The Archives link lists all posts...

Civil 3D is Too Complicated

Tags WATT, alignment, alignment type, alignment direction, Alignment Style, annotation, video

In Civil 3D Land we hear this compliant all too often. I believe that it is safe to say that I have a healthy respect for the complexity of AutoCAD Civil 3D. Needless to say the Framework for Civil 3D is deep, detailed, and robust because all of that is required. This is a good capability thing in the end, but bad training news in the beginning.
In training sessions l like to put it this way,

“The Civil 3D Diva Makes Smart People Stupid.”

This impetuous and insightful statement deserves further explanation:

  • Civil 3D is production software designed to be employed by people with civil engineering and survey experience and by folks who also have model-based software skills.
    I won’t belabor it here but AutoCAD skill is sadly not model-based software skill.
    These skills are not mutually exclusive only jointly useless at times.
  • Civil 3D isn’t software designed to be easy to learn with the resources you get from Autodesk out of the box.
    This is unconscionable in my opinion, but who am I to complain.
    That fact that Autodesk leaves everyone holding the bag in that regard helps me pay the bills.

Why call Civil 3D a Diva?

Civil 3D is very much like a performance artist. Think Lady Gaga. The software requires a prepared and very detailed environment to be truly functional and successful for you. Autodesk and others tell you that you need this environment - you “need a template”. How to get there is another matter.
We simply package and deliver it. The Framework proves that is possible.

How is the Makes Important?

As CAD people we are used to making pictures. The Civil 3D Diva artist laughs at you.
Dynamic Models are always in motion and must be managed.
If you can’t sing and dance at the same time, you will be run off the stage.
Good Model-builders know we are making and managing the data behind.
Data first. Pictures Later.
A huge amount of that work is putting stuff together and managing that creatively.
You have to be able to both lay down and manage multiple tracks so to speak.
Then you have to put them all together to produce a hit.
Now you are singing her tune and you are ready for her performance.

Alignment Matters Make the Point

Where are the Smart People?

We don’t want to be one hit wonders. Autodesk talks a lot about workflow for a reason. Some say they do it to demo their new features. That’s only partly true.
You could argue workflow is a trap of their own making.
It is not.
That does not mean I endorse all of Autodesk’s published workflows. Some make me shudder.
If you have the right environment – the prepared stage, the show itself is always all about the process.
Good execution requires practiced performance under pressure.
There is no short cut to the repetitive practice of a good process.
That is a learnable skill. I call it…

Do the Do - Learn The Nuance of the Loop

The purpose of iterative design is not to keep repeating the same mistakes ad nausea. That’s how bad habits are born. Which are stupid because bad habits make us appear foolish if to no one else other than ourselves. It sadly takes creative practice and great Style Tools to see and learn from the nuance in the production loops in Civil 3D.

Now you get it - Why we call the Framework for Civil 3D

The Freedom to Work in Civil 3D

We all know freedom is never free.
But some good things around here are.

Register and get more AutoCAD CIvil 3D help and video training.