AutoCAD Map 3D General Discussion

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*Anthony
Message 1 of 3 (96 Views)

Map Six and Annotation Templates

96 Views, 2 Replies
11-25-2002 01:59 AM
I've been trying to make an annotation template for some of our data, just
to put the distance and bearing on a line, and it seems to be a lot harder
than it needs to be. I checked the help file but it wasnt much help. I've
got the text aligned with the line its annotating, but cant get the angle
out of radians and into d/m/s, or put a ' at the end of the length so
signify feet. Anyone willing to lend a hand? Thanks in advance..

-Anthony
*GIS], Richard Howard [Autodesk
Message 2 of 3 (96 Views)

Re: Map Six and Annotation Templates

11-26-2002 10:20 AM in reply to: *Anthony
"Anthony" wrote in message
news:27707207E21CAA2EEF583D750B8FF8D6@in.WebX.maYIadrTaRb...
> I've been trying to make an annotation template for some of our data, just
> to put the distance and bearing on a line, and it seems to be a lot harder
> than it needs to be. I checked the help file but it wasnt much help. I've
> got the text aligned with the line its annotating, but cant get the angle
> out of radians and into d/m/s, or put a ' at the end of the length so
> signify feet. Anyone willing to lend a hand? Thanks in advance..
>

Hello Anthony,

Thanks for your feedback - we're very interested in hearing how this
could be made simpler for you...

Is the primary problem with the concept itself, the UI, the workflow,
or maybe as you allude, the details of constructing expressions used to
drive the dynamic properties?

We realize the Map expression syntax is somewhat cryptic and complex.
At the same time it is very powerful, and ultimately used in many places
within Map and 3rd party applications. What we hope to do is build a
friendlier UI for constructing expressions. Perhaps something like an
IDE like you see with VisualLISP and VBA would be helpful?

In any case, if I follow what you're doing, you'll want to use an annotation
text value something like this:

(strcat (rtos .length 4 1) " @ " (angtos .angle 1 4))

And then a template rotation of:

.angle

This will cause the annotation to be inserted along the entity angle, and
then the text will extract the length and distance and apply some
formatting.

Cheers-

rdh.
*Anthony
Message 3 of 3 (96 Views)

Re:

12-02-2002 08:42 AM in reply to: *Anthony
"Richard Howard [Autodesk GIS]" wrote in
message news:041A815B73A54D1D78CD3CC95C7150B7@in.WebX.maYIadrTaRb...

Thank you for the response! Comments are below...

> Hello Anthony,
>
> Thanks for your feedback - we're very interested in hearing how this
> could be made simpler for you...
>
> Is the primary problem with the concept itself, the UI, the workflow,
> or maybe as you allude, the details of constructing expressions used to
> drive the dynamic properties?

The UI is ok, there is nothing really wrong with it from a functional
standpoint. Well there was a confusing issue. I'm not sure if its a bug or
not, but when I would put .Angle as the expression for the object rotation,
when I quit out of the expression editor window, the text box would still
say "0" which was confusing since I had just told it to be dynamic. The tool
tip however, said ".ANGLE".

> We realize the Map expression syntax is somewhat cryptic and complex.
> At the same time it is very powerful, and ultimately used in many places
> within Map and 3rd party applications. What we hope to do is build a
> friendlier UI for constructing expressions. Perhaps something like an
> IDE like you see with VisualLISP and VBA would be helpful?

I'm not sure an IDE would be needed. But something to help in the
construction of the expressions. As much as I don't like wizards, I'm
thinking one might be helpful here (object property/block attrib/obj data,
then formatting, then placement). Explanations of some of the object
properties would be useful (maybe in a help file, not on the form). IE, I
know what .angle and .length are but not .sangle.

> In any case, if I follow what you're doing, you'll want to use an
annotation
> text value something like this:
>
> (strcat (rtos .length 4 1) " @ " (angtos .angle 1 4))
>
> And then a template rotation of:
>
> .angle
>
> This will cause the annotation to be inserted along the entity angle, and
> then the text will extract the length and distance and apply some
> formatting.

Ah! You can put lisp in those boxes. I'm not quite sure I saw that anywhere
in the documentation or on the form itself. That information would help a
great deal. The box says Expression Editor, but I didn't realize it was LISP
Expressions that I could plug in. That brings LOTS more functionality.

One of the other issues is how to apply one template to a series of existing
drawings. I would like to setup one template DWG and write a lisp routine to
apply that template to all the features on layer X for a bunch of drawings.
The lisp code is easy, but how do I export/import the anno templates? Or is
this at all possible?

Another feature of particular interest to me is the ability to annotate
parts of objects, like the individual segments of a polyline instead of the
whole thing. I wrote a VBA program a while ago to place text for each
segment of a polyline, and to do some rudimentary collision testing to see
where the best place to put the text is. I was hoping this anno tool could
replace and surpass my code, but its not quite there yet.

Thank you for listening to my concerns and suggestions. Sorry about the
reply delay.

-Anthony Fiti

PS. Oh yea, please put this into the next release of the VB API, I'm a far
better VB programmer than I am a Lisp programmer.

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