No drawing conversion is 100% accurate run through high-volume process alone. And yet, this is where many of our competitors sign-off. There is no magic software that can perform a
trustworthy, complete drawing conversion. Even the best software remains limited in understanding crucial details. For example, the true intrinsic composition of overlapping shape objects in a given drawing.
Automated & Hand Crafted
DCM automates what can be automated for efficiency but then each drawing conversion is manually manipulated – our hands-on touch! This hands-on human correction is essential to correct and redraw what the automation process unable to accurately convert.
We fine-tune each drawing conversion by putting it through our proprietary 8-point Quality Control. We apply drafting principles, CAD standards, and your specifications. Following your specification ensure that drawings are consistent across the conversion project and/or with your current practices.
The appointed Production Manager looks it over to make sure your drawing is complete and ready for immediate use without any compromises.
The workplace of today goes well beyond the four cubicle walls and 9 to 5 hours. The workforce of today is adapting to work where and when needed. Work is performed in the field at remote or client sites, during impromptu meetings, from home and away on the road.
With the ECHO drawing management system from DCM, your technical drawings and documents are always accessible to follow your mobile workforce where and when these resources are needed most.
The ECHO system is delivered as an Internet-based software-as-a-service (SaaS) application. The ECHO drawing management system is fully mobile and accessible anywhere an Internet connection (wired, wireless or cellular-based), is available. Whether your company provides end-user mobile devices, (such as laptops, tablets or smartphones), or has adopted a bring your own device (BYOD) mobility model, the ECHO system is ubiquitously available on any device as it only requires a standard web or mobile browser.
Using a secure and encrypted Internet connection, your entire repository of technical drawings and documents is available to your employees via the newly redesigned and seamless ECHO web-interface. Handy personalized features such as recently viewed documents, marked favorites and automatic suggestions allow for quick access to common documents. Touch-screen controls such as a simple swipe allow users to cycle through a set of drawing thumbnails. Touch to click in order to make the drawing’s title block, revision information all visible. Again, simply touch the thumbnail preview image to view the entire drawing in full screen, which allowing zooming and panning around the drawing as needed. There is no need to download the entire drawing file or any special software required to simply view the drawing on any mobile device.
Using the efficient & powerful ECHO search feature, the exact drawing can be located in seconds. Detailed document search criteria often includes client name, project number, location, wing, floor and discipline.
Mobile Drawing Access
An ECHO-based mobile drawing access solution will empower your technical workforce with valuable information where and when needed. There are numerous specific vocational use cases that demonstrate the benefit of a drawing management system across all levels of the enterprise and industries.
- Building maintenance & facilities workers access the correct building schematics & equipment manuals.
- Construction & renovation builders, and skilled trades accessing the latest architectural, building systems, services & as-built drawings.
- Equipment & mechanical service technicians accessing manuals, equipment assembly and service documents.
- Engineers & project managers accessing the latest design & engineering documents.
- Executives, Management & Sales access the latest client proposal project documents and drawings.
The latest version of our DMS system will be released later this year. In the meantime here’s a preview the great new look and some new features coming your way with the ECHO release.
In the era where “google” is both a noun and a verb in modern parlance, search technology has revolutionized the way we think, work and store data. Using just a few keystrokes, locating the desired information from within massive repository can be accomplished in just a few seconds. Seek and search times to locate work documents and records become essentially nil, and worker productivity benefits. The bar has been set for all types of information systems, from Internet Search Engines, email history, corporate file servers and document management systems.
Sadly, even with all this great technology available to us, not all organizations leverage the best of breed technology solutions to achieve efficient enterprise data search. The problems are usually exacerbated when applied to large libraries of technical files, such as drawings. The amount of identifier content text within these types of files is often very limited, so the metadata describing the file in relevant business terms becomes even more important. Here’s a couple common problems we solve for new clients who suffer from unorganized file storage and inefficient technical document search.
