I couldn't agree more that the cumbersome way Inventor does the measuring is very frustrating. I am coming from MDT, which is also a 3D parametric solids Autodesk product (NOT tallking about Mechanical), where it is super fast to snap to an end or mid or center, and it sees through the model. There is no lag time due to the possible choices. It also allows measurement from a click into space for situations where there are no features present. Making a idw is even slower still, although if the model is complex enough a good cross-section is valuable.
My beef with the Measure tool in Inventor is that there is no way to record the given information for future comparison. Similar to Text window in AutoCAD. At this point of time I still have to use pencil and paper to do it.