Saturday, January 5, 2013

An Open Post to DipTrace for Menu Enhancement

As I have stated before, I use DipTrace for most (if not all) of my PCB projects posts on this blog. The major reasons that I use DipTrace are:
  • I have a very small investment in Licenses.
  • DipTrace runs well on my Linux workstations via WINE  (I do not have access to MS system).
  • DipTrace provides one of the best High Resolution Copper Pours that I have found.
  • DipTrace's recent Updated Software has solved many of my previous grips, see my DipTrace Survival Guide post.
  • DipTrace is easy to learn and easy to promote to new users.
  • Managing your own Library of parts is easy, once you learn all of the tricks.
With the latest DipTrace Software Update, and with the press of a single button, High Quality PCB's can be ordered (it is almost too easy, especially if you order before your are actually ready?). The included BayArea Circuits PCB Manufacturing Service is not the cheapest, but they are one of the fastest available in the USA,  they claim the default is 5 days plus post delivery time (and faster if you want to pay more).

The following is my recent Enhancement Request as posted on the Yahoo Group DipTrace Forum.

Default Menu Enhancement Request

One of the most accessible menus available with DipTrace PCB Layout is the "Right Mouse Click". The Default Menu is available when nothing is selected and available virtually at any place on the entire Display screen.

But, this severely under utilized Default Menu has only has two menu items available for selection; "Paste" and "Empty Clipboard", both of which I have never used.

I would like to see the following items added to this Default Menu:

0) ESC
1) Update ALL Copper Pours
2) Edit Traces
3) Route Manual(~)
4) Auto "ReRoute" Trace
5) Mirror while Bottom selected (very useful for backside edit and viewing)
6) F10

I know some of these are available at the Keyboard, or at the top menu, but productive is LOST with each long mouse excursion or attention diversion to the keyboard.

Currently, to use DipTrace, my left hand hovers over the ESC and 1,2,3,4 keys as these key functions are almost always needed to do anything. But other keyboard activity requires diversion of attention and could be best handled via menus.

NOTE: The above menu items are only a few that I would put into a "User Defined Menu" if the function was available.

There may be other menu items that other uses would suggest for this Default Menu.

Eldon Brown

I am hopeful that we will see more Productivity, User Menus, and Library Access enhancements in the near future releases.


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