Recent Enhancements 2.6

These enhancements were part of Release 2.6 published on August 15, 2011.

Pattern Search Enhancements

Included in Release 2.5, Pattern Search can be used to find multiple occurrences of symbols representing components that need to be counted (such as fixtures or switches). In Release 2.6, it has several major enhancements.

First is the ability to refine a search. Many patterns consist of an outer symbol with an abbreviation inside the pattern. For example, light fixtures are often shown as rectangles with a letter indicating the fixture type. When the abbreviation is a very small part ot the complete pattern, pattern search can’t reliably differentiate among the different abbreviations. Now you can do an initial search to find all the outer symbols. Then you can do a refined search within the matches found to look for a particular abbreviation. You can create a measurement from the refined search results then do another refined search on the remaining symbols.

We also added the ability to define rectangular and polygonal search areas. This is useful when you want to repeatedly search the same area for different symbols. This (and other improvements) have greatly improved the search speed. A Pattern Search Toolbar has been added with buttons to start a search, create search area annotations and show or hide search area annotations. Reviewing pattern matches on the drawing now displays all matches. You can double click on them on the drawing to select or de-select them.

Pattern Search is included in Premier and offered as an add-on product for Pro and Pro-Plus. Click here to watch a short video on pattern search.

Import and Rename Drawings

Poorly named drawing files and multi-page drawing files with no page descriptions make it very difficult to find a specific drawing. Previously we offered eTakeoff Import as a separate product to easily rename drawing and add them to an eTakeoff project.

We have now added this functionality inside of eTakeoff. First you select files to rename and import. You can also rename drawings that are already part of a project. To start the renaming process, you zoom and scroll the first drawing to view the title block, then enter the new name. As you’re doing that, the next file or page is loaded. When you finish renaming a drawing, the next drawing is instantly displayed rotated, zoomed and scrolled to the same area as the previous drawing. This will usually display the title block without any adjustment. You can also set the subfolder and rotation. Abbreviations and other features accelerate the naming process.

Import and Rename Drawings is included in Premier and offered as an add-on product for Pro and Pro-Plus. Click here to watch a short video on import.

Quick Renaming of a Page or Drawing

We’ve also made it easier to rename a page or drawing as you’re viewing it. Simply press the F2 key and a small text window will appear. Enter or edit the description and press the Enter key. This feature is available in all versions of eTakeoff.

Dimension Annotations

Dimension annotations are created by clicking on two points on the drawing. They display a line between the two points and the actual distance between the two points with optional arrows at the ends of the line. They can be used to check scales or to display a distance. Because they are annotations, they are NOT included in the measurement list.

Dimension Annotations are included in Pro, Pro-Plus and Premier.

Measurement Point Symbol and Text Sizing

Trace definitions can now specify the size of the symbols and/or text displayed at the points of a measurement. This capability is included in Pro, Pro-Plus and Premier.

Faster Annotation Layer Selection

The Layer button in the Annotation Toolbar has been replaced with a drop-down list. This displays the layer for the annotation currently selected. You can select from the list to quickly change the layer for the selected annotation. This capability is included in Pro, Pro-Plus and Premier.

Excel Add-in Enhancements

The Excel Add-in has been enhanced to facilitate the use of Excel Templates. The Add-in stores a small amount of information in each workbook such as the current project. In previous releases, this information could not be saved if the workbook was protected. Many template makers wish to protect portions of their workbooks to keep carefully developed formulas from being changed accidentally. They can now configure workbooks to store the eTakeoff information in an unprotected area within a protected workbook.

Earlier Enhancements

Click here to see earlier enhancements.