Wed 25 Jul, 2012
Tags: Announcement, Design, Graphics, Ruby, Script, SketchUp, Software, Tool
You may not be aware, but there is a free application called OpenOffice that is largely equivalent to Microsoft Office. It can be downloaded at http://download.openoffice.fm/free/ . One note of caution; there are a few extra applications that get installed with OpenOffice that are marketing data gathering software. You are supposed to be able to opt-in at install time, but the opt-in process is so obscure that most people will miss it. However, you can remove these application after installation if you miss the opt-in process.
I have downloaded Open Office and gave it a test drive with CutList Bridge 2.0. It works with one very minor problem. First, when exporting from SketchUp use the File/Export to Microsoft Excel command. Next, when importing to OpenOffice Spreadsheet use the File/Open command with All files (*.*) selected for Files of type:, and then a dialog box will appear. See the image on the left (click to enlarge). Clear any single quote or double quote (‘ or "") in the Text delimiter drop down box. You don’t have a choice of blank in the drop down, but just select any character(s) in that box and delete them. Make sure you have the Comma check box selected and none other. Hit OK and you will get a cut list similar to that shown in the image at right.
The double quotes in the left hand column should not be there. They are a result of a bug I have in my script which Excel overlooks, hence I have never seen it. I will fix it in the next bug fix release. This bug does not affect either CutList Plus or Excel. Simply select these cells and delete their content.
So far I am quite impressed with Open Office. I don’t know why I haven’t tried it before today. If you are looking for a complete free solution from 3D modeling of woodworking projects to shop cut lists then the combination of SketchUp, CutList Bridge 2.0 and OpenOffice is your answer.