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No Substitute for Scripting

"The number of tasks that PyTecplot enables is virtually endless"

Designing a GUI is a balancing act: icons require fewer clicks than menus, but too many icons can make the UI too complex. This means there’s always the possibility that something you want has been omitted from the GUI. What’s more, there are often things that are better accomplished outside the GUI. Scripts are the ideal solution: see this article to learn what – and this one for how – you can best use scripting with Tecplot.

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Surface Continuity

Hermite’s disquiet is now history, as described, for instance, here and here. But difficulty with enforcing or maintaining continuity dogs the world of CAD even today: this primer on surface continuity is well worth the read. These issues are relevant to analysts too: watch this space for the announcement of the release of Pointwise Version 18.5 with a feature that addresses just this!

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Polygons in a CAD World

"If you need to do engineering, see if you can get a true CAD model"

“Visual” representations are probably OK in a WYSIWYG world where the critical verb is “see”. For better or for worse, though, polygonal representations are hard to wish away even in the world of design where fits require better accuracy than can be “seen”. This article provides a few tips on how to deal with the problems they pose – and take advantage of the benefits.

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Visual Consistency

"plenty of ways graphs can mislead and outright manipulate"

When they’re used well, as this article points out graphs can help us intuitively grasp complex data. It goes on to list – and illustrate – several examples of the counterfactual. The impact can be that much worse, of course, if comparisons between datasets aren’t presented well. See this article for the ways you can avoid such errors using Tecplot.

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Some MeshGen Theory

If you’ve wondered which grid-generation algorithm to select, you’ve been “perplexed by plenty”. The Pointwise manual is useful – see this and this – but if you have about 15 minutes to spare, this video is worth watching. And if you’re upto investing more time on the topic, this thesis is a pretty good starting point.

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Powershell and Folder-Watchdogs

"There is a wealth of learning points in this code"

Monitoring a folder for changes can, as pointed out earlier, be useful for automation. If you’re using Windows you can do this without using any “external” programming languages: Powershell, that comes with all current Windows versions, is often underappreciated and underutilised. See this article for an excellent explanation of how you can use it to watch for changes to a folder’s contents.

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KFour Metrics offers technology solutions for engineering design, simulation and optimization.

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