Saturday, February 23, 2019

Infrasucks Strikes Again!

Infrasucks strikes again in failing to provide a sane easy to use program. Infrasucks is called Infraworks by Autodesk. In my latest encounter with this product it once again fails to deliver an experience that makes me want to use this product. Evidently Autodesk wants it’s users to be frustrated in the first 4 hours of using the product.
In this case, I have a coworker who I’m foolishing helping out to get access to Infrasucks and then if he has any questions try to help him out. The coworker brings in the model from Civil 3D and then I have to answer the obvious questions on why it’s so hard to do. Why Autodesk doesn’t care about interoperability? etc, etc.
Then the coworker determines a city furniture item doesn’t exist and he learns how to create his own 3D Model in AutoCAD Civil 2.5D (using AutoCAD 3D commands) and then exporting the model to FBX, including the materials. Everything is going great at this point.
Then Infrasucks gets in the way of itself. The user imports in the FBX model into Infrasucks and goes to verify the model is being imported correctly. But the model isn’t being brought in correctly. All of the Autodesk Materials are missing. What’s up with the that? There is no messages saying why Infrasucks is refusing to show the materials. It isn’t until you get out of the dialog box and then go back in a refresh the model do you get a message on what is broken.
Doing an internet search you’ll find numerous AKN articles saying Infrasucks doesn’t include Autodesk Materials.
In order to get the Materials to show you need to download and install a same year version of the Infrasucks you are using. But there is a problem, there is no branding to let you know what year version Infrasucks you are using.

So what product should I download?
Another issue is that I already have multiple versions Autodesk Material Library installed on the computer.

By math I have 2,643 MB of Autodesk Materials installed on my computer. Why do I need to install another Autodesk Material Library? Based on the install sizes, little to nothing has changed. Why do I have to install it again just to change the year? Are Autodesk programmers so inept they can’t subtract 1 from a number? Can’t they ask their coworkers where the default install location is?
If any Autodesk programmers are reading this you can find the folder of Materials here:
C:\Program Files (x86)\Common Files\Autodesk Shared\Materials
I’ll leave it to you to learn how to get a list of folders in a folder (it’s really, really easy to do).
So I’ll continue to tell users they should call the product Infrasucks, especially since it’s been at least 4 years this problem has existed and Autodesk continues to make it hard for users to use the product.

Monday, December 10, 2018

XSL Reports

It appears Reports and Internet Explorer don’t mix.

Brian provided a fix here:

To not have to do this each and every time it is possible to modify the XSL file to load the IE 9 by default. To do so open the XSL sheet in a text document editor, such as Notepad.

Scroll down to a line with <html>

Below <html> add:

<meta http-equiv="X-UA-Compatible" content="IE=9">

Scroll down to the next line with </html>

Above the </html> add </meta>

This will let the browser know it should be rendered in IE 9.



Thursday, December 06, 2018

Adding Number and Area to General_Legal_Description_for_Parcels

Civil 3D comes with lots of reports. Some of the XSL reports haven’t been updated in a while and don’t show correctly anymore (or may have never showed correctly). It does look like the information is in the html rather than being shown. This post shows how to add the parcel numbers and area to the General_Legal_Description_for_Parcels report to show up.

First you want to open the appropriate year’s file. In this case I’m going to be using Civil 3D 2017.

"C:\ProgramData\Autodesk\C3D 2017\enu\Data\Reports\xsl\General Legal Description for Parcels.xsl"

In the file is an area that should be showing the parcel number, but doesn’t appear to do this anymore.


The highlighted line will need to be changed to show the value.

Parcel Name: <xsl:value-of select="@name"/><p></p>

The above line with add “Parcel Name:” as text and then write the name of the parcel from the XML file. The ps in the brackets add a line between the parcel name and then descriptions to follow.

The next chunk of code is supposed to write the area.


Unfortunately, it looks like it no longer does this. So it needs to be changed.

Containing <xsl:value-of select="landUtils:FormatNumber(string($ParcelArea), string($SourceAreaUnit), 'acre', string($Parcel.2D_Area.precision), string($Parcel.2D_Area.rounding))"/> acres 
(<xsl:value-of select="landUtils:FormatNumber(string($ParcelArea), string($SourceAreaUnit), 'squareFoot', string($Parcel.2D_Area.precision), string($Parcel.2D_Area.rounding))"/> square feet)<p></p>


<xsl:value-of select="landUtils:FormatNumber(string($ParcelArea), string($SourceAreaUnit), 'squareMeter', string($Parcel.2D_Area.precision), string($Parcel.2D_Area.rounding))"/> square meters
(<xsl:value-of select="landUtils:FormatNumber(string($ParcelArea), string($SourceAreaUnit), 'hectare', string($Parcel.2D_Area.precision), string($Parcel.2D_Area.rounding))"/> hectares)<p></p>

Use the top option for the best units in the world, use the bottom one for the messed up units.

Now run the report and you should get the information to show up.


There are plenty of other issues with the report. At one time browsers supported VBScript, but they no longer appear to do so. I suspect at one time the dialog box would be used to turn on and off which parcels one wanted to see. Most of the report I tested doesn’t appear to work anymore.

Thursday, November 22, 2018

Dead Blog?

Why is this blog seemingly dead? Part of the reason is me being busy travelling the State of California teaching a bunch. The other part is me boycotting the main source of topics of this blog, the Autodesk Forums. Autodesk decided to redo the their forums. In doing so it has made it more difficult to post and reply. They added a ton of white space (which on some pages has been reduced), put a bunch of meaningless text and other input boxes between the Enter Details and the Post button. My goal is to type an answer, press Post and move on to my next task. Currently I have to type and then scroll down to press Post. Heaven forbid you scroll down too far and accidently press the Reply button.

So until Autodesk adds a Post button below the Enter Details box, I plan to continue my boycott of the Forums. Until then I foresee this blog to be devoid of content.


Wednesday, August 08, 2018

Notes on Starting Out Programming

It's mainly about having a problem to solve and then taking the steps to accomplish the task. I am usually just taking the workflow that one would be doing in AutoCAD and automating it. Google and Bing are a great source to find code snippets that can be modified to suit the needs of the code.

Getting started for an Autodesk project is covered in this AKN:

Creating a bundle file to autoload in AutoCAD:

This book helps teach how to better organize code:

The source code for the free version of the SincPac is a great resource for Civil 3D coding:


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