tvCAD is a direct replacement for ACNE but faster, modern, much easier to use and with more features and Support.
tvCAD will be released in October. If you want to use it before then (for free!) you need to be in the private Beta (join at the bottom of this page).
tvCAD is an alternative to ConnectCAD, VidCAD, D-Tools, Star Draw, Vector sketch etc.
How to use tvCAD: see the Help pages for a quick start.
Here are a few drawings, a cable schedule and a tvCAD project. Have a look and see how it works. How do I try tvCAD? please join the Beta at the bottom of this page.
tvCAD Version 2, sometime early next year, will be configurable to parse pretty much any CAD drawing standard and produce reports (including cable schedules) in pretty-much any format you like (as long as it’s Excel)..
tvCAD is for those who want to do their own CAD drawings (system wiring diagrams for Broadcast, IT, Production Houses, Radio Stations, AV facilities etc.) and let the computer do the boring bits like working out cable schedules, finding errors, updating off-sheets, labels etc. tvCAD regards your drawings as the main database, it doesn’t hold you ransom to a database that you can’t even see. If you take away tvCAD you still have all your drawings exactly as you made them, all of your reports, and all of your information, you will just have to do all of the boring bits yourself and find all your errors.
tvCAD is 100% compatible with ACNE drawings.
Don’t know what ACNE is? Here is the help file that explains what ACNE does. Note, ACNE has been unsupported for a long time and is no longer available.
I have been working on the idea of tvCAD since before 2007 (yes, really, that long). I personally it now and I have evolved a whole host of workflows and features in that time.
Does tvCAD need AutoCAD? Nope. You don’t even need Excel.
Does tvCAD replace AutoCAD? ah, no. You still need your CAD to draw your drawings, tvCAD is for all the boring bits you don’t want to do.
So I need SQL Server-blahblah DBadminAaahNoooo? Nope. That’s built into tvCAD. There is no Database admin, it just works. Also, you’re not locked out of your tvCAD database, you can query it to your heart’s content, if you wish to.
- for you: Knowledge Base, Blog, email, Skype, Phone, house-calls by arrangement.
- for the latest version of AutoCAD, or whatever CAD you use.
- Feature requests, bug fixes
- tvCAD.tv’s blog has a ton of unpublished blog posts queued up on all sorts tips for tvCAD and for AutoCAD, particularly the way we use AutoCAD. Coming soon to an Internet near you.
- You won’t need much in the way of training, it will “just work” but there will be plenty of help when you want it.
- Drawing List Manager
- (optionally, coming soon) watches all the drawings for changes and checks them if they change.
- tracks file moves, deletions, renames. (ok, ACNE users, all together: “YAY!”)
- quickly open drawings from the manager.
- Cable Schedules.
- coming soon(ish – depending on what you want) ..
- generate reports of what is in a rack, on a jackfield etc.
- Connectors, cable lengths…
- You have complete control over the content and formatting of any report.
- Most of the reports would be Excel XLSX spreadsheets, like everything else in the world.
- Error Manager (perhaps but not yet)
- What errors are happening in the current project. Bad cable numbers, invalid locations etc.
- Custom Rules for what constitutes an error.
- Validation rules for locations etc. Make sure they are consistent.
tvCAD has scope for time-saver plugins. Some I am working on are…
- Offsheets Manager
- You fill in (or perhaps just right-click) the cable number(s), tvCAD generates the offsheet info from your drawings.
- if you change something then tvCAD will generate the updated offsheets and, after your ok, update the connecting drawings with the new information.
- Block library manager
- create / insert / update / replace blocks in a drawing.
- Rebuild an entire block library in a different style.
- This “nice to have” will be a (near) future addition.
- Label Maker
- for jackfield labels etc. Also a “nice to have”, (near) future addition.
- You should read that again – Automatic Labels. Want? Ask!
- things that are “Pending Changes”, “as-built”, “tested”, commissioned” – a workflow engine.
- …well, whatever you want it to do, really. You’re paying for it so you get to ask for things. Those things get built for you and for what you need.
I’m sure it’s hard to picture what tvCAD is from this grocery list of some of its features but here’s what it does: tvCAD saves you time and effort (and money!) by checking your work in real time. You do the CAD, tvCAD automates the boring bits. If you can do it then tvCAD can automate it. I have a rule: once, ok, I’ll do it…twice, hmmm, didn’t I just do this…three times – automate it! The future direction of tvCAD is up to you, the user. That’s the “Support” I was talking about.
Interested? If you want to know more (including anticipated pricing), follow our progress, interested in trying the beta test version, have questions, suggestions, please drop me a line…