[OpenRoads SS3] Civil AccuDraw set origin

Using Geopak SS3 .722, I'm finding that when I have certain tools activated and I try to change Civil AccuDraw origin, Civil AccuDraw behaves strangely. I'll give a couple specific examples:

  1. If I have Measure Area (other than using Flood or Points methods) or Measure Angle Between Lines or Measure Length or selected, and I go to set my AccuDraw origin, I can select only areas. If I try to select a linear element, it winds up with some nonsense stationing that seems to have no meaning whatsoever. (I'm using Station-Offset.)
  2. If I have Measure Radius selected as I click to set CA origin, I can select only curved elements. If that curved element is a member of a larger, complex element, it still uses only that one segment.
  3. If I have Measure Volume selected as I click to set CA origin, I can only imagine what elements it will accept or what that will look like if it does.

I realize that this behavior may not affect most users because they're not going to be as ridiculous as I am at investigating how things work, and since I know these things now I will easily be able to work around it. (That doesn't mitigate the annoyance.)

It's clear that Civil AccuDraw's origin setting tool is somehow dependent on what the active tool can accept, and my hunch is that this is not working as designed, and indeed is irregular and (in my opinion) should be fixed.

The workflow I was doing when I discovered this strange behavior is that I was measuring areas and needed to know the station at the beginning and end of the area.

(EDIT: I mention this step of the workflow only for context: that is the task I was working on, not to suggest that I expected to find the areas using Civil AccuDraw. Other edits are to clarify that for each case I mention above, I had that tool selected as I was attempting to set the Civil AccuDraw origin.)

  • It's conceivable that this other tool would help me execute this task, but I'm not using SS4 yet.

    And of course that is irrelevant when I'm talking about setting the origin of Civil AccuDraw while I'm using a tool that expects an area element. This is the issue here.
  • So...are there any plans to modify the behavior of CA to permit it to select *any* valid element that CA could select, no matter what tool is selected? Could this functionality be listed as a request for future enhancement?


    Say I'm editing a text element, and I've already written quite a bit. I realize I need a station along an alignment. 

    Civil Accudraw is reporting station and offset on one baseline but I need the station and offset from a different baseline. I click the button to set a new origin baseline. I move the cursor over the alignment I want to use. It won't accept it. It says "Element not valid for tool" in the tooltip. 

    I'd rather not click in space to commit the changes, because there's a lot of text in the text element I was working in, and when I do finally have the station and offset, I have to relocate where I need to enter the text. (Yes, there are clever solutions to make this easier. I shouldn't need a clever solution to avoid this issue that is so obviously a bug.) But it looks like I have to. So I click in space to commit the changes to the text element's contents.

    I click to set the origin. I attempt the same thing. Same issue. So obviously it's a tool thing. 

    So now I have to do the selection tool, or a line-drawing tool, or some other tool (I don't have a complete list of what works and what doesn't). Then I click to set the origin, then click the very same alignment that I'd tried to click before. It works fine. 

    And now I have to go back to the text edit tool, find where I was editing before, and then snap to whatever I need the address for.

    Civil Accudraw should be tool agnostic. So can this be listed as a bug?

  • Pulling this back up from the depths because it has come up again.

    Civil Accudraw should be tool agnostic. So can this be listed as a bug?
  • Derek:  You really should re-read this entire thread.  You are asking for Civil Accudraw to do something for which it was never designed and to which there is not even a relationship.  Civil Accudraw does one and only one thing.  It feeds points to other commands which need a point.  It is completely and absolutely agnostic to which tool is being used. But, it is designed ONLY as an input tool, not a tracking tool. (although in some circumstances there are some tracking side effects)

    However, the tools in question must be such as requiring point input.  The measure area command using element method which you describe does not function based on any point, thus Civil Accudraw is inactive/Asleep.  It will never become active until some other command is started which needs point input.  You are wanting to use CA as a reporting tool, which is fine but it is not a continuously active since no point is being asked for.

    So, I suggest the following:

    1. Upgrade to latest versions:  All the reporting tools that you need for reporting areas are there.  Parcel report will provide the area as well as station and offset of points.  And as was previously noted, the inverse points report might also be useful.  The parcel report should exist even in SS3 and will give you a million times better results than the Microstation area command.  If you are using SS2, then CA really only exists there as a teaser for later versions.  It is not very useful at all.
    2. If you are wanting Civil Accudraw to become a tool providing continuous feedback of the cursor position (a tracking tool), then you should file the following request with Bentley.  "I want Civil Accudraw to be enhanced to have an option for providing continuous tracking feedback on the cursor position even when I am using a tool which does not require point input."  I have no idea if this will get any traction with the development team but at least the request will be out there for others to perhaps co-sponsor.
    3. It is very important when posting these questions to drill down to the heart of the need or problem.  (I know, sometimes this is difficult to figure out). For this specifically described issue your real need was: "I need an area report which also includes station and offset of some of the points"  This is doable.  See number 1.  

    Robert Garrett
    Senior Consultant