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Everything posted by quigley

  1. BTW its all on the website - the new features that is. http://www.nemetschek.net/architect/new2009.php?feature=Productivity I almost forgot my own favourite - move symbols in walls using the move tool...
  2. Well it depends entirely what kind of work you do. If you are into 3D then frankly its a no brainer. Parasolid, even in this early implementation is far more robust than the previously used kernel (which wasn't ACIS BTW - ACIS is pretty robust as well, as you will find from using Shark). If you do a lot of Architectural design work there are some very good enhancements with symbols in walls, letting you cut the wall in any manner you want. For 2D as has been mentioned the new pre selection and snapping and snap loupe feature really do increase productivity. Also Parasolid is used for 2D profile work as well so things like offsets are more robust. As for the history side of the modelling well again that is more to do with the interface to the kernel rather than the kernel itself. Right now in the MCAD world there is a raging discussion about the merits of history editing vs direct face editing, driven ironically enough by Siemens with their new Synchronous Technology, and new applications like Spaceclaim. These don't use history as we would know it, in the form of a tree. I don't know what NNA are planning with this but suffice to say that parasolids will handle either scenario.
  3. You might want to try the new cut wall opening feature as part of symbols in VW2009. I haven't tried it for this application yet though but it might work. Not sure it you could set it up to cut a different wall?
  4. Just to throw another option into the pot here and that is to use workgroup referencing to reference in any standard detail drawings from an archive into any active project file. This has the benefit that should the standard detail change all the files that use it are updated. You can also do the same with notes. Works especially well with the new pdf referencing and snapping in VW2009.
  5. quigley

    smart points

    Also adjust the delay setting in the edge constraints. Not sure what the default is as I changed mine to zero to get the same behaviour as previous versions (it's a constraint I use a lot)
  6. I think this is a visual issue with SP0 that has been resolved in SP1. I think it is to do with the way the software facetting engine handles geometry of different sizes.
  7. Shaun the dimensioning you describe is nothing to do with parasolid. it is to do with the constraints system that interacts with the kernel. In Siemens case, this is the D Cubed system that is licensed by practically every MCAD system around. Until Vectorworks has a constraints system like this you won't get this kind of functionality. But as Jeffrey says, who knows what is coming? VW2009 has a lot more to it than just the parasolids kernel, buy it!
  8. Bret there is a groundswell of users after this as well. If the DLVPs are intended as replacemnets for layer links then they should be in all products IMHO. But the real issue I feel is that the whole relationship with layers having their own views needs to be sorted if Vectorworks is to really progress and build on what VW2009 brings with parasolid. I've used VW and Minicad before it but have never understood the logic of having different layers with different views from a 3d modelling point of view. I can understand it from a presnetaion drawing point of view before we have sheet layers and viewports, but not now. Just my opinion.
  9. clb, rather than venting why not tell us all, in detail, what it is you cannot do in 2008 so we may be able to offer some feedback. I don't know what the cost of VW is in South Africa but in most sectors VectorWorks is the lowest cost AEC solution that offers a wide range of 2D/3D/data intergration, Mac and PC, and a robust modelling kernel. I deal with a lot of VW users, large and small, and most are perfectly happy with the product, especially those that have moved from systems like Autocad or Microstation. I don't know what your job is but for AEC design it ranks with the best. For MCAD functionality, to be frank, I wouldn't use it as my main 3D workhorse (and I don't, I use SolidWorks), but it still offers excellent tools for certain types of jobs (like plant layouts, schematics etc). With 2009, VW will, I think, take on a more useful role for the engineering sector given that it now imports and exports Parasolid flawlessly (from my tests to.from Solidworks).
