Bricsys unveiled V 14.2 on Feb 28, 2014. This is another feature packed release, and an interim dividend from the company during the V14 life-cycle that is bound to delight the user and application developer community.
I looked at the Release Notes and found that most of the new improvements are direct implementation of user requests, as can be seen from the various Support Request numbers in it.
Here is a low-down on what is new in BricsCAD V14.2:
2D drawings from 3D models are now easier than before.
GENERATED DRAWING VIEWS: the BMGENDRAFT and BMGENSECTION commands have been completely reworked.
Some command names have been renamed. A new VIEWBASE command has been added, and replaces the earlier BMGENDRAFT command.
The VIEWBASE command now creates the drawing views as simple 2d entities, rather than as a 3d solid with special visual styles. This make management of 2d representation simpler and easier.
A new system variable VIEWUPDATEAUTO now controls whether the 2d views are automatically updated when the source 3d model changes. A bounding box around the view tells whether the view needs updating or not.
A new command VIEWUPDATE updates your 2d views on demand.
QUICKDRAW is back - in a different avatar
The other good news is that the functionality of the previous QUICKDRAW feature of V13 has been re-introduced in this version, although in a different way. A new command called VIEWEXPORT now allows views to be exported to model space, in exactly the same manner as QUICKDRAW.
A new VIEWSECTION command has been added, and replaces the earlier BMGENSECTION command.
The BMGEN... commands will be retired in V15.
A new system variable PROJECTIONTYPE has been added which controls the projection type used when generating drawing views.
A value of 0 provides for First Angle projection (Europe) while a value of 1 provides for Third Angle projection ( U.S., Canada, Australia). This setting is stored in the drawing.
The OVERKILL command arrives in BricsCAD
As a developer of productivity tools for BricsCAD, I am mighty pleased with this new feature. You can now remove duplicate entities, partially overlapping entities and more using this command. This is a pain-point which has been finally addressed.
What I liked is that there is a command line version also, which will allow un-attended processing of large number of drawings at once.
BricsCAD now supports CUIX files
So, if you have AutoCAD CUIX files, you can re-use them straight away in BricsCAD. This is convenient because now, I do not have to maintain my menus in CUI and CUIX formats for both platforms. Internally, BricsCAD converts the CUIX files into CUI files and any bitmaps within the CUIX files are stored in RESZ files.
CADPower CUIX (for AutoCAD) imported directly into BricsCAD with NO change.
The SHEET METAL menu flexes its muscles again. More features unfold.
For the Mechanical industry, the newly introduced Sheet Metal feature gets a shot in the arm again. It is now possible to associate a bending table with a Sheet Metal model. .CSV files containing bending tables can be specified using the corresponding field in the Mechanical Browser. Bend deduction values from the table are used to exactly calculate unfolding matching the used manufacturing tools. With this addition, Bricsys is clearly focusing on the pain-points to make sure the Sheet Metal module is well on its way to give the big guys in this segment a run for their money.
A brand new command SMFLANGECONNECT allows closing gaps between two arbitrarily oriented flanges.
V 14.2 adds support for snapping to hatch pattern geometry, controlled by new OSOPTIONS system variable setting.
OSOPTIONS = 0: Object snapping is enabled for hatch entities
OSOPTIONS = 1: Object snapping is disabled for hatch entities.
This option is disabled by default in BricsCAD.
There are a significant number of performance and usability improvements as well as defect fixes in this new release. You can read the Release notes for a detailed description of the same.
Most improvements are in Direct Modeling, Constraints features, Sheet Metal, Snap+Track, Hatching, Annotative Scales, Visual Styles and more.
Lastly, Lisp application developers have something to cheer about. There are huge speed improvements in Lisp function speeds, with the introduction of Fast-COM in all vla functions. Fast-COM, which is an internal, equivalent fast implementation of ActiveX functions using more efficient techniques is now part of mainstream Lisp and users automatically use it in BrcsCAD, reaping performance benefits.
Unlike other dwg CAD companies, Bricsys keeps BricsCAD users delighted by adding new features throughout the life-cycle of a release. You don’t have to wait till October each year to learn about new features in a new release. V14.2 is certainly one of those exciting releases with new features across the board.
Releases such as these highlight the intense level of communication and connect between Bricsys management and developers on one side and the user & partner community on the other side. This also underscores the need for users to be on an active and current subscription to be part of this incredible association.
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