Thursday, September 03, 2009

No Man’s Land

I’m in Autodesk’s API No Man’s Land, the land between Subscription Tech Support and not being able to pay ADN fees. For instance I was working on a post last night for a routine to change the manning's value of a pipe. Everything was going good until I tried to assign a value to the PartDataField. The routine appeared to work correctly, no errors where thrown. Unfortunately the value didn’t change. I looked in help to see if I was doing something wrong, it looked like I was. So I changed the code to match what I understood was help was trying to say to do.

It’s at this point I find myself in No Man’s Land. I could try multiple iterations of different ways of trying to do something. This is problematic since I could be trying to get something to work that’s broken. I could try sending a Support Request (SR) to Subscription Tech Support to see if it’s a known issue. This is problematic, since depending on who gets assigned the SR, I could get either a helpful answer telling me they searched the defect list and did or didn’t find a bug or I could get the dismiss out of hand email telling me to go to ADN (extremely frustrating email). I could go to ADN as the SR email indicated, but it takes $1,350/yr to ask them questions.

There is another option of searching the web, but I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but there isn’t a large source of Civil 3D API code available on the web. Joshua Modglin, posting at, has provided some code examples. There are also some samples on Civil 3D related discussion groups. Other than that I think this blog is probably the largest source of Civil 3D API examples on the internet, and if I’m having a problem this blog probably isn’t much help.

I really wish Autodesk would provide official support to people like me who are in No Man’s Land.

I would like to thank the Subscription Support people who in the past did provide more than just the dismiss out of hand email, I really appreciate it. I’d also like to thank the ADN people who have answered my occasional email in the past, even though they don’t have too.

Now off to find an answer to my question through unofficial means.

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