In an earlier blog posting, I mentioned what's new in Autodesk Design Review 2008. In addition to the new features, there are enhancements to existing ones. One these enhancements is greater control for the Navigation Pane. The content in this blog posting is a "mutation" of the information you will find in the Autodesk Design Review 2008 help file created by Chris Blocher, Jonathan Geary, and Kim Schaefer of the Technical Publications group at our Ithaca, New York office. The Navigation Pane organizes all of the elements of a DWF file that accompany the graphics.
In particular, the Navigator Pane Toolbar is particularly handy.
The Navigator Tool Bar lets you manage all of the palettes at the same time. This is possible with 5 items (left to right):
- The Restore button undoes Navigator Pane layout changes.
- The Unrestore button redoes Navigator Pane layout changes.
- The Distribute All button equally spaces all expanded, undocked palettes.
- The Collapse All button closes all undocked palettes.
- The Navigator Pane Options button provides the ability to: select a predefined Navigator Pane layout, save a current layout as a defined layout, or restore the layout defaults. This is new, so let's expand on that.
Design Review’s palettes are dynamic in that the layout of the palettes changes automatically depending upon which tool you have selected. For example, when you Cross Section a 3D model, upon engaging the Cross Section tool the Navigator Pane is reconfigured, displaying the Contents and Cross Sections palettes. Many times we fiddle with the layout of the various panes and get them just like we want them. Autodesk Design Review lets us save these palette adjustments. In addition, it comes with 3 predefined layouts:
- Markups Layout. Opens the Contents, Markups, and Properties palettes. This layout is displayed for adding markup or dimensioning objects on the canvas.
- Cross Sections Layout. Opens the Contents and Cross Sections palettes. This layout is displayed for sectioning 3D objects.
- Animations Layout. Maximizes the Views Palette and collapses all others. This layout is used when viewing animations which, if any are present, are listed under Presentations in the Views Palette.
In addition to the Navigator Tool Bar, each palette title bar has 5 user interface elements:
- Double clicking the title bar itself expands or collapses the palette.
- expands or contracts the palette.
- maximizes the palette.
- hides the palette. It appears at the bottom as a tag .
- has functionality specify to each palette. For example, this provides access to Delete for the Markups palette. For the Layers palette, it provides access to Layer(s) ON and Layer(s) Off capabilities.
Hiding and showing a palette determines whether or not a palette is displayed in the Navigator Pane. Hiding a palette removes it from the Navigator Pane and places the palette icon in a dock at the bottom of the Navigator Pane. Unlike hiding and showing a palette, which controls whether or not a palette is accessible in the Navigator Pane, double-clicking a palette’s title bar in the Navigator Pane expands or collapses the palette. These two operations are different.
A DWF is more than just the graphics. The extra data is what allows it to go beyond the paper. Providing user control over how much or little of that data is displayed is a handy enhancement of Autodesk Design Review 2008.