  10. You need to recognise that BIM is a moving target and one man's BIM is another's nightmare. BIM is about the digital definition of a building so that all parties involved in building it and running it and ultimately disposing of it have a common model from which the information they require can be extracted and used. There - how vague was that In terms that most understand, it is usually about creating a 3D model of a proposed building design, extracting drawings from that model, and providing the ability to add non geometric information to the elements in the model (such as details of finishes, cabling, materials, and environment. From that combination of geometry and information the building user/designer can pull out the detail they need and run it into other applications that provide details on structural integrity, ventilation, energy efficiency, carbon footprint etc. Vectorworks is aiming at the front end design side of BIM so the modelling and drawing production and ability to add information to elements is key. In this respect VW is already a very capable BIM application. The 3D modelling now surpasses most if not all of the AEC competitors. The drafting and drawing is second to none, and the ability to add information can be done in a variety of ways from automated plug ins to manually added data. As to the question of 2D to 3D integration VectorWorks is probably as good as any of the so called BIM applications out there at creating drawings from the 3D data. But in fact ALL the AEC systems lag way behind what most MCAD systems currently do in this respect. The problem with any 3D to 2D is that to have the drawing detail you need to model the detail in 3D. In MCAD systems this is actually usually necessary due to manufacturing or operational considerations but even here shortcuts are taken. For example, you would not model the thread of a screw. There is no need to except for visualisation purposes. For the drawing the screw would be represented by standard ISO drafting schematics (and these are generated automatically by the MCAD systems for holes and threads - as indeed they are by VW screws and holes). Furthermore, if you do try to model everything in minute detail you will end up with an unusable file and very quickly go bust! What Vectorworks lets you do is use the 3D model to flesh out the bulk of the drawing, and then use either DLVPs or SLVPs to manually add the details. This approach works well provided you keep the limitations in hand. The main ones being that currently you cannot have section viewports on design layers, so all sectional work needs to be either done as sheet layer viewport annotations or as 2D in the design layers. For some this is not an issue but if you need to export to dwg it is a big issue as viewport annotations in sheet layers do not appear in model space in autocad and so are, effectively locked. Si is VW a true BIM application, yes, definately. Can it provide fully detailed construction drawings from the 3D data automatically? No, but then either can any other system, regardless of what their marketing blurb says. What you get with VW is a good combination of tools to mix and match to do your job efficiently. And those tools can only get better now that parasolid is being used. FYI Autodesk products use ShapeManager which is based on ACIS (well OK it WAS ACIS until about ACIS version 8 when Autodesk opted out (taking the source code with them). ACIS is good but parasolid is more robust (I have apps based on both and the parasolid ones just model better).
  11. Ian, most companies of any size choose not to upgrade every release cycle anyway for the simple reasons that projects are best completed in one version (which is the reason why Autodesk introduced subscriptions - to force users to pay even if they still used an old version). Large scale Architecture design is on a par with enterprise level MCAD, where applications like CATIA are used. Enterprise level solftware like this is designed for each release to last maybe up to 10 years, with point releases. The file format is designed to be stable through that release cycle. The problem is CATIA is a ?10k entry level package rising rapidly to ?20k per seat. Companies who make cars and aircraft recognise these issues. VectorWorks is a ?1.5k system max, with most in the UK being the Fundamentals at half that. The AEC market is just not used to paying enterprise level software pricing and all the benefits of file format that it offers. Question: Would you pay ?2000 a seat for VectorWorks Designer if the file format was backwards compatible for say 3 versions? From the experience I have the answer would be a resounding no. As I said most firms I deal with skip a release or two or even three. The problems they have come when they have new hires or expansion and this needs new licenses. What tends to happen then is that project teams switch versions for the project. So would I prefer NNA to divert development resources away from software improvements, bug fixes and interface changes to a re-structuring the file format to provide backward compatibility? No.
  12. All software has bugs. All software has long standing bugs. No software company guarantees to fix all bugs in a given release. Most software companies issue service patches to fix bugs or alter functionality during a release cycle. The fact is when you buy a release you are buying a work in progress - you are buying the best that that company can offer at that moment in time. No software company on the planet can know what every user will do with their software and how they will use it. No two users are the same, so spread this across hundreds of thousands or millions and you see the issues. Of course bugs are annoying and frustrating but most have workarounds to let you get the job done. If you find there are no workarounds - consistently - or that the workarounds are too time consuming, then that is the time to look at other systems.
  13. returning the to topic again I think the issue here is not that simple actually. Remember that for 2009 the underlying modelling kernel has been changed from 2008. Also we are talking about geometry here not text or a database. This backwards compatibility argument rages across the entire MCAD sector where none of the main players offers ANY form of backwards compatibility. How do the developers cater for changes in the underlying kernel? Different kernels build the same shapes from the same curves differently. Some operations like filleting and shelling will fail in one kernel and not in another, or even from version to version (it is no wonder the MCAD companies are pushing for non history modelling - one the huge issues when upgrading is to assure that older models rebuild in exactly the same manner and with the same results. With no history just the geometry has to work).
  14. I note from your specs you have 1GB RAM? Thats a bit on the low side for a 100MB file especially if you have other apps running with VW (eg Mail/Safari?) For these kinds of files I'd recommend uping the RAM to 2GB minimum - indeed 4GB would be a safe choice.
