Happy Independence Day to Indians and Pakistanis

Best wishes to everyone in Pakistan and India
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On this hard days of big floods just want to wish all the best for their respective Independece Day to all my Indian friends and to all Pakistanis.

We all hope the regions affected by the floods will recover soon. The pictures are just a snapshot of my Google Analytics page stats. Thanks to all Indians and Pakistanis who follow me in their countries or abroad.

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Sign your Documents in Acrobat

Use stamps to sign your document without the need of printing them and scanning them later.
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Nowadays, more and more applications mean filling up forms and sending them electronically. Many people like to print those forms, fill them up, sign them, scan them and then send them back. I personally prefer to do a everything in my computer. It helps me keep track of my applications and to have a record of my documents, plus I think an applications typed in the computer looks more professional.

So this post is for those who like to do that. I normally download the application PDFs, use the typewriter to fill out the different fields and when it comes to signing the document I used to find a problem. Acrobat doesn't let you insert an image that easily. I have my signature scanned and I use it in word documents, but in PDFs is not that easy. I found the solution not so long ago.

Acrobat has a feature called stamps. You can set up a custom Stamp, and used a JPEG scanned version of your signature. To create a custom stamp see the image below, it is under Comments & markup.

Once you have the custom stamp created follow the same path but this time go to Sign Here (or whatever subcategory you used to save the custom stamp) and add the stamp, your signature, to the document. On the image below you can see the custom stamp with a random signature I found on the internet ready to be used.

That's it, now you can avoid completely to print your documents. For me it is not a question of beeing green, but a question of beeing practical, I move a lot, and sometimes work in coffee shops, I not always have a printer ready, so with this system I do not need to stop what I am doing to wait till I get access to a printer and a scanner.


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SketchUp Plugins: New version of the Joint Push Pull Plugin

A new an imporved version of the Joint Push Pull Plugin has been published.
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One of the most visited posts in this blog was the one describing the Joint Push Pull Plugin. See it here.

A new version (2.0) of the Joint Push Pull plugin was published by Fredo6. The New release, available here (you need to be logged in to be able to download it), has added a visual preview to the Joint Push Pull operations (see below)

And the possibility to add the parameters window pop up on will by pressing Tab while running the Plugin.

This is one of my favourite Sketch Up Plugins, it is great to see it improved.

Remember to check this post if you don't know how to install plugins.

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SketchUp: Drawing Torus, Spheres and Ellipses

Drawing Spheres, Torus and Ellipses is quite easy. There are some plugins though that make it even easier.
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Some basic shapes like a Sphere, a Torus or an Ellipse are not included in the default tools in SketchUp. They all can be done quite easy without the need of a Plugin, but of course anything that speeds up the modleing process is more than welcome.

Here you can see a quick video showing how to model a Sphere, a Torus and an Ellipse in SketchUp with the standard tools.

As you can see, it is a pretty simple process. Still, some of you might want to have these tools directly accessible on the Draw menu. For this, Regular Polygon has created several Plugins, simply click on the links below to access the Plugin website and to download them.
They also have two plugins called Superellipse and Supperellipsoid (Sort of rectangle with rounded edges, or cube with rounded edges) for this one I don't see a some way to draw it easily with the standard tools, so here comes the link to the two of them.

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My Parents House in SketchUp

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Long ago I modeled my parents house in SketchUp. I used this building to learn basic and not so basic modeling technics. No one would call the building an architectural masterpiece, but its a bit illogical and random architecture made it a good bulilding to learn SketchUp (and other programs too).

I already used this same model long ago when posting about the SketchUp Web Exporter (unfortunately now the post is not working properly because of the transition from google pages to google sites)

So here come some screenshots of the building.

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SketchUp Plugins: Soft Selection Plugin

Add vertexes and perform Soft selection operations in SketchUp
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Thomthom has a very interesting plugin called Vertex Tools to perform Soft selection of vertex. It is not free (it costs $20) but if you need to perform this sort of operation it will be worth paying for it.
On a previous post about Rhino, I already explained what soft selection is and what we use it for. Below you can see a video explaining the functionality of the Vertex tools Plugin.

