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HowTo for "Create circuits from worksheet"?


elc

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Trying to use the Create circuits from worksheet, but unfortunately I get an error that the "source and source socket are missing" ("* Quellgerät/Anschluss fehlt"). Not sure, if this is a translation issue, but I can't get it to work neither with the German translation (Quellgerät-Anschluss) nor with the original column names (Src_Dev_Name-Src_Skt_Name)?

 

1.) Any hints? Or is this one for the german bug-report?

2.) What columns have to have entries for the command to work?


Thanks.

Best,

George

grafik.thumb.png.df280e673b6482020c30a3506b3fe6a8.png

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  • Vectorworks, Inc Employee

@elc well it could be simply that the command can't find the device/socket you have specified in the list? I would figure this out by creating a few devices, making some connections between them and creating a report e.g. Current Layer Cable Report. Then I would Convert to List, delete the circuits on the drawing and try to re-create them  using Create Circuits from Worksheet. That will reveal if there is a bug. (a process known as eating your own dog-food@!

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  • Vectorworks, Inc Employee

Yes I think German tech support should be your starting point and they will file a bug if it's not a "lost in translation" thing. I also tried the English "dog food" test and it works so let's see.

 

Vielen dank!

 

 

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  • 1 month later...

Hello @Conrad Preen,

never gave an update:

the tool is working and the issue was indeed only related to the translation (yet again). -> all column titles are the same (src_skt_name etc) except for the cable number and the source device which were translated... guess there was a good reason for that? I don't know. 🤷‍♂️

 

but I have a new issue with the tool that still fits the thread title:

as I found out just now it can only be used for devices on the same layer, right? not even changing visibility and editability of the layers is helping.

any chance this can be changed? or is it common practice to have the device of all rooms of a site on the same design layer?

 

 

thanks,

george

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  • Vectorworks, Inc Employee

@elc Hi George

 

The rationale for only creating the circuits for devices on the current layer is to avoid unintended consequences. I know it adds some extra steps but it does seem to me a lot safer to stay with operating on the current layer.

 

Opinions may differ of course...

 

Conrad

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thanks @Conrad Preen

 

1 hour ago, Conrad Preen said:

I know it adds some extra steps

 

1.)

here's my 50ct. not only does it add extra steps, it actully caused lost connections when i temporarily moved devices to the same layer just to connect them. 😕

 

let's just say you have a 48 port switch and worst case 48 end devices in 48 rooms (ergo layers)... the amount of "extra steps" does seem a bit excessive, doesn't it?  🙂

(no I don't have one 48p switch dealing with 48 rooms, but I do have more then one switch. 😉 )

 

wouldn't it be just as safe, if you limit the "connectable" devices to the ones visible or visible and editable?

 

6 hours ago, elc said:

or is it common practice to have the device of all rooms of a site on the same design layer?

 

2.)

is there a best practice for "larger" and permanent systems?

 

 

 

best,

george

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  • Vectorworks, Inc Employee

@elc OK, well this is something I will think about. Quite simply you are one of the first (I think) to use this command on an "industrial scale". I had always envisaged it as a way to update an existing drawing to "as-built" from that bundle of notes which came back from the installation. Create Circuits from Worksheet has a basic limitation that circuits can only follow default paths. And it does not prevent or handle situations where circuits cross over each other (this would slow the command down a lot). So while it will always create the connections in the list, it isn't guaranteed to make a beautiful drawing every time.

 

The history of the command is interesting. I was hired by a TV station to re-create the system schematics because their chief engineer had been fired and took all his notes with him! So I had to actually trace the cabling to compile a list, and then I wrote a command to create the devices and another one to create the circuits. So in that context working only on the current layer wasn't the biggest issue.

 

If you don't mind me asking, what business are you in? What's the field of application here?

 

Conrad

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11 minutes ago, Conrad Preen said:

OK, well this is something I will think about.

Sounds promising already, thanks @Conrad Preen. 🙂

 

11 minutes ago, Conrad Preen said:

I was hired by a TV station to re-create the system schematics because their chief engineer had been fired and took all his notes with him! So I had to actually trace the cabling to compile a list, and then I wrote a command to create the devices and another one to create the circuits. So in that context working only on the current layer wasn't the biggest issue.

I am currently also creating as-built drawings for an AV and IT systems design company. but unfortunatelly I am lightyears away from knowing enough about VW and Vectorscript to create my own tools. still hoping to get there though. as I mentioned in another post, the possibilities with VW seem endless... if one knows what he or she is doing. 😉 

 

 

but I would still be very(!) interested in best practice hints/tipps/opinions with regards to layer usage. I still don't understand how VW is used. In AutoCAD you would probably have every room schematic in Model space and then create Layout pages for publication.

But using layers seems to keep it a bit more tidy and (the main reason for me) I can reference the different layers on my arrow connection labels. Especially when I split up big rooms accross different design (and later of course layout) layers, the arrow circuit connection tells me exactly on which page to look? and I don't have to create -and most importantly keep in sync- rooms with equipment for every device I use. 🤷‍♂️

 

 

 

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  • Vectorworks, Inc Employee

Hi George

 

One the things designer come to love about ConnectCAD is that you are not forced into a particular way of working. It is also a bit disorientating at first. Vectorworks began life as an architectural CAD package. In the context of architecture, layers are where things are, classes are what things are. Layers in Vectorworks have a Z elevatiion which kind of maps to the floors of a building. Autocad doesn't have classes so layer are used for everything. So that's architecture - what of ConnectCAD?

 

Well you have a huge amount of freedom: schematics are essentially not-to-scale drawings with no location in physical space - so you can divide them up into layers or put them all on one layer ( and create saved views to navigate ) or some mixture of these approaches. When I was designing TV stations in the '90's and early 2000's I tended to put video, audio, control and data on separate layers. Those systems had a lot of parallel signal flows that would have cluttered up a a single drawing. Nowadays everything is data more or less so I might split up my project by rooms as you are doing. But then I would also be careful about creating situations where there are a lot of layer-to-layer "arrow-style" connections. There get very hard to follow visually. Why is that?

 

The visual side of the brain works differently from the logical side. Your visual brain sees a polyline joining to sockets and instantly understands it. Whereas an arrow means pass the job to good old logical step-by-step brain to read the text, hand it back to visual  brain to find the corresponding anchor, then finally put 2 and 2 together to understand there is a signal flow. It's a lot slower.

 

So, I tend to split my designs up into functional modules that each perform a process and pass a small set of signals to other modules. If you think of your overall system as a high=level block diagram each of those blocks could be an a separate layer. In the end the goal is clarity. Can someone else take your drawings and instantly understand how the system works?

 

My 2c worth - hope it helps.

 

C

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