Product Description - Overview

The eTakeoff Plan Viewer is much more than a viewer. It performs several main functions:

  • Viewing drawings
  • Organizing drawings in projects
  • Making measurements
  • Making annotations
  • Organize measurements and make advanced calculations
  • Transferring quantities to other applications
  • Printing drawings with their measurements and annotations
  • Comparing different versions of a drawing to identify changes

The viewer is available with three levels of functionality:

  • Basic - This FREE version allows viewing and printing drawings, organizing drawings in projects and measuring but measurements can't be saved. It also allows full review of information created with more advanced versions.
  • Pro - This version adds the ability to save measurements and annotations, display them in various colors, organize them in layers, list the measurements and easily transfer them to other applications.
  • Pro-Plus - All the funtions of Pro plus formula extensions, a live Excel interface and drawing comparison.
  • Premier - This version adds the ability to organize measurements and annotations in a hierarchy and calculate quantities based on multiple measurements.

Viewing Drawings
eTakeoff allows you to view the plans with powerful zooming and scrolling capabilities. See User Interface for a detailed description. eTakeoff also allows you to organize drawings by project. You can switch between drawings instantaneously within a project. If more than one person uses eTakeoff in your organization, drawings and other project information can be stored on a common server.

These capabilities are available in all versions.

Organizing Drawings in Projects
Drawings can be organized in projects to make it easy to move from drawing to drawing within a project, or to move from project to project. Drawings and projects can be quickly chosen from drop-down lists or from folder trees. The viewer remembers the last project you viewed, the last drawing viewed within each project and the last view displayed (zoom and scroll) for each drawing. This makes it easy to move among drawings and pick up where you left off.

These capabilities are available in all versions.

Making Measurements
Making measurements in eTakeoff is done by simply clicking on the points in the measurement. For each measurement, eTakeoff stores the point count, the length, the area and the perimeter. The perimeter is the length plus the distance from the last point to the first point (you don't have to manually close the measurements). You can also combine disconnected groups of points into a single measurement , define cutouts within areas , quickly digitize arcs, , digitize to a known length and edit existing points. See Measuring for a detailed description.

Measurements may be displayed in many different ways using "Traces". A trace defines the colors and other attributes for the points, the lines between the points and the area enclosed by the points. Standard traces can be defined and re-used.

The Basic version supports making a single measurement which isn't saved. It may be displayed using pre-defined traces. The Pro, Pro-Plus and Premier versions support all measuring capabilities.

Making Annotations
Annotations are used to add notes and other marks to drawings. eTakeoff supports many methods of annotating:

  • Text Annotations
  • Line Annotations
  • Rectangular Annotations
  • Oval Annotations
  • Cloud Annotations
  • Freehand Annotations
  • Hyper-link Annotations

Most annotations are created by clicking on one or two points. Foreground colors, background colors and font characteristics can be specified for annotations. Hyper-link annotations are used to create a link form one drawing to a view of another drawing. Clicking on the hyper-link displays the view of the second drawing.

The Basic version doesn't support annotations. The Pro, Pro-Plus and Premier versions support all annotation capabilities.

Organizing Measurements and Making Advanced calculations
The Measurement List provides a simple list of all the measurements in a project. The list can display the measurement description, trace, quantity, unit of measure, layer and drawing. The list can be sorted by any of these values. The list can be printed or easily transferred to other applications such as Excel.

The Quantity Worksheet is a more advanced tool for organizing measurements and annotations. It also lets you perform calculations and easily transfer them to other applications. The heart of the Quantity Worksheet is the Worksheet Tree/Grid Control. This tree part of the control allows you to define a hierarchy of project information (items), much like the hierarchy of folders you use to organize files.
You can assign measurements and annotations to the item branches in the tree. This can be done by simply dragging them from the drawing, or you can have them assigned automatically. Assigning measurements to items allows you to accumulate measurement quantities and even use them in calculations. The item quantities can then be dragged and dropped to other applications such as Excel.

Assignments can also be used to drill down to specifics in the drawings. If you're looking for information about a concrete slab, you can browse down through the tree until you find it. Then you can double click on the assigned measurements and annotations and jump to a view of the drawing they came from.

The Basic version allows you to view, print and transfer Measurement Lists and Quantity Worksheets created with more advanced versions. The Pro and Pro-Plus versions support the Measurement List. The Premier version supports both the Measurement List and the Quantity Worksheet.

Transferring Quantities to Other Applications
eTakeoff supports both the "cut and paste" and "drag and drop" techniques to transfer information to other applications such as Excel. When viewing measurements on a drawing, you can transfer individual measurements. When working with the Measurement List or the Quantity Worksheet, you can transfer individual cells, rectangles of cells, entire rows, entire columns or even the entire grid.

Excel Integration
eTakeoff offers an Excel Add-on that provides advanced integration. The add-on provides functions that lookup measurement and worksheet quantities in eTakeoff. When quantities are transferred to Excel, they can be transferred as formulas containing those functions rather than as numbers. The formulas then extract the actual quantities from measurements or worksheet quantities. So when measurement and/or worksheet quantities change, you can choose "Refresh" from the eTakeoff menu in Excel and instantly see the latest values.

You can right-click on an Excel cell containing an eTakeoff function and pick "eTakeoff Drill Down" from the context menu. The measurement or quantity worksheet item referenced by the function will be instantly displayed in eTakeoff.

The eTakeoff Excel Add-on is included in the Premier and Pro-Plus versions of eTakeoff. It can be purchased as an add-on module for the Pro version.

Printing Drawings with Their Measurements and Annotations
eTakeoff has extensive printing capabilities. You can print an entire drawing or just the current view of the drawing. You can print at the original scale or a percentage of that scale. Or the scale can be adjusted to fit the printed area to the page. When the printing will extend across multiple pages, you can print across then down or vice versa. Edge pages that contain no significant information can be omitted.

Printing capabilities are available in all versions.