IntelliCAD 6

the customizing e-book by ralph grabowski


Architectural Desktop
General CADD Pro
Generic CADD 6 

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Table of Contents
-Tailoring IntelliCAD 6

About the Author
Ralph Grabowski

Sample Pages


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 Chapter 1

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 Chapter 2

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Chapter 3

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Chapter 4

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 Chapter 5

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 Chapter 6

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 Chapter 7

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 Chapter 8

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Chapter 9






















































Tailoring IntelliCAD 6 is the e-book for customizing and programming IntelliCAD 6. The 204-page e-book is available in Adobe Acrobat (PDF) format only, via email or on CD. 

This e-book is based on the popular Tailoring AutoCAD series, and is revised for IntelliCAD with this material:

  • Introduction to customizing.
  • Changing the IntelliCAD environment.
  • Aliases and keyboard shortcuts.
  • Toolbar modification and macros.
  • Menu customization and macros.
  • Custom linetypes.
  • Custom hatch patterns.
  • Custom shapes/fonts.
  • Creating complex linetypes.
  • Layer status.
  • Documentation of .txt layer status file format.
  • Writing script files.
  • Introduction to LISP programming.
  • Understanding DXF.

The book features

  • Exclusive! Export file formats (.ica, .ick, .icm., mnu) documented.
  • Comments on AutoCAD compatibility.
  • Dozens and dozens of tips.
  • Illustrations in full color.
  • Formatted for printing on standard 8.5x11 paper.
  • Margins designed for three-hole punching. 

ordering the book

To order the Tailoring IntelliCAD 6 e-book:

  • Web Download Price: Sent to you by email in Acrobat PDF format: US$20.45 (2.2MB download)
  • On CD in Acrobat PDF format: US$25.45 (incl. shipping).
  • Add US$25 for CD delivery by FedEx.

You may make payment in US$, Euro, Yen, British pounds, CDN$, and other currencies (converted to US$).

Check or Money Order

  • US funds drawn on a bank with its address in the USA.
  • Canadian funds drawn on a bank in Canada (incl. GST).
  • Euro funds drawn on a bank in ECC.
  • British funds drawn on a bank in Great Britain.

By Mail
Make cheque or money order payable to "upFront.eZine Publishing, Ltd." You may mail payment to:

      "Tailoring IntelliCAD 6"
      upFront.eZine Publishing, Ltd.
      34486 Donlyn Avenue
      Abbotsford BC
      V2S 4W7     Canada


I welcome your feedback for correcting and improving the text. Send your email to grabowski@telus.net  

table of contents


The Many Ways to Customizing. Which Customization?
The History of IntelliCAD. Visio Acquires IntelliCAD. IntelliCAD Goes Free, Sort Of. The IntelliCAD Technology Consortium.
Tips for IntelliCAD Users. User Interface. Command Bar. Changing the Prompt Text. Prompt Box. Realtime Pan and Zoom. User Interface Elements. Skill Level. Backgound Color. Drawing and Editing. Quick Changes to Properties. Copying Entities Between Drawings. Drag and Drop Launching. Drawing from the Last Entity. Previewing Blocks. On-the-fly Ortho Drawing. Special Polyline Operations. Bisecting. Exploding Objects. Arcs to Circles. Lines and Arcs. Hatch Style. Sketch Editing. Set Layer Current. Miscellaneous. Automatic Script Recording. Sources of Help.

1: customizing the environment  

Starting IntelliCAD. Command Line Options. /b Switch.
Changing Colors. Background Color. Cursor Color.
Support File Paths. Search Path Options. Drawings. Fonts. Help. Xrefs. Menus. Hatch Patterns. Blocks. Default System File Names. Log File. Template. Alternate Font. Font Mapping. Fly-over Snapping.

2: command aliases  

Shortcut Keys. Defining Shortcut Keys. Editing & Deleting Keyboard Shortcuts. Assigning Multiple Commands.
Command Aliases. Creating a New Alias. Editing & Deleting Aliases. Alias Rules.
Sharing Shortcuts. Exporting Shortcuts. Importing Shortcuts.
File Formats. Keystroke Shortcuts - .ick. nAccelKeys. Command. Accel. Aliases - .ica. nAliases. Alias. LocalCommand and GlobalCommand

3: toolbar macros  

Customizing the Toolbar Look. Rearranging Toolbars. Dragging & Moving Toolbars. Toggling the Display of Toolbars.
Creating a New Toolbar. Renaming Toolbars. Changing Button Size, Color, and Tooltips.
Writing Toolbar Macros. Simple Macros. Intermediate Macros. Toolbar Macros Are No Panacea.
Sharing Toolbars. Saving Toolbars. Importing Toolbars.
.ict File Format. General Format. Toolbar Format. ***TOOLBARS. **name. TBAR_name. _Toolbar. "titleBar". defaultPosition. defaultVisibility. xCoord and yCoord. rows. Button Format. ID_cmdName. _Button. cmdName. smallIcon. largeIcon. macro. Flyout Button Format. _Flyout. _otherIcon. TBAR_name. Help String Format. ***HELPSTRINGS. TBAR_name [name]. ID_cmdName. [helpString]

4: customizing menus  

Modifying the Menu Bar. Editing the Name. Underline - &. Dialog Box - . . .. Tab Separator - \t. New... and Ctrl+N. Editing the Macro. Cancel - ^C. Transparent - '. Internationalize - _. Enter - ;. Pause - \. Editing the Help String. Changing Options. Experience Level. MDI Window. ActiveX In-Place Activation. Checked-State and Grayed-Stated Variables. Value - &. Not - !. Context Menu Entity Availability. Miscellaneous.
Adding New Menu Items. Deleting a Menu Item.
Sharing Menus. Importing AutoCAD Menus.
Menu File Format. nMenuItems. Name. &. . . .. \t. TearOffName. Command. Cancel - ^C. Internationalize - _. Enter - ;. Pause - \. Visibility. Experience Level. MDI Window. ActiveX In-Place Activation. Other. HelpString. SubLevel. AddSpacerBefore. EntityVisibility. ChekVar. GrayVar. Value - &. Not - !

