William Sutherland


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Tips & Tricks...

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Increase screen area...

A simple method of increasing your screen area is to set the 'Autohide' option on the Windows™ Taskbar properties - just right-click on the taskbar at the bottom of the screen and choose 'Properties' from the bottom of the list. Tick the option for Autohide in the dialogue that pops up and then OK out of it. This will make the taskbar disappear while in Allplan (and reappear temporarily if you move your cursor too close to the bottom of the screen!)
Update September 2002 - there is a 'cleanscreen' tool in v17
Polyline unlimited undo...

Several times I have heard complaints of clicking the wrong point when defining a polyline outline for a slab or a roof plan or an area fill ... and so on... in fact to delete the unwanted point you just need to click the previous point - the undo is unlimited so that you can go right back to the start if you want.
Update Aug 2005 Allplan 2005 has a polyline Undo command in the Dynamic Toolbar
Textures to 3D elements...

assign custom surface ... [pre-v 2003 only] Although I had heard about this some time ago I did not realise until recently the potential of the command 'Modify->Bonus Tools->3D Modeling->Assign Custom Surfaces to 3D/Archit. Elements'. This command brings up a 'Surface' dialogue - clicking in the empty box will bring up more detailed dialogues allowing the import of any bitmap (you will be prompted to save it as a surface file) and when all set up you can start selecting elements in the isometric view window. The power of this command lies in the fact that the bitmaps are no longer applied by pen colour but purely by selected 3D element allowing an approach more like Cinema 4D to rendering. Brilliant...
See also page on elementary rendering
Update May 2003 Allplan 2003 now enables animation window views within symbol and architectural element dialogs. :-)
Scan module selection tool...

Scan Module When using a selection rectangle with the scan module tools you will notice that the 'fence selection' tool assistant is greyed out - why?... well, because the selection tools within this module automatically incorporate the 'fence' selection mode - wonderful.... so why not do the same with the selection tools in the rest of Allplan? The selection defaults to a rectangle but if another point is chosen it goes into 'fence' mode
Text in Allplan...

Horizontal Text Some curious features of text in Allplan...
The text editor defaults to single line text which is infuriating when you later discover that all your lines of text are independent. [Seems to be fixed in v16.2... Hurrah! :) ]Changing to paragraph text in the editor will only 'stick' if there is more than one line of text (a blank line below a single line of text does not count as Allplan trims it when saved).
- if you have a block of single lines of text you can manipulate it by selecting with a selection rectangle, just the left hand end of the block except for the first line which needs to be included entirely otherwise it is excluded (quite useful this sometimes)
- if true type fonts are used Allplan will display an outline of the characters for up to about 35 characters when moving a block of text - any more and it reverts to a rectangle describing the outline of the block.
Update - In v16.2 True Type Fonts are now displayed in the text editor window.
Update September 2002 - in v17 turning on the 'Display list' feature will lose some of the onscreen smoothness of truetype fonts because they are vectorised to enable the display list to handle them - it does not affect plotted output.
You might find it better to turn off 'Display list' from 'Show/hide' if there is a lot of text onscreen.
Update Aug 2005 Allplan 2005 TrueType fonts now work as normal in Windows applications

Animation Options ...

open the animation window (F4) - you can now select 'Animation' from 'Tools->Options'. A small dialogue appears where you can set wireframe mode, anti-aliasing On/Off and quality of texture rendering - the helpfiles are useful here too. Click on the button 'About' and information is given on the OpenGL driver and whether it is actually working plus some other useful bits of information like the number of lights supported by the OpenGL driver (8 usually).

Allplan 2004 - some of the commands have been moved into slightly different locations.  Right-click in an animation window and look in 'Animation Window Properties' and lower down the list 'More tools..' and then 'Animation Window Settings'.

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