Author Topic: Leading zeros  (Read 22650 times)

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LE

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Re: Leading zeros
« Reply #15 on: August 09, 2007, 02:04:23 PM »
I am working in porting several commands and modules of a commercial product named civilcad by arqcom software ...
Porting them to what Luis?

To C++/ARX/MFC some of the routines that were made in lisp (the core of each of the modules is in C++/ARX) and adding the English language option for now - they want almost everything in arx.

LE

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Re: Leading zeros
« Reply #16 on: August 09, 2007, 02:27:08 PM »
and Mark.... I tried to say... that there are other friendly packages that can do what c3d an can be customized easier (or if there is a requirement - they deliver)... (i know this one is in spanish) that's why I also noted that I will be removing my comments.... :)

Jeff_M

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Re: Leading zeros
« Reply #17 on: August 09, 2007, 02:33:49 PM »
Just for grins I opened up my CD of recorded maps from the year 2000. Randomly opening about 50 of them (I wasn't counting) I found that those created in LDT (I know they were, based on that funky North Arrow and/or having knowledge of the office) all had leading zeros for the degrees...expected since LDT has most always done this. Those offices still doing things by hand (yes, there still are!) were pretty much split on the use of them. Those using other CAD software used both methods, but leaned toward the use-the-zero side.

So the majority use the leading zero, but, so far as I can find, there is nothing that says they MUST be used. I have always used them, but it doesn't bother me when I see a map without them. That being said, I do think that the option should be there to use as one desires, but in no way would I let it affect my decision to use the software.....it would be, and has been, classified by me as a minor annoyance.

Dinosaur

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Re: Leading zeros
« Reply #18 on: August 09, 2007, 02:56:22 PM »
OK... I will leave my comment for a short time, if I may...  :roll:

I am working in porting several commands and modules of a commercial product named civilcad by arqcom software, that it is use in latin america and it is being sold more than c3d or any of the ldt ones... autodesk came to this software company and ask them to why they did not adapt with their c3d api the civilcad modules.... the reason no one wants to buy their package, first it is very expensive, and primarily it is not designed for the latin market and very hard to customize and also, to many jumps to do or complete a task.

At the end, the intention of using the c3d api for all the civilcad modules was almost impossible, so that end up there, without doing the port....
You bring up some important points here Luis.  A short stroll over to the .NET board will treat one to the efforts of one of our new members trying to access the innards of Civil 3D for a project he is involved in and the obstacles he is finding.
I understand that we are still in the infancy for this program as far as any customizations are concerned.  It is very much like using vanilla AutoCAD without the assistance of any lisp, arx, visual basic or any other variety of customization and is very much doomed to stay that way until more success is realized in the efforts to customize the beast so it can produce results acceptable to a more diverse group of users.  I have no real understanding of what the problems are that those attempting to write these routines are facing, but it is apparent that the program does not react to or cooperate with their attempts in the expected manner.  It also seems to not expose certain vital areas of its workings that are necessary for the projects to work.  In short, Civil 3D is as much or more unfriendly to developers as it is to the end user.  Progress is being made, but with a new set of tools and rules introduced every year, the developer is forced to begin retooling his work almost as soon as it is finished to remain compatible.

mjfarrell

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Re: Leading zeros
« Reply #19 on: August 09, 2007, 05:01:43 PM »
I dunno, the esteemed guest poster, called the AUGI users groups the shallow end of the pool?!?

I wonder if he just feels that way about anyone not going to AU, or otherwise?
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mjfarrell

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Re: Leading zeros
« Reply #20 on: August 09, 2007, 05:05:18 PM »
and Mark.... I tried to say... that there are other friendly packages that can do what c3d an can be customized easier (or if there is a requirement - they deliver)... (i know this one is in Spanish) that's why I also noted that I will be removing my comments.... :)

The fact that this product is currently only available in Spanish actually had me thinking about downloading a copy. There's a usability test for you, my knowledge of Spanish is shaky at best, so if I could still use the software  in anyway productive, that would say a lot in any language.
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Michael Farrell
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sinc

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Re: Leading zeros
« Reply #21 on: August 09, 2007, 05:32:17 PM »
and Mark.... I tried to say... that there are other friendly packages that can do what c3d an can be customized easier (or if there is a requirement - they deliver)... (i know this one is in spanish) that's why I also noted that I will be removing my comments.... :)

Can you name some?  I haven't been able to find any, except of course for PowerCivil, for those who want to jump to the Microstation world...  I also know about MX, although from what I hear, although it is parametric, it is not really model-based the way C3D is, and has a very old-school UI...  And still, I hear just as many complaints from those users.  It sounds an awful lot like the same BS, just with a different flavor.

