Layout User Guide / Reference Manual is needed!


Consider compiling the many SketchUp Knowledge Base articles into a printed User’s Guide. Many learning deficits can be overcome if users have a readily accessible source for referencing issues as they occur. A reference manual will better enable all users to get up to speed in less time.

Currently making use of the Knowledge Base is cumbersome and this makes it difficult to rely on as a useful resource. No discernible method exists to find an index so one is compelled to search for a specific concern in order to resolve an issue.

Note: This information was located after the initial post but no index was found:


That is an understatement. I’ll be blunt. It sucks! So I & others avoid using it.


OK. I was trying to be nice about it :o)


It seems that a rewrite has been under way using Drupal.
The roll out is section by section.
So some of the content will be new, and some old.

This may explain the funky results I have been getting lately with the site search feature.

@Tommy Want to weigh in ? Give us an update ?


The re-write has been going extremely well and the content looks great, but it has also taken longer than anticipated – due to the size of the project and the availability of our collaborator. We also need to push the new content all at once instead of in stages like I originally hoped, which will make things seem even longer. Rest assured that we will have a new Knowledge Center reborn from the nourishing ashes of content that has spanned over 12 years.


I can only imagine how massive a job this must be. I’m sure the result will be well received, especially by newer users.


Yes, the “User Guide” as it is is horrible. Whomever wrote it likes to make up terms, the bane of Windows. For example, what is a “Windows Menu”? They are of course referring to the Windows, drop down menu, with items listed on it. They tell you to go there to find Windows Dialogue boxes, or something else they refer to as a Windows Dialogue box tray.
A dialogue box could be anything. This ‘tray’ item is a mystery, but typical of Windows making up words or phrases no one has heard before. And nothing is cross referenced so information just ends, hanging in space. What now?
The computer industry needs a formal vernacular, what exists now is just the similar ramblings of various electrical engineers and the like, who use common phrases get used enough that the rest of us pick them up, but there is no formal Information Technology dictionary, as there is for medicine, engineering, etc…
So people writing guides come close to uniformity, but seem to always ‘make stuff up’ at the critical moment of information delivery. Why is Layout so confusing? Because no one defines concisely what it does. You try to learn routines that don’t have any apparent use. Just what exactly is a layout document for? To pull permits? Then Layout should have a routine for developing those presentation sheets.
To present concepts to a client? That would be another routine, less focused on specific items as much as focused on effective presentation format, the big picture.


For example;
From this page, there isn’t a link to get back to
which is the Index of the Layout User Guide. You should be able to go straight back there from any page.


Now I’m starting to understand: A ‘Dialogue Box Tray’ is the long, directory tree/Index combination control thingy that we started seeing in Google Maps, Earth etc., that takes up one quarter of the screen down the right side. You can turn it all on or off from the “Windows, drop down menu”.
I was looking for anything on the screen, an icon, a tool bar, a dialogue box etc… when turning the “Dialogue Box Tray” on and off to find it, to know what they were talking about.


I think it originated in Photoshop. It made a short visit to AutoCad to be replaced with the Hello Kitty-style tabbed interface.