Heya all! I've been using DipTrace for years, and it's the best EDA software so far!
But!!! There are a lot of ways to improve.
Here's my list of short features:
1. MUST HAVE FEATURE: ability to set Hotkeys for tools.
For example, keys F1-F12.
F1 = Select tool
F2 = Set Origin by Mouse Pointer tool
F3 = Place Component - QuickSearch + 10 Last Used
F4 = Place Wire
F5 = Place Bus,
In Inkscape (vector drawing program) all drawing tools are on the F-keys, and it's super fast to work like that. No need to click on the toolbars, just memorize the keys.
But in Diptrace, I want to measure something. There goes the mouse, click the small icon, measure, then press ESC to be back to select. Then I move a component, want to measure again. Bah! Click the icon agan. Click, click, click! It would be so much faster over a keyboard.
Or, I want to move a component, then re-arrange a trace. These are 2 different tools. I have to endlessly click on the Trace Edit icon, then keep pressing ESC every time I switch from moving component to editing a trace.
2. Hotkey for unpouring or pouring cooper pour.
For example, P and U. It pours or unpours the area under mouse pointer.
3. And basically, hotkeys or meta-key combinations for all features!
Now, a list of ideas for Novarm team:
1. Make an Electrical-Cabinet and Switchgear design software!
Like EDwin or E-Plan packages.
It shouldn't be too much different from a EDA software. There are schematics, and there are cabinet plants.
Each component (for example, a contactor) can have it's symbol (schematic symbol), and it's "footprint", that is, shape of the contactor which will be installed in the panel.
Hierarchy and busses are little different in switchgear, but it's nothing so complicated.
What would be excellent here, is having 3D models of components (connectors, switchgear, DIN rails, etc), so designer could visualize the panel layout.
And once you have a finished version, Novarm could, for example, sell it to energetics equipment manufacturers, like Moeller, Schneider, Eaton, Siemens...etc., and have a mass licensing with pre-build component libraries. Not everyone has money to buy E-Plan, but if Schrack or Moeller can offer a complete design software which saves time and makes a BOM-file ready to be sent to the local sales office, that is a killer app!
2. Create an online "repository" of libraries for DipTrace.
Something like git code repositories.
DipTrace users all over the world create their libraries. Now, they have the possibility of uploading and sharing their libraries with the rest of the world.
For example, I want to create some part. But instead of taking it all by myself, I first check if there's similar parts in the web repository already! If there aren't, I could create parts and leave them on the site for other happy users to download. If libraries are good, they receive 5-star rating, and the best library creators could get some kind of gifts or promotions (e.g. DipTrace upgrades).
Repository could be kind of Web 2.0 site, having: categories, faves, 1-5 star ratings, etc.
Also, library creation could be crowdsourced! For example, someone posts a $10 bounty for some exotic part, something like PIC32FJ407JFUWTFLOL-E/IP. A day later, another uses puts a $30 bounty. That's $40 total. So a library creator comes by, takes the task, makes the library. The requester(s) approve the library, after 2 or 3 five-star reviews, the lib creator gets the $40 bounty. Something like that.
So much for now.
Keep up the good work, Novarm!
Post your circuits and ideas here
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