User Group Meeting – Coachella Valley / Phoenix

April 8, 2010

The next Coachella Valley / Phoenix User Group meeting will be held in the Phoenix area on Saturday, June 5, 2010 at 10:00am. Place is not yet set. Several of you have volunteered in the past, and I need someone to step forward and volunteer to host this event. This will be an “organizing and planing meet & greet” so we can all get to know each other and discuss what we all expect of the group.

Vectorworks Service Pack 3

April 8, 2010

Reprinted with permission:

Nemetschek North America has released its third Service Pack for the Vectorworks® 2010 product line. This Service Pack has a number of critical fixes, especially in the areas of the wall network and IFC export.

In addition, the Vectorworks help system has been updated for Vectorworks® 2010 SP3, with the release of Vectorworks 2010 Help 2.0. This is a maintenance release of the help and primarily reflects changes made to the IFC interoperability features of Vectorworks Architect and the compatibility of Vectorworks Fundamentals with version 2010 DXF/DWG files. Several minor documentation bugs were also resolved in this release.

For more information about the Service Pack, please visit the Vectorworks Knowledgebase at:

Continuing Education for the Professional

April 8, 2010

Reprinted with Permission:

Practical Modeling Methodology for the GSA BIM Guide Series 02 (1 AIA LU)

Presented by Jeffrey W. Ouellette, Assoc. AIA,
BIM Specialist, Integrated Practice at Nemetschek N.A.

Wednesday, April 21 at 3 p.m. EDT
Register Now (Free, one-hour online presentation)

The US General Services Administration (GSA) has been a leader in the development and adoption of Building Information Modeling (BIM) standards to provide workplaces for the United States federal government. BIM standards enable the GSA to provide services in the acquisition, design, construction, and management of facilities across the nation and abroad.

The BIM Guide Series is an ongoing collection of policies, processes, and data standards for how to effectively use BIM at precise stages. The GSA BIM Guide Series 02 Spatial Program Validation supports the use of BIM to assess how a future design meets project requirements, prior to committing to a final design. This guide offers the GSA and its consultants specific requirements for creating and submitting a Spatial Validation digital model.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Review the GSA BIM Guide 02: Spatial Program Validation;
  2. Discuss how the BIM Guide requirements fit into the design process for a GSA project;
  3. Discuss specific element modeling strategies in a BIM-authoring application to meet the Guide’s data requirements;
  4. Learn how to use the IFC format to share BIM data with the GSA.

For questions concerning the Continuing Education Program offered by Vectorworks, please contact
Kristine Sherwood at
or 443-542-0620.

Vectorworks in the Military, and on the iPad???

March 28, 2010

If you were following this blog when I first created it, you may be wondering what happened to it. Why did I stop writing? I took a contract position with the Marine Corps. I commute from the Palm SPrings area to 29 Palms five days a week. We (a group of engineers and architects that got hired under the same contract) travel an hour and a half (each way) and report to work at 0700. That’s 7:00am for those of you not familiar with a 24 hour clock. As you can guess, this makes for an extremely long day. Also, after a few weeks, we were told that we couldn’t bring in personal laptops. This meant NO VECTORWORKS!!!!! I am forced to use the evil, dare I say it out loud, AutoCAD. YUCK!!!!! OK that was painful!!!!! So the fact that I have been working long hours, preparing for the remaining sections of the ARE, and haven’t been able to use my favorite toy, I mean tool, means that I haven’t had time or been very enthused to write. This also explains my lack of enthusiasm to be more active as a Vectorworks User Group Leader. But I have realized that I must press on. I am taking on other projects outside of my military contract, which allows me to dive back into Vectorworks. This has sparked some enthusiasm.

What also sparked some enthusiasm is a little piece of hardware that Apple will be releasing soon. The iPad. So now I have two subjects that I would like to discuss. The first topic revolves around the fact that I can’t use Vectorworks on the Marine Corps base, regardless if I am using it on a personal laptop, or if it is installed on a military computer. Why is this you might ask. Well, the Marine Corps is a component of the Navy, but it is its own entity. The Navy has tested Vectorworks and has approved its use on Navy installations. However, the Marine Corps doe not allow use of this software. So I call on the powers that be at the Nemetschek mothership to get with the powers that be at Headquarters Marine Corps in Washington and get Vectorworks approved so I am not forced to use that other software that shall remain nameless for the rest of this rant.

On to my second topic… and this one I would like to see more than being able to use Vectorworks on a Marine Corps base. I went to the Nemetschek website today to see if there was any mention whatsoever about the iPad. So the big question on my mind is… will there be some version of Vectorworks ported to the iPad? Obviously the processor is probably not up to running the full version of Vectorworks, but it seems that there could be some watered down version. It may not be optimal to complete an entire project on an iPad, but it would be great to take it in the field and make minor adjustments, mark up plans with redlines, or take field measurements and do some general layout. I know, I know, you can do that with a laptop. But in light of the fact that I recently bought a new 21″ iMac with 8gb of RAM, I am selling my laptop on e-bay and will be purchasing a 3g iPad as soon as they are available. That being said, a pad is more practical and portable for the field, and I am hoping I am not the only one that would lie to see an iPad version of Vectorworks. I want to hear from you. Do you want to see some sort of version of Vectorworks on the iPad?

Nemetschek has announced the release of Service Pack 4 for Vectorworks 2009

June 5, 2009

Greeting! I’m back. I apologize for not posting in a while, I’ve been dealing with some serious family issues. For now they seem to be resolved and I’m back to business as usual.

With no further adieux, Nemetschek has announced the release of Service Pack 4 for Vectorworks 2009. According to Nemetschek, this release is only for the professional version, with the release for other flavors coming in the next “few weeks.” Some of the issues addressed are “improvements related to stairs, performance, and overall stability.”

Personally, I was hoping that they would have addressed the NOTES database, particularly in regards to reconciling notes. The integration of the CALLOUT tool and the NOTES database worked flawlessly in version 12 and I have personally worked with Nemetschek to bring it to their attention that these features simply do not work any longer in version 2008. They confirmed that these features were not fixed in 2009 either, but now that they now about the problem, they will be working to resolve these issues. This was a few months ago to the best of my recollection. Maybe this was not enough time to resolve this issue in time for the release of Service Pack 4.

Anyway, this should be a welcome release. Anything that “improves performance and overall stability” is certainly welcome. You can upgrade by downloading the Service Pack from the Nemetschek web site or you can “go to the About Vectorworks dialog box in the Vectorworks 2009 application and click Check for Updates.”

Happy Vectorworking!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Source: Downs, T. Nemetschek Press Release, June 5, 2009

Inserting Windows and Doors After Importing a DWG

April 2, 2009

The following comes from Pat Stanford, coordinator of the LA VectorWorks User Group and creator of the PodCAD PodCast:

“We did trouble shoot one problem that you might want to point out to your group.

A user said she could not put doors or windows into a drawing after importing a DWG file. What is the problem?

It is a name space problem. The imported file created classes called Door and Window. Since you can’t have two “objects” in a VW file with the same name, you could not put Door or Window objects into the file.

The solution is to rename the classes to something else. Even better use the prefix option when you import the file so that you don’t end up with name conflicts. Better still is to not draw in a file with imported data, but use a design layer viewport to pull the data in from a file used for only DWG import.”

Service Pack 3 released for VectorWorks 2009

March 31, 2009

Nemetschek released Service Pack 3 for VectorWorks 2009. This may be old news as the notification was sent out on March 26. You can find out more about the Service Pack and decide if you should install it by checking out the Nemetschek web site

Or if you just want to get right to the install, run VectorWorks and go to the “About VectorWorks” dialog box and click “Check for Updates.” This upgrade is available only for professional licenses according to Nemetschek.