I’m going to expand on what makes Topobase different than a lot of the products in the Autodesk lineup. If you have are completely unfamiliar with Topobase, you might want to read read Part 1 or Part 2 first.
Topobase ultimately distinguishes itself by being very flexible. Too much flexibility can be bad right? This is especially true if you are the person trying to administer the system. When people have too much flexibility (think AutoCAD without standards) users are going to do whatever they feel like.
Topobase is different in that it is flexible for the administrator, not the user. The administrator has complete control over how the system is used. This is accomplished using two major features of Topobase, feature rules and workflows.
Feature Rules are events that are fired whenever features are insert, updated or erased. They can be setup to run either on the Client side or on the Oracle server side. For example, if I had a manhole and wanted to make sure that the depth from the rim to the pipe invert was always updated, the feature rule could take care of that for me.
Workflows are custom commands typically used to control the creation of features. For example, if you were going to add a water meter to a system, you would at least want a service line to go with it. The workflow can automatically create the service line and make sure that it connects to the pipe main. Therefore, this reduces drafting errors when people forget to use object snaps because the workflow will take care of it automatically.
Other AutoCAD products do not have as many built in tools to allow someone to administer a GIS system. With Topobase, you can do anything, provided you are willing to put in the work to get what you want setup.
This concludes the series on what is Topobase. I have really only scratched the surface of what Topobase is and what it can do, but hopefully you have a broad overview of what it is and whether it is useful for your organization. If after reading this and you are still interested and have questions, the best thing to do is to talk to us. We’d be glad to answer any further questions that you might have.