Tuesday, November 29, 2011

AU Innovation forum

In previous posts I have shown you how you can use Citrix to run Revit in the cloud from a mobile device. The topic of the innovation forum is using Revit and other applications and tools in the cloud. For the speakers/panelists, the infinite computing power of the cloud has opened up great potential to do projects they otherwise would not be able to do on conventional high power desktops.
Ken Young from HOK is using a similar citrix system as we have setup, and is having great success on Revit projects.

Autodesk University begins!

Once again I find myself at AU this year! The General session is about to begin....and rumor is that Mark Zuckerberg is somewhere around here and his sister is presenting on the topic of innovation.
Here are some shots from the general session

Friday, November 4, 2011

Wind analysis in Revit

What does one do with an hour of time while the wife is putting the little 18-month old munchkin to sleep? Well explore new Revit apps in unconventional and possibly unsuitable ways, of cousre!
Here's Project Vasari being used to test the wind-wake of a quadcopter armature design.
There's photos and videos through the link.
So a Quadcopter is not exactly the ideal subject for this tool but it gave me the opportunity to test it's ease of use and functionality. What I found was promising but I may have missed where the resultant data could be output to a chart or spreadsheet. Non-graphical data output is critical to the Engineers in my company as they prefer looking at the numbers behind the images and Architects prefer the images. Exploring analysis a little further and on more Architectural subjects, I came across this post which looks at Conceptual energy analysis and CFD. It may be worth a looking at. I have used Green Building Studio and a number of the other tools this describes and have introduced them within the firm. The use of these tools has been limited in house but I can't believe that it's because of their capability. I'm convinced that it's a simple(?) combination of validation, workflow and time issues which are things that can be overcome with a little focus.

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Exciting news!

I don’t usually discuss things like this on this blog but in this case I will make an exception. My company, KlingStubbins, is merging with Jacobs Global Buildings! What does this mean for you? I’m not really sure, but for us it is very exciting. It’s a publically traded company so buy stock if you can! This new Revit powerhouse will be making waves!
Here’s the 360+/- degree moment of the big announcement by our CEO Mike Lorenz and Jacobs’s Group VP, Tom McDuffie:
Here’s the press release
You can call us "KlingStubbins Inc. a Jacobs Company"

Ideate Explorer for Revit

We have been using Ideate Explorer for about 4 months now and have been finding it very useful in supporting and troubleshooting projects. It allows you to find lost CAD imports and links, export results to excel, view zone and space information, amongst many other features. There’s a free trial so check it out.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Noteblock for tracking comments in Revit

This is one of those ingenious uses of the tools in Revit to make collaborating better:
BIM Troublemaker: Comment Tracking Using Noteblock Scheduling

Monday, August 1, 2011

AIA Philadelphia TAP Announcement

2011-08-01_0943In the AIA Philadelphia Chapter newsletter that was published July 27th 2011, the AIA announced the creation of the Philadelphia TAP group. I am posting this here because Revit currently plays a major role in the technology of the AEC industry and will most likely be a consistent thread of commonality weaving through the many topics of discussion. Follow the link to read the announcement. The announcement describes the need for a Technology in Architectural Practice(TAP) discussion in Philadelphia, it's affiliation with the National TAP group and identifies it’s Groupspaces website and contact information.
The announcement also requests nominations for Advisory Board members and encourages membership by all industry professionals in the Philadelphia area. If you are in Philadelphia, join the discussion here.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Open Revit Standard

The Twittersphere and bloggersphere is igniting over the "Open Revit Standard" http://openrevitstandards.com. I was reading the Knowledgesmart blog whom we are evaluating as a resource for evaluating new hires and staff, and think that their perspective may be shared as well by others. 
I would be interested to hear your thoughts, discussion, and if there’s participation from your companies?
Our 60-year old company is so far sticking firmly to it's belief that the contractor and client care deeply about our unique view titles and section marks and graphic titleblock and lineweights and symbols and so on. And they may be right, who knows. There is the aspect of professional pride in this as well. But as BIM standards go, and in terms of the National BIM standard and the success of the UK National BIM standard, an Open Standard following the form of Wikipedia in my opinion has got legs that can run and run.
It's an interesting concept and far from the proprietary environments of the past. One of the creators of this movement is Dave Fano who is a friend and colleague of mine and a is one of the geniuses behind the Design Reform site and Case Inc.

Monday, July 11, 2011

New Revit uniforms

If your office is considering implimenting Revit, make a splash with a Revit outfit like this. If you already are amongst the Revit guru firms, your star Revit team will look like real pros outfitted with these!