5: linetypes  

Commands Affecting Linetypes. System Variables that Affect Linetypes. The Special Case of Polylines. Compatibility with AutoCAD.
Customizing Linetypes. IntelliCAD Explorer. Editing the Linetype Definition. Deleting Linetype Definitions. At the Command Prompt. Testing the New Linetype.
Creating Linetypes with Text Editors. The Linetype Format. Line1: Header. Line 2: Data.
Complex (2D) Linetypes. Embedding a Shape. 3D Linetypes.

6: hatch patterns  

Where Do Hatch Patterns Come From?
Creating Custom Hatch Patterns.
Hatch Command. BHatch Command.
Understanding the icad.pat File. Comment and Header Lines. The Hatch Data. Tips on Creating Pattern Codes
Adding Custom Patterns to the Palette. Creating a Sample Hatch Pattern. Creating the Slide.
Hatch Pattern Samples. Standard Hatch Patterns. ISO Hatch Patterns.

7: shapes & fonts  

About Shape Files. Font Compatibility with AutoCAD.
The Shape File Format. Header Fields. Definition Lines. Vector Codes. Instruction Codes. 0/000: End of Shape. 1/001: Draw Mode. 2/002: Move Mode. 3/003: Reduced Scale. 4/004: Enlarged Scale. 5/005: Save (Push). 6/006: Recall (Pop). 7/007: Subshape. 8/008: X,y Distance. 9/009: X,y Distances. 10/00A: Octant Arc. 11/ 00B: Fractional Arc. 12/00C: Bulge Arc. 13/00D: Polyarc. 14/00E: Flag Vertical Text Flag.  

8: script files

What are Scripts? Drawbacks to Scripts. Strictly Command-Line Oriented.
Script Commands and Modifiers. Script. RScript. Resume. Delay. Special Characters. (space). ; (semi-colon), ' (apostrophe). Backspace. Esc.
Recording Scripts.

9: lisp programming

The History of LISP in IntelliCAD. Compatibility between LISP and LISP. Additional LISP Functions. Different LISP Functions. Missing LISP Functions.
The LISP Programming Language. Simple LISP: Adding Two Numbers.
LISP in Commands. Remembering the Result: setq.
LISP Function Overview. Math Functions. Geometric Functions. Distance Between Two Points. The Angle from 0 Degrees. The Intersection of Two Lines. Entity Snaps. Conditional Functions. Other Conditionals. String and Conversion Functions. Joining Strings of Text. Converting Between Text and Numbers. Other Conversion Functions. External Command Functions. Command Function Limitation. Accessing System Variables. GetXXX Functions. Selection Set Functions. Entity Manipulation Functions. Advanced LISP Functions.
Writing a Simple LISP Program. Why Write a Program? The Id Command. The Plan of Attack. Obtaining the Coordinates. Placing the Text. Putting It Together.
Adding to the Simple LISP Program. Conquering Feature Bloat. Wishlist Item #1: Naming the Program.
Wishlist Item #2: Saving the Program. Wishlist Item #3: Automatically Loading the Program. Wishlist #4: Using Car and Cdr.
Saving Data to a File. The Three Steps. Step 1: Open the File. Step 2: Write Data to the File. Step 3: Close the File.
Putting It Together. Wishlist #5: Layers. Wishlist #6: Text Style.
Tips in Using LISP. Tip #1. Use an ASCII Text Editor. Tip #2: Loading LSP Code into IntelliCAD. Tip #3: Toggling System Variables. Tip #4: Be Neat and Tidy. Tip #5: Read-Write-Append File. Tip # 6: Quotation Marks as Quotation Marks. Tip #7: Tabs and Quotation Marks.

10: Understanding DXF

References; Introduction, DWG and DXF File Formats, Miscellaneous Comments.
DXF Format, Header Section of DXF Files, Object Properties,
Group Codes, HEADER Section, Version Numbers, CLASSES Section, TABLES Section, BLOCKS Section, ENTITIES Section, OBJECTS Section, THUMBNAILIMAGE Section, EOF.

about the author

Ralph Grabowski has authored and co-authored 70+ books on CAD management, ArchiCAD, AutoCAD, Generic CADD, IntelliCAD, MicroStation, TurboCAD, VDraft, Visio, HTML, and VRML. He is the editor of two e-newsletters, upFront.eZine and IMAGINiT.eZine.

Mr Grabowski received his B.A.Sc ('80) degree in civil engineering from the University of British Columbia. He currently works and lives in the beautiful Central Fraser Valley region of British Columbia, Canada.

You can visit his Web site at www.upfrontezine.com.

opyright 2004 by upFront.eZine Publishing, Ltd. All rights reserved worldwide.