  15. You can export everything in one go but if you use multiple layers and classes your poor old AC user will be in trouble as AC has only layers. At export time you can choose to export VW classes or layers to map to AC layers, the default is classes so if you do this for all layers you can see the potential problems at the AC end. So yes one layer at a time would be sensible, or you to work group reference in the different layers into a new file and export those. If you are a Design serier user you can also export PDF as layers and classes - this would be a good thing to do anyway to accompany the CAD data as it lets the other user see what they should be getting.
  16. My rule of thumb with upgrading for anything more than a couple of licenses at a time is to wait for the first 2 or 3 service patches before upgrading. With some software it is even more critical. For example SolidWorks I have a maintenance contract that I pay ?1000 a year for that gives me all upgrades and support. Version 2008 SP0 is now out, but I won't be installing until 2008 SP3 - and interestingly the UK resellers don;t tend to distribute DVDs until at least SP2 unless customers want them. As you seem to have a large team I'd probably hold back a month or two before upgrading, unless you have a real need to use the new features. Having said that if you use a lot of walls and angled buildings 2008 is a bit of a no brainer with the rotate plan and multiple PIO in wall selection. Maybe upgrade one or two seats and run them and see how you get on. At least that way when you do upgrade everybody some users can help the transition process.
  17. There have been changes in 2008 whereby you can reference files without actually importing the data (as was the case with WGR up till now). This "should" help the file sizes. Also, in my experience, different companies have different approaches to single master model BIM in VW. Some do it all in one file (like the example). Some just to 2D (it is still BIM - it is the data that is important) with a master file of each floor plan and others referencing these to generate details/fitting out plans/elevations etc. Others do the 3D where master model is a basic 3D plan showing only the key elements and this is WGR'd into other files for doing floor plans and details - basically embellishign the 3D structure with 2D detailing. This approach is , I think, the most efficient in VW.
  18. I've been looking at this as well and have noticed that in 2008 and 12.5 the Top/Plan view ignores the class attributes set for Style-1, Style-2 etc - in other words the style classes you can assign the various elements of the door or window to. Instead it takes on the class attribute of the class the window or door object is placed into. However, when you switch to a 3D view you do see them. There are also issues if you try a horizontal section through the windows/doors in an attempt to get around this. Some of the elements in PIO don't get picked up at all.
  19. Many naval architects use Rhino for design and engineering - there are extra modules you can get - http://www.rhinomarine3d.com/ You can also get flattening and nesting modules for steel or wood construction - I know a company using Rhino in combination with Maxsurf and SolidWorks to design steel boats for which they supply the plasma cut kits for boatyard assembly.
  20. Rhino can import/export as IGES, VW can import/export IGES - that would be the format to use for NURBS surfaces. Rhino can also import/export .3ds (which is a facetted format), VW Designer series can import .3ds. So you can handle all geometry types. VW isn;t great at .3ds import though - sorting out the smoothing is not easy. Nurbs IGEs files should be OK though.
  21. Don't think it supports native Acrobat 3D export - not at the machine right now so can't remember, but that doesn't matter as any 3D object from any application using OpenGL can export to Acrobat 3D. What you don't get is the feature tree, or in VW case the layering. Acrobat 8 is fully supported as standard (non) 3D pdfs with layering and classing. Also if you are using ACROBAT 3D you can of course export the drawing files from VW then add a few 3D PDFs into that document using Acrobat itself (which in most cases would be better - eg - add the model view relating to the drawing sheet onto that sheet). Personally I'd love to see something like E-drawings export from VW - see http://www.solidworks.com/pages/products/edrawings/eDrawings.html
  22. No - still the same. If you have SketchUp though, export some of the thousands of free versions you can get from Google Warehouse and import into VW.
  23. I think NNA are working on a referenced version of that right now. Yes you are correct, most firms (certainly here) will use referencing rather than building all in one file.
  24. Yes thats true Katie but the methodologies promoted by NNA are very much a single model file, and multiple drawings in one file. Many of the commands are built around this - eg - Batch print. Unless the sheets are referenced into the active document these commands don't handle the one file one sheet structure. I am very pleased with the new referencing in 2008 and I think 2009 and beyond will bring more in this area for 3D work, hopefully. The key will be the ability to bring in references that don't add to the overhead of the file (they call this lightweight assemblies in SolidWorks for example). I know Jeffrey is working on another project example using referencing, so hopefully this will show what can be done with 2008 now.
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