Projects & Plans: Introduction to Plan / Prepare

On This Page: 

Getting Started with Plan / Prepare

A. Plan Page Interface

Plan / Prepare is the main planning module of ALICE, where the user can review the 3D or Non-3D (2D) elements, develop a construction sequence, create recipes and resources.

To enter the Plan page:

  • In the “Plans,” click on “Open” to enter the Plan page Plan___Prepare.svg
  • The plan page is one of the essential modules of ALICE, where users can review the 3D model, 2D model, assign Supports (construction sequence), and create RecipesPlan___Prepare__1_.svg
  • The following are the key tools on this page:
    1. Go back to Project List
    2. Go back to PlansList within this project
    3. Project and Plan name
    4. Support Group
    5. Element Tree
    6. View Cube
    7. Toolbar: See A. Plan Page Interface for more information
    8. Support Slider
    9. Access to a Recipes
    10. Access to ALICE library
    11. Access to Resource pool
    12. Open the Solutions / Explore Page
    13. Switch between Model and Diagram view

 

A.1 Toolbar

There are 11 tools located in the toolbar:Plan___Prepare__2_.svg

  1. Orbit: To rotate the 3D view 
  2. Pan: To move the 3D view
  3. Section Analysis: To create vertical or horizontal sections to cut the 3D model 
  4. Explode Model: To explode the 3D modelto easily see the individual elements
  5. Settings: To change the Configuration, Navigation, Appearance,and Environment settings of the Plan module
  6. Polygon Select: To select the elements by drawing a polygon line 
  7. Crane Location: To create mobile crane locations on 3D view 
  8. Previous & Next Support: To assign previous and next supports
  9. Group Tool: To add and remove an element from the group 
  10. Help: To see all available shortcuts in the platform 
  11. Adjacency Constraint: To activate the Adjacency Constraint feature

For item #10 above “Help” (), the shortcuts available are:Plan___Prepare__3_.svg

Note: More clarity on the “M” shortcut key: When the user selects an element in the 3D view, the purple (previous support elements) and blue (next support elements) will appear. If the user holds down the “M” shortcut key and selects either the purple or blue elements, the previous and next supports of those elements will appear next. This is a great way to review and follow through the chain of supports.

 

B. Navigation Tools

There are two main navigation tools to review the 3D model:

  • Rotate
  • Move

B.1 Rotate

Option #1

  • Activate the “Orbit” feature from the toolbar below
  • Click & hold the left mouse button and move the mouse
  • Click on the “Orbit” icon again to deactivate the feature

Option #2 - recommended

  • To rotate the 3D view, simply click & hold the left mouse button and move the mouse
  • Note: Ensure the “Orbit” icon is selected.Plan___Prepare__4_.svg

B.2 Move

  • Option # 1 - recommended
    • To move the 3D view, hold the “Space” key on the keyboard (a hand sign will appear), then click & hold the left mouse button and move the mouse
    • OR Hold down the center scroll wheel of your mouse and move the mouse aroundPlan___Prepare__5_.svg
  • Option # 2 
    • Activate the “Pan” feature from the toolbar below
    • Click & hold the left mouse button and move the mouse
    • Click on the “Pan” icon again to deactivate the feature

C. Element Selection 

There are two main options to select the elements in ALICE:

  • From 3D view 
  • From Element Tree

C.1 Select elements from the 3D View

  • Use the left mouse button to select the individual element 
  • Hold the “Shift” key to select multiple elementsPlan___Prepare__6_.svg
  • The selected element(s) or group(s) are highlighted in yellow
  • To remove element(s) from the selection, click on that element(s) once again
  • To remove all elements from the selection, click on any white spacePlan___Prepare__7_.svg

 Note: Click in the blank white area to deselect the elements.

