Monday, December 12, 2016

Knowledge is Perishable

When Vectorworks introduced the Python language into Vectorworks I decided to learn about Object Orientated programming. I enrolled in a class at the local Technical Institute. I really enjoyed learning about it and I did really well. With regular practice, homework, and working an a major project, I became reasonably skilled.

Before the exams started we were given a few weeks to study. Unfortunately, instead of studying I worked on my business. I thought that my knowledge would remain in my head even though I wasn't studying.

On the day of the exam I sat down with the exam paper and I looked  through the questions. The questions were really easy, we covered all the topics in class and all the questions looked really familiar. However, when I went to answer questions, I could not get the knowledge out of my brain and onto the paper. In those weeks when I should have been studying my knowledge gradually vanished. I didn't realise at the time but knowledge is perishable.

If you don't keep refreshing your knowledge it gradually vanishes, and even though you know you should know something, you find hard to remember the answer. This is exactly what happened to me and my exam. I knew I should know the answers but I just could not recall the knowledge.

The same thing happens with your Vectorworks knowledge. If you do not keep refreshing your Vectorworks knowledge it gradually vanishes. The Vectorworks techniques that you use every day are fine, you are refreshing your knowledge every day. What about the techniques you do not use so often? Sorry, but you gradually lose your ability to use them.

But I have a solution! My subscription website has regular monthly meetings that cover a huge range of topics. Users that regularly come to the sessions report that they learn something new at every session. So, not only is it a good place to refresh your knowledge, it's also a good place to expand it.

Knowledge is perishable, keep up-to-date!

Subscribe now!

archoncad End of Year Webinar

At the end of the year I have webinar where I go through all the topics that my subscribers and I been through in the previous 12 months.
Normally, my webinars are restricted to my subscribers. At the end of the year webinar I like to open it to the public so that everyone can see what I have covered. You can also contribute to these webinars by telling me what topics you would like me to cover next year.

Vectorworks Architect Asia

I have just completed a new course called Vectorworks Architect Asia. What makes this course different is that it is designed for countries with warmer climates they have higher density populations and build from masonry construction. So, like the other Architect course, the course covers site modelling, creating quick bulk and location, layers and stories, drawing walls, creating roofs, and creating drawings. The main difference to this course is that it uses different construction, building density, and design.

Check out the course here…

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Vectorworks 2017 Online Courses Available

img_0334I have create 4 new courses for Vectorworks 2017:

  • Fundamentals
  • Architect
  • Landmark
  • 3D Modeling

These are not like the manuals I have previously written, these are online courses that use video to teach you. The courses are broken up into logical chapters and some chapters have several movies. When you have compeleted the lesson, you can move to the next lesson and so on until the course is completed.

Thursday, June 16, 2016

Fixing Computer Issues

(There might be offensive language in the YouTube clip)

When my computer, phone, or Vectorworks misbehaves, I follow the advice from the IT Crowd, and restart the thing. I know this sounds like simplistic advice, but it so often works.

Saturday, June 11, 2016

Vectorworks Tip 440 - Adjacency Matrix

Vectorworks spaces have the ability to create and read Adjacency Matrices. OK, but what are they and how do you read one. In simple terms, the Adjacent Matrix tells you the relationship between rooms. The Adjacancy Matrix uses and scale from o to 5. 0 means that the rooms have no need to be near each other, 5 means that the rooms have a strong relationship.

For example, the relationship between the master bedroom and ensuite bathroom might have a number 5 relationship, they should be next to each other.

In this example we will use the master bedroom. We want to find the relationship between the master bedroom and the ensuite. Start with the the room name and follow this to the right. Now follow the diagonal down.

Now go to the other room, in this case the ensuite. Follow this room to the right and follow the diagonal until you intersect the diagonal from the other room.

The next example is the relationship between the master bedroom and the double bedroom. Start with the the master bedroom and follow this to the right, then follow the diagonal down. Now go to the other room, in this case the double bedroom. Go to the right and follow the diagonal until you intersect the diagonal from the master bedroom.

In this example the relationship is a -, or no relationship. So if I was the designer, I would make sure that these rooms are not near each other.

My final example is the relationship between the master bedroom and the outdoor area. If you follow the matrix you find that the score is 3. This means that the rooms have to be close to each other. You have to be able to easily access the outdoor area from the bedroom, but they do not have to be right next to each other.

