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Re1: On-Line Collaboration -

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Dear Mr. Dennis,

First I would like to apologize about my English, my native language is 
Portuguese here in Brazil.

Yes, it is possible to be done and we are working to do it but, we have a 
long way before get good results.

(1) We have a central site on internet that many constructions companies 
has an account (  in Portuguese) . Each 
Client (construction company) can open many Projects inside their accunt. 
Each Client can register many project companies or individual consultant 
in their area (Users). This project company or consultant can be registered 
in another Client too. The Cliente will give the hability for each User to 
access the system (download and / or Upload) only in the projects that they 
are working. Each User has a 'level' (Structural, Architect, Hidraulic, 
etc) and could be registered to access your own level and others levels too 
(structural can access Architceture and Hidraulic - example).
When a User (project companie) send a new file to a project area of a 
Client, the system will send an eMail to all users registered in this 
project with message about a new file is available with the comments about 
this file.
Ok, first steep is running ! we have a central (dataWarehouse) to storage 
files and document it.

(2) This second steep is were I am working now and the most difficult to be 
solve. I would like to introduce on this system, a service like a 'chat 
drawing' were each one that are connect in this service will be a drawing.
This drawings have to be a normalization.
Scale, layer names, one fixed point by coord x,y, etc.
This drawing have to be save on DWF format (Drawing Web Format)

Why this steep is the 'bad' steep ?
Because we create the system not for one company but for many companies 
that would like to utilize it.  The problem here in Brazil is that each 
construction company has a different padronization of drawing, most of then 
(small companies) do not have padronization. The project companies do not 
understand that a 'drawing file' is not a file to be 'plotted' , there is a 
lot of information inside of the drawing. This file is not a drawing, it 
is a project.  When I start this work, 3 years ago, I wrote a 
document with the title 'CAD  Draw x Project' (look at .  The main propouse of this 
document were explain that the CAD files should be done to be read and not 
only to be 'plotted' . We have to define a normalization of layers, scale, 
etc that specific softwares like 'Structural Softwares' can read this files 
and get information (not visual) there.  We have it runnig in our 
structural software.

(3) The last steep, we are developing a CGI program to run on this service 
that will create a 'chat drawing room'.  Each one that enter on this room 
will point a drawing that is storage in the Client area (1) and everione 
has the hability to this project.  If you update your drawing in a storage 
area, the system automaticaly reload and redraw the selected layers of all 
drawings on the room.

How is the great advantage of the system ?
This syetam have FTP and HTTP codes.  You will send (UpLoad) files to an 
FTP temporary area and, register the file sent on the system by HTTP 
(site), internet address. When you register it, working in a GCI 
program, the system has the hability to send eMails and update registers 
about Project, users and Client.

I hope give you an ideia about our procedure.

Best regards

Marcelo P. Picarelli

> I found this interesting website - which is a project
> collaboration site supported by AutoDesk but a privately owned business.
> The purpose is to provide an online intranet so that members of a project
> team can work off the same drawings which remain available online.
> I am not very clear on this, but the concept is great. My main question
> is why a company large enough to have Internet capabilities use a service
> such as this rather than set up their own company website with private
> access.
> I would like to hear from others who are working with clients over the
> Internet in order to learn how they coordinate and participate in the
> work.
> Mostly, I'm interested in understanding how work is constantly updated
> and how each participant is notified of changes that are made which may
> affect the work of others.
> Regards,
> Dennis S. Wish, PE
> Structural Engineering Consultant
> (208) 361-5447 E-Fax

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