So far, I have not really heard anything that makes me think the switch to Microstation would be worth it, especially considering almost everyone we work with uses Autodesk products, we are trained in Autodesk products, we have a huge monetary investment in Autodesk products, etc.  Is that wrong?

LE

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Re: Leading zeros
« Reply #22 on: August 09, 2007, 05:46:27 PM »
OK.... I need to be clear - do not want to say something I did not want to... :)

I am talking about a software that was made to run inside of AutoCAD as an add-on from 2000 to 2008 versions.

The customization part is done by them (the programmers at arqcom software) - the end users can make all their modifications and adaptations on all the available commands where they can add their own requirements.

The source code is in C++, ObjectARX and some external routines in AutoLISP/VLISP
« Last Edit: August 09, 2007, 09:17:22 PM by LE »

sinc

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Re: Leading zeros
« Reply #23 on: August 09, 2007, 06:42:50 PM »
Oh, OK.  I was going to say that if you knew of any model-based Civil Engineering package that was easier to use and worked better than C3D, then I wanted to know about it.

As far as I've been able to determine, there is nothing that can match C3D's capabilities.  It's too bad that the good points are clouded with so much that is mis-designed and/or mis-implemented.  And so many bugs...

I suppose part of the problem is that C3D shows incredible insight.  That makes the bad parts look even worse by comparison.  So I keep using C3D, and I've reached the point where I can generally do something faster in C3D than I can in LDT, despite the problems.  It's just that it seems the bulk of the good stuff was already in CAiCE, and the bulk of the bad stuff is in features added since Autodesk bought the software.  That's what really makes me nervous about the future of the product.  And it is really frustrating needing to do the same task several times to get it all right, even if doing something three times in C3D takes less time than doing it once in LDT.  It makes it difficult to predict how much time it will take to do ANYTHING, which affects everything from scheduling to budgets.

MickD

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Re: Leading zeros
« Reply #24 on: August 09, 2007, 07:36:17 PM »
Has anyone had a look at 12D?

I have no idea about it but it is used here in Aus. and I have only heard good things about it.
It's a standalone product developed just for civil work and has been around for some time. I know it's not autocad based but you guys seem to be suffering a lot of pain just for the sake of a file format.
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Dinosaur

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Re: Leading zeros
« Reply #25 on: August 09, 2007, 08:36:09 PM »
Thanks for the idea and the link Mick.  I was going to test 2D at work, but my Civil 3D install has proven itself too fragile (per IT) to risk any unnecessary programs installed with it.  Now I have retrieved the trial version & manuals and will try it at home.

My personal feelings on Civil 3D are that it would likely be better served if it was not tied to the dwg format either.  As it is, the only true compatibility it has is with other installations of the same version of Civil 3D.  I have heard of no way for a C3D drawing to export out successfully import back into any version for Civil 3D with data intact even with the same dwg format on both ends.  Sinc's above observations on the relative effects of AutoDesk's and CAiCE's respective contributions toward the current Civil 3D are quite interesting from this perspective.

The painful part of this is that the many spots where Civil 3D shines brightest are so much better than any of its competition I have tried that using anything else is a demoralizing step backward.  Even the places where its output is questionable, the hassle of trying to use something else in tandem is not worth it due to the interoperability issues.  I have been willing to hold my nose and put up with the instability and certain functions that just don't work, but now for the first time I am observing data that comes out just plain wrong for no reason.  This same phenomenon has been verified and reported by other parties.  I have now valid reason to distrust the model which changes the entire equation and a difficult decision is in the wind.

jpostlewait

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Re: Leading zeros
« Reply #26 on: August 09, 2007, 09:21:26 PM »
I dunno, the esteemed guest poster, called the AUGI users groups the shallow end of the pool?!?

I wonder if he just feels that way about anyone not going to AU, or otherwise?
I think that was me Mike that referred to AUGI as the shallow end.
And if I remember correctly that was in a PM.

