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Wildcards for DWG Layer-Layer Conversion settings

Karl Ottenstein
Moderator

AFAIK, the layer-layer conversions in the DXF-DWG Translation Setup translators can only refer to complete layer names.

Wouldn't it be useful if wildcards could be used to match multiple DWG layers (for Open / Attach / Merge)?

For example - screenshot - all DWG layers beginning with A-WALL would have their content moved into the Walls layer, A-ANNO prefix (A-ANNO*) would go into Notes and everything else (*) would go into the ArchiCAD Layer. (And - subordinate wish: this ArchiCAD layer would be THE ArchiCAD Layer... not a duplicate, as it is now.)

dwg-wildcards.gif

Suppose you want all DWG content in a single layer - the translator would just have a *-entry.

Karl

PS Because wildcards work in only one direction (match one side - translate to the other) - there would then need to be a separate attribute sequence for importing than exporting, unlike now... or, more easily, one translator for import and one for export.
One of the forum moderators
AC 27 USA and earlier   •   macOS Ventura 13.6.7, MacBook Pro M2 Max 12CPU/30GPU cores, 32GB
5 REPLIES 5
Link
Graphisoft Partner
Graphisoft Partner
I agree Karl!!

Here's part of a wish I sent to GS (over a year ago! 😞


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Simplify the Translator: There are currently so many settings scattered around to check on or off, most with very poor explanation, that the user is simply scared by the interface.

I would recommend initially dividing each Translator into two intuitive sections: Import & Export. Within each Import & Export section, have seven tabs: Drawing Units, Layers, Pens & Colors, Linetypes, Fills & Hatches, Fonts & Styles, Miscellaneous. Each tab should be able to check 'Same as Import' or 'Same as Export', to save duplicating info.

Drawing Units - can remain quite the same as it is now, but with a drop down list of scales for the 'Use constant factor for all conversions' option, (similar to the list avaiable in the Floor Plan Scale dialog).

Layers - we should be able to reference a template DWG file (as we do now) separately for each Import & Export section, and when setting a Layer Conversion rule, we should have a drop down list for ArchiCAD layers within the current file and a drop down list for layers within the chosen template DWG file, so we can select both easily. We should be able to also assign wildcards, so that we can assign a bunch of layers to just one layer in the resulting file. Xreffed layers should show which xref they belong to. Nested Xrefs should can just show the lowest nested name. Eg. DWG Name|Xref Name|Layer Name - although we will need 256 characters for this!

Pens & Colors - should default to Colors Bylayer under Export. Import should give us the options currently available, but with the same drop down selections as the layers, allowing the user to drop down and select Pens & Colors from the current ArchiCAD file and chosen template DWG file.

Linetypes - can remain quite the same as it is now, but with the same drop down selections as the layers, allowing the user to drop down and select linetypes from the current ArchiCAD file and chosen template DWG file.

Fills & Hatches - should include a similar mapping as the above attributes, with the same drop down selections as the layers, allowing the user to drop down and select fills & hatches from the current ArchiCAD file and chosen template DWG file. The Drafting/Cut/Cover fill options can also go in here, as well as the options in the current Fills (save methods) section. The wipeout could be improved. Instead of an AutoCAD Wipeout, it would be nice if the translator optionally didn't convert ANY data under a (solid white) fill.

Fonts & Styles - this is a big cause of grief for most users of Translators. Text seems to come in all over the place. The same anchor points, justifications, size & widths need to translate perfectly. A lot of work needs to be done in this area. Many of the font related options from the current Miscellaneous section can also be included in here, as well as the options in the current Fonts - style conversion section.

Miscellaneous - the current Open/Save options can go in here, as well as the remaining options from the current Miscellaneous & Custom Functions sections. When exporting from PlotMaker, we need the views to export as Viewports in Paperspace, with the correct scale! This is imperative! But this option needs to make the user blatantly aware that it is only applicable to PlotMaker, as I have seen many people confused by this, believe it or not.


Basically, the whole dialog and process needs to be better organized and more intuitive for the average user. And Import & Export options need to be set in the same translator. As it is now, most users need to create two separate translators - one for Import and one for Export.

A good set of instructions should be made available, including exactly what the template DWG file is used for. Everything should have bubble help attached to it, with complete explanations on the consequence of setting that particular option. If not bubble help, then definitely with use of the ? at the top right of the dialog.

I am sure there is much more to add, but unfortunately I ran out of time to fully test the DWG/DXF Translator when I had access to AutoCAD and an architectural firm using it with ArchiCAD in their everyday practice.

Cheers,
Link

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So - you got my vote mate!

Cheers,
Link.
TomWaltz
Participant
Karl wrote:
Wouldn't it be useful if wildcards could be used to match multiple DWG layers (for Open / Attach / Merge)?
PLEASE!!!! This is an important one for anyone doing a lot of translation!
Tom Waltz
Anonymous
Not applicable
Amazing how many things I have done recently that have just come up on this forum, DWG Translation is one of them. Tried three or four times just to get what I wanted, then still not sure if the guy at the other end can understand and use it.
Needs work. Thanks.
Matthew Johnson
Advocate

Still a need for this if anyone is watching.

Matthew Johnson - POWE Architects
AC4.5 --> AC27 & Revit 2019 --> 2023
Asus Zenbook Pro 16x i9-13900H w/ Nvidia RTX 4070 4K dual, Windows 11 64bit
I'd rather be sailing.
Matthew Johnson
Advocate

I even asked if we could make our own Custom Function add-on here https://community.Graphisoft.com/t5/Data-Exchange-articles/DXF-DWG-Export-Translator-Settings/tac-p/... but got nowhere.

Matthew Johnson - POWE Architects
AC4.5 --> AC27 & Revit 2019 --> 2023
Asus Zenbook Pro 16x i9-13900H w/ Nvidia RTX 4070 4K dual, Windows 11 64bit
I'd rather be sailing.