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OCAD 11. File | Import : Journal #4

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OCAD 11 multiple file import

OCAD 11 provides multi file import for Shape, DXF, GPX, NMEA and XYZ formats.

Import multi Shape files - screen snip
Importing multi Shape files

I tried it with Shape files (Professional version of OCAD 11) and it worked well. If, like me, you often use Shape files to create base maps then you will find this a time saver.

Selection of files is by Windows conventions of SHIFT to select a range of adjacent files and CTRL to select disparate files. However! The files you import must share the same field names for selection of unique key and layer information.

The screen snip shows the result of selecting an area hydro file and a line hydro file. The layers column contains the relevant entity names and OCAD symbols can be applied to the right of each entity for automatic translation.

I could not evaluate the co-ordinate system transformation function as issues arose that I have reported to OCAD.

Import PDF and save layer reference file

PDF convert layers screen snip
PDF convert layers

Dead simple, efficient and worked well.

However! The VicMap PDF I tested, generated a CRT (layer-symbol cross reference) file comprising a long list of layers named by number rather than descriptiion thus was unworkable – not the fault of OCAD. If your supplied PDF does have more relevant layer names, then the facility to select an appropriate symbol for each layer appears to work just fine.

It gets even better if you regularly import PDFs that have the same layer structure. The first PDF you process creates a CRT file that can be saved and reused to process later PDFs. So name those CRT files meaningfully.

 

 

Import OCAD file with colours to top of Colour Table

What a great option. Recently I have been importing a new symbol set with associated colours, into older files. Often the colours for those symbols are not in the correct place in the symbol table to enable the symbol to show. So now, when I test out those symbols by opting to place colours at top of the colour table, I can be sure they will show up on the screen as they are no longer subservient to existing colours.

In case you are not aware, the order of colours in the colour table defines the order in which they are printed. The top colour in the table is printed last (in offset printing and simulated so in digital printing) thus rests on top of any colour below it. Unless you have ‘overprint‘ ticked for a colour, OCAD does not generate lower sequenced colours using the same space.

If you intend using the new symbols but marry them to existing colours, then once you have checked out the symbol shapes and sizes on your map, the redundant colours are easily found for deletion at the top of the table.

Import Freehand files

I won’t be testing Freehand as I am not familiar with it. However you can read the process in one of OCAD’s FAQs .

Next up

View functionality.

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OCAD 11 File | Print : Journal #3

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OCAD 11 improved dialogue

At first sight it looks like new functionality has been added. But closer inspection shows the OCAD 11 layout design has again been improved and is certainly clearer.File Print screen snip

Entire Map now has the option to move an oversize map in relation to the print boundary in order to select what part you wish to print. And the Options are now displayed in the dialogue thus obviating a click.

Rescaling can be dangerous

Referring to the Help file for this function I noticed a welcome addition. Scaling now explicitly states that the map and all symbols will be scaled if you choose a print scale different to the map scale. I have seen one glaring example of this wrongly applied and the producer was unaware how it occurred.

A rule is that a 1:10,000 scale map is a strict enlargement of a 1:15,000 scale. So using File | Print rescaling to get there seems OK. But on the Orienteering Australia list of recent map deviations was North lines not at the correct spacing on a 1:10,000 scale map – often results when a 1:15,000 scale map is printed at 1:10,000; lines should lie between 20 mm and 40 mm on the map.

Rule of thumb

Map printing often appears to be last minute and therefore rushed (as the organisers of a recent event admitted when advising of 3 corrections to marked courses). Therefore, I suggest that unless you are one of those rare persons who is absolutely punctilious and totally aware of what is required, then you consider this practice.

For the event print, do not rescale in the print or PDF export functions.

The safest way to rescale for printing is to rescale the OCAD map (or a copy of it) using Map | Change scale in both OCAD 10 and OCAD 11. That prompts you to rescale symbols, or not,  in accordance with IOF rules. And having the map on screen in front of you might just prompt you to consider whether north line separation needs changed. Better still, use a check list — you will find one soon on our Resources page.

Next Up

File | Import | Shape, PDF, OCAD

 

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File | Send file by email : OCAD 11 Journal #2

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Club mappers rejoice

Without exiting OCAD 11, you can in this single dialogue, package up your map along with these optional items;

  • background maps
  • layout layer (great new feature in OCAD 11)
  • databases (professional version)
  • Digital Elevation Model (professional version).

Screen snip: dialogue for Send file by email

When you send, the package is zipped up to reduce bandwidth and transmission time. So if you are co-operating on a map then it becomes so much easier and more error proof.

Connection to your email

The connection to your email system relies on some standards and some conventions.

I found that connecting to my web based email did not work despite having a SendMail file association in place which works with other apps. OCAD AG is investigating.

The OCAD wiki on the topic.

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File |New : OCAD 11 Journal #1

A lot to like

Check out the screen snip (click it for a larger view in a separate tab) and I rather think you will agree. OCAD 11 has this process much clearer with less clicks.

Display File | New dialogues 10 and 11
File | New dialogues

There is an enlarged choice of map types. The corresponding choice of symbol sets is shown in the same dialogue. The Map notes: panel name now corresponds to the naming of that tab in Map | Map Information. The default symbol set location saves looking that up on the odd occasion.

Enhanced usability

So seemingly nothing major. A related set of information presented in one dialogue. And its a double whammy because we are saved a click or three. But the portent is good because if this is typical of enhanced usability then using OCAD 11 is definitely going to be faster, easier and smoother. We will find out for sure in the next weeks.

 Next up

File | Send file by email.

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OCAD 11 Journal of Exploration

Ken’s foray into OCAD 11

This diary relates my experiences in exploring the features and functions listed by OCAD AG as new or revised in version 11. I expect to navigate to, and inspect, 1-2 features a week minimum.  While generally I will be heading through the Renewals List in sequence, I will bypass items that I don’t use and that I think few orienteering or trail mappers will use. Generally I will be comparing to OCAD 10 and often will display OCAD 10 and OCAD 11 screen snips side by side.Earth from space

When I find issues, as in the first post coming up, I report those to OCAD AG. When the solution is provided, whether my mis-understanding, a fix or their placement on the OCAD 11 to do list or wish list, then that will be reported.

Your comments

If you have OCAD 11 knowledge on a post that is useful to other orienteering mappers, please do comment. Your comment may not appear immediately as it will be moderated. If you would like to be a guest journaller, then contact me.

Keep fresh

Why sweat over missing a post or five? Take the RSS feed at top right of this page or follow the top right sidebar to have those feeds emailed each day that a new post appears. The email version enables you to select just OCAD 11 Journal posts if you so wish.

Something you want to see soon

If there is an OCAD 11 function that you would like to have explored earlier than it appears in the list, then do let me know via Feedback on the website.