Posts Tagged ‘2D library’

Saving A Library Object

December 7, 2013

Yes, I promised.

I promised a couple of posts ago that I’d follow up on the post about Adding a Border to Your Plan.

Today I’ll show you how to take the border we created and make it into a Library Object that you can use and re-use in any plan you create.

Here’s how.

1. Open the Ez-Architect file where you saved the border.

2. Be sure your border (or other object) is selected. If it’s not already grouped, group it and then select it.

3. If you already have a library file with your own custom objects, that’s good. You can add this new border object to it. If not, go to Options/Library/Create New Library and create a new library file. Depending on the permissions on your computer, you may need to change permissions for the Library directory if you want to add your own file there. This can be done. Otherwise, just put your custom library file in your My Documents directory, or with your other Ez-Architect data files. Your Library file will be an *.aal file. Your Ez-Architect files are *.aad files.

4. Next select the object. (Read 2, above again if you haven’t grouped it).

5. Go to Options/Library/Add Object to Library…

6. The default Library directory will open. If you have placed your new library file there, find it and click. If your *.aal file is somewhere else, then navigate to it and then click the file.

7. To make sure your border is now in your library file, go to Options/Library/Manage Library.

8. When the Manage Library dialog opens, click Open, navigate to your library file via the file dialog and then open it.

9. You’ll see your border as an object in the library. You can use the Rename option to give it a name. Then save.

10. To use your border, click the Library icon Tool and draw a rectangle, the Library file dialog will open where you can select your library file (or navigate to where you saved it). Click to open.

11. Double click the library object. Click done, and it will be placed in your drawing. Drag it so it’s the size you want.

That’s it!

Are you having trouble Registering Ez-Architect ?

November 25, 2013

We’ve had a couple of incidents where users have had some trouble registering Ez-Architect.

Did you see something like this?

Do you see this when you try to register your key?

Do you see this when you try to register your key?

There are reasons and solutions (not reasons and excuses…). First, solutions:

Solution A

  1. Check to see what version of Ez-Architect you are using. Go to Help/About. This will operate whether you’re using the demo or have an older registered version.
  2. If you have a version prior to 6.0, you should not be seeing anything like the message, above. If you do see this and you’re trying to register an old version, contact us and tell us about it. We’ll find it very interesting… and strange. And then we’ll encourage you to upgrade to version 6.
  3. If you have version 6.0 or 6.1, you’ll need to download version 6.2 (see why below). You can do this here: Ez-Architect 6.2 demo download
  4. Be sure to uninstall any previous version.
  5. Install version 6.2
  6. enter your key.
  7. Ez-Architect should be in full operating mode.

Solution B

Upgrading from 6.1 to 6.2 if you’ve already Registered

You might be wondering how to get the latest and greatest and what will happen if you’ve already registered.

This is not a problem. If you’d like to upgrade to version 6.2 from 6.0 or 6.1 and you’ve already successfully registered, follow the instructions above (Solution A). But skip step 6. Your software will automatically be in full version (not demo) mode.

Why no re-registration? Because you have registered your computer. So even if you uninstall Ez-Architect, and reinstall Ez-Architect at this version level, you will be automatically registered for the newer version. That’s also why you can’t use the same key on a second computer. AND it’s why we make 2nd and 3rd key options available at a very reasonable cost ($2 bucks) when you make your original purchase. So you can use Ez-Architect on more than one computer. You just have to use the 2 or 3 key option when you purchase (or send us green rectangles after the fact). See this page for more info about getting extra keys after your original purchase:

Get more keys

But I digress.

Why the message?

Explanation 1

I promised an explanation of the message for those of you who care; And more explanation for those who are asking ‘why, if I was able to register version 6.1 a couple of months ago, why can’t I register 6.1 with a new key on a different computer?’

When you register Ez-Architect, it contacts a special server that records your email address and Ez-Architect key. A few months ago, we switched to a new server and so Version 6.2 of Ez-Architect was set to contact the new server. Earlier versions were set to contact the old server, which alas, is no longer there. So if you try to register version 6.1, it cannot do it, and you get the friendly message above when you try.

Explanation 2

There is one other possible reason that you might see the message above: Sometimes your firewall will block you from connecting with our server. If this happens, please try to set your firewall to allow the connection and try again. If it’s still a problem contact us and we’ll assist you.

And there you have it!

