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DWF files

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The difference being that dxf and dwg are modifiable formats and dwf is not. It would be nice to have a format that all could print to that would allow for easy interchange of finished product in a non modifiable format that print shops and contractors could use for take offs etc.

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PDF's are the standard for us to send out for printing and for GC's. PDF is a format that can be viewed in, and printing from, Adobe Acrobat, a software that is FREE to download, and can be used in both mac and PC. What more could you ask. We are always educating people about software/file format issues, its part of the job nowadays. If GC's can't access PDF, there is something wrong with their computer capabilities, not yours. Remember, Autocad does not have to be the standard...

Is this the format used for that annoying "Whipit" viewer, by the way?

[ 03-13-2003, 04:54 PM: Message edited by: jfmarch ]

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  • 7 months later...

if you read the article in AEC magazine, it actually presents quite a good argument for dwf, and details the limitations of pdf... just because it is the standard approach doesn't mean that it is the best... dwf is smaller, and will soon be able to support 3D models...

anyone who is mac based and has to deal with the majority of the rest of the deisgn community on pc, using autocad, microstation, archicad etc will know all about the problems file sharing...

we are under so much pressure to change (and conform) that the only thing that might delay the inevitable is if programs like VW try and improve not only their product, but also their ability to snyc with other pc programs...

dxf are a waste of time...

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i still stand by my previous post. i do not know what is meant by the statement that PDF's are not scalable on the screen.

autocad is the big boy on the block, and of course their version of PDF is always going to become an 'industry standard'.

we have had NO problems, complaints, gripes, etc., form any printer, printing service, contractors, consultant, etc., about the PDF's we either send out or upload to our website. in fact, since OS X was released, the print to PDF has been imnproved greatly.

just becuase VW can't export VWF's doesn't mean its automatically weak or worse than any other program...

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I'm a big fan of pdf's. But not scaleable on screen means that you are basically dealing with a picture. You can't hold a ruler over the space between a kitchen island and the cabinets and learn the distance that separates them. As I understand it, dwf's store vector information so viewers can do area take offs (hard to do with a pdf on screen), compute linear distances and so on.

Long term it could be a problem for us because building departments will inevitably move to electronic document submittal and plan checking and some will be tempted to fight the application wars and adopt a particular format, particularly with all the "enticements" that may be offered to help them decide.



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DWF can be translated to a DWG, which can then be read into VW. The only problems for MAC users particularly, and others is that you have a copy of AutoCAD 14 to 2002 and purchase the "dwfin" AutoCAD plug-in from IntelCad. Once loaded the dwfin command reads the DWF file into AutoCAD. The dwfin AutoCAD plug-in is the only program in the world that can do this. IntelCad has reversed engineered the DWF file format (refer to link below), but I am sure John Williams and his team are smart enough to emulate this functionality within VW; but don?t hold your breath, implementing AutoCad?s new 2004 file format translator no doubt would be enough challenge at present.


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There is one other thing about dwf that is not so nice. Ever do a nice vw drawing, export dwg and reimport into vw?

Last time I did that I was not happy because vw lets us do very handsome graphically sophisticated drawings but they come out on the other end looking like autocad drawings.

That is what I love about pdfs, they preserve the look of things so well.

Really, adobe is the one that should step up to the plate here and teach acrobat to understand vector information. Having created one of the original mac vector programs they should be able to do this.



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