Several readers have asked about the Inventor add-in I created, All Thumbs. All Thumbs allows you to set consistent background color and visual settings for file thumbnails regardless of your application settings within Inventor. Although I wouldn’t say it’s official supported by me anymore, it does seem to work well with the latest version of Inventor.
‘Swift Prints’ has recently been updated for compatibility with Inventor 2018. In this update, the method to which your username to Autodesk 360 is obtained to validate your Swift Prints license has been changed.
If it wasn’t already easy enough to use Swift Prints with Autodesk Inventor to print your drawings, you can now print by just clicking a single button on the toolbar. 1-click adds the ability to send a print based on the last used printer configuration.
The people have spoken and they love ‘Swift Prints’ for Inventor. If you’re not already using Swift Prints, it allows you to create templates for common printer configurations that you can quickly access later for one click printing of Autodesk® Inventor® drawings.
GrabCAD now provides a means to synch your local data to Workbench using a desktop synch application. GrabCAD says within 3 minutes time (or the time it takes to brew a GrabCAD cup of coffee) you can be up and running with desktop synch. This is definitely mostly true. I logged into Workbench and quickly found the link to download the installer for the desktop synch tool. Once I setup the application and signed in I was able to see a list of my Workbench projects and select a local folder to synch with the selected project. Sounds easy enough. You can think of the new tool as sort of a Dropbox for GrabCAD.
More than 15,000 people have signed up for Workbench since we launched it in June. We’ve heard a lot of stories from people who are using Workbench to share CAD with vendors, with customers and clients, and with non-CAD users in their organization. For many engineers, Workbench has made it easy to get partners involved in the design process. Today we’re happy to announce that we’re building on this success by adding a broad array of file management features to Workbench to make it easier to keep your design team on the same page.
I like the concept of the desktop synch tool for use with Workbench, but with any first release software (which is actually still tagged as beta by GrabCAD) it has its flaws. When you X the program you would expect it to minimize to the Windows taskbar notification area but it stays visible on the taskbar the whole time. Also, when you add or edit a file either in Workspace or locally, you have to manually tell the desktop synch tool to download or upload the changes. This isn’t really a true “synch” as you can easily forget to do this and be working on an old version of a file quite easily.
Along with desktop synch, GrabCAD also is now providing a new set of tools that make Workbench a “Collaborative Product Development” solution.
Desktop sync – Link folders from your desktop to any cloud-based Workbench project, but keep control of when files are synced.
File locking – Working on a file? Lock it with one-click to let others know not to modify it.
Visual version comparison – Overlay two versions of a model to see what changed.
Dependency tracking – When you change a file, we’ll let you know if other files are affected.
Partner Spaces – Easily release and track specific versions with your manufacturers, clients or partners.
The additional collaboration tools are definitely setting up Workbench to be a formidable solution for any companies project data management needs. With continued honing of the feature set I think Workbench will be ready to become a top notch solution for any company wanting to move on to the next generation of project data management.
Just wanted to share a sneak peek at an update for ‘Swift Prints’ coming soon. Version 2.4 will provide a method to watermark your prints. This will work by adding a custom iProperty to your drawings called “Water Mark” and then entering the text you would like to fill in on that iProperty before the print is created. I’m working on a few more ideas for this version as well, stay tuned for more updates.
Effective today, the Autodesk Developer Network has added access to Autodesk web services including all the latest web services such as Render As A Service, Autodesk 360 Pro, BIM 360, PLM 360, and Green Building Studio.
Until today, ADN members have had incomplete access to Autodesk products – including almost no access to Autodesk Web Services whether standalone or delivered as a “Subscription” benefit. Autodesk believes in supporting our ADN partners by providing simple, modern, on-demand access to almost all our “platform technologies” (technologies that are extensible through APIs) whether they be desktop, add-on or web service based. So starting now, we are giving you a single straight forward way to access all these Autodesk technologies.
This is a great addition to all the other available software and services the ADN program from Autodesk offers. Those 3rd party developers that wish to develop apps that work with any of the available web service API’s can now do so and no additional cost beyond that of an ADN annual subscription.