Once you have this Adjacency Matrix, you can use many other Vectorworks tools and commands to create spaces, create a concept design, and later on, use the spaces to create the walls.


Tuesday, June 07, 2016

Vectorworks Tip 438 - Things Energos Needs (that you may not have thought of)


There are two things that you may not think that Energos requires. The first is that Energos needs to have a Heliodon in the same design layer as the walls. It uses this Heliodon it on to find the location of the site. It needs have the location of the site because the climate data changes from location to location. The other thing that you may not have thought of is that Energos requires spaces. It requires the spaces so that it knows which rooms or parts of the building are habited, and it also needs these spaces to calculate the volume.


Friday, June 03, 2016

Vectorworks Tip 437 -  Creating A Viewport That Fades Out


I saw on the tech board, somebody was asking for a technique that would allow the viewport to fade out. I think you can achieve this now if you put an object in your viewport with a transparent gradient. In the image you can see I created a gradient that changes from solid white to transparent. I used the attribute mapping tool to control where the transparent and solid parts are, and I also used the attributes palette to change the gradient from a linear gradient to a radial gradient.


Thursday, June 02, 2016

Sketching on an iPad

If you get my newsletter you would have seen this sketch (all images copyright Jonathan Pickup 2016).

This sketch is from my trip to Chicago for the design summit and it was drawn on my iPad. I have been using my iPad, Apple Pencil and sketching software (Procreate).

Wednesday, June 01, 2016

Vectorworks Tip 436 - Creating a Curved Stair


In this example I'm using the Circular Stair tool (remember this is part of the legacy tools that you will have to add to your workspace). Like the simple stair, the curve stair allows you to create a quick curving stair, which I find is useful for concept drawings where you do not want focus too much on the detail. The Object Info palette has all of the options that you need for the stair.


Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Vectorworks Tip 435 - Advanced Energos Settings

These are the settings that you use to control the detail of Energos. There are several options here that you will need to check through to make sure that you have the correct settings. There is also an advanced settings area where you can control even more of the detail.

Friday, May 20, 2016

Vectorworks Tip 434 - How to Edit A Symbol


There are several ways that you can edit a symbol. You can right click on the symbol on the drawing area, you can right click on the symbol in the Resource Manager, or you can double-click on the symbol. Choose which part of the symbol you want to edit (2-D, 3-D, wall hole component, or symbol options). Remember the changes you make to a symbol will affect all instances of the symbol and the entire drawing.


Thursday, May 19, 2016

How to Draw A Section

How to draw a section

A section is a drawing that shows a cut through an object. Many CAD programs will do this for you, but you also nee to know how to draw one of these for yourself so that you can understand the technique behind it.

Start with the plan view and protect the lines down. Next, project the lines from the elevation across to give you the heights. Add the thickness to the object.

In this view I've used the same technique to project the lines down from the plan, but this time of drawn a cross-section through a site. Notice how I've project of the lines down wherever the contours cross the section line. This is what you need to do to give you the correct site cross-section. Many CAD programs give you the ability to create a site model, and create sections where ever you need them.


Wednesday, May 18, 2016

Vectorworks Tip 433 - Creating a Dogleg Stair With the Simple Stair Tool


The Object Info palette gives you the options that you need to create a quick dogleg stair with a simple stair tool. The important part is to make sure that you have enough gap between the two flights of stairs.


Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Vectorworks Tip 432 - Setting up an Energos Project


Energos doesn't just look at the insulation on your walls, it looks that the entire project and looks at the properties of all of the components of your walls, slab, and roof. This means that if you want to use Energos to analyse the energy in your building you have to set up your project correctly. Walls have to be drawn correctly, rooms have to be connected to the walls, and slabs have to be properly constructed. Of course this is using common BIM principles so setting up the project should also include making sure that your stories, layers, and levels are also well considered. It might seem like this is a lot of work to set up a project, but these are the things that you should be doing already because using these BIM principles will speed up your workflow from concept to contract documentation.


Friday, May 13, 2016

Vectorworks Tip 431 - How To Create a Symbol


In the past we have had several posts about how cool symbols are. Here we will look at making a symbol. Actually, its really straightforward. Draw the 2D and 3D information that you want, select it and use the Create Symbol... command from the Modify menu.

Most of the troubles I see are from users not make the information correctly. Make sure that you have use the correct line weights, classes, and graphics.