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Very simple auto-naming scheme to help manage your feature list

jon_loschkejon_loschke Member Posts: 24 ✭✭
edited April 13 in Product Feedback
Do you have a large feature list with names like "fillet 9" and "extrude 15"?   Sure you do.  Renaming every feature is tedious.  Here is my idea which has two parts:

1. When you create a new sketch it opens the sketch form with the name field already selected for input.  You just type a quick name, say "main body" and hit enter and start sketching.
2. When you create any other new feature, it auto fills the name with the root name of the previous feature, e.g. "main body extrude 1"

That's the entirety of this idea it's so simple.  At any point you can change a feature name through the usual method and any following new feature name will derive off that name.  For example, if your sketch defines multiple elements, then you can change the name when you start one, e.g. "main body inlet extrude 2", then following features would adopt that, e.g. "inlet fillet 1".  This will keep features better organized with little effort.

In case some people freak out with this change, you could make it a simple mode switch and the top of the feature list that you can engage / disengage at any time.  All it is doing to helping you name features. 

PLEASE UPVOTE!   :)

Comments

  • lougallolougallo Member, Moderator, Onshape Employees, Developers Posts: 1,849
    @jon_loschke These types of automation and or naming schemes is not something we plan to add as every user is different.  Names can be renamed in the feature dialog but a vast majority of users do not rename so auto highlighting is something that can get cleared or interfere with other default behaviors.  This might be considered as a shortcut key to allow rename while the dialog is open.  I have moved this to product feedback for more discussion.
    Lou Gallo / PD/UX - Support - Community / Onshape, Inc.
  • Jake_RosenfeldJake_Rosenfeld Moderator, Onshape Employees, Developers Posts: 1,615
    @jon_loschke

    Have you tried feature folders?  They were sort of meant for this workflow of grouping features by concept:
    https://www.onshape.com/cad-blog/tech-tip-organizing-features-with-folders-in-onshape
    Jake Rosenfeld - Modeling Team
  • jon_loschkejon_loschke Member Posts: 24 ✭✭
    Shift N while in a sketch or feature will edit and highlight the feature name for quick replacement. 
    Not sure how I missed that.  Thanks.  That is a good step to what I want.
  • jon_loschkejon_loschke Member Posts: 24 ✭✭
    @jon_loschke

    Have you tried feature folders?  They were sort of meant for this workflow of grouping features by concept:
    https://www.onshape.com/cad-blog/tech-tip-organizing-features-with-folders-in-onshape
    definitely.  That was an awesome addition.  I wish I could suppress a folder (all features contained) as a quick/cheap config (yes I know about configurations).  But I agree this helps with organizing features.
  • jon_loschkejon_loschke Member Posts: 24 ✭✭
    lougallo said:
    @jon_loschke These types of automation and or naming schemes is not something we plan to add as every user is different.  Names can be renamed in the feature dialog but a vast majority of users do not rename so auto highlighting is something that can get cleared or interfere with other default behaviors.  This might be considered as a shortcut key to allow rename while the dialog is open.  I have moved this to product feedback for more discussion.
    Hi, Lou.  Understood.  Maybe extending on John's tip, a version of Shift N that auto populates with root name of previous feature or similar.  Thanks for taking a look.
  • john_mcclaryjohn_mcclary Member, Developers Posts: 3,013 PRO
    No offence to your request, but here is my side of the story.
    In my experience anything that tries to read your mind is wrong most of the time, and ends up costing more time renaming the sketches/features that shouldn't be named after the previous sketch/feature.

    And to be honest, I rarely bother with feature tree names when I'm in the moment. When designing I'm thinking of manufacturing ability, fastening method, can this be made from a drop of another part (common stock size), should there be machining/finishing on any surface... etc. tree names are the least of my worries.

    Maybe when I'm close to releasing a part, or if the tree starts to be confusing. Only at that point do I rename sketches/features and sort by folder. I would be pulling my hair out if I were forced to rename every feature on creation.

    I mean who ever can design a part from start to finish with full clairvoyance of what sketches and features you need, and what names they should have the first time; is obviously copying someone else's part. ;p But people like me delete the features and create them with a better approach fairly often. Unless it's a simple plate with 4 holes or something... but if that was the case, there would be no need to rename anything in the tree anyway.

    I'm sure I'm not alone in this thinking.
    I digress.

    ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    It would be better to change the way the tree displays the feature.

    The format would be something like: Feature Name [Child Name]
    (Imagine the italic texts as a light gray to distinguish is as the child of "Feature Name")

    This way the base code of Onshape does not need to change. The only thing that changes is how it is displayed on your tree.
    This way it could be toggled on or off by button next to the filter/search. Rather than trying to design  A.I. to know what you wan't your tree items named.

    Such  as: 
    Sketch: "Pin"
    Revolve: "Revolve 1 [Pin]"
    Sketch "Base Plate"
    Extrude: "Extrude 2 [Base Plate]"
    Loft: "Loft 1 [Faces]"   (mouse over for unabridged list in a tool tip, or leave in-compatible for these types)

    So when you Shift+N and rename, you will only be editing "Extrude 2", not "Extrude 2 [Base Plate]"

    This would be similar to how Solidworks shows inheritance. (although SW does this verrrryy well, "hint hint Onshape")

    Bottom line, if you name your sketch, then any part that uses it, would list out the sketch name in brackets next to itself.
    Mouse over for a full list of references.
    Or copy what SW did (they also make this toggle on/off, because it gets annoying when you don't want it)

    This kind of thing should also be considered for features like Hole or fillet.
    Where it  also displays meta data. To me this is more important information than the name of the feature.
    Example:
    Hole1 (1/2-13 thru) [Base Holes]
    or simply
    Hole1 (1/2-13)

    Thanks for listening to my rant
    😋
  • romeograhamromeograham Member Posts: 485 PRO
    @john_mcclary
    I also really like the Parent/Child visualization in SW...and miss it in Onshape.
  • jon_loschkejon_loschke Member Posts: 24 ✭✭
    @john_mcclary
    I appreciate your rant and agree 100%.  The whole dependency graph has been requested so many times and Onshape seems disinterested so I wanted to avoid that landmine completely.  My name inheritance suggestion was actually also to avoid "A.I" with a dead simple scheme that anyone would understand and modify as needed.  As you point out, when you are in the moment you don't want to spend your time managing names.  

    Anyway, if Onshape is open to your idea I'm all for it even more.  I agree the meta data is most useful as well.
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