After fixing several major bugs, and adding some great new features, the BidSmart Estimator 2.1 (build 2.2.2024) is now available for download. With all of the new features and bug fixes over the last year, it only seems appropriate to call it at the very least version 2.1.
A new download interface now requires you to enter your email address and wait for a link to the download to be returned to you via email. This has been instituted due to the high number of pointless (and much of the time, automated) downloads which have been occurring. I apologize for the inconvenience, especially if you want to try out my software. I will not sell or use your email address for anything beyond verifying your desire to download my software.
New features, fixes, and some necessary code cleanup…
This update includes hundreds of code enhancements and bug fixes. The rest of this post will expand on them and maybe solve your favorite issue. If you are in a hurry, you can move on to the end of this post and get right to the download button.
Details refresh crash
The first of the major bugs that was fixed was the crash while refreshing the Details report when it contained dynamic Subtotals. This is now gone as well as the problem where Subtotals returned to a zero value after moving from the Details report worksheet to the BidSheet. While the formulas were still valid, they did not update and returned ”$0.00″.
Of course, I always appreciate your bug reports. If you find a bug email me through the Contact page.
The New Move Row(s) tool
Until now the only reliable way to move line items up or down in the listing was to use the Data Entry dialog. However, this process only moved the current line -item up or down 1 row. Now you can select multiple rows and then from the context menu (right-click), a “Move rows” dialog opens (as seen in the following image.) From this dialog, you simply select the row where you want the first row of your selection to be located from the drop-down box (only allowable rows are listed) and click the move button. There is no Undo, but it is easy enough to reverse your work.
Updated Developer Options
The Developer Option dialog has a new feature, the addition of the “Hide/Unhide Columns I:J” on the Details worksheet. Yes, some important values are stored there and though you should never need to change them, now you can view them (and change them if you feel lucky.)
The “Fix Me” repair routine was also updated to be more extensive, accurate, and efficient.
New Line Item Import type
The Estimator’s import tool has also had some significant updates. There is now a new line item import choice, “Import line item DESCRIPTIONS ONLY (Zero out the values.)”. This option works just as you would expect you get line-item task descriptions with no values attached.
Export your Scope of Work to a JPEG file…
I don’t know how I missed this feature, but by popular demand, the Estimator’s export tools now include the export of a Scope of Work to a JPEG file. Images seem to be the popular choice when communicating with clients, subcontractors, or vendors via text messages. Although PDF files work well with MMS messaging.
The code which validates e-mail addresses has been completely rewritten in VBA. Originally, the process was taken care of by a VBScript that used a regular expression for its validation routine. While this was a straightforward few lines of code and very efficient, it was VBScript. Unfortunately, many Anti-virus programs now flag VBScript running in Microsoft Office applications and disallow the running of that code. Some people feel it is unsafe and it has been used many times to introduce malware into Windows systems. Microsoft will be deprecating the feature soon.
Two widely used sub-procedures were updated and propagated even more throughout the code. These subs are Set_Properties_Off and Set_Properties_On and can be found in the MainMod program module. Their purpose is to ensure a uniform setting and unsettling of specific application properties which make things run smoothly and seamlessly.
The Summary (or the whole post was TL;DR)
This is the most recent version of the BidSmart Estimator (2.1 – 2.2.2024). It includes sample data and is licensed by the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike license. A 33-page Quick Start Guide is also included. The full User Guide is still being developed.
When you first open the Estimator warnings about the program’s safety may appear. It is safe, to make sure that the Excel macro settings are set to “Enable VBA Macros…” in Excel’s Trust Center. Then, Close the workbook and reopen it. Read the Quick Start Guide about this.
There is also the new Microsoft Office document warning which is explained here.
As always read the readme.txt file first! Click the download button below to get your copy…