CAD Tech News (#5)

13 Nov, 2014 By: Cadalyst Staff

▶ Bentley Systems Wants to Help Infrastructure Professionals Connect

With Connect Edition — its new generation of infrastructure project design, collaboration, and management products — the software developer seeks to encompass all project participants.

By Cyrena Respini-Irwin

While its competitors may be content with using consecutive version numbers or appending the year to their software titles, Bentley Systems — not one for conventional naming strategies — is updating its V8i generation of infrastructure products to Connect Edition. The new name is meant to reflect an inclusive workflow that encompasses all project participants and a hybrid computing environment of desktop modeling applications, cloud services, on-premise servers, and mobile apps. The unconventional Connect Edition naming continues with the Bentley Navigator "app-lication," a term intended to indicate users of the desktop application and mobile app will have the same Navigator software experience. "Uniquely, it's the same code, the same environment — we've done this right," commented CEO Greg Bentley.

Microsoft's Azure cloud platform serves as the hub of this broad network of users and devices in Connect Edition. It also provides the horsepower for optioneering, or quickly working through multiple engineering scenarios and their costs to find the best of the bunch. For example, with SITEOPS site-optimization software — which Bentley acquired in September — users can determine the most economical site layout option, the one that provides the most parking spaces, or the option that best meets both of those criteria. "That's not been possible before, and is now globally available through Bentley Systems," said Greg Bentley.

The connectedness of Connect Edition extends to users of the previous version. The DGN file format has not changed with the update, so V8i modeling applications are compatible with both MicroStation and ProjectWise. "With Connect Edition, we don't change the file format, so you can mix and match V8i and Connect Edition in a common Playbook," noted Senior Vice-President Bhupinder Singh, referring to the collection of applications and apps recommended to address each project's requirements. (A Playlist, in contrast, is a compilation of applications and apps specific to a participant's role, and includes personalized learning paths.) Read more »

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Cyrena Respini-Irwin is editor in chief of Cadalyst.

▶ Circles and Lines: Text Tips for AutoCAD 2015

New features in the mtext editor make formatting faster and easier.

By Lynn Allen

It is a rare drawing that doesn't include text somewhere in the file. Consequently, any improvements made to multiline text (mtext) or text editing really come in handy for AutoCAD users. Luckily, AutoCAD 2015 provides some substantial improvements to the mtext editor, as well as TextAlign, a brand-new command that helps align text objects.

If you've ever wanted to see through the mtext editor to the objects beneath (to ensure your text is properly placed on the sheet), you'll appreciate the new transparency feature.

Transparency Feature
The updated mtext editor is transparent.

Managing columns in the mtext editor has improved over the years, but the new easy-to-use resizers provide more of what you expect in a text editor. Simply grab the bottom or right edges to change the height or width of the mtext editor, or use the corner resizer to change the height and width at the same time.

Improved Bullets and Numbering

If you begin a line in the mtext editor with a number or a letter followed by a period, right parenthesis, >, }, or ] along with a space or tab, AutoCAD 2015 assumes you want to begin a sequence. A lightning bolt icon lets you know that automatic numbering is in effect. Simply click on the icon for other valuable options, including the ability to turn off sequencing. If you backspace right after the sequencing appears, AutoCAD assumes this was not your intention and reverts the text to what you typed. Read more »

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Cadalyst contributing editor Lynn Allen is an Autodesk Technical Evangelist, has written Cadalyst's "Circles and Lines" column since 1993, and is the creator of Cadalyst's popular AutoCAD video tips.


CAD Manager's Toolbox: Emergency Checklist
How do you prepare for a data emergency? Read more »

Change Happens
Change is inevitable, so how can you make it easier to manage? Read more »

Nudge Your AutoCAD Objects into Place
Have you ever needed to just nudge an AutoCAD object into its proper place? Join Lynn Allen as she shows you this top-secret tip for moving objects on the screen without going into a single AutoCAD command! Watch the video »


EuroMold 2014
November 25–28, 2014
Frankfurt, Germany
EuroMold 2014's theme is From Design to Prototyping to Series Production, with a focus on topics such as innovation and cost efficiency for latest development techniques and modern forms of production. Read more »

Construction Technology Forecast: Harnessing Integration, Mobile, Sensors, and Augmented Reality
December 2, 2014
2 p.m. ET
Associated General Contractors (ACG) of America will present this webinar, the cost of which will be $99 for ACG members and $129 for nonmembers. Read more »

Autodesk University 2014
December 2–4, 2014
Las Vegas, Nevada
This annual event for users of Autodesk software will offer 650 classes for designers and engineers, Innovation Forums, networking receptions, and an exhibit hall. Read more »

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AutoCAD Tips!

Lynn Allen

In her easy-to-follow, friendly style, long-time Cadalyst contributing editor and Autodesk Technical Evangelist Lynn Allen guides you through a new feature or time-saving trick in every episode of her popular AutoCAD video tips. Subscribe to the free Cadalyst Video Picks newsletter and we'll notify you every time a new video tip is published. All exclusively from Cadalyst!

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