 

C.2 Selection Box

  • The selection box allows users to select multiple elements or groups at once
  • To use the selection box, hold the “Shift” key, click & hold the left mouse button, and drag from left to right or from right to leftPlan___Prepare__8_.svg
  • Note: Selection boxes drawn from left to right select the elements within the window and elements crossing the border.
  • Note: Selection boxes drawn from right to left select the elements entirely contained in the window.

C.3 Element Tree

The “Element Tree” is a powerful tool and provides different options to select, search, and filter elements. The element’s name comes from the initial modeling software such as Revit, Open Building Designer, etc. 

  • The “Element Tree” has four options to work with elements:
      • Family: Sort element(s) and groups(s) by category
      • Level: Sort element(s) and groups(s) by level
      • Recipe: Sort element(s) and groups(s) by recipes
      • Properties: Sort element(s) and groups(s) by UDFs (User Defined Properties) / Custom Parameters
        Note: Sorting and grouping by custom properties can be a powerful way to select elements and groups based on the desired organizational structure. 
  • To select the element from the “Element Tree,” first expand the necessary category
  • Click on the name or checkbox to select an element
  • You can continuously choose other elements Plan___Prepare__9_.svg

Note: Click on the name or checkbox once again to deselect the element(s).

  • To make a bulk selection, hover the mouse on the first element, hold the “Shift” key and drag it down. Click on the last element to confirm the selection Plan___Prepare__10_.svg

Note: Click on the name or checkbox once again or on the white space / blank area  to deselect the element(s).

 

C.4 Search in Element Tree

Searchis a powerful tool to quickly find and isolate a group of elements based on the name of the group. Once the field is populated, ALICE will isolate the group of elements containing the typed word.Plan___Prepare__11_.svg

Note: It is recommended to have a clean and structured naming convention to utilize the search tool fully.

C.5 Number of Elements / Groups Selected

The number of elements/groups is an essential data that can impact the productivity of ALICE. Currently, the limit for the number of elements/groups is 40,000. 

Grouping functionality helps to decrease the number of elements that ALICE reads. For instance: we can create 1 group from 50 elements. 

 

C.6 Bulk Editing Group Names

To bulk edit the names of the groups, select the icon next to the search bar in the “Element Tree.” Type in the existing text in the group/element name in the top field and type in the new text you would like to replace within the bottom field.Plan___Prepare__12_.svg

D. Remove & Restore Elements 

The elements can be temporarily removed from ALICE for different purposes. 

  • Select the element(s) / group(s) from the 3D view or Element Tree
  • Click the right mouse button on the blank area / white space to open the tools tab
  • Select the “Remove Elements” command Plan___Prepare__13_.svg
  • To restore the deleted elements, click on the “Recycle Bin” icon on the Element Tree
  • From the Element Tree, select the element(s) that you want to restore 
  • Click the right mouse button on the blank area / white space to open the tools tab and select “Restore ElementsPlan___Prepare__14_.svg

E. Hide / Isolate / Show All  

Hide,” “Isolate,” and “Show All” are the essential tools to navigate and control the visibility of the 3D model.

 

E.1 Hide

ALICE has two options to “hide” the element(s): 

  • Option #1
    • Select the element(s) from the Element Tree or 3D View
    • Click the right mouse button on the blank area / white space to open the tools tab
    • Click on “Hide SelectedPlan___Prepare__15_.svg
  • Option #2 - recommended
    • Select the element(s) from the Element Tree or 3D View
    • Click the right mouse button on the blank area / white space to open the tools tab
    • Click “W” on the keyboard (“W” is the shortcut key)

E.2 Isolate and Show All

To activate the “Isolate” tool: 

  • Select the element(s) from the Element Tree or 3D View
  • Click the right mouse button on the blank area / white space to open the tools tab
  • Click on “IsolatePlan___Prepare__16_.svg

Show All” brings back all hidden or isolated elements. To activate “Show All”:

  • Click the right mouse button on the blank area / white space to open the tools tab (do not select any elements)
  • Click “Show AllPlan___Prepare__17_.svg

Further Resources

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