There's also a "Revit-Rave" pant with codpiece and shin balls(?) and Revit printed on the ass, made by the same company, for the more extreme Reviteers:

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Package your Revit projects in a jiffy

Check out eTransmit for Revit, in the Labs now. A much appreciated tool provided by our friends at Autodesk. It's described as follows:
  • Copy and detach a Revit model and associated files to a single folder for internet transmission. This removes the typical error messages when you copy central files using the operating system.
  • Locate dependent files automatically and include them in the transmittal folder, reducing the possibility of error. All dependent files are automatically converted to use relative paths to ensure that the dependent files can be located by the model.
  • Choose to include related dependent files such as linked Revit models, CAD files, DWF markups, decal images, and external keynote files. You can transmit any Revit (.rvt) model that has been upgraded to Revit Release 2012.
  • Transmit models that are using file-based worksharing or server-based worksharing. eTransmit for Revit will also work with non-workshared Revit models.
There are some known issues and Revit 2012 Web Update 1 is recommended.

    Rendering in the Cloud - Project Neon for Revit 2012


    Check out Project Neon for Revit 2012.
    David Light -has a great post on this.

    Natasha Luthra in my office ran a few images using our In house projects and the results were impressive. Other than a slight lag in accessing the server (apparently they are slammed with requests) the rendering itself took only a few minutes and even allowed her to add a few environment maps after the image was rendered. Best of all, she could continue to work on her project while the "Cloud" rendered her image.
    According to #, it is currently having an issue with anyone who updated to SP1 but he says they are working on fixing it.

    Saturday, June 25, 2011

    Off-topic: Sand Soccer

    Since I left SoCal for the East coast, a new sport has appeared on the beaches... ever heard of Sand Soccer? Me neither until todays tournament.
    And now, back to the conference.

    RTC 2011 day 2

    Today at the Revit Technology conference, my sessions focused on management and business aspects of BIM and Revit. It ended with an entertaining BBQ.
    There are about 300 attendees, some of which are the "rock stars" of Revit, and others who are the regulars I run into at Technology conferences.
    All in all a good event.
    Photo courtesy of #PhilRead

    Thursday, June 23, 2011

    Revit 1.0

    I enjoy coming across Revit-related things I have never seen before. Just now I ran into Jim Balding and Anthony Hauk hovering over a book of CD's that happened to be all of the earliest versions of Revit, including an original beta. Jim is going to install Version 1.0 on one of the lab computers here at the conference. Check it out:

    Stratus for Revit

    Carl is reviewing labs.Autodesk.com software for Revit, talking about Neon, Vasari, and others you may know but just mentioned one I haven't come across yet, called Stratus. It's a Structural analysis plugin that looks very practical.

    Carl Bass put my "Revit on Android" on the big screen

    Carl Bass, CEO of Autodesk is presenting the RTC keynote and just showed the image from my post on running Revit on my Android mobile!
    No credit to yours truly but I'm ok with that if he buys me a beer.

    RTC 2011 begins

    I am at the Revit Technology Conference in Huntington Beach as it kicks off its first US event. 
    The Revit documentation and presentation boards from the previous Australian conferences are posted all around the halls and are darn impressive.
    And now for the opening ceremonies with Wesley Bennett and Carl Bass...

    Thursday, June 16, 2011

    RTC 2011 - Revit Technology conference

    If you're attending the Revit Technology conference next week let's meet up. Shoot me an email Craig a t iRevit.com.

    Autodesk goes Open-source!

    A 3D printed model at Autodesk's Waltham HQ
    In a major change from its business model, Autodesk has made a software application (or utility in this case) Open-source! It is another example of Autodesk embracing the sizeable makersphere of which I am a big fan.
    Check out BIMapps blog for more details on the Revit STL exporter

    Wednesday, June 15, 2011

    Revit 2012 Viewer

    Revit 2012 has a "Viewer mode" which is a method to enable the Revit-savvy Architects, Engineers, or Revit Illiterates access to explore a Revit model without any chance of effecting the Central file or production in the model. It is installed when you install the full version of Revit and accessed from the Windows Start menu program list.

    The viewer allows all standard functionality of Revit but:
    • You can't save or save as,
    • You can't export or publish views/models *if you make any changes, but can export certain formats if no changes are made.
    • You can't Print *if you make any changes, but can print if no changes are made.
    • You can't edit elements in a workshared file, but you can if you open 'detached'.
    In our office we use Navisworks Freedom for Project Leaders to review models. The difference between this and Navisworks freedom is that this is Revit and the model sizes we often create require higher levels of computer hardware to open, whereas Navisworks Freedom does not have high hardware requirements. Also, Navis. Freedom is far simpler and easier to use for the average Project Leader.
    When you use the viewer to open up a workshared central file, Revit viewer mode uses a read-only method to lock you out of the central file preventing any and all ownership of elements, but still allows you reload latest, and therefore, monitor changes.
    What is this Revit viewer useful for?
    1. Reviewing models real-time, without fear of accidentally obtaining ownership of building elements
    2. Checking the file History
    3. Viewing coordination issues and running Interference checks
    4. Walking through models without fear of accidentally obtaining ownership of building elements
    The viewer does does not pull a license so keep that in mind if you use it.

