November 1996 New Products TOC
It's tough to keep your drawings and documents orderly if you toil in a workgroup. It's even more difficult if you're part of a multi-site business. AutoEDMS 4 helps keep your documents up to date and in order, no matter how many people revise them.
The new version includes check-in/check-out, revision control, automatic filenaming and file-activity audit trails. The program's expanded built-in viewing and printing support includes direct viewing support for AutoCAD 13, CALS Group IV large format raster images, MicroStation DGN drawings and HPGL/2 plot files.
You can view, print and copy all supported files to the Windows Clipboard without using the native applications. AutoEDMS also offers built-in viewing and printing support for Microsoft Word and Excel, Corel WordPerfect and Lotus 1-2-3, among others.
Changes to the interface include the addition of a floating toolbar for common functions, a new toolbar design, a database editor and multiple pick lists. The Help system is now a hypertext-based, Windows-style system. Starter kit (2 users), $895; expansion kit, $395; CAD viewing module, $195 per seat; document viewing module, $150 per seat
310-325-3055, fax 310-325-3059
If you want to learn CAD from the ground floor up, try TurboCAD Designer 2D and 3D 3.0. Based on the same technology as TurboCAD, these programs don't include the more sophisticated filters. A reference book of CAD basics comes with the software, which has built-in tool tips and hints, and templates and wizards for CAD novices.
More advanced features include a standalone 3-D modeler, and automatic and associative dimensioning. The dimensioning function ensures dimension lines are automatically updated when you edit objects. To quickly reshape objects, you can use the program's handle-based and node-editing functions. Included are 101 sample home plans and more than 2,000 professionally created, discipline-specific symbols. You can place documents from Word, Excel and other apps into CAD drawings.
Even a beefy program like AutoCAD 13 can use a power boost. AutoCAD Data Extension (ADE) 2.0 lets you access and combine drawing subsets and their related information into a single entity. Modify a drawing, and all related attributes within the project also change.
ADE 2.0 uses the AutoCAD Runtime Extension (ARX) object-oriented environment to allow team members to share CAD information.
$795; upgrade, $119
Worm's Eye and FreeBird aren't a couple of grunge groups. They're new features in CADkey 7.5. Worm's Eye lets you open a viewing window that displays areas adjacent to the cursor at a magnified scale, so you can inspect small details without zooming or panning. FreeBird provides instantaneous panning and zooming, and lets you rapidly view the entire model from any vantage point. The new version also lets you create 3-D models for VRML (virtual reality modeling language) Web sites.
A good plotter reduces your workload. The CalComp TechJet Designer 720c plotters use interchangeable snap-in ink cartridge systems that are monochrome and color-capable. The plotters also include a variable-width media-handling feature and an automatic media cutter that neatly separates each plot when finished. They plot monochrome images at 720x720 dots per inch and color drawings at 360x360dpi. They work on roll-fed or cut-sheet media. A plot-receiver basket and floor stand are optional. The D-size model prints on media up to 24 inches, while the E-size model prints on media up to 36 inches.
D-size, $2,495; E-size, $2,995
Axum 5.0, a technical graphics and data analysis package, now includes panel plots for revealing hidden patterns in data and a link to Microsoft PowerPoint so you can automatically create presentations from Axum graphs.
$395; upgrade, $149.95