By Raphael Rodrigues, a new adherent of ZWCAD
Nowadays, touch screen technology is widely applied to all kinds of devices, such as handheld Internet tablets, mobile phones, and car navigation systems. But have you ever drafted on computer using your fingertips? Recently, I discovered a video on YouTube showing how the ZWCAD (TM) CAD system responded to touch controls; in response to someone’s fingers, it zoomed in and out, panned across the screen, made copies, and so on. You can see the video for yourself at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ho9kIOtJum0.
The video shows that ZWCAD responds quickly to finger touches and drags. It was so amazing that I decided to download ZWCAD 2010 and gave it a try.
To my delight, I found on the ZWCAD website a no-charge demo version of ZWCAD 2010 in the Portuguese (Brazil) language. To a Portuguese-speaking CAD user like me, Portuguese menus, toolbar tooltips, and command prompts provide a more comfortable drawing environment.
The ZWCAD website indicates that the in-place MTEXT editor is the biggest enhancement in ZWCAD 2010. I decided to try it out, and in doing so I found the in-place editor to be very user-friendly, because it has the same functions as does AutoCAD®. Let me summarize the benefits one by one:
1. The text in the MTEXT dialog box looks identical to the resulting text in the drawing.
You are not supposed to experience abrupt situations such as this one: after you finish text editing and click the OK button, you find that the text in the drawing turns out to be too small or too big. ZWCAD displays text in the editor at the same size as it will appear in the drawing.
If you find the text in the dialog box too small or not in the right position, just use ZWCAD’s real-time zoom and pan controls to get the right view (roll the mouse’s wheel to zoom in or out; drag the mouse to pan). ZWCAD’s new in-place MTEXT editor fits the text to the drawing easily.
Furthermore, the special symbol displays its shape in the text editor’s dialog box. For example when you enter ‘%%d’, the degrees symbol displays immediately.
2. Edit the text just like in the Microsoft Word application.
The new editor has additional features for adjusting text and paragraphs, such as multiple justification modes, various line spacing settings, adjustable tracking, and unlimited width factors. When you paste text copied from Microsoft Word, ZWCAD’s MTEXT editor keeps the original formatting.
You may find it inconvenient to edit text in 3D views, such as SW isometric view, because the text editor and its text also maintain the SW angle. ZWCAD takes this into consideration by setting the Mtextfixed variable to 2. This forces the text to display horizontally, with a readable size, so that you can read and edit it more easily.
Another point of consideration is that ZWCAD asks whether to save your text changes when you press ESC while editing text in the text box. Careless users may appreciate this!
So far in my testing of ZWCAD, I have found that it is convenient and easy to use. In the future, I will have more experiences to relate to you.