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SketchUp: Free Ruby Programming E-Books

Five free ebooks to learn to program in Ruby Language.
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SketchUp plugins use the Ruby programming language. There is plenty of ruby programmers out there doing a great job creating SketchUp Plugins to improve the functionality of SketchUp. If you have an idea of a Plugin that could be useful but you don't know ow to program in Ruby this post might be for you.

This is a list of 5 free ebooks to learn about the Ruby programming language.
I strongly believe we can all make technology better from a collaborative approach. Users are the ones who have the capacity to know what they really need and to create those products/applications that serve them better. It is a change in the traditional paradigm were big corporations were the only ones creating products for the end user. Nowadays, the user has the power and more importantly the knowledge to assess what is needed. The Google approach to let users create Plugins easily for SketchUp embraces this principle.

So now we have no excuse. If you think you need a Plugin that is not out there, get your hands on this free guides and start programming. The entire SketchUp community will thank you!

via citizen 428.

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Design Review Programs

See two options to digitally review your drawings
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The two following videos show how o do basic design review operations with two programs. The first shows the operations done in Adobe Acrobat Pro, the second, the same done in Autodesk Design Review. This is part of my research to create a Quality Assurance system using big format touch screen and a Design review Software.

As you can see, with both software packages the same can be achieved. So probably the 642€ per license for Acrobat Pro are not worth paying if the only thing you need is to do this type of operations. Autodesk Design Review is a free application. it can be downloaded here.

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AutoCAD: Create a Field Displaying the Layout Tab Name

This trick can be useful for several purposes. I needed it to standardize a Titleblock.
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Fields are very useful to standardise blocks, titleblocks, etc but still allow certain properties of an object to change. In a previous post, we saw how to use fields to display properties of a dynamic block. Today, I wanna show you how to use a field on a titleblock to show the Layout Tab name.
We need of course to have a tittleblock we want to use, then we will insert a text, dtext or mtext with the "fixed" part of the text of the titleblock. For the aprt we want to show the Layout Tab Name, we need to insert a field.
To do that, you can either righclick inside the text area and select Insert Field, or you can use the FIELD command directly. Once you insert the Field, you will be prompted to select the variable the Field will show. Here is where you need to take note.

Select "System Variable" in the Field Name Column. Then Select "ctab" on the System Variable column. And then finally specify on the right the format of the text. See Below.

That's it. now if you rename the Layout Tab, the field will change accordingly.

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Free Video Screen Capture Software

A utility to capture videos from what you do on your computer.
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I needed some free software to capture some video of my screen and I found this software called CamStudio. It is extremly easy to use and has some nice features. It is not perfect, but it worked out well for me. I've been using to create some of the videos you have seen posted here in CAD-Addict, although some or most are post edited with Adobe Premiere.
You can download it for free here.
I did a quick capture from google earth to check if it worked, this is the result.

Most of the others I found are either only free for 30 days or you have to pay for them right away, so this one is worth the first try.

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Stuttgart and Berlin in 3D

Stuttgart and Berlin have been added to the collection of 3D cities in Google earth
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Some months ago I posted about my hometown Barcelona being included in the list of 3D cities in Google Earth. Since I've been living in Stuttgart for the past 9 months, I though I'd just mention about this too.

Stuttgart (and Berlin) is now available in 3D in Google Earth. See the video below to get a glimpse of these two cities.

So for those who are curious about discovering new places, here you have a breif overview.

via Official Google SketchUp Blog.

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CAD Addict is busy

I am not dead
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Working, studying and trying to follow a World Cup. Last month has been crazy, you've seen the low amount of posts. Hope to get back soon here as soon as I get things a bit in order.
By the way. CAD Addict has reached 300 posts. I really never though when i started writing those little notes about a command or two I had learned that it would reach here.
Soon more, thanks for reading!

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