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    Zoom Extents

    By bryan boyer
    Apr 29, '06 6:48 AM EST

    I'm interetsed in how the UI in various programs informs our way of seeing. People often lament the 'lack of scale' in autocad and rhino-- a symptom of the ease with which one can zoom in and out-- but I think it's just a new way of thinking about the relationship between 2d and 3d, scale and detail. Sometimes when zooming from a detail at the scale of a door to a view of the whole building I like to imagine actually experiencing that journey-- how many Gs would you pull when flying way up in the air like that? How high would you be?

    One also tends to have bits and scraps of drawing strewn across the digital ground. The frenzy of creative production that used to be measured in rolls of trace may now be analyzed by zooming extents. What lays at the fringes of your drawings? Half drawn sections, fragmented plans, a stock of furniture, maybe even entirely abandoned schemes? Details? Reminders and to-do lists?

    So here's a little experiment: If you use rhino stop reading this and go to whichever file you have open (because I know you're reading this when you should be working), save it (safety first), select everything, and then type "boundingbox" and hit enter. It will compute for a while and then draw a box around your entire drawing, all the bits and pieces and abandoned projects you have all over the place. Measure the bounding box and place the results here. I'm currently working with something like 3238'x4222' of drawing. That's about half of a square mile or 1.3 square kilometers.


    • siggers

      On some of my drawings for previous practices, I've drawn huge monsters devouring the drawing in model space, (at the scale of a town I suppose)

      Of course they don't appear on the actual 'paper' drawings, although I did hear from a friend of a friend that they had discovered one of these creatures recently, hehe, they were a boring bunch, hopefully it will have brightened up their day!

      Apr 29, 06 9:03 am  · 
      bryan boyer

      signum- do you have any of those still? post an image!

      Apr 29, 06 9:13 am  · 

      hehe, unfortunately I don't - I only keep a copy of drawings I do if I think they're valuable somehow, which at that time didn't include km-sized monsters devouring supermarket site plans ;-)

      Apr 29, 06 3:57 pm  · 

      fringes? half drawn sections, for sure...scale figures - they make my CD's happier....a stack of options for how to depict a particular stair in elevation....

      Apr 30, 06 7:55 pm  · 

      what are CD's? not compact discs?

      May 1, 06 7:13 am  · 
      bryan boyer

      construction docs....

      May 1, 06 7:16 am  · 

      I'm assuming this is an American term, cos I'vew never heard it!

      May 1, 06 8:06 am  · 

      over the weekend my extents were trimmed!
      I opened up some drawings this morning and discovered they were cleaned up, with some extent-fragments placed in a new "trash" file.

      and signum, what do you call Construction Documents (ie - the drawings etc. that communicate to the contractors how to build the building)?

      May 1, 06 9:09 am  · 

      (I figured, with all of this international outsourcing of CD's etc. that the term was international, or at least had become so...)

      May 1, 06 9:10 am  · 

      1987'(x) 3294'(y) 605'(z)

      May 1, 06 8:11 pm  · 
      liberty bell

      Hmmm, my little rowhouse addition drawing only takes up 450'x250'. And I use a LOT of little drawing fragments plus a chart of all my dimension styles tucked way up in one corner.

      Guess I'm being more discreet and organized than I thought!

      May 1, 06 10:52 pm  · 

      17,352' (x) 19,151 (y) 663' (z). I think that is roughly the size of Luxembourg.

      May 6, 06 4:29 am  · 

      19, 151', that is.

      May 6, 06 4:30 am  · 

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