As to the topic at had, the leading Zero.
The leading Zero is a place holder that tells you Nothing is here.
That's it nothing more nothing less.
So you purpose to abandon software that will not display a place holder signifying nothing?
I have spent a significant portion of my career in the surveying end of the business and read and created Legal Descriptions of many forms.
Maybe this has changed lately but I have never had anything kicked back because of the lack of a leading Zero.
The survey business by it's very nature is tied to the past but before the invention of the superscript O the degree word was written out.
Do you write out degree now or us a symbol?
Personally i find humor in people getting worked up about a symbol signifying nothing.

Dinosaur

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Re: Leading zeros
« Reply #27 on: August 09, 2007, 10:30:36 PM »
I am pleased to see you back posting John; your thoughts and insights are and always will be a welcome addition to TheSwamp.

The zero thing is one of those holding of the nose and going forward annoyances that I would sure enjoy not having to bother with.  In itself or even the summation of all such annoyance do not amount to a deal breaker.  The pipe network problems that result in data I can no longer trust is a different story.  I do all the pipe stuff in our shop and it makes up about 6 hours of each of my days and I now think my tools may have been broken from the start.

Whether a leading zero is a symbol or a significant digit and the quality of our sampling aside, from the current 12, 00 and 02 here and the 06, 00 results on a similar poll at augi, it appears to be something that others would prefer to see as well.  The issue has been around since r2005 so it seems either it is just an impossible fix for Autodesk to perform or one they just don't care if we want or need.  In the absence of any response other than they consider it a non-issue, what recourse do the end user who desire or need at least the option to use a leading zero, other than make noise to generate attention perhaps to some stockholders that all is not in perfect harmony between AutoDesk and their customers.  I was privy to a stock analyst's briefing for Autodesk shares throughout 2005 and 2006.  You will remember those were quite ugly times in Civil 3D's infancy.  Not one time in those quarterly briefings was any mention made of customer dissatisfaction with performance, stability or production with the transition to Civil 3D.  It was absolutely perfect Civil Engineering software receiving nothing but enthusiastic reviews and acceptance in all markets with rosy predictions for nothing but more of the same.  I was interviewed twice by the author of these briefings and I assure you I was quite frank with my thoughts on such issues as missing and broken features, stability issues and the extremely long learning curve and told him where to find other similar observations.  I am no longer under any delusions that AutoDesk gives even the flea antennae on a rat's backside what I think of or need from their software, but perhaps I know of a group they may listen to if the collective voice is loud and persistent.

sinc

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Re: Leading zeros
« Reply #28 on: August 10, 2007, 10:48:22 AM »
Personally i find humor in people getting worked up about a symbol signifying nothing.

Let's look at it from the other perspective.  How hard would it be to implement the leading zero in code?  My experience says it is a relatively trivial task.  However, Autodesk refuses to do it, despite the fact that the vast majority of their clients want it.  Why does Autodesk refuse?  Why is it so important to them that we not be allowed to have that leading zero?

Likewise, there is the grouping delimiter option.  EVERY SINGLE PROGRAM I have ever seen that is capable of formating numbers has had the ability to add grouping delimiters - e.g., "10000" can be displayed as "10000" or "10,000" or "10.000" or even "10 000".  The better ones allow an additional control for suppressing the delimiter in four-digit numbers, i.e. "10000" gets displayed as "10,000", but "9999" gets displayed as "9999" and not "9,999".  However, Civil-3D does not have the ability to handle delimiters AT ALL, and it's up to the user to use obnoxious expression hacks in order to fake that delimiter.

And they wonder why we say Autodesk software is not user-friendly...   :-P
« Last Edit: August 10, 2007, 10:51:21 AM by sinc »

Jeff_M

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Re: Leading zeros
« Reply #29 on: August 11, 2007, 02:21:12 AM »
AFAICT no one ever posted a question regarding the leading 0 for C3D prior to about 6 months ago. Not in the basic C3D group, nor the customization, nor the wishes. Peter Funk HAS replied in the wishes group that this has been added as feature to be included in a future release.

Edit: After a good night's sleep I did my search again and actually found a handful of messages from late May/early June of 2006 asking for the leading zero. 4-5 requests probably wasn't enough to move the wish to the top of the list. With all the clamoring for it in the past few weeks, I'll bet it has a good chance of getting much closer to the top.
« Last Edit: August 11, 2007, 11:30:35 AM by Jeff_M »