I am hosting my own site and blog now. It has been my desire to create a site that has better content, news, information and benefit to the Autodesk Design and Manufacturing community. More storage and flexibility was required. This site will be discontinued over time.
The new Blog “Design and Motion” can be found here:
The main site will be developed as time progresses
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3D Connexion released the newest creation in their line 3D navigation tools, the Space Pilot Pro. I have always been fascinated by 3D Connexion’s tools, as they clearly are unique items. However I kept them at a distance because of a few factors: Price, Uneasiness, and Dependency.
If I can’t have it, I usually won’t go play with it. This keeps my marriage in tact as well.
Price – I believe that at least 50% of the users out there know something about these devices, and know they are fairly expensive. Well, this is partially true. If you get in at sale time, you can pickup a notebook model for 80 USD. I don’t think there are any buttons, just view mobility. That’s still a nice item for 80 bucks. The new deluxe model comes in at 500 USD. That’s pricey.
Uneasiness – Mostly my innate lack of desire to change something that works; namely the way I have been doing it. The 3 button mouse and an ALT key covers a lot of ground. I watched some field experts navigate quite well with a 3 button mouse, and there was no lack of speed. Which brings us to the last item.
Dependency – Ever since Vibrant Graphics dumped us old people, I have been very jaded about dependency on non-OEM functionality. I still wrote C++/C# code, but usually this was to cover things that were reasonably impossible with other methods. No odd command aliases, no large menu configurations, mostly out of the box. This way I would never be bent over the way I was in 2000, when I had to relearn the interface.
These 3D mice have always been super-popular at AU. So I decided to do a few 3D Connexion promotions for the upcoming Tekni Creative Inventor training, and the powers that be agreed to pay for the mice. I however was not one of the lucky ones that will get said mice.
The curiosity was killing me. While I’d like to try it in Inventor, my question is how will it work in Civil?
So my associates introduced me to some people at 3D Connexion, and Walt and Company, and they kindly agreed to let me play with one of the new toys. During the last discussion, they asked what I intended to do with it, and I told them I intended to review the product in different environments, and then publish the results. A few days later a new Space Pilot Pro ended up on my door step. Like a kid in a candy shop.
What came in the box was a folder from the company, containing some fact sheets, Company Rep contact info, the driver CD, and the Space Pilot Pro….and a note that said basically “If you need any assistance, please call.”
Please remember we have moved to http://johnevansdesign.net Come visit us there.
This has been a pain in numerous people’s sides for a long time. One day you love it and the next day you hate it.
The DWG Launcher
This gizmo is the thing that loads the drawings from remote requests, based on the registered DWG extension. AcLauncher.exe
Since Autodesk is trying to spread it’s trademarked use of DWG to numerous platforms, it needs some flexible way to allow users to open the DWG easily through explorer and other applications.
How this works
When the OS sees a DWG file request sent, it uses the DWG registered app to open it with. In this case it is the DWG Launcher. The application uses registry entries to figure out which version of what application to use. It is fairly simple, except there is nothing evident about it, and it gets fouled up.
The registry settings governing this work something like a flow chart:
- Windows initiates default dwg app ->DWG Launcher
- Launcher reads shell DWG default Application –> AutoCAD
- Launcher goes to AutoCAD and reads launch instruction –> AutoCAD r18 exe path
- Launcher executes launch statement with requested dwg file
Most users will never have a problem with this since they only use 1 type of DWG application. Actually, most users of differing DWG apps never have a problem.
We recently reviewed Garin Gardener’s 3D sketching post, and highlighted the 2D and 3D sketching. There was 1 point remaining that we didn’t have time to get to:
3D Intersection Curve
3D Intersection Curve is a feature that intersects in 3 dimensional space, the projected geometry from 2D sketches on intersecting planes (did that make any sense?)
Here we have a 2D sketch as well as a work plane created for the second sketch.
We need a new 2D sketch on the work plane. Don’t forget to project the geometry needed to work from (I used the endpoint of the line in the first sketch. See below)
This post has been moved over to http://johnevansdesign.net/2009/02/09/inventor-3d-sketch-tips/
Here is a problem some VISTA users have. The DWG import wizard viewer “Selective import” control is empty. One reason is of course VISTA, but another may be because of constant uninstall and reinstalls of Design Review. I have not confirmed the latter, but I do suspect it.
I went looking for some info on this, and found the ‘known issues’ list in numerous places.
The DWG import wizard viewer “Selective import” control is empty: You may notice in the DWGIN wizard’s viewer page that the “Selective import” control is empty (this control lists the layers in a DWG file). This indicates that a module needed by the viewer is not registered (because a lack of user privileges).
In Click Start > locate the program for “Command Prompt, ” and right-click it as run the program with the option “Run as administrator”
To register You cannot start the cmd.exe from Run…” menu for this procedure. When the command prompt is active, navigate to where dxoemviewer.arx is located (c:\program files\aoemview 2008, by default), and then enter the following:
AU 2010! Yeah, well I’m back and already looking forward to next year.
Tekni is still giving away promotions for the new 2011 courseware. Register before 12/31 deadline to get a chance to win.
We all know about constraints. It make the world go round.
I have a reasonable amount of twisted workarounds, but very little every day constructive examples. So, I as thinking of AU (as ALWAYS) and was reminded of Dan Banach drilling productivity tips at us, and Horizontal and Vertical constraints were mentioned numerous times (seriously, take his class at AU).
Whether you are in training or didn’t pay attention to this feature, you should consider it.
This Horizontal constraint should be applied to geometry that passes through the horizontal plane from another reference feature. Refer to the image below. I’d like the sketched geometry to be evenly distributed across this part. The best way is with constraints.
Content Center Family Editing
We need to change some settings in the Content Center Family just written. Navigate through he Content Center Editor to the new Family. Right Click, and select the Family Table option. The family parameters dialog will appear.
The following are examples that I used, however you will undoubtedly have differences and variations at your company that need to be adopted.
- AutoCAD Civil 3D
- Autodesk University
- Design Review
- Bug Report
- Error Code