Keeping Up With Technology

I try to keep up with technology. I am a luddite at heart. I just need a good book, a sketchbook, and fountain pens to be happy.

I am also a realist. Technology makes my life easier. Keeping up with technology is essential to ensure that my work is the best it can be, and my clients are as happy as I can reasonably make them. Technology makes my life easier most of the time. (Except when my scanner won’t send scans to the computer for no apparent reason. Makes me swear like a sailor.)

One of the things that I do is mark up drawings. It is one of the major things an architect does. One of the ways I work, when I am busy and don’t have to time to do all the drafting myself, is to use a drafting service to help me create the drawings. The way I work is that I sketch things up on paper, scan it to a PDF, and email the PDF to my drafter who’s staff work their magic and turn my sketches into CAD drawings.

They return the drawings to me in PDF form. Up until recently, I would print the drawings, mark them up, scan the mark ups to a new PDF file, and return it to the drafting service. This cycle repeats itself until the drawings are complete to my satisfaction.

With a recent purchase of a Wacom digital drawing tablet, however, that process will be changing. The digital drawing tablet lets me draw directly in the computer, be it a new drawing, or marking up a PDF. This will save me time, paper, toner, and space in my filing cabinet.

The drawing above, illustrating this post, is one of my first attempts to draw using the digital drawing tablet. It is crude to be sure. There is a learning curve associated with eye-hand coordination. Seeing what the hand is producing on the screen, while your and is on a completely different surface more than a foot away will take some getting used to. But I’ve learned to work with a mouse. I can learn to work with a stylus. And that lettering – it must improve!

I will still be doing work on paper. I can’t see that changing any time soon. But the revision process will be primarily digital from here on out.

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