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I guess the whole (3D) engineering process is a little ways out of our
ballpark. We don't have to deal with issues regarding the logical content of
FYI: our postscript conversion technology already exists and sells. my
suggestion was to take this technology and use it for a new kind of
Bill Hall states:
> Because most illustrations are used to
> illustrate logical relations or physical aspects related to engineered
> products, changes to them are normally sourced from within the engineering
> change process and are normally first implemented in source materials from
> which the illustrations were originally distilled (i.e., 3D CAD drawings,
> etc.). After a change, these sources are then redistilled to make new
> illustrations or new photographs of the changed product.
If I read this correctly, our technology can actually be valuable as part of
this process. After changing the source designs in their original
CAD-applications, they can be "redistilled" into PostScript, creating a
robust, application-independent 2D repository of the current state of the
designs. From that repository (where everybody can view and print the
drawings), various kinds of illustrators can use our software to convert the
2D PostScript representation of the design into the native format of the
different publishing tools they use (which I listed in my previous writing).
So the workflow would be: every time engineers change the actual design,
they write a 'dumb' 2D version of that to the PostScript repository (simply
printing 'to file'). Other departments then know that that's the latest
version of the design, and use our software to get the illustrations into
their textual documents, ranging from Frame to PowerPoint to HPGL plotting
devices to the Web. All from the same PostScript source, derived directly
from the CAD-source.
In this way, PostScript creates a bridge between the engineers (no matter
what CAD-application they use) and departments who need the illustrations of
The beauty of editable vector formats such as MIF, WMF and CGM is that tech
writers can scale the drawings to perfection in their page layout without
any loss in quality. They can also edit colors, line thickness, text and
everything else, as well as take out any part of the design (either deleting
it or zooming in on it).
But anyway. Thanks for at least thinking along with me on this, and i hope
you'll agree with some of the thoughts above. I'm curious to know how some
of the established solutions deal with linking design to documentation,
considering the many different CAD applications and publishing tools used
The Graphics Connection
jeroen -at- square1 -dot- nl