Adding a Border to your Plan

November 11, 2013

In some circumstances, depending on what you are drawing, you might want to add a border. In fact, you might want a standard border for all of your plans, kind of like a logo or a way for your customers/clients/friends to quickly identify that the work they’re looking at is from you. Almost like a trade mark or identifier.

There is no specific border tool in Ez-Architect. But there are plenty of tools included that make creating a border easy enough. You can even create a border and save it as a library object so you can use it over and over. You can create several different borders for different types of projects.

You can easily come up with a way to create your border. I’ll just give a couple of simple examples. (I’ve drawn these smaller than a full page so they’d capture more easily.)

First start with a simple hollow rectangle. See the fill pattern with the dash in it at the upper left. That’s your empty fill “color.”

This is simpler than you'd want for a special saved border. But it's a good place to start.

This is simpler than you’d want for a special saved border. But it’s a good place to start.

Next, change the rectangle’s line thickness by selecting the rectangle and then clicking on the thickest line icon. Then right-click on a color in the color palette. (Be sure the rectangle is still selected before right-clicking on the color.)

Here's the border, now in blue with a thicker line.

Here’s the border, now in blue with a thicker line.

Note, the fill is still empty, but now your corner color indicator shows up in blue. You’ve made the simplest border of all!

Next I make an arc pie.

The little Arc Pie, selected.

The little Arc Pie, selected.

Then I rotate it.

Use Ctrl 2 and Ctrl 1 to rotate the arc into a new position.

Use Ctrl 2 and Ctrl 1 to rotate the arc into a new position.

And next, I duplicate it 3 times.

The duplicated Arc Pie.

Duplicated Arc Pie.

Now the fun begins. First group the new object. (Forget about the old rectangle. No one needs that any more…)

Then duplicate it again. You can experiment with difference offsets to make it interesting. I settled on 60″ to come up with this. It’s just duplicated 3 times.  The first object plus the 3 dupes. Be sure to use the duplicate tool (it’s shown in the icon bar to the left of the border) so that you have perfectly spaced duplicates. If you don’t use the tool, you’ll have to carefully place them individually which is a silly exercise, if you ask me. (You didn’t, I know.)

Duplicated group.

Duplicated group

I experimented with a variety of fills for this pattern. But I like the dynamics of how it looks “empty.”  Fills made it look flat. But you can certainly experiment, and depending on what object shape you begin with, a fill pattern may be just what you need for your own unique border. Fill the pattern if you wish and then continue to group and duplicate it until you have a complete border. You’ll have to rotate it a couple of times, too.

Here’s the complete border. After positioning everything, I did group it. I didn’t want any of the segments to go astray.

Complete Border. The right, left, and bottom were rotated and/or flipped.

Complete Border. The right, left, and bottom were rotated and/or flipped.

One more thing (as Colombo was wont to say). Be sure to place the border on its own Ez-Architect layer. That way it won’t interfere with other objects in your drawing, nor they with it.

Next time, we’ll look at saving it as a library object that you can bring into any new plan.

New Version of MacDraft Released

December 5, 2012

Recently the newest version of MacDraft was released. The current version is 6.0.6.

As you likely know, version 6.0.5 added support for AutoCAD AC1024 (2010/2011/2012) DWG files, and improved functionality for reading DWG files. Renaming layers and renaming library objects is now easier with the Rename option in the drop down menus of the Layers and Library palettes.  Mac OSX Lion issues have been resolved and many other performance and stability changes have been made. Legacy issues from previous versions have also been addressed.

In addition, we now have a customized toolbar, a new layers palette, new library palette which now works with seamless integration with iPhoto. The new image menu gives you lots more control of your images, and much more.

You can download an update from here. On this page you’ll find free updates for each Microspot program in several combinations.  Be sure to update from the version you are using for the correct software. Each updater is different. Read the list carefully to locate your software, then read it carefully again to find the correct update.

 

How Unusual is your Ez-Architect Project?

September 22, 2012

Tell us how you are using Ez-Architect.

Are you a pro using it often for client projects?

Are you a do-it-yourselfer who plans and executes projects for your home or other location?

Do you do any unusual things with it, like design sets for theater productions, plays, videos etc.

We used it to design our set for The Perils of Cheryl. We came up with a brilliant scheme and it worked great. Watch the demo right here.

And tell us how you use Ez-Architect or MacDraft or MacInteriors, for that matter.

