At 10:04 AM 3/12/2002 +0100, Edi Im Hof wrote:
>Have you also tried to "Update Footprint from Library"? It didn't work 
>with spaces in the name.

Frankly, I consider the *recognition* of spaces in a footprint name to be a 
sort of bug or inferior operation. I have somewhat grudgingly accepted 
spaces in filenames; it is convenient when Word creates a filename with the 
first few words of a document, but I see no good place for this in naming 
footprints.

Ditto lower case letters.

If my engineer tells me to use a footprint, I don't want to worry about 
whether or not the next word is part of the footprint name....

Where I would be tempted to use a space, I used an underscore or hyphen. We 
don't need spaces in names, so I'm sorry that Protel recognizes them at 
all, and I am not surprised to find that some routines might fail if there 
are spaces in the name.

Here is what I would suggest to Protel: remove any complete recognition of 
spaces from filenames. When a file is loaded which contains spaces in the 
name, replace them with an underscore. If a part is not found with the 
underscore name, search for one with a space or with spaces where the 
underscore or underscores exist (i.e., consider them equivalent). If a 
library part is found to contain a space, query the user to allow the 
program to replace it with an underscore.

(This would allow users who have used spaces to convert to underscores more 
or less painlessly.)

If a user has used space vs. underscore to discriminate between two parts 
in the enabled libraries, the same process should be followed that we wish 
Protel followed with respect to any name duplications: the user should be 
queried instead of automatically loading the first name. This, however, 
should be a configurable option *if* Protel allows us to easily give 
libraries priority.

[Right now, a requested footprint which exists in more than one library 
(i.e., it has the same name, it is not necessarily the same footprint) is 
taken from the first library in the list. This is often not what we would 
desire. Typically, where a part is in the default Protel library and we 
have edited the part to improve it, from our point of view, we would want 
to use our part, not Protel's part. Or we might have reflow parts and wave 
solder parts, and we might want to choose them differently for a board, but 
still use a part from the "other" library if it does not exist in the 
library for the technology being used.

By the way, OrCAD Layout's technology files were a good idea.... Just 
because I think that using Layout is roughly equivalent to diving into a 
swimming pool with no water in it doesn't mean that they did nothing right. 
Having optional setups (Rules, libraries) for various common kinds of board 
designs and production levels would be quite useful, and we could make our 
own as well. Yeah, we can do this now by making empty board files, but 
better files could come with the installation, including files for common 
controlled impedance design configurations, etc.

When libraries are enabled, they are sorted in ASCII order in the library 
list. This was an error. At the worst, they should have been listed in the 
order they were enabled; this would have given us a measure of control 
better than what we have now, which is to rename the libraries or give them 
prefixes to control priority. At best we should be able to directly edit 
the order. Eudora has a nice way of allowing filters to be prioritized. One 
picks up a filter name in the list (left-click-hold) and can then move it 
up or down; the cursor becomes a line showing where the filter will be 
inserted; this is much better than a highlight which always raises the 
question of whether the object would be moved to the space *before* or 
*after* the highlight.]

Abdulrahman Lomax
Easthampton, Massachusetts USA

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