2014 Release 0: February, 2014    Brochure PDF
2014 Release 1: July 2014 to TPC Connection Members Only
2014 Release 2: October 2014 to TPC Connection Members Only

Label Orientation





In the Miscellaneous drawing settings, you can now specify the label orientation for traverse line labels, curve labels, labels of lines you draw manually, lot labels and point labels.

TPC will orient every label so that it reads left to right when you hold up the top of the page, the left side of the page or the right side of the page. Pretty neat!

Many of you have asked for finer control over how TPC applies labels to objects. You’re already letting TPC’s Quick View do the lion’s share of the drafting for you and you wanted it to go all the way with this one.

And while we were at it, we made label orientation also account for drawing rotation. Rotate a drawing so that North is down instead of up and TPC will flip lot labels and line labels so that they still read from Top Only, Top and Left or Top and Right.

Choose from Top Only , Top and Left or Top and Right . Let’s take a look at them now.


Label Orientation – Top Only

Top Only

(the current default)

This is the way TPC has labeled objects forever. Looking at the drawing, every label reads from the top. Sometimes you might tilt your head a little to the left or to the right, but you can read them all.


Label Orientation – Top And Left

Top and Left

This option orients labels to they read left to right while holding up either the left side or the top of the drawing. Preference is given to the top, so only labels that are mostly vertical are oriented to the left side of the page.

Top and Right

This option is just like Top and Left except it orients labels that are mostly vertical to the right side of the page.


Label Orientation – Top and Left withTable References

Table References

Even table references adhere to the orientation. We put all the line labels in a table in this drawing.


Label Orientation – Top and Left – Rotated 180°

Drawing Rotation

We rotated the drawing below 180° (see the North arrow). Notice that the lot label CCW and area are still oriented to the top of the page. The line labels are also oriented Top an Left.

Traverse PC is smart enough to rotate the lot labels with the drawing to the point they are still readable. At some point however, the label would switch to reading upside down. That’s when TPC makes the change and converts an upside down label to a right side up label.


Inside / Outside



Traverse Settings – Inside/Outside


In the Traverse Settings, you can choose from Above, Below, Inside or Outside. Place all the distances inside a foundation traverse, or outside a wetland boundary.

As long as we were tackling labels, this new feature was a natural. Many of our old C&G users loved this option and asked us to put it in Traverse PC.

Here, we’ve told TPC to draw the Distances Inside and the Directions Outside. You can see the results in the drawing.


Drawing Labels – Inside/Outside

Reverse Direction



Traverse Settings – Reverse


This version of TPC Desktop gives you more control over the direction you use for bearing labels.

You can reverse the direction of an entire traverse or individual direction labels.

Traverse Labels

By default, TPC labels traverse lines in the direction of the traverse, but we added a new option to reverse the direction for the entire traverse.

With Reverse turned on, TPC still orients the labels per the drawing settings (Top Only, Top and Left, Top and Right), but generates the opposite bearing label.

So a line with a bearing of N 45° E will generate the bearing label S 45° W when reversed.


Drawing – Reverse – Top And Left

Here is a drawing with the direction labels reversed. Notice the arrows in the line type indicate the traverse direction, while the labels go the opposite way. The label orientation is set to Top and Left.

Take a minute to notice that direction labels are all

1) parallel with their lines,

2) oriented to either the top or left edges of the page and

3) labeled in the opposite direction of their line.

Reverse Traverse Example


Drawing – Bearing Trees Reversed

Let’s take a quick look at where this can come in handy.

Here’s a corner diagram, showing the location of its three bearing trees. We’ve reversed the direction for the side shot settings. Now the bearings are from the accessory to the corner, ready for the corner card notes.

Reverse Direction of Any Label


Reverse Individual Curve Label

Once TPC has labeled a traverse line or even a line you drew manually, just right click and choose Reverse Label Direction . Don’t want it reversed? Just right click it and choose Reset Label Direction . This works for traverse line labels and object labels you manually add to a line or arc.

In this example, we right clicked one of Traverse PC’s stacked curve labels and choose Modify Object , Reverse Direction Label .