The more unusual, the more unusual……

MacDraft Professional, MacDraft PE version 6.05 now available

May 31, 2012

Minor updates and bug fixes comprise this iteration of both versions of MacDraft.

If you haven’t tried it yet, you can download a demo of each and use it for 14 days:

MacDraft Professional 14-day Trial

MacDraft PR 14-day Trial

Try these out and let us know how much you love them!

You’ll find all the info you need starting here.

What kind of Features Do you Crave in Ez-Architect?

May 28, 2012

The developer does update Ez-Architect periodically. We have not come up with many new feature ideas as we believe the program is very complete and powerful as is.

Here are a few things we’ve come up with:

Text tools
1. improve text functionality. Have text operate in the more common way:
Select the text tool, drag a box and start typing. If the text gets too big for the box, expand the box automatically instead of forcing the user to expand it.

2. When you select a text box to edit and you click in it, make the cursor land where you click instead of at the beginning of the text.

Layers
1. Enable users to re-order the layers.
2. allow users to arrange layers: bring to front/send to back. Example: if you make a plan and then you want to add a layer with floor colors or patterns, it’s not easy to get the carpet beneath the floor (and furniture, if any).

General
don’t require users to install as admin

Object Properties
Change Dimensions
1. Add option to keep the aspect ratio so if one dimension changes, the other changes automatically to keep the aspect ratio.

Speak soon if you have an opinion. The above suggestions are pretty minor and wouldn’t likely comprise a major upgrade.

But if you’ve got a feature you’re craving for, you really need to tell us. Our M.O. has always been to listen to our users as we go to new versions. So if you aren’t talking (writing), we can’t give you what you want. The people who use our software a lot are the best experts. So we’ll lend you an ear, if you’re willing to “speak.”


Scanning Objects into Ez-Architect

February 26, 2012

Ez-Architect actually doesn’t have an acquire function whereby you could bring in an image directly from your scanner. However, it’s easy enough to bring a scanned image in.

  1. Scan your image with your favorite scanner and scanning software.
  2. Save the scanned image to your computer as a bmp, jpg, jpeg, tif, tiff, wmf, emp, png, awl, iwl, lwl. Remember its location on your computer and its name.
  3. Use Ez-Architect’s Library Tool to bring the image into your plan.

Put the scanned image on its own layer, if you have an empty layer available. This will enable you to include the image with other layers of your choosing.

Examples of items you might want to scan are logos, clip art photographic images like landscape items or examples of details for your plan, maybe a window or door detail, kitchen appliances, furniture ideas, swatches, or even your face “the designer!” You can enhance a floor plan with these types of details just off to the side of your drawings. You can also scan and import library objects and save them in one of your libraries.

Note: images you import, whether they are scanned or are existing graphics or photos, cannot be manipulated the way you manipulate Ez-Architect objects. They can be stretched and resized, but you can’t change individual parts or colors.

Another great use for a scanned image is a floor plan or idea that you want to use as a starting point for your own plan. Or you may have a plan that you sketched on a napkin, or one that you made with other software (print it and then scan it). Or how ’bout the original plan for your house? You can start with these for your remodel.

You might also find sketches in a magazine or floor plan book, or even an interior setting that you want to arrange your way. Be careful of copyright issues here. Someone owns those plans, but you can probably use them as starting points for your own ideas. Scan the plan, save it, then import it to its own layer, set the settings so that the layer shows along with other layers. And then make the modifications on a new layer to create a new plan that is your own.

What ideas do you have for scanned images?  How have you used them with Ez-Architect?

Working with the Ez-Architect Home and Office Library

July 22, 2011

We have a wonderful little library that provides you with all kinds of additional furniture shapes. Learn all the details about it here.

Note, the library is not a program. It’s an add-0n for Ez-Architect (and only 9.95).

You will download a zip file. Although you can put it anywhere on your computer, using and accessing it easiest when you unzip it into a new directory just below the Library directory that installs with the program. This is usually Program Files/Ez-Architect5/Library/Ez-Architect-Home-and-Office-Library.

When you select the library icon in Ez-Architect, it defaults to the Library directory, and then it’s just one click on the Ez-Architect-Home-and-Office-Library folder to access the new library files.

Please read the README file after you unzip.

And for more info read our Top/left/right/front/back quintuplets.

There is a nice template here that you can use to get started with room designs.

The Ez-Architect Home & Office Library will enable you to expand Ez-Architect into an Interior Design tool without having to master the complications of 3D software.


%d bloggers like this: