OrthoGraph Survey F.A.Q.

Does the software support any distance recording tool other than Leica?
Since the system communicates with the distance recorder through a standard Bluetooth connection, the system has the potential to support distance recorders of any brand. Currently, however, the support exists only for Leica Disto A6, Leica D3a BT, and Disto D8 devices because they are the ones with the extra function that allows the survey to be controlled simply with the distance recorder. During the survey, the PDA operates as an extended display, while the measurements are conducted with the distance recorder.

How is the surveyed ground-plan displayed in AutoCAD?
Also, the findings of the survey can be saved in standard "DWG" format, which can be displayed and edited in AutoCAD. If data about the height are given, the findings of the survey are entered into the AutoCAD as a 3D model, and if no height information is specified, as a 2D ground-plan.

Can OrthoGraph be used for on-site area measurement?
Following the assessment of the parameters, you need only to push a button and the device displays the exact floor-space and perimeter of the given area. The more accurate the assessment of the parameters, the more accurate the area of measurement. With the help of its built-in automatic measurement function, the software provides you with very accurate information about the floor-space and the perimeters right on the site.

How can large areas and complicated facilities be surveyed on the small screen of PDA?
OrthoGraph Survey has adaptive and manual magnifying (zoom) function; in other words, by the push of a button, the image is scaled to the size of the screen and any desired area can be zoomed in on. With the help of this function, the image of the entire area to be surveyed can be displayed, while also focusing in on any detail of the drawing. In any given moment during both drawing and surveying, the device focuses on a certain part of the drawing. The software is designed to intelligently display the important details of the drawing with precise clarity.
Transparency is supported also by the use of ghost layering. This means that in basic operation mode, drawing in a given moment takes place within a certain area, and this particular area is displayed by the system. In certain work phases, however, it is desirable to see the environment of a particular area to be able to adjust the current drawing. With the help of the ghost layering, the areas that have already been drawn can easily be displayed as background to the current surveying phase. In addition to being displayed, the ghost layers can also be used for the assessment and definition of points that are currently being drawn and surveyed in relation to certain points in the areas in the already existing drawings.

Can the OrthoGraph be used only on PDAs or on Tablet PCs also?
When developing the OrthoGraph, our priority was mobility, along with simple and reliable usage. For on-site work, we wanted to devise the smallest surveying tools possible for drawing and data recording, and those tools are PDAs. Water-, shock and dust-proof cases are widely available for them as accessories, and they ensure safety for the tools during on-site work. Each function of the software has been developed to fit the small size of PDAs, which ensures optimum work. In its current design, the OrthoGraph surveying component only runs on PDAs (and Windows mobile based devices) and not on Tablet PCs. Currently, we are developing our software to be compatible with tablet PCs as well at Macitosh operating systems.

What kind of bar code scanner can be connected to OrthoGraph?
The OrthoGraph PDA ground-plan surveying and storing software line enables the use of any bar code scanner that connects to the PDA and provides standard serial communication. Due to their easy handling, we recommend models with Bluetooth connection or ones that are built-in. Good examples for the latter are several models of the Symbol product line.

Can I make cross-sectional images with the software in addition to ground-plan surveying?
Yes, the drawing and surveying functions of the software can be used for the drawing of not only ground-plans but also sectional and other structured images. By means of the universal "Zone" feature, any physical structural element can be assigned by cross-sectional drawings. With the help of the hierarchic drawing levels, you can choose how detailed the images should be. A template file can be created in OrthoGraph ProjectManager in a way that enables the selection of a zone called "section" with any level at which a sectional image is to be recorded during thesurvey.

Can I make a front view image with the software in addition to the ground-plan surveying?
Yes, the drawing and surveying functions of the software can be used for the drawing of not only ground-plans but also front view and other structured images. By means of the universal "Zone" feature, any physical structural element can be attached by other individual drawings. With the help of the hierarchic drawing levels, you can choose how detailed the images should be. A template file can be created in OrthoGraph's ProjectManager in a way that enables the selection of a zone called "front view" with any level at which a front view image is to be recorded during survey.

Can I record the surveyed information in three dimensions?
During survey, the recorded data of the ground-plan can be increased by information about height and section (see the appropriate FAQ answers). During the export of the survey, the data can be transferred to architectural CAD systems, which can make 3D models from the available information. If the height information is also provided during the measurement, the standard DWG graphic output is saved as a 3D model.

