Using Linear Select
Ortelius’ Linear Select™ tool is used to apply a variety of special effects to connector tracks. To use Linear Select, click the tool and drag over a connector track, highlighting as you go. Using Linear Select, you can select discrete portions of tracks to insert special objects, such as a bridge or tunnel or a style transition. Select a junction of two tracks and insert a "magic round-about.”
These special objects – bridge, tunnel, cutting, embankment, and magic-round about-– are found in the menu under Edit > Insert Special.
Inline & Overlay Styles
Among other things, Linear Select is used to apply "inline" and "overlay" styles. Inline styles apply a new style along the line replacing the section highlighted with Linear Select and providing a smooth transition between one linear style and another. Overlay styles and extra styles applied to the section highlighted with Linear Select, for example a bridge, in addition to the underlying style.
This example shows an inline style transition between a highway and a divided highway. The Linear Select tool is used to highlight the portion that will get the new style treatment (that is, the divided highway line style). The new style is selected from the Symbols Palette and is automatically placed, creating a smooth style transition.
Tracks featuring inline styles can be interactively adjusted with respect to the positions of these styles. A green knob and bar is used to indicate the boundary positions of the inline style that can be simply dragged to reposition them. The Object Inspector allows the display of these knobs to be turned off to reduce visual clutter and/or reduce the problem of having ambiguous targets for mouse clicks.
Style Transitions With Width Adaptors
Ortelius creates beautifully smooth transitions between styles of varying widths using Width Adaptors. The settings for these Width Adaptors are in the Object Inspector’s Features pane. Smooth Blend is the default for style transitions.
Inserting Special Features Along Tracks
The Linear Select tool is used to select a portion of a connectable tract and insert Special Features, such as bridges and tunnels.
Use Linear Select to highlight the section of line to accept the bridge then choose Edit > Insert Special > Bridge from the main menu. Special features available from the Edit menu are smart and will adjust certain style properties, such as line weight, according to the line style of origin.
Ortelius gives you “just right” positioning with overlay features. Note that the bridge can be selected. The left handle (yellow circle) on the bridge slides it along the line for fine-tuned positioning. The right handle (orange dot) on the bridge controls resizing the length of the bridge.
Bridges, cuttings, and embankments are overlay styles – extra styles applied in addition to the underlying style. To delete a bridge, use the Linear Select tool to highlight the section of track with the over-lay style and choose Edit > Paths & Tracks > Delete Overlaid Styles from the main menu.
Highlight the section of line to accept the tunnel then choose Edit > Insert Special > Tunnel from the main menu. The tunnel will be automatically styled to match the road style.
Tunnels are in-line styles – what is used when blending one style into another. To delete a tunnel, right-click it and choose "Remove Tunnel." Alternatively, use the Linear Select tool to highlight the section of track with the in-line style and choose Edit > Paths & Tracks > Unify Styles from the main menu.
Placed at the junction of two or more connector tracks, the magic roundabout places a circle in the parent line’s style, sized according to the width of the line, with junctions made fully automatically. After placement, the roundabout is editable as needed.
Cuttings and Embankments
During highway and rail construction, the land surface (for example, a hill) may be “cut through” to allow the rail surface to remain level. These features are referred to as “cuttings.” Alternatively, when land subsides it may be raised to create a level rail surface, forming an “embankment.” Cuttings and embankments are traditionally shown on local scale maps.
Bridges, cuttings, and embankments are over-lay styles – extra styles applied in addition to the underlying style. To delete a cutting or embankment, use the Linear Select tool to highlight the section of track with the over-lay style and choose Edit > Paths & Tracks > Delete Overlaid Styles from the main menu.
Inserting User Created Overlay Styles
If the predefined special styles available in the Edit > Insert Special menu are not to your liking, you can overlay any style by holding down the OPTION key when selecting the style in the symbol palette. This inserts the style into the connectable track as an “overlay” which is suitable for bridges, embankments, cuttings and other similar effects.