Windows Search – local or network file shares using Microsoft Windows File Shares offer very limited metadata & search capabilities. The common realm is pretty much limited to file content, file name, file type, modified date, location. In an attempt to overcome these limitations we often see very elaborate file folder hierarchies and endless document naming conventions. For example: FinalArchitecturals_BWing_Client-ABCInc_Project-15153_2015.04.03_ASmith_ver2.2.pdf, buried well within a directory hierarchy that is both repetitive and non-intuitive.
These structure & conventions are often time consuming to follow, impossible to enforce, very brittle and with little gain and continued waste.
Microsoft SharePoint / OneDrive – the Document Library feature of this product line does make some headway in properly treating important enterprise document as true records. Document metadata – data points such as author & version are properly dimensioned out-of-the-box within a “Document Library”. However, extending the Document Library support additional metadata dimensions, requires expensive SharePoint Administrator, Designer & Developer expertise, to customize and maintain the software solution.
The Search Secret: Drawing Management System & Data Inventory
The latest release of DCM’s software-as-a-service (SaaS) Drawing Management System (DMS) is named ECHO. As part of the process to deploy includes a implementation of a metadata inventory catalog. Common data point include: Unique ID, Document Discipline, Building Name, Project Name, Project Number, Document Status, Creation Date, Engineer/Architect, to name a few. This metadata inventory data-point database is populated upon the upload of each document or drawing into the ECHO drawing repository.
Once implemented, fully expressive pin-point accurate searches can be run using very exact document/drawing search criteria.
Drawing Search Criteria Example
- Project Number = 15153
- Discipline = Architectural
- Building Name = Atria
- Status = Final
Via the easy to use ECHO web-interface, users can readily search to find the necessary technical documents in mere seconds. Document/drawing previews are display, any all available source types are available for download (e.g. PDF or DWG source) in single-click.
Think of is a powerful search engine for technical document repository, or as we like to call it, ECHO.
“Quality means doing it right when no one is looking.” – Henry Ford
It today’s digital age there are tons of file format conversion software tools out there that will convert practically any form of digital file between any desired format. However, one key point to keep in mind is that all conversions are not created equally, especially when it comes to quality.
One measure of quality for data or image conversion is the concept of lossless and lossy conversions. As per the Wikipedia definition,
A lossy data conversion method is one where converting data between one storage format and another displays data in a form that is “close enough” to be useful, but may differ in some ways from the original.
On the other hand, a lossless conversion has zero loss of information, it’s by all practical measures a perfect copy. Is some cases, if the original version is somehow compromised in condition, quality or errors, a high quality conversion can also be restorative in nature and correct such imperfections.
How good is “close enough”?
One example that many people are familiar with is the lossy compression that often accompanies when working with or converting JPEG images. The differences in the photos below may have negligible awareness or impact depending on the purpose, but not in all cases.
In the realm of technical drawings and documents for commercial / enterprise / construction purposes, the fine details can be of significance. Automated software conversion tools have little to no quality control. The output is driven strictly by the input, and garbage in will mean garbage out. Even if the input is of reasonable quality, the barriers to go from raster, vector and fully composed 2D or 3D line/shape drawing are typically well beyond the capabilities of even the most advanced boxed software.
Without a skilled-human review and insight applied to the conversion process throughout, software tools alone are unable to evaluate to what degree the fidelity of the available information is retained and where improvements are needed to ensure not just a lossless conversion and that the output is fit for purpose.
The drawing conversion at DCM uses a proprietary 8-point quality control process to ensure that each drawing is fine-tuned. Drafting principles, CAD standards and your specifications are all taken into account. A Production Manager review the drawing to ensure its complete and ready for immediate use.
Are you proficient in AutoCAD?
Do you know how to read and interpret various types of blueprints and technical drawings?
Are you well organized, self-motivated, customer-focused and have great attention to detail?
DCM has always been at the front of technology when it comes to drawing conversion, optimization, and drawing management. It was time to update our website to showcase what we do. So….. welcome to our new site!
Maybe it’s time to clean up your paper mess and get digital files. Or maybe you’re ready to layer all of your files into one working document. Perhaps you’re at the stage where you want management software?