Finding inspiration in even the most mundane of tasks

Archive for January, 2010|Monthly archive page

BIM Blog Banter

In CAD / BIM Manager on January 21, 2010 at 8:45 am
I follow a lot of blogs.  I really enjoy gaining information that will help me with the technical and procedural side of architecture, but I also like hearing things I don’t quite agree with that challenge what I think.  Greg Arkin at tends to post in a way that provokes me to thought.  .-)  I read and responded to this post yesterday, and figured I would repost it here too.

The MText Question

In AutoCAD Architecture on January 16, 2010 at 10:44 am

Just a quick AutoCAD tip for the weekend.  A lot of companies that have used AutoCAD for more than a decade have customized their standard SHX font, especially to show symbols such as Diameter, Angle, Centerline, etc.  The common method for displaying these special characters is to use the ‘percent percent’ code (e.g. %%169).  This has worked fine for years, but in newer versions of AutoCAD, when using MText, for some reason some of the symbols display as question marks.

You could explode the MText object to single-line text to get the symbol to display, but I’m not too fond of that solution as I am a die hard fan of MText.  The solution I have used is to use the ‘ALT key code’, which works for most of the problematic symbols I’ve encountered.  The way to to this is to hold the ALT key while keying a 4-digit number on your keyboard’s number pad (make sure NumLock is on).  It can be a little tricky on a laptop, but it still works.  For example, %%169 would be ALT+0169, and %%43 would be ALT+0043 (the zero padding is applied to the front of the code).

If you have any other solutions feel free to comment.

At a Crossroads

In AutoCAD Architecture, CAD / BIM Manager on January 6, 2010 at 7:52 am

Choose Wisely

One of my users’ AutoCAD installations went horribly south yesterday, and we encountered this error that was just too good not to share.  The more I think about it now, however, the more I realize this question is actually being asked at an increasing rate in our industry.  It will be interesting to see what’s in store for AutoCAD over the next couple years.

Doctor, it hurts when I do this

In AutoCAD Architecture on January 5, 2010 at 1:11 pm

“Don’t do that.”

Here is a recent glitch we encountered with ACA 2008.  We use Project Navigator, with our details set up as individual View drawings.  We then drag the defined Model Space Views in these drawings onto the Sheet to place the details.  Sometimes the wrong MSV is accidentally dragged into the Sheet, and the natural reaction to correct the error is to hit the ESC key.  For some users, if the ESC key is pressed before picking the insertion point for the viewport ACA crashes.   Read the rest of this entry »