    Update: The commenter is correct that the viewer is not supposed to pull a license. I talked with the Revit platform manager about it. Viewer mode is re-titled Demo mode which you may have come across when you lose a license or went beyond the trial period.

    Wednesday, June 1, 2011

    Handy tool to identify good keyboard shortcuts 4u

    I just came across this little tool on Rod Howarth's blog and if you work in Revit day-to-day then you'll find this useful. It analyzes your Revit journal files and identifies commands you use a lot that you don't have shortcuts for as well as those that you do have keyboard shortcuts for. It's a tad difficult to associate the commands to the keyboard shortcuts but you'll get the hang of it. Cheers,
    Craig Barbieri

    Wednesday, May 11, 2011

    Revit on Android Part II

    Not long ago, I wrote about running Revit on android devices. The secret's out now that Revit 2012 is available and I can share this information with you. Our good friends at Autodesk have enabled Revit to run on a Citrix xenapp server and it works pretty flawlessly if you have a decent internet connection. A Citrix xenapp server is very cool in that it enables you to access many different Desktop applications such as Autodesk Revit, Autocad, Microsoft Word, Outlook, Adobe Photoshop and so on, from mobile devices. All your mobile device needs is the little Citrix app available from the app store if your an Apple fan or the Android Market if your on Android. What the server does is essentially runs the software using the server's hardware/resources and transfers the appearance of the interface of the application to your device. I hope I am making sense. This setup allows you to be extremely flexible in how you work and access models on the fly and on the job site even.

    Because the Server is doing all the work, you can even render a model, even on 'High' and see the results on your device. It's pretty fantastic so feel free to geek-out over it. Your server's specs have a lot to do with performance but in our initial testing, we used a 2007 Dell Precision 490 workstation with 8gb ram and it worked great even for 3D Max. Enjoy!
    Craig Barbieri

    Wednesday, May 4, 2011


    This is Revit-support related for within a firm, and thought I'd share. Check out Hively, it's a cool & easy way of encouraging positive support and communication in your company. It's also pretty cheap!

    Monday, February 28, 2011


    When I'm looking for design advice, this is where I go:

    Full of only the top quality advice you'd expect.

    Thursday, February 24, 2011

    Phasing and Revit Ceilings

    Revit has some fantastic "Phasing" features that can simplify working in renovation projects and other projects that have multiple demolition and/or construction phases. Today I came across a request that surprisingly enough, I have never heard before. ACT Ceilings in Revit will demo but the fill pattern that they use is not overridden like model elements are. When a ceiling is demo'd in Revit, the ceiling pattern stays the same(non-dashed) and so the request that was made was for an ACT ceiling pattern that represented itself as demo'd (dashed).
    Ceiling patterns in Revit are fairly straight forward and follow simple rules. You can make your own with a text file. I created two "Demo" ceiling patterns and have placed them in our Revit Standards Library. If you are interested in making your own patterns, take a look at this blog post on iRevit.com.
    If you need the 2x4 or 2x2 demo ceiling pattern, there they are.

    Tuesday, February 15, 2011

    Revit on Android

    We are looking at various ways of delivering Revit to our people at KlingStubbins and our partners. I'm geeking out over this one... running Revit on an Android phone. I should have had 4G turned on and I would have gotten better performance but maybe next time. Yes, I'm rendering the model. The multi-touch is a little difficult to work with in Revit so I don't recommend you running out and replacing your desktops with iPads but if you are in a pinch and need to check a model in the field, there's no stopping you now!
    Details huh? Well there are actually several ways you can accomplish this and one of them I can't mention yet but suffice it to say it's my favorite. The other methods are by using remote detop of some sort, androidVNC works. the other is Citrix Xendesktop, which is essentially running a windows deskop virtually from a server. I'll post more when I can!
    Craig Barbieri

    Friday, January 21, 2011

    BIM Apps

    Is this the year of Leveraging the BIM? Now that many of us are darn good at designing and building in Revit, new tools and companies seem to popping up everywhere offering new ways of making use of the mass of information in the BIMs. This is a major focus of mine this year and a focus for which the time has come. There is much efficiency and productivity to be gained from leveraging or making use of the information in Revit models. Many aspects of our industry are effected by the switch to BIM. Contractors are becoming true partners in the building paradigm we know as IPD, providing new avenues and methods of information flow and new opportunities for tools that enhance what we do.

    A new blog has started and it addresses the topic of add-on tools, now referred to as “Apps” and which generally are making use of the Revit API to perform their magic. The blog is “BIM Apps” and it’s located here.

    I first came across the author,  Emile Kfouri more than several years ago while I was working on a 2.1 million square-foot resort in Revit Architecture. I believe at the time he was the Revit Platform Product Manager. He’s moved on to bigger and better things at Autodesk and I wish him luck with his new blