Civil 3D Trials and Suffering

Tags WATT, Civil 3D 2020, Civil 3D 2019, Civil 3D 2018

The common comment I get from new Framework for Civil 3D customers is
“I wish I done this (or found you) sooner.”

That’s kind. We’re not hiding. Almost no one looks for options until the pain, for whatever reasons, comes to their attention. Even then life’s a struggle. Most of us try to fix our problems with what we have in front of us. Makes sense. It just like the male thing joke about never stopping to ask for directions. I’d tell the story about my first trip to Fenway Park in Boston in a VW bus full of kids. We wandered around and around the ballpark (that everyone could see) until the fourth inning, but you’d just nod and laugh. Directions in Boston Southy are not English.

Bushel Baskets

How bad can that be? The people of Israel had to wander around in the Sinai for forty years until the stubborn ones all died off. Ouch. You could argue they initially asked the wrong people for directions too. Maybe God spoke a Southy dialect of ancient Hebrew.

We Moderns are no better. We sent a man to the moon 50 years ago. We didn’t manage to figure out how to put really functional wheels on suitcases until about maybe 25 years ago. Mine worked fine until they reduced the size of airplane overheads to be more efficient.

The solution to a major logistical and physical problem didn’t come out of research at Cal Tech, MIT, NASA, or DARPA for that matter. Today I’m sure that someone(s) from the Harvard Business School MBA program claims credit on Facebook.

Somewhere out there there’s a robotic suitcase that will follow you around.
There’s an app for that. It is a rule. Experts must make life more complicated.
“Honey, can you please plug in the suitcase to your laptop?” Geez.
Will this new Chinese drone find a way to eat my website?
Nah. It only wants my contact list and permission to use the laptop camera or better yet my phone.
The robot wants me to scan a QR Code in the manual, so we get our free battery charger in 6-8 weeks.

Nothing Important is Obvious Until Afterwards

I first had to memorize this quote in like 4th year Latin. I can’t recall the Roman writer who said it - which tells you something. I picture faithful, but frozen, wooly Irish monks copying this onto sheepskins for five hundred years. This brave work led to the Enlightenment for obvious reasons. Yogi Berra probably gets the credit for the quote in the New Yorker. These days I cannot be a fat lady unless you want me to be.

Most of our customers are successful engineers. They believe they can engineer anything better than anyone else. Comes with the territory. Most our new customers these days are not new to Civil 3D, but folks who have been employing Civil 3D for years. Most have multiple seats of the software. Most already have developed internal Civil 3D customized solutions. Some paid handsomely for it. All already have their own Civil 3D template(s) and Civil 3D Style library.

Tiptoe Through the Tulips

Tiny Tim’s meme can be the theme song that becomes an all too common approach to Civil 3D implementation. These folks laugh when I ask them to sing along to that famous ukulele music from the time of Woodstock. The vision of the ukulele chorus of my son, my daughter-in-law, and my grandkids (all together now) learning the song on the instrument just resonates. Somewhere over the rainbow it comes together… over me.

None of these professionals actually want to talk about how much they spent on all the trial and error. I get it. They don’t know and don’t want to know. Me too.

Lots of folks are not Framework for Civil 3D customers because of all of that. Comes with the territory.

The Framework for Civil 3D is Optionality

“Where are the wheels for my Civil 3D?”

Clearly, Civil 3D takes a great deal of tinkering to function productively for most Civil 3D users. Civil 3D is a complex and potentially fragile piece of software. As model-based software that employs abstracted named Styles and collected Sets of these Styles, successful production work and execution depends on planning and a degree of consistency of resources unlike the old school computer-aided design software. We learn this the hard way like huffing your family’s wheel-less suitcases around airports and train stations.

Funny thing is, I talked about the complexity problem back in the first Civil 3D beta. This didn’t make me a lot of friends. Silly me, I became one of the first, and today, certainly one of the most persistent, long-term Civil 3D tinkerers.

The Civil 3D Wheeled Suitcase

I am proud to be a player that fiddles and picks.
I’ve done many iterations of the Civil 3D wheeled suitcase. At times I iterate so much in so many Civil 3D versions I get the jitters. The Framework is an important idea based of demonstrable historical principals. Better options can and will produce more payback.

This is the Way the Best of the World Works

I advance these Civil 3D stranger things – That affordable, doable, and adaptive options are the most vital product requirements. Those things create real value over the long haul for those that do the work. Those that don’t and won’t find it hard to see them. The good news and bad news come with the territory.

People are more creative and productive when they have tools and resources with options and choices they can tinker with themselves. Participation matters. People are able to change a little and produce a lot more bang for the buck.

The latest versions of the Framework for Civil 3D cover all the resource details in adaptive and integrated ways.
For a limited time there is special pricing on all the versions the Framework for Civil 3D.

Innovation Beyond the Code
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