The long chord bearing changed from S 81°37’19” E to N 81°37’19” W. We also reversed the tangent coming in from N 76°40’32” E to S 76°40’32” W.

We can restore their directions by choosing Modify Object , Reset Direction Label or resetting all modified attributes.

Reverse Label Direction in Tables Video


Reversed Curve And Tangent Labels

Stacked / Aligned




Right Click – Align Label Command

Many of you know how TPC evaluates each tangent label and draws it off to the side with an optional leader if it doesn’t fit. You also know how TPC will stack curve and spiral information off to the side unless you choose the new arc aligned option we introduce in TPC Desktop 2013.

In TPC Desktop 2014, you can still let the traverse settings do all of this PLUS you can manually stack or align related labels.

To stack the labels above and below a traverse line, just right click either one and choose Stack Related Labels . To put them back, right click and choose Align Related Labels.


Drawing – Stacked Tangent Aligned Curve

In this drawing, we duplicated a traverse in order to contrast changes we made to the labels.

The black traverse is the original. We told TPC to align the tangents and stack the curves.

The green traverse is the duplicate in which we manually stacked the tangent label and arc aligned the curve label.

This is consistent with how Traverse Settings work. Let the settings generate the bulk of the labels the way you want them, then individually change the few that are different. This is a real time saver.

Label Leaders



The whole idea behind leaders is to relate drawing text to the appropriate drawing object. TPC Desktop 2014 gives you more options for leaders and greater flexibility in using them.


Traverse Settings – Point Leaders

Point Label Leaders

For point labels, you want to relate the label, elevation, coordinates, geodetic position and station back to the symbol or end of line where the point is.

Move the point label anywhere you want around the point. The leader revolves around the insert point, leaving a small gap beyond the point symbol, and lining up perfectly with the point label.

Turn Leaders On/Off for Any Label


Leader Off Command

You can now turn leaders on and off for any object label. So you can use the traverse settings to create leaders where appropriate, then change individual labels to add or remove the leader.

Here, we right clicked the stacked curve label and choose Modify Objects, Leader Off . TPC will remove the leader from the label.

To turn the leader back on, just choose Modify Objects , Leader On .

For those of you who are already familiar with how TPC’s traverse settings work, you know that at any time, you can choose the Reset Modified Attributes command shown here, and the label will revert back to the options you selected in its traverse settings.

Drawing Variables


Text Properties – With Variables

TPC has allowed the use of drawing variables for many versions now. However, the variable had to be at the start of the text and nothing could follow it. This meant that to place a date like ‘Date: 1/24/14’ in a title block, you needed 2 text objects – one for the word ‘Date’ and one for the variable ‘$DATE’.

Now you can create a text object like ‘Date: $$DATE’ to do the same thing more easily.

Let’s enter a paragraph we want to include in a drawing template, to show

•  The survey – $$SURVEYNAME and $$LOCATION.

•  Who did the survey – $$SURVEYOR, $$LICENSE, $$COMPANY.

•  And who it was done for – $$CLIENT and $$CLIENTADDRESS.

Notice the new Variables pulldown in the dialog. Its easy to use. Just select the variable you want and choose Insert .

Drawing With Variable Text

Drawing With Variable Text

Now, here is the drawing template, showing how TPC replaces the drawing variables with the values you provided elsewhere in the program.

This is why drawing variables are so handy in drawing templates. You enter the drawing variables just one time in the template, then with each new survey, just fill in the survey information and that whole part of your new drawing is done.

Survey Information Dialog For Variables

Survey Information Dialog For Variables

Most of this information comes from the Survey and Surveyor tabs in the Survey Information dialog shown below.

Survey information comes from the Survey tab.

Surveyor Dialog For Variables

Surveyor Dialog For Variables

Surveyor information comes from the Surveyor tab.

Drawing Variable Pulldown

Drawing Variable Pulldown

Drawing Variable Pulldown

To help you use the drawing variables more efficiently, we added a new drawing variable pulldown list to the text dialog.

Using a drawing variable is as easy as selecting it from the list and chooseing Insert .

The best part about the pulldown list is that it fills in the replacement text for each variable in the list. You can see the variable that will be inserted into your text along with the replacement text you’ll see in your drawing. Its the best of both worlds in one pulldown.

