AllyCAD Showcase

A Passion for All He Surveys

Surveyor General's Office
Cape Town

"We have the finest land tenure system in the world, it is accurate and it works well," says James Florence, a twenty-year veteran in the Surveyor General's Office in Cape Town. James is responsible for checking that all submitted diagrams are accurate and then passing them on for approval.

As a teenager, James Florence suffered from a severe stutter. "I literally battled to get one sentence out without faltering," says James with no sign of hesitation. "I have learned how to deal with it and now, without problems, I even train people."

"My speech impediment was largely instrumental in my choosing surveying as a career. I figured that I would be spending most of my days out in the field and wouldn't have anyone to talk to out there!"

As luck would have it, his decision to become a land surveyor was the right one. "I love what I do," he says simply. "I have worked in the field and in the office, and I am quite happy doing any part of surveying for the rest of my life."

James has seen some interesting things in his time doing survey work in the field. "Up on the West Coast you will still find whale bones stuck in the earth that act as beacons. I have come across stone monoliths as well. We have had accurate records and data in this country since the 16 and 1700's. If you think that Great Britain is only now surveying their country accurately - they always used the feudal system - one's property was measured from that rock to that tree"
  "Recently the guys at Mowbray adjusted all the data from the Clarke 1880 system that we have been using for the last century or so, to the WGS system; that is the standard that the world follows. None of the beacons were physically moved - the co-ordinate were just adjusted," says James.

"I recently bought a copy of AllyCAD and I am just so happy with it. I have managed to teach myself most of the program; it is really easy to learn. I used to work by hand in the old days, today it is a breeze with AllyCAD," he says with a wry chuckle as he rolls out a yellowing plan covered with columns of figures. "Each and every one of these figures was drawn manually."

"I have worked with many CAD programs out there. AllyCAD is streets ahead of them all. It actually works like I did when I was still using the old manual ways. I am not forced to learn a new way of working like a lot of the other software packages do."

"Something that is really impressive, because you so seldom find it, is the back-up service you get from Knowledge Base. I am able to interact with the developers, the support centre, and the sales guy, Reece, who is very knowledgeable. He has even come to my house to help me out on a problem."

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