Let us observe on May 25th

Towel Day!

Towel Day :: A tribute to Douglas Adams (1952-2001)

Don't Panic! Just join many around the world in celebrating the life and literary art of one hoopy frood, Douglas Adams. I'm sure not everyone fully appreciates the linguistic gymnastics performed by this verbal olympian, but, he is an entertaining writer who plays wildly with his words... which amuses some of us endlessly.

I've been a fan since my harley-riding computer-geek uncle gave me the first of the six books in the Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy trilogy. I've since obtained the books in hardback as well as the original cheesy movie on vhs. I somewhat enjoyed the newer version of the movie, but, it doesn't quite do justice to his written words.

So, grab your towel and show your support for the late Douglas Adams.

So long, and thanks for all the fish. :-)


Happy Birthday, Dear Hubby!

WAKE UP! It's your Birthday!

Yep, DH turns another year older today. He blames the gray hairs on me, I tell him it's just his advanced age.

Join with me as I wish my wonderful husband a wonderful day!

Happy Birthday, Darling!


Two Free Apps I couldn't work without

I know it's not CAD, but, there are other programs that we need to make it through our days.

My husband
is always checking out new applications... sometimes installing them on my pc when I'm not looking and making me an unwitting guinea pig.
BUT! at work, where I am the only one choosing programs for my pc, I keep these two old favorites that he recommended to me awhile ago.

Gadwin Printscreen -
Options! There are options! (but, not too many! like some applications)
You can hit printscreen, select your area, hit enter... and you're done! You've set up a directory and these screenshots are sent right there, naming themselves in a sequence. If you're working along, you can quickly capture each step, and collect the images later.

Before Gadwin, I'd Prnt Scrn, open my photo editor, paste as new image, make selection, choose crop to selection, then save. WAY too many steps there.

Try out this freebie, I think you'll like it (if not, check out the hyperlink in the second paragraph of this post, to a BLAUG entry by my Dear Hubby and see what else he mentions).

Ditto clipboard extension -
You can copy multiple bits of text, etc at a time, and paste to your heart's content. There are a million ways that I use this at work and at home.

One that sticks out in my brain is the AUGI Annual Salary Survey. I calculate those numbers using excel. There are just reams and reams and reams of data, I've got some formulas that count up/average out/total, etc. But, those just aren't very pretty spreadsheets to look at, so I use simple forms to report the results that are posted on the website. I used to copy, switch files, paste, switch back, copy, switch files, paste, etc, etc, etc. UG! That took forever. Now, I can just go through and grab each result I need and paste them in as I need them.

Another thing would be answering questions in discussion groups... you find a few websites that could help and copy the URL's and perhaps a snippet of pertinent information (applicable text, or a knowledge base ID number for when someone does a site redesign, invalidating your URL's). Take everything you need from one page and paste, paste, paste the information much more quickly.

I hope you find these great FREE applications as handy as I do. I appreciate all of the work that developers put into these freebies for all of us to benefit from.

Oh, another cool freebie that I was just using today; this one is a lisp routine from Dotsoft's FREE STUFF page which "Exports TEXT objects to an ASCII file in the order they are selected."


National BIM Conference

Saw a notification about it today through a CADalyst magazine email...
The conference is being held May 15th through 17th in Anaheim, CA. Looks like registration is under $600.

It is sponsored by National Institute of Building Sciences, Facilities Information Council, National BIM Standard, AECnews and CADalyst; the site for the event is www.bimconference.com

I'm not exactly sure what the AEC-ST exhibit is, but with the description in the CADalyst announcement makes it sound like it's something that would affect FMers:
"The National BIM Conference is part of AEC-ST - the only event addressing the IT needs of the entire facilities and construction team and covering the entire lifecycle of the built environment. AEC-ST is co-located with Ecobuild America which covers green and sustainable building. For more information on AEC-ST, visit http://www.aecst.com."

I'd love to hear from anyone who attends. What type of 'now' and 'future' projects others are doing, recommended resources, etc.

For the past two years at my Facility and Corporate 'Planning Conference', I've presented briefly on BIM as applied to our field (Facilities and MEP design planning, building, maintenance) to plant the idea in the heads of the executives and get them to start thinking about it as momentum grows with BIM adoption and education.

This year I won't be formally presenting, but, I believe I'll be speaking at least a little on CAFM again, as I've just gotten approval to roll out a pilot program for a small portion of my facility with the FMDesktop suite.
I've turned over a list of the information I intend to gather over the next few months.

I'm waiting for a purchase order number and then I will be ready to roll. I know that the FMD install is pretty simple already, and I can't wait to actually have 'work' time to fully explore it. I really hope there are some hands-on classes at Autodesk University 2007 for FM Desktop/Facility Manager/Facility Web, etc. I had some good FMDesktop classes last year, but, they were all lecture courses, and I learn better with my hands than with my ears. ;)

Wish me luck as I break some new ground, moving from CADD Coordinator to CAFM Technician (well, in skills only, not like my job or pay is actually changing, I'm honestly wondering how the !*$% I'm going to squeeze this work in with my normal duties :-o)