If you haven’t yet provided information for a variable elsewhere in the program, TPC displays not defined in the pulldown, reminding you to provide the information before you can use the variable.

Coordinate Conversion

Many COGO dialogs have the TPC ‘What List’ that allows you to perform the COGO operation on a subset of the survey. Until this release, the Coordinate Conversion dialog did not have this list. You could only convert the entire survey. If you were unfortunate enough to import coordinate data into your survey that did not match the coordinate units of the survey, it took some work and a number of steps to get them synchronized to the same units.

Convert Coordinate Units Dialog

Convert Coordinate Units Dialog

What List

So we added the ‘What List’ to the Coordinate Conversion dialog. Now you can select the point(s) or traverse(s) that are in the wrong units and TPC will convert them to the same units as the survey.

In the dialog shown here, we imported 2 metric traverses from our GPS software into a survey that was already in feet. The What List allows us to convert just these 2 traverses from meters to feet.

Show Conversion Details

We also added conversion details for those who are interested. You can see exactly what got converted and by how much.

Convert Coordinates Details

Convert Coordinates Details


Ascii Settings Convert Units

Ascii Settings Convert Units

ASCII coordinate import and export now allow you to convert coordinate units as the file is being imported or exported.

We sometimes found ourselves importing metric coordinates into a survey that is already in feet. TPC has always had the tools to help you do this conversion, but it required multiple steps and another survey file.

Now you can select the conversion you want, including a base point and U.S. vs International Survey Foot, from the familiar Coordinate Conversion dialog. TPC takes this information back to the ASCII import or export and that’s it. You get the coordinates you want every time.

In the dialog shown here, we are importing and exporting ASCII coordinates between our survey which is in feet and another source that is in meters. We can import their metric coordinates and convert them to feet as they are imported. Then when needed, we can export our coordinates in feet and convert them to meters for the other source to use.

Cadastral / PLSS

We added three chapters to the Cadastral learning guide.

Geodetic Center Section Video

Cadastral Geodetic Center

Cadastral Geodetic Center

This new chapter shows you how to create a geodetic center section and compares it with a planar intersect.

Computing Sixteenth Corners

Cadastrl Computing Sixteenths

Cadastral Computing Sixteenths

This new chapter shows you just how easy it is to insert sixteenth corners as midpoints in a geodetic traverse.

Importing GMM Files Video

Cadastrl Importing GMM

Cadastral Importing GMM

This new chapter walks you through the steps of importing a GMM township record file and show you how TPC automatically creates a drawing of the township.


Geodetic Preference

The Ascii and Generic Raw imports now retain the geodetic preference of existing points if they are overwritten. They also give geodetic preference to new survey points they create if an imported point includes just geodetic data or both geodetic and grid data. Imported points with just coordinate data retain coordinate preference.

TDS SK Records (Staked Points)

We added support for TDS SK records. This feature was available in earlier versions of TPC, but had since been removed. So we added it back in at your request.

Carlson SurvCE RW5

When importing ‘GPS’ records from Carlson SurvCE RW5 files, TPC ignores the EL value if a coordinate record has already provided an elevation. This gives preference to coordinate elevations over geodetic heights. If no coordinate elevation exists, the geodeitc elevation is converted to a coordinate elevation.


We added lots of new features to drawings.

Added Apply Button to Dialog

For the past several releases of TPC, you have been able to change the settings of a traverse or surface and choose the Apply button to see the changes before leaving the settings dialog. We’ve extended this same feature to the Drawing Settings dialog.

Added Leading Zero Option to Bearings

For some time now, TPC has given you the ability to include leading zeros for the degrees of a bearing or azimuth. S3°06’03″W could be displayed as S03°6’3″W in a drawing. This release adds another option to extend this to 0 through 9 degrees as well. So S3°06’03″W becomes S03°06’03″W.

Block Line Types

When reading and writing blocks, if a line type used in the block does not include a ‘CAD NAME’ in its definition, TPC now defaults to the line type’s name (every line type has to have a name) instead of “CONTINUOUS”.

