Author Topic: Dimension lines like in Visio. How do I create them?  (Read 583 times)

January 24, 2019, 03:08:37 PM
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uxhamby

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I have been using Visio since 1993, before it was sold into the hands of Microsoft.

One of the features I like and use a lot is creating arrow ended dimension lines for objects, with an integral text field dynamically displaying the relevant dimension with units.

Despite a day or two of researching, I cant find a way to do this in Inkscape.

I'd like to switch over to Inkscape as my old XP machine running Visio is getting long in the tooth and I have otherwise migrated everything I do over to linux.

So, how do I create dynamically annnotated dimension lines in Inkscape?

Pls see the attached pdf of a typical Visio doc showing the sort of dimensioning lines to which I refer.

Thanks,

Brian H.

*Visio-FireBiFoldHinge.pdf
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January 24, 2019, 06:49:41 PM
Reply #1

brynn

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Welcome to the forum!

There's an external extension for drawing the arrows.  I've never used it, so I don't know if it includes the ability to add the text or not.

https://github.com/Rutzmoser/inkscape_dimensioning

Here are instructions for installing the extension:  https://inkscape.org/learn/faq/#how-install-new-extensions-palettes-document-templates-symbol-sets-icon-sets-etc   It sounds like you probably will be able to understand those instructions.  But if you need more detailed instructions, I can show you some steps that I wrote for those who are less technically inclined.  Just let me know.

I think I heard that there will be a new LPE (live path effect) for dimensioning arrows, in an upcoming new version of Inkscape.  It's possible that it's already available in the version 1.0 alpha, but I don't know that for sure.  If you'd like to try it out, let us know and we can give you a link to it. 

(Hmm, I guess I need to get around to installing the newest stable version 0.92.4.  Possibly it's even available there??)
« Last Edit: January 30, 2019, 03:28:33 PM by brynn »
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January 24, 2019, 11:11:09 PM
Reply #2

Lazur

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Hi.

There is a live path effect that can generate dimensioning which updates with the shape -haven't seen it in the current stabile but knowing it is in the development master branch, probably made it into 1.0 alpha build.

Then again, sadly you are out of luck. Since 0.924, inkscape dropped supporting win xp systems so not sure if you could install these versions.

January 25, 2019, 05:41:17 AM
Reply #3

Moini

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I'd switch to Linux in that case. Have a look at Ubuntu, Linux Mint or elementary OS, with xfce as desktop.

January 25, 2019, 10:02:06 AM
Reply #4

uxhamby

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Quote (selected)
There's an external extension for drawing the arrows.  I've never used it, so I don't know if it includes the ability to add the text or not.

I have tried that but havent got it to work yet. (I'll read the instructions you quote) Don't think it does the dynamic text though.

Quote (selected)
possible that it's already available in the version 1.0 alpha, but I don't know that for sure.  If you'd like to try it out, let us know and we can give you a link to it. 

I would like to try the version 1.0 beta please send me a d/l link. Thanks.

Quote (selected)
I'd switch to Linux in that case. Have a look at Ubuntu, Linux Mint or elementary OS, with xfce as desktop.

I have new machines running Linux Mint 19 that I am very happy with. Once I can get assurance that I can replace Visio with Inkscape, I'll pull the plug on my old XP box.

Thanks all,

Brian H.
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January 25, 2019, 01:10:34 PM
Reply #5

brynn

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January 26, 2019, 02:12:02 PM
Reply #6

uxhamby

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January 26, 2019, 05:16:36 PM
Reply #7

uxhamby

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Well I have tried out the V1.0 beta and found a set of extensions called "Visualize Path" amongst which "Measure Path is offered. Seems promising.

When I try to use it however, all the response I get is a long winded error message:


Quote (selected)
/tmp/.mount_Inksca4SxeSO/usr/share/inkscape/extensions/inkex/deprecated.py:67: DeprecationWarning: Effect.OptionParser or `optparse` is very old, it was deprecated when python 2.7 came out in 2009 and is now replaced with `argparser`. You must change `self.OptionParser.add_option` to `self.arg_parser.add_argument` the arguments are similar.
  warnings.warn(msg, DeprecationWarning)
/tmp/.mount_Inksca4SxeSO/usr/share/inkscape/extensions/inkex/deprecated.py:67: DeprecationWarning: Effect.affect is now `Effect.run()` with the same args
  warnings.warn(msg, DeprecationWarning)
Traceback (most recent call last):
  File "measure.py", line 267, in <module>
    e.affect()
  File "/tmp/.mount_Inksca4SxeSO/usr/share/inkscape/extensions/inkex/deprecated.py", line 144, in affect
    return self.run(args=args)
  File "/tmp/.mount_Inksca4SxeSO/usr/share/inkscape/extensions/inkex/base.py", line 73, in run
    ret = self.effect()
  File "measure.py", line 132, in effect
    inkex.errormsg(_("Failed to import the numpy modules. These modules are required by this extension. Please install them and try again.  On a Debian-like system this can be done with the command, sudo apt-get install python-numpy."))
NameError: global name '_' is not defined

Apparently I am missing some "numpy modules" from python.

AAAAAAAAAAARG!
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January 27, 2019, 10:01:49 AM
Reply #8

Moini

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These are three errors:

1. AppImage seems to lack numpy. Not your fault. Known issue here:
   https://gitlab.com/inkscape/inbox/issues/41

2. Extension tries to translate the error text, but can't. Due to almost all extensions being broken currently.

3. Trying this on an installed version of the alpha (not AppImage), it skips the non-translatable error message error, and gives me one about
"AttributeError: 'module' object has no attribute 'composeParents'".

So, it's broken in many ways, fixing one won't help the other, and if you cannot program in Python or package AppImage, there's nothing you can do.

January 27, 2019, 10:04:59 AM
Reply #9

Moini

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Except for using 0.92.4 for production instead. Which crashes quite frequently, though. 0.92.3 seemed more stable to me.

January 27, 2019, 10:50:10 AM
Reply #10

brynn

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You realize that "alpha" is less stable than "beta", right?  Extremely experimental version.  I thought you might already know that, so I mention it just in case.

But I thought you wanted to try 1.0 alpha to find out if the new LPE is in it?  Is it?

Measure Path is available in the current stable version (where it should be working without errors, afaik).  But it only gives you the text.  It's not the complete solution that you want.  However, there's probably a way to create a somewhat streamlined process, if you wanted to try a compromise.  For example, I'm thinking maybe a custom document template might offer some possibilities.  Or a 2 step process, with the Dimensioning extension plus Measure Path.  Or maybe other routine?

Isn't there a way, using the Measurement tool, to turn the measurement marks into objects?  I think there is.  I'm not very familiar with that tool, and find it confusing and hard to use.  But with some research, it might be possible this would work.   Fortunately there is some instructional material on it.  Find the Inkscape article in this issue of Full Circle magazine.  I haven't read this one, but it's from a very good series!   http://fullcirclemagazine.org/issue-121/

Moini, is there any beta version currently?  Or is all the new work going into 1.0 alpha?
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January 27, 2019, 11:56:58 AM
Reply #11

Lazur

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Here is the latest development built for win 64bit:

download link

It has a live path effect called "measure segments".

alpha.gif
*alpha.gif
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January 27, 2019, 03:55:56 PM
Reply #12

brynn

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Wow, that looks awesome!

Thanks for the intro, Lazur  :)
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