Can I assess the internal height of spaces?
Yes, there are several options. If the area is simple and the internal height and height of the floor level are constant, they can be easily recorded on the data sheet of the area. In fact, the built-in template contains these data. In the event of areas with a more complex layout, the zones assigned to the various internal heights have to be recorded, and the zones can be assigned by individual internal height and floor level height. If a 3D image is to be produced of an even more complex layout, each wall section can be assigned by the height parameter, and that enables a considerably more detailed 3D assessment. If the height of a wall section is not constant or sectional drawings of the wall finishing materials are to be prepared, it can be done easily by means of so-called "spread-out" drawings. For information about these, please see the FAQ reply on sectional drawings.

Is the inventory sheet to be printed from the PC of the PDA?
The inventory sheet compiled as a result of the survey is created by the OrthoGraph ProjectManager application which runs on PC. A customized inventory sheet can be printed directly from the application, and can also be stored in PDF format for later usage.

Does the software support Bluetooth printer?
The printing functions are provided by the OrthoGraph ProjectManager software. Printing directly from the OrthoGraph PDA software is not supported.

In addition to the metric system, does the software support non-metric units of measurement?
At present, the OrthoGraph software only supports the metric system of measurement. The prepared surveys, however, through the DWG outlet, can easily be used in CAD software, where the data entry takes place according to scale, and the data are then available even in non-metric units of measurement.

How do I connect Leica Disto to the OrthoGraph system?
Section 3.4 of the user's manual includes a detailed description of the connection.

I received an error message: "OrthoGraph DwgExport Add-On has been expired".
This error message is displayed when the license of a previously installed valid ".dwg" export module expires. It can occur also when a demo system downloaded from the internet is activated with a new license. Please contact your OrthoGraph sales representative or our customer service department.

Can I use the system for land measuring?
The system stores all survey information with three decimal accuracy, and thus ensures accurate handling of the data. If the creation of 2D models suffices, the system can be used for land measurement. However, when detailed 3D models are to be produced, we do not recommend the use of the OrthoGraph software for land measurement.

Why are PDAs better than Tablet PCs for surveys and inventories?
OrthoGraph Survey and OrthoGraph Inventory software runs on PDA. During the development of the software, portability and simple on-site work were our priorities, which are supported by PDAs more than by Tablet PCs, due to their nature. Tablet PCs are, in effect, conventional laptops with touch-screen displays, whose advantage of greater capacity is outweighed by the pronounced disadvantages of being less mobile, sensitivity to shaking, contamination, dust and dampness, shorter usage when the laptop runs on battery power, and considerably higher prices. If other equipment is to be used (laser distance recorder or bar code scanner), a Tablet PC leaves virtually no hand for holding the other equipment, and has to be put down near the point to be surveyed.

What type of bar code scanner does the system support?
The OrthoGraph PDA-based ground-plan surveying and inventory software line supports the use of any bar code scanner that connects to the PDA and provides standard serial connection. Due to their easy handling, we recommend models that have Bluetooth connection or are built-in. Good examples of the latter are several models of the Symbol product line.

My laser distancemeter does not have Bluetooth support. How can I use it?
The purpose of laser distancemeters is to simply and accurately measure distances during surveys. With the help of the Bluetooth support, the data surveyed can be recorded in the software in one simple step. Switching between the survey information can also be controlled from the supported models. If the distance recorder does not have a Bluetooth connection, we only lose this advantage, as the data can still be entered manually into OrthoGraph. The survey will be just as accurate as with the help of the supported models.

What are type, key, mandatory, and fixed list fields?
Type, key, and mandatory fields are special types of the data entry fields included in the data sheets of areas (buildings and building parts, collectively referred to as physical structural elements), and objects. They help ensure the entry of data in the appropriate format: " " Type fields include numbers, texts, photos and marking squares. " Key fields include bar codes, which enable the accurate identification of individual elements. " The mandatory fields ensure that no important information is missed during the data gathering. " Fixed list fields provide a pre-determined set of values; for example, good, medium and poor. They accelerate data entry and the values can be standardized, which considerably facilitates subsequent data analysis. The above data types largely accelerate data entry, while the quality of the recorded data far surpasses that of paper-based data entry.

What are fixed lists?
Fixed lists help make the survey more uniform and faster. When data to be assessed can only represent any of a set of given values (for example, wall finishing materials, condition, color, manufacturer, owner, etc.), those values can be pre-defined and the value lists thus devised can be assigned to data entry fields. During the survey, the surveyor has to choose from the pre-defined list, which accelerates the process and also eliminates typing errors, along with multiple references to a single item. Direct data connection interfaces often enables the automated compilation of fixed lists from financial or facility management systems. For example, from the ArchiFM facility management system, cost centers, personnel and supplier lists, and the list of units of measurement are available pre-set.

News & Events

New archifm.net version released with ArchiCAD 17 support
10. December 2013

We have just released the new hosted version at the end of last week on our servers, and also we are going to update the local installations by our clients based on our service contracts.

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