connectCAD 2016: System designer’s CAD buddy from concept to implementation
In connectCAD 2016 key features got fully customized while others got smarter. Designing AV, IT and any connected system faster and easier.
We always try to look at our software first from the perspective of a newcomer. Can we make it easier to use? Yes! We've simplified commands, got rid of unnecessary functions and added new tools and automation to make connected system design even faster for connectCAD ‘veterans’ and simpler for new users.
Here are the highlights of connectCAD 2016:
We’re making much more use of the Vectorworks Resource Browser.
Device placement: Just drag and drop. Browse all your documents in the Resource Browser and set up your favourites for easy access to your libraries and projects.
Reports: Grab your favourite reports and just drop them onto your drawing to import them. Vectorworks worksheets do database queries and they have two-way linkage* with the drawing - type into the sheet and update the drawing directly. And that’s not just for cable numbers. You can update anything.
Want to customise your reports. You have full control of layout and style. Just save the worksheet in a Vectorworks document and use it again and again. Drop the report on the drawing - click Recalculate and bingo! You’re done.
Reports can be exported as .csv or tab-separated for use in Excel etc. and you can pull the modified-after-installation data back into a VW worksheet. Then you can use this for Compare & Markup or even Reverse Eng commands to update your drawing.
Using the Resourse Browser has cut away a whole batch of commands and we please more of the people more of the time.
We’ve taken this opportunity to review Tool / Command names. When you begin translating stuff it makes you think harder about your English.
Put Devices on Rack Layout becomes Update Rack Elevation.
Disconnect Device tool becomes Disconnect command normally on the right-click menu.
Deljack tool become Remove Jack command normally on the right-click menu.
How do we create new device placement tools? In 2016 we're letting you in on the secret.
Most tools print a symbol on the drawing and change the Device and Socket fields. We made all that accessible to power users and given you an example, MyDevice so you can create tools for your own application. Painting with devices !!!
We've also added the DINrail tool, a special for the guys at Kraftwerk in Austria. We created that with no extra code - it's just configuration. So true to our philosophy we're giving you control.
We've listened and improved. Now when you Connect to a Link in another document the target Link 'knows' it’s been connected. And the Link selection dialog shows you what’s already been used.
And now we have two-way communication with a simple Refresh Links we can display an annotation showing what’s going into each Link. We’ve restyled Circuits going to Links so it really does look seamless.
In 2016 you can move a project folder without breaking links - we’re using relative paths to locate documents. And if you do need to change the folder structure, we have a Rebuild Links command to let you repair any broken links.
Group-Ungroup Conn Panels
Connector panels are cool but we get situations in which the text starts to overlap with long panel names. So we have two new commands 1) to Group up a selected bunch panel feed-thrus from the same panel into a single device 2) to UnGroup them back into separate devices. Makes your drawings a bit neater...
Align Device to Grid
When sockets stray off the grid they become hard to connect to. This command takes the selected device and moves it so the sockets are back on the grid. At last!
That's the big stuff - but little things matter too:
Front-Rear Rack View
We use the VW class system to show and hide equipment on rack elevations. This makes it easier to control the view in Design Layers and you can easily present front and rear views in viewports for final publishing.
connectCAD Help menu
Three ways to get help from inside connectCAD: pdf User Guide, support website, submit a bug direct into our system. Simple to do and looks cool :-)
Connector type pre-selection
Less clicks more fun! We now preset the connector type based on signal type selection in most dialogs. No more scrolling down that list.
Last but not least...
A zillion little fixes and improvements that make life easier for system designers.