The most important piece of functionality that has been added to AutoCAD WS for the release of AutoCAD WS 1.5 is the new Design Feed. The Design Feed adds a new dimension to the process of design introducing a mechanism for capturing context-specific posts that enable and encourage both real-time and asynchronous collaboration.
The Design Feed has also been added to the web version of AutoCAD WS.
In addition to the Design Feed this update introduces the Add Photo function.
Design Feed – Important Terminology
Every distinct entry in the Design Feed is called a “post”. Each post can either be an original standalone “parent post” or it can be a response to a parent post which will appear in a thread below the parent post to which it responds.
Creating a Post
To create a new post Design Feed button to open the Design Feed and tap again in the text box or one of the other functions (Link, Attach Image). If you’re working on a smartphone, there will be an additional “New Post” button.
Associating your post with specific elements in the drawing
There are three types of post you can make:
- Standalone post
- Post to a point – select a position in the drawing and attach your post to that point
- Post to an area – define a rectangular area on your drawing and attach your post to that area
Features of your post
In order for your post to be committed to the drawing it must include either text or an attached image. Until one of these criteria has been met the Post button will either not appear or it will be greyed out.
Text may be as little as a single character or a complete essay. Tapping in the text box will call up your mobile devices keypad and allow you to enter free text.
There are two kinds of link you can make for a post in your drawing.
Point – Tap the Link to Point button and select a point anywhere on your drawing to associate the post with that point.
Area – Tap the Link to Area button and then select a rectangular area on your drawing either by tapping twice on opposite corners of the area or by tapping and dragging the area you wish to define.
Links can only be associated with parent posts.
Tap the Attach Image icon to begin the process of attaching an image to a parent post. You will have the option of selecting an image already stored on your mobile device or using your device’s camera function to take a new picture and attach that.
You can attach up to three images to each post.
Once you commit the post by tapping the Post button, the attached images will be uploaded to your AutoCAD WS online account and associated with the post in your drawing.
A thumbnail of each attached image will appear as part of the post in the Design Feed. Users can download a copy of the image to their device.
This is the list of image file types that you can attach to a post in the Design Feed:
Tap the Tag button to tag colleagues and clients in your post. Currently, tagging is enabled for parent posts only.
- Select a contact name from the list of people with whom the file has already been shared.
- To tag some new, tap Add People.. to open up the share dialog where you can enter one or more email addresses of the people you wish to tag. You can also retrieve email addresses from your device’s contacts. Tap the Share button to tag these users on your post.
When you tap the Post button, all the people tagged in the post will receive an email explaining that the drawing has been shared with them and that a post has been created in which they are tagged. The email will also contain a link that will open the drawing directly into AutoCAD WS.
Managing a Post
Reply to Post
Anyone with whom a drawing has been shared may reply to a post. Simply tap the Reply button to enter text.
You cannot associate a reply with a point or area.
The Resolve button sits at the parent level of a post thread. when you tap the Resolve button the post will be considered closed and will be hidden from the Design Feed. You can view resolved posts by selecting the appropriate function from the Settings menu.
For now the Delete post option is available in iOS only and in the web version of AutoCAD WS. Only the originator of a post may delete a post. Currently Delete can only be applied to a parent post. When you delete a post it removes the post and all replies.
The Delete option remains hidden until called up by the user:
- In iOS: Swipe the post to show the Delete button.
- In Android: No Delete function currently.
Currently there is no way to edit an existing post.
Design Feed Settings
Call up the Design Feed Settings by tapping the Settings button in the upper right corner of the feed.
The user can choose whether or not to show all the resolved posts (and their post threads) in the Drawing Feed and on the canvas.
Showing Posts on the drawing
There are three settings for the way posts are displayed on the canvas.
When you select Hide Posts, no posts will appear on the canvas. If you select a post in the Design Feed that corresponds to a point or area on the canvas the canvas will center on the extended post and reveal the point or area it is attached to.
This is the default setting. All posts will appear on the canvas with their identification number. selecting a particular post on the canvas will expand its preview.
Show Post Previews
All posts on the canvas will be expanded to show their post previews including details of the person who created the post and a preview of the text.
You can now insert an image into any drawing in your AutoCAD WS online account. Simply tap the Attach Image button to decide whether you want to capture a new image with your device’s camera or upload one from your device’s photo archive.
Once an image is inserted into your drawing it can be duplicated, resized, rotated and moved until it occupies the position you want.