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Pen sets should be linked to Views

alexliz
Newcomer
I have drawings which are supposed to be viewed and plotted with different Pen Sets. For instance, the main architectural plans use the standard ArchiCAD Pen Set (where for instance pen 6 is a light blue and pen 7 is a dark blue). Mechanical plans, however, are superimposed on the main architectural layers, using different pens (i.e. all mechanical elements are done in pens 198 and 199), and we then use another Pen Set which turns every pen _except_ 198 and 199 to a very pale shade of grey.

The annoying thing is that every time we need to print an architectural or a mechanical Saved View, we have to remember to switch to the appropriate Pen Set.

Bottom line: we need to be able to save the relevant Pen Set together with the Saved View, just like every Saved View remembers its Layer Combination, Scale, Model View Options etc.
Alex Zachopoulos

MacBook Pro 17" 2.4GHz, MacOS X 10.5.6, ArchiCAD 11 & 12, WinXP, Vista (well, not really Vista...)
21 REPLIES 21

TomWaltz
Newcomer
Isn't that what Layouts are for, so you can print your drawings without remembering all the pen and printer settings?
Tom Waltz

alexliz
Newcomer
OK, but the whole concept that ArchiCAD is moving closer and closer to each version that comes out, is that things in a project's management should be as automated as possible, with as little human intervention as possible, to speed things up and ensure high accuracy of modelling and documentation.

So, if I am setting up a view in ArchiCAD and save it in the Saved Views sets, and then someone else in the project team (or even myself) at a later stage wants to publish a document (i.e. drawing), but it is necessary for them to remember to switch the Pen Set prior to printing, then where is the automation in that? It much more closely follows ArchiCAD's logic to have the Pen Set embedded in the Saved View data as a parameter: you set it up once (when you save the view), and then you just forget about it unless you want to intervene specifically.

Don't forget, either, that we now have the capability to drag a whole tree of Saved Views (or open them through a dialog) within ArchiCAD's plotting facility (previously PlotMaker). Each Saved View replicates itself and dynamically updates, but if upon adding a new Saved View you have to also remembed which Pen Set should be assigned to the newly placed drawings, then I'm afraid you are setting yourself up for mistakes and wasted time and paper.
Alex Zachopoulos

MacBook Pro 17" 2.4GHz, MacOS X 10.5.6, ArchiCAD 11 & 12, WinXP, Vista (well, not really Vista...)

TomWaltz
Newcomer
If you put it on a layout, they don't have to. You can publish layouts, too.
Tom Waltz

alexliz
Newcomer
Tom,

I'm not saying it can't be done. I'm just saying that it doesn't go along the lines that ArchiCAD has been moving overall, in terms of system efficiency.

Of course I can put every Saved View on a Layout and at that time also specify and Pen Set to be used for every drawing on the Layout. But then, why don't I also have to specify the Layer Combinations, or the Model View Options for those drawings, too?

The answer is simple, in my view. Just include the Pen Set as a Saved View parameter and leave it at that. Surely, it can be done at no great hassle on the programmers' part.
Alex Zachopoulos

MacBook Pro 17" 2.4GHz, MacOS X 10.5.6, ArchiCAD 11 & 12, WinXP, Vista (well, not really Vista...)

Geoff Briggs
Booster
This has been discussed repeatedly (from the pre-beta period through today) and I'm guessing there's already a poll as well. In a nut shell the reason that pens are not part of views, despite the fact that such an inclusion seems obvious and consistent, is that separate pens are necessary for layouts since it's common for users to have working (color) pen sets and output (B&W / grayscale) pen sets. Since output tricks like ghosting can be achieved equally by layout or view dependant pen sets Graphisoft decided not to add the additional (redundant) view setting.
Regards,
Geoff Briggs
DeForest Architects
Seattle, USA

AC24 INT, Mac (home), Win10 (work)
Yes, you read that correctly, we are in the US but use the INT version.

Aussie John
Newcomer
Actually i am glad they DONT. When in CAD view i want to see the colours of the pens so I can relate to them. Then print out without the colours.
Cheers John
John Hyland : ARINA : www.arina.biz
User ver 4 to 12 - Jumped to v22 - so many options and settings!!!
OSX 10.15.6 [Catalina] : Archicad 22 : 15" MacBook Pro 2019
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alexliz
Newcomer
Geoff, John:

I see your point, but, at this time, I beg to differ.

What you suggest is that, as it is now, the system gives the user the flexibility of seeing colors on screen, then switching to another Pen Set and outputting a Grayscale or B&W document. Why can this not be done by simply going in the layout and selecting the drawing, then in Drawing Selection Settings, in the Properties tab, in 'Colors:' selecting the 'Grayscale' of 'Black and White' option?

It is counter-intuitive to have both options available within the Properties tab in the Drawing Selection Settings for each placed Drawing in a layout. Notice how to the left of the 'Colors' option you see the 'Pen Set' option?

Your way, one has to _always_ make sure the current Pen Set is right for each output job.

My way, one has to _only_ interfere with output colors if there is a specific reason for doing so (in your example, they want colors on-screen, not for output).

It would be much more streamlined and error-free as a system if the Pen Set was automatically saved with the View which produces the Drawing, saving color and pen thickness data. If for some reason, as you both suggested, the user needs colors for screen only, but not for output, then just go into the Properties for those drawings (you already do this, even if not only to select just B&W etc. options, but the Pen Set, as well) and instruct ArchiCAD to ignore the pen colors.

Simple and streamlined.
Alex Zachopoulos

MacBook Pro 17" 2.4GHz, MacOS X 10.5.6, ArchiCAD 11 & 12, WinXP, Vista (well, not really Vista...)

TomWaltz
Newcomer
I have yet to see why your method is any better than just assigning pens on the layout, both for the overall Layouts and for each independent view placed on the layouts. Once you set the Pen Set, you never have to think about it again. Why is this a bad thing?

Are you printing from Layouts? Or from Model View?
Tom Waltz

Eduardo Rolon
Moderator
The concept I see here is that Model views are for working with the project and Layouts are for final printing. The requirements for a Model View, like been able to highlight with colors the different type of objects and taking design decisions means that the Pen Set are secondary to the process. In Layout view the concept is to prepare the drawings for output thus Pen Sets are an important tool and having them unlinked means that I don't have to create different views where the only difference is a Pen Set. Examples are a greyscale-ghost floorplan, or a demo floor plan were I want those walls highlighted in Red.
IMO if I am printing a Model View it is because I want to check something that has to do with the Model /Design Phase of the Project (Pens Sets are not Important, though Line weights might be) and printing in color, greyscale or B/W is not important. If I am printing a Layout then I want to check my Documents and there the Pens Sets are important.
eduardo rolón AIA NCARB
Another of the forum moderators.
Macbook Pro 2.4 i9 32GB ram
OS X 10.XX latest
AC25 US/INT -> AC08

alexliz
Newcomer
Maybe I need to explain a little better what the problem at hand is. Let's go from the top, shall we?

I have my main Pen Set, using which I do most of the bulk of my design/editing or the project. Things look good on-screen, with elements shown in different colors and pen thicknesses, all to my liking. I have even bothered to structure my Saved Views, so if I want to work on a particular plan, instead of first going to such and such a floor, then making sure the right layers are switched on, then making sure the plan scale is right, then also checking that the view options are appropriate (so that I see doors and windows, for instance, with or without their dimension details), all I have to do is double click on a View in the Navigator.

Now, consider this, if you would: I have been working like I describe above on the architectural plans, and then I need to edit my mechanical/services drawings, which comprise a set of special layers carrying all services elements, together with just a few basic layers of architectural interest (i.e. walls and columns only). Only, for clarity's sake, I need all the non-mechanical elements (i.e. walls and columns) to appear in a very pale shade of gray, so that the mechanical/services elements stand out. After all, this is the services drawings I'm working on, isn't it?

So, while still looking at my architectural Saved View, I double click on a services drawing's Saved View in the Navigator. Layers are switched on and off, according to the Saved View's settings. The scale, if different to the architectural plans' scale, is duly adjusted. View options kick in and make all doors and windows look just like plain holes in the walls, because this is all I want to see in the mechanical and services drawings. All is ready for me to carry on with my work. Or, is it?

No, it's not; I still have to go to the Document menu, chose Pen Sets... and then select the particular Pen Set which will show everything but the mechanical/services elements in pale gray.

The same will have to take place when I switch back to the architectural set again.

Bottom line: if the Pen Sets were saved together with the Saved Views, I wouldn't have to keep going to menus and changing Pen Set settings all the time. The Saved Views would take care of that for the life of the project. Of course, there would be the added benefit of this not having to be setup for the Layouts, either, so that would be one more automation for me.

I can't help but notice that a few of the people who have posted above feel strongly about being able to manipulate the Pen Set settings when putting together a Layout; this, they seem to declare, offers them a great deal of flexibility. There is nothing against this, and I certainly do not posit that such flexibility be taken away from the user. If you don't want to plot the Layout using the Pen Set which had been saved with the Saved View when that was created, all you have to do is go into the specific drawing's Settings, into the Properties pane, and for 'Pen Set:' select a different one. I hate to state the obvious, but... this is what all these people who post here are already doing! Eduardo Rolón (ejrolon) says: "...If I am printing a Layout then I want to check my Documents and there the Pens Sets are important...." ; Aussie John declares: "When in CAD view i want to see the colours of the pens so I can relate to them. Then print out without the colours." So they could continue working like they are; to them nothing will change. But to the user who wants to have this peace of mind and consistency while editing and designing within the main ArchiCAD framework, the suggested implementation will mean a great deal.

PS I feel I cannot explain any further my view on this matter. If you still don't see my point, I rest my case. Peace, guys!
Alex Zachopoulos

MacBook Pro 17" 2.4GHz, MacOS X 10.5.6, ArchiCAD 11 & 12, WinXP, Vista (well, not really Vista...)

Laszlo Nagy
Community Admin
Community Admin
I think Pen sets might be part of a View Set, but with one condition, and this condition we should be able to apply to other settings saved with Views:
There should be an options for each setting called "keep current", or something. This would mean that that setting has no effect in case of that View.
The Zoom setting works that way: you can specify the Zoom factor not to be saved with the View.
Similarly, you could have "keep current" for Scale. In this case, when applying the View, the scale would remain the same.
Ans so on for Model View settings, etc. even Pen Sets. this way everyone would be happy, because the setting would be saved with the View only when he, the user wanted.

If I recall correctly, in older versions (maybe 6.5 or so), this was possible, there used to be checkboxes and you could specify which settings are saved with the Quick Views.
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Laszlo Nagy, Lead Moderator, Community Admin
Get Archicad Tips at https://twitter.com/laszlonagy
AMD Ryzen 1700X CPU, 48 GB RAM, Nvidia GTX 1060 6GB, 500 GB NVMe SSD
2x28" (2560x1440), WIN10 PRO ENG, AC20-AC25
Loving Archicad since 1995

alexliz
Newcomer
Laszlo,

Couldn't have said it better myself! I actually had in mind to add this to my last post, but I forgot to include it.

Thank you very much.
Alex Zachopoulos

MacBook Pro 17" 2.4GHz, MacOS X 10.5.6, ArchiCAD 11 & 12, WinXP, Vista (well, not really Vista...)

Geoff Briggs
Booster
Alex, I don't disagree with you. I was only trying to explain why Graphisoft did not include this feature. I know for a fact they did indeed consider both sides of this argument. Most people do not consider views to be precisely faithful to the final published output. In this case you do and of course you're free to argue your position.

As for the option to exclude selected settings from a view definition, I too have thought about this. There are plenty of times I would have liked this for working views but it would almost necessitate an error that would disallow such a view from being placed as a drawing.
Regards,
Geoff Briggs
DeForest Architects
Seattle, USA

AC24 INT, Mac (home), Win10 (work)
Yes, you read that correctly, we are in the US but use the INT version.

Laszlo Nagy
Community Admin
Community Admin
Geoff, I see your point.
When a View is only by itself, "keep current" is a good feature.
But when a View becomes the source of a Drawing, then the Drawing must have a series of settings to be based on, and in that case the "keep current" setting can mix things up big time. Or not? I am wondering if that would really be a problem, since it would be up to the user to decide whether he wants to take a setting into consideration or not when generating the content of a Drawing from a View.
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Laszlo Nagy, Lead Moderator, Community Admin
Get Archicad Tips at https://twitter.com/laszlonagy
AMD Ryzen 1700X CPU, 48 GB RAM, Nvidia GTX 1060 6GB, 500 GB NVMe SSD
2x28" (2560x1440), WIN10 PRO ENG, AC20-AC25
Loving Archicad since 1995

alexliz
Newcomer
Geoff/Laszlo,

When you talk about 'almost necessitating an error' and 'messing things big time', are you talking from the standpoint of ArchiCAD code programmers? Or from that of the end user? If you mean the latter, then I would disagree.

I sense, though, that you mean the former, in which case I am left a little stumped: can we concede defeat to a programming hurdle and leave matters at that? If it's not working out in a particular way, then programmers can surely find another way to implement something which (even my opponents here have agreed to an extent) has merit in at least some circumstances.
Alex Zachopoulos

MacBook Pro 17" 2.4GHz, MacOS X 10.5.6, ArchiCAD 11 & 12, WinXP, Vista (well, not really Vista...)

Laszlo Nagy
Community Admin
Community Admin
I was referring to the user side.
I meant that in Drawing the user would need to really look at his Drawing to make sure it contains what he intends for it, especially when printing/plotting.
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Laszlo Nagy, Lead Moderator, Community Admin
Get Archicad Tips at https://twitter.com/laszlonagy
AMD Ryzen 1700X CPU, 48 GB RAM, Nvidia GTX 1060 6GB, 500 GB NVMe SSD
2x28" (2560x1440), WIN10 PRO ENG, AC20-AC25
Loving Archicad since 1995

__archiben
Newcomer
i haven't been following this topic very closely . . . so forgive me if this has been mentioned:

i would like my pensets linked to views. no messing around on the layout. but i can see the disadvantages. maybe a view should have a model penset and layout environment penset attached to it?

thinking further...

what if the pensets themselves were able to change automatically when in particular environments? so: penset 'A' has a model and layout definition attached to it. depending on the environment you're working in, the pens change themselves?

of course, having solved that there is always the scale issue . . .

as i said, i haven't been following this one too closely so i may be right off target . . .

cheers!
~/archiben
b e n f r o s t
b f [a t ] p l a n b a r c h i t e c t u r e [d o t] n z
archicad | sketchup! | coffeecup

Anonymous
Not applicable
I just did some redlining on structural PDF's and I would have liked the ability to link a pen set to a view. Most of the time I have one working pen set and like the fact that a different set can be given to a drawing in the layout book. If pen sets were tied to view it would be necessary to be able to control the pen set for the layout book and for all other drawing/modeling windows. In other words we would need to be able to assign at least two different pen sets to a view - output and working.

alexliz
Newcomer
I hadn't thought about Ben Frost's proposition. You seem to be turning the whole thing on its head. I think it would work, but you are making the working Environment a Pen Set attribute rather than Pen Sets an attribute of Saved Views. From a conventional end user's level of database schema, I think this tends to be a little removed.

I would prefer Mike Hann's approach. Perhaps it could be that in the New Saved View dialog you get two Pen Set fields: one for how things will look when modelling, and another one (perhaps grayed out when a checkbox for 'Use different Pen Set for Plotting/Printing' is left empty) for outputting purposes. This way, everyone is happy. Those users wanting different colors and pen thicknesses for modelling and outputting get what they need, and one can rest assured that if someone at some point drags a Saved View onto a Layout, it will automatically take care of its pens without human intervention, thus eliminating waste of time and paper.
Alex Zachopoulos

MacBook Pro 17" 2.4GHz, MacOS X 10.5.6, ArchiCAD 11 & 12, WinXP, Vista (well, not really Vista...)

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