Software Africa Newsletter - April 2017


Into the whirlwind again, to say nothing of the earth tremors, so we are awaiting a new Autodesk price list with trepidation. We held off on sending this newsletter out to cater for the price rise but, so far, it hasn't happened. The Rand is strengthening!

Autodesk Special

There is a special running until the 21 April to upgrade your old Autodesk products to replace them with 3 year subscriptions at a 30% discount. More details:

1. What is the AEC Collection & BIM 360 Offer?

Up to and including 21 April, customers who purchase a new annual Autodesk Architecture, Engineering & Construction (AEC) Collection subscription are eligible to receive three annual Autodesk BIM 360 Team subscriptions; customers who purchase a new 3-year AEC Collection subscription contract are eligible to receive three 3-year year BIM 360 Team subscriptions.

Condition: The discounted product(s) must be purchased at the same time during promotional period. Terms & Conditions can be found here:

2. Where can customers learn more about this offer?

Customers can go to for more information about this offer.

2.1. What products are covered by the offer?

Subscriptions for the following products are eligible for the discount: an Annual AEC Collection subscription purchased with 3 annual subscriptions of BIM 360 Team or a 3-Year AEC Collection subscription purchased with three 3-year subscriptions of BIM 360 Team no later than April 21, 2017

2.2. How many products can be purchased?

There are no limits to the number of new AEC Collection subscription with BIM 360 Team subscriptions (in groupings of 4 SKUs) that can be purchased.

2.3. What is AEC Collection?

AEC Collection is one essential set of BIM tools for building design, civil infrastructure, and construction. It is a rich set of software and innovative technologies to help you design, engineer, and construct higher-quality, more predictable building and civil infrastructure projects.

4. What is BIM 360 Team?

BIM 360 Team is design collaboration software. It is a cloud-based collaboration tool that lets architects, engineers, and project stakeholders work together in one central workspace, using a web browser or mobile device.

5. What is the value of purchasing the AEC Collection with BIM 360 Team?

The new industry collections provide access to multiple Autodesk products, together, at one great price and with BIM 360 Team customers can extend the value of that investment to collaborate with your extended project team. Together these tools provide all your essential design tools and the ability to collaborate in a centralized workspace that helps distributed teams stay connected, which helps to accelerate decision making with access anywhere using a web browser or mobile device.

6. Is the offer available for both subscription with single-user access and subscription with multi-user access?
Yes. AEC Collection subscriptions are offered as single-user and multi-user.

7. Is the offer available for subscriptions with either Basic Support or Advanced Support?
Yes: AEC Collection subscription is available with Basic Support and Advanced Support.

An Alternative -  ZWCAD!

With the ever-widening Dollar-Rand exchange rate and the pricing of Autodesk products based on the Dollar, AutoCAD is becoming expensive for many companies.  As an Authorised Reseller, we offer a cheaper alternative, similar in function: ZWCAD. Watch an introductory video here (3 minutes).

ZWCAD 2017 produces DWG files, the same as AutoCAD, and comes in Standard and Professional versions: The former is for 2D drafting, like AutoCAD LT. ZWCAD Pro has 3D capabilities and can do rendering, similar to full AutoCAD.

ZWCAD is available for outright purchase (as AutoCAD used to be) and also on annual licence (as AutoCAD is now).  On annual licence, ZWCAD Std is 77% of the price of AutoCAD LT; and ZWCAD Pro is 23% of the price of full AutoCAD.

You can download a 30-day Free Trial of ZWCAD 2017 here. The download is the PRO version, but when activated with a STD key it will switch off PRO features. Go to this link for product features and to this link for a product comparison.

Would you like to buy?  Email Rick.

Online Business Tip #6 - Google Translate

Worth bookmarking if your company uses multiple languages, is Google Translate.

There are two boxes: Input and result. Google may automatically detect the language, or you can click a button above the input box (or the drop-down list arrow) to select the input language if it gets it wrong.  Click a button above the output box (or the drop-down list arrow) to select the output language, then click the "Translate" button. It helps if you have some knowledge of the output language: Google Translate is still a work in progress and misses a lot of the nuance of the language. You can improve its abilities by editing the contents of the output box.

Apart from English, Google Translate now also has Afrikaans, Xhosa and Zulu.  Perhaps some of our readers who speak Ndebele, Northern Sotho, Sotho, Swazi, Tsonga, Tswana, or Venda could give Google a basic vocabulary of those languages?

QuickBooks 2017 Update

QuickBooks Accounting Software is now being offered as an Annual Subscription. With the Annual Subscription, you will receive much more as it is a subscription that comes with perks - QuickPerks.

Receive QuickBooks 2017 and free upgrades to the latest version of QuickBooks available when you renew your subscription annually

  • Free email and telephone support.
  • EasyBIZCONNECT, which is an application that comes in two hardworking parts:
    1. An Open Database Connection Driver (ODBC) that allows users to access data from QuickBooks and view it in other applications
    2. Mobile applications that allow business owners, reps and even clients to access information within QuickBooks from a mobile device

    The QuickPerks Annual Subscription offers you and your business many benefits, including making your QuickBooks Desktop package mobile. Isnít it time to convert your business to easier financial management?

    Contact Judith for more information!

    Quick Payroll

    We look forward to having you as a Quick Payroll Key Player user and we will do our utmost to make the transition from the old Quick Payroll, as painless as possible. Please contact for assistance with this.

    Please contact Judith for the new KeyPlayer software and assistance in getting your data file to QuickBooks for conversion.

    Green Tip

    Minister Zwane has ignored the hydrology reports on the Karoo aquifer. Needless to say Treasure the Karoo is fighting for their water. We all have to fight for water quality everywhere and conservation.

    How Autodesk Products solve problems

    A new product has been released and is only available online. It is Eagle for designing PCBs

    Did you know that you can also access rich learning resources online? You can start with the Autodesk University videos Once you have registered on the Customer portal, you can also access customer FAQ groups plus many other training videos.

    The World is changing rapidly

    Here is a very good link for Autodesk users to see what is new and the benefits:

    Excel Tip #153 Ė What's New in Excel 2016 for Windows? Recommended Charts > All Charts

    We are looking at what is new in Excel 2016 for Windows Desktop, compared with Excel 2010. On the Insert ribbon, Charts group, there is a new button, Recommended Charts. Click on some data and then choose this button. As we saw last time, the dialog box has two tabs, Recommended Charts, which we looked at then, and the second tab, All Charts:

    On the left pane, we can choose a chart type (outlined, with light green background). Then, near the top of the dialog box, there are variations of this type to choose (with light green background). Finally (outlined in light green) in the main pane of the window, we can choose which way the data should be interpreted: Hover the mouse over each one to see an enlargement. Click to select what you want, then OK to insert the chart on the worksheet.

    Next month we will start looking at the new charts in more detail.

    Computius Say:

    I hit CTRL key but I'm still not in control!

    Remember:  We can make your business run better by:

    All the Best from the team!
    Judith and Rick

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