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Michael’s Corner

Michael BeallMichael's Corner is a monthly publication written by Michael E. Beall, Autodesk Authorized Author and peripatetic AutoCAD trainer. Michael travels all over the USA, bringing his fantastic experience and great understanding of AutoCAD to his clients. Michael's Corner brings together many of the tips, tricks and methods developed during these training sessions for the benefit of all users.

Michael's Corner provides something for every AutoCAD user. Every month, a number of articles cover a wide range of topics, suitable for users at all levels, including "The Basics" for those just starting out. Essentially, the aim of Michael's Corner is to help all AutoCAD users work smarter and faster.

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This month…

October - Inside Some A2015 Updates

Michael with students in Manila

At this writing, I have just returned from training this amazing group of AutoCAD users in Manila! They were very receptive and gracious to all I had to share with them, and I loved every minute! Through the efforts of my longtime customer, One Workplace, I thoroughly enjoyed an unforgettable training session with ProView Studio. You guys rock!! WootWoot!

If you are a current user of AutoCAD 2015, you have probably encountered at least a couple of the topics I have here. If you're not there yet, there may be something in here that will get you excited about upgrading. As I have been training this version over the last couple months, here are a few things I kept track of that I wanted to pass along…

…The new Text Align command—very nice.
…Insights into the new Block ‘Ribbon Gallery’—expanding upon an existing theme
…Quick View Layouts on the File tabs—and where you can find Quick View Drawings
…The new Cursor Badges—Yes or No

Also, if you haven't gotten it yet, Service Pack 2 is available and was released in mid-September. The best part of this update is we, once again, have the ability to copy a layout tab, by clicking and dragging and holding down the Ctrl key to make a copy!!

Autodesk University SpeakerMy Autodesk University Hands-on Lab, Click My Ride: Customizing AutoCAD for How You Work is being repeated!! I know there are many who were hoping this would happen (including ME!), so check the AU website—http://au.autodesk.com/—where you can sign up for class (AC8277-L) which is the repeat date of Wednesday, Dec 3rd at 2:45pm (it's a 75 minute lab). Please come up and say ‘Hello’… and sit on the front row! (I like to have my friends close when I do these big events).

Keep up the good work!

This month's articles

The A2015 Text Align Command
The Block ‘Ribbon Gallery’
Drawing Tabs = Quick View Layout
‘Sign Language’

From the Vault

Originally published November 2006

A2007 3D Visual Styles

DashboardThere are two ways to access the Visual Style options. One way is from the shortcut menu of the Constrained or Free Orbit commands, the other is from the Dashboard [ToolsPalettesDashboard]. My thought is that you will find the Dashboard much more exciting simply because of the additional features it offers.

Note: Obviously, to take advantage of the 3D visual styles, you'll have to have a 3D object. In my February 2006 column I introduce 3D Orbit and step you through how to make a quick 3D object. Also, you may want to consider saving your current view [ViewNamed Views] so you can return to it later after playing in this 3D sandbox.

Visual Styles control panel

Visual Style Control Features

There are lots of really wonderful things on the Dashboard, and this is not an exhaustive (exhausting??) review, but here are a few you may want to play with…

x-ray mode & Silhouette Edges
  1. Expand the Visual Style Control Panel to display all of the available features.
  2. Take a look at X-Ray Mode in the upper pane of that panel; pretty cool!
  1. Curiously, before you can use the slide bars for the features in the lower section, you have to click the feature button first to turn it on, then you have access to the slider.

Personally, I think the sliders are a bit wimpy, but you get used to it. Regardless, all of those features are pretty fun to play with. Next issue I'll cover saving a Visual Style.

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