AutoCAD Line Types

Added NONE AutoCAD line type definition to tpc.lin file and used this for the CAD NAME for TPC’s None line type. This allows TPC to write AutoCAD entities, like filled polylines, that don’t have a line.

More Layers

Increased the number of user layers allowed in a drawing from 205 to 32717. This will help those of you who import CAD drawings with lots and lots of layers.

Multiple Columns in Tables

Drawing tables can now have multiple columns as in previous versions of TPC Desktop.

Safer Traverse Moves

When moving traverses graphically in the Drawing View, TPC now cancels the entire operation if any affected survey points are protected. It is also more explicit about what is being moved. This is a great feature for those of you who do design or stakeout.

AutoCAD 2014 Drivers

Read and write AutoCAD 2014 DWG and DXF files.


Tooltips for survey labels (lines, points, lots) are now more consistent in displaying the traverse they originate from.

Picture File Warning

We added a warning message when inserting a picture with commas in filename. TPC doesn’t allow commas in picture file names and now forces you to rename the picture file and remove the commas before importing.


Delete Raw Data Command

You can now delete (remove) raw data from any point(s) in a traverse. Once the raw data is removed from a traverse point, the point remains in the traverse right it was, but it acts as if you had recalled it into the traverse.

Any raw data removed from a traverse point is reported in the Report View. We prompt you before removing the data, but if you still want it back, you can just type it back in.

COGO, Distance Offset

This dialog now accepts zero for the Distance and Offset fields. This feature was available in previous versions and was added back in to this release.

Retain Upper and Lower Case Letters in File Names

TPC used to convert all survey file names to upper case. Now survey file names retain whatever case you enter for the file name. So ‘West Hills Topo.trv’ doesn’t get converted to ‘WEST HILLS TOPO.TRV’.

Drag-n-Drop Items Between Groups

You can now drag-n-drop traverses and drawings from one group to another. Doing this with traverses was supported in previous versions. Dragging drawings between groups is new.

More in 2014...

Here’s a sneak peek at what we’re planning during 2014.

Agile Releases Beginning in 2014, we’ll be fully up to speed with agile software releases, getting the features you ask for, into your hands, when you ask for them. You won’t have to wait months for the next release, then drink it all in from the ‘new version fire hose’. Instead, you’ll get bite-size features you can learn in stride.

Trimble Business Center We expanding our support for TBC files so you can get more information about the project, geodetics, projection, etc. If you use Trimble for your GPS, this update will be a must.

License Management We’ll give you ability to revoke your license on one computer and transfer it to another computer – like the new one you just purchased.

Survey Label Variables TPC will start embedding variables like $$DISTANCE into survey line labels. Now you can add your record distance and still allow TPC to update the actual distance automatically. You can do the same for line directions and lot areas.

Point Reference Label Add ~label to any point description to establish a reference to any other survey point. For example, suppose you import point 200 from your data collector then change it’s label to the GCDB point 400400. Add ~200 to the description (or let TPC add it automatically) and TPC creates the reference. Now you can continue to import field data using point label 200 and TPC will treat the label ‘200’ like an alias for point 400400.

Standardize Coordinate Import We included two new options for updating existing coordinates in TPC Desktop 2011. We only exposed them in the TDS raw data import while we got feedback on which one worked best. Well, the verdict is in and we’ll be including the option in the other import formats that need it.

Legal Descriptions We’ve compiled quite a list of enhancements you would like to see in the legal description writer. We’ve included just a few of them in TPC Desktop 2013 Release 1.

GMM Files We’ll expand the Township record file import to include the information in the SID files.

User Defined Zones You’ll be able to add your own projections and zones to the Premium and Professional editions. Now you can put in your state or county CRS (coordinate reference system).

Layered PDF Files We hope to provide the option to write layers to PDF files of drawings. We currently write a ‘flat’ file, but layers can be a big help for those of you who regularly interface to GIS.

User Suggestions We have hundreds of suggestions we are excited about including in TPC.

Automatic Updates TPC will check for updates every 30 days or whatever interval you set. You can download and install the update or just keep using the version you have. Makes staying up with TPC simple and easy.