There’s an elegant simplicity to Data Shortcut and Data Reference (DREF) functionality in AutoCAD Civil 3D. Autodesk just built an XML based “website”. We can call it a website because a Data Shortcut is a published link in a simple folder structure. Through that structure of links we are allowed share the fundamental model-based data that under pins all our civil engineering design and survey data.
Freedom to Make and Manage
We can put the Data Shortcuts website and the XML links almost anywhere. Civil 3D looks for that basic folder structure relative to a Working Folder location that we control. With more flexibility and freedom comes increased personal accountability for every Civil 3D user.
The mission critical Civil 3D training issue is probably not about How to do it, but about How to employ Data Shortcuts?
As you can see from this short video, how you can employ Civil 3D’s Data Shortcut basic methodologies is simple, elegant, and powerful.
Data Shortcuts and Civil 3D Data References do make our real world work easier.
They can keep us from tripping over our own feet –destroying our own work.
They can prevent us from tossing stones at the feet of others who work with us – providing out of date static data.
The odds are you missed the substitution reference (pun intended) I alluded to in the video. Since it’s an advanced Civil 3D topic, let’s just say data shortcuts can also provide and help you manage project options.
Well-constructed (NoStyles) data shortcuts can also make our project upgrades faster and easier.
All that said, there’s a bigger picture here…
Why Are Data Shortcuts Really Important?
The Managed Dynamic Model a Data Shortcuts structure creates potentially means more meaning and more value for everyone involved in any infrastructure or public works project we build or maintain.
Separate to Add Value
“Our internal graphic standards, processes, and workflows must maintain the increasingly valuable separation between the data-centric model and a specific published result.”