eNewsletter – April, 2017

John Balcom: Another Surveyor Walks Away From CAD, Mark Lull: Drawing View Enhancements, Oliver Bochsler: Convert to Survey in the CAD View, Eric Tanikawa: Real Land Surveyor’s Corn Bread (With Smoked Bacon)

John Balcom, President, MSE, PLS, GISPJohn Balcom: Another Surveyor Walks Away From CAD

Last week, I was on the phone with Scott, a long time TPC user. He started the conversation with , “I’m not updating my CAD program. I’m now doing all my drawings in TPC”. The week before that, I was at a training session for some of our BLM users and asked if they were still using CAPD (their BLM drafting program) for their drawings. Several of them answered, “Nope, we’re doing all our plats in TPC”.

I can’t tell you how many hundreds of TPC users have walked away from CAD. We hear the same story every day. Only the names have been changed to protect the innocent.

In recent years, we’ve tackled geodetics, PLSS, google earth, LandXML, best fit lines / curves and other very important features. But more recently, we’ve focused on TPC’s drawing capabilities. TPC Desktop 2017 is a good example of this. When Scott called, he wanted to know how to automatically label record data with brackets [ ] around it. I showed him, and I think he stopped breathing for few moments as he realized how much time he would be saving in future drawings.

In future releases, we will continue to integrate better with CAD files when you need them, but with the way TPC does drawings now, you’ll pretty much walk away from CAD and never look back.

John Balcom, President, MSE, PLS, GISP

Mark Lull, Technical SupportMark Lull: Drawing View Enhancements

We will be releasing TPC Desktop 2017 R1 to our TPC Connection members very soon.  We have made a lot of nice improvements that I am sure you will like.  I want to highlight a couple of the changes in the Drawing View.

TPC Desktop 2017 R1 New Point SymbolsOccasionally, one of our users will tell me that they want a new point symbol that matches how they like to draw things.  This usually happens with new users as they come in expecting to see something like what they have used in the past.  I am always happy to create the symbols they need to do the work the way they want it.  TPC Desktop 2017 R1 includes some new symbols that we added because someone requested them.  I’m sure our east coast users will really like having the new Stone Pile symbols.

A few of the other nice improvements that are heading your way are the ability to disable the move not allowed message.  Several users have told us that they accidentally click on a survey line and that they don’t want to be told they can’t move it.  We have added the ability to turn that message off.  We also added the Repeat command to several more tools.  You can now use the Repeat command to draw several leaders or other objects without having to restart the tool.

There are a few other nice changes to the Drawing View that should make your work easier.

Mark Lull, Technical Support

Oliver Boschler, Software DevelopmentOliver Bochsler: Convert to Survey in the CAD View

TPC Desktop 2017 Release 1 has a lot of very nice enhancements for our TPC Connection members.

Among the many great changes in the CAD View, one of the coolest is the new Convert CAD Entities to Survey. It’s very similar to how you would normally convert drawing objects to survey, except in this instance we’re converting entities from the CAD view to survey. You must first select entities in the CAD View that you want to convert to survey. Then right click in the CAD View and choose Convert selected entities to survey…

You’ll first see the familiar Convert to Survey dialog box that you’ve seen before. Set your Traverse Name, Traverse View Format, Traverse Drawing Settings, etc. Once you’re satisfied with your choices click OK to continue. If you have more than one selected entity, Traverse PC will ask you if you want to create a traverse for each selected entity or if you want to place them all in one traverse.

Once you’ve converted the selected entities to survey, the current drawing will draw those traverses once you tag them in the Traverses Manager. This tool is great when you want to quickly bring CAD entities into the surveyor’s world where we live. We make moving entities between the CAD View and Drawing View easy for you.

Remember, if you are not a TPC Connection member, you can’t get TPC Desktop 2017 R1!

Oliver Bochsler, Software Development

Eric Tanikawa, SalesEric Tanikawa: Real Land Surveyor’s Corn Bread
(With Smoked Bacon)

This is a true corn bread recipe, because NO sugar is added and it is cooked in a cast-iron skillet. If you cook the corn bread batter in a baking pan, then you made CAKE! In addition, never use wheat flour, because you will end making wheat bread.


4 slices smoked bacon (optional California version: Use jalapeno peppers – Per Michael Clyburn PLS)
2 eggs, lightly beaten
2 cups white cornmeal
2 cups buttermilk
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup whole corn kernels


  1. Preheat oven to 425°F.
  2. In a well-seasoned cast iron skillet, fry bacon until crispy.
  3. Remove bacon, crumble and drain on paper towel. (Save the bacon grease.)
  4. Mix dry ingredients in mixing bowl (cornmeal, baking powder, baking soda).
  5. Whisk the eggs into the buttermilk, and then combine dry and wet ingredients.
  6. Add crumbled bacon, and whole corn kernels.
  7. Coat bacon grease in well-seasoned 10-inch cast iron skillet over medium heat.
  8. Just as the bacon grease is about to start smoking, pour it into the other ingredients, stirring as you pour.
  9. Pour entire mixture into the skillet.
  10. Place the cast-iron skillet on middle rack of oven.
  11. Bake until cornbread is cooked in the middle (test w/toothpick no visible batter), browned and pulling away from the skillet on the sides (about 15-20 minutes).
  12. Remove from oven and invert skillet over serving plate. If cornbread does not drop easily, you may need to run a spatula around/under it until it comes loose.
  13. Serve hot, with plenty of butter, or optional orange butter.

Eric Tanikawa, Sales