink. The Epson 2200 (now 2400?) uses Epson's UltraChrome inks, which are beautiful and light-fast, but expensive. Unless you are printing a lot of photos, it is probably more than you need. I don't know about the HP 9800. HP produced a series of dud printers for a few years, but recently they have improved. Check to see what the printer cartridges cost at somewhere like LDproducts.com, as the cost of a replacement set of inks can quickly exceed the cost of the printer. One disadvantage of the Canon is that the inks are water soluble, so if it is raining, the plots bleed. I think Epson's inks are waterproof. [ 02-14-2006, 12:22 AM: Message edited by: altoids ]
  25. (This is a repeat posting from another thread.) We bought and installed a non-postscript Designjet 500 with an Ethernet card about 3 months ago and despite what HP's website said, the 500 without postscript is supported by HP for use with OS X 10.4; and HP provides drivers. No need for gimp, Ghost Script or setting up a print server. Installed and worked since day one, first time. The printer is on our network and has become invisible technology; we say print and it does. Three disadvantages so far: 1) Unlike HP's Windows counterpart, their OS X driver does not allow plot rotation, so we are constantly wasting paper. 2) Light gray fills print with a v. slight red cast. 3) Not HP's fault, but VW 11 show diagonal line weight problems on this printer as well. The latest OS X drivers (3.1 - Nov 9, 2005) are available on HPs website. You can download the drivers onto your laptop, bounce along to your local dealer and try plotting from VW before buying. When we bought our 500, HP also threw in free paper & ink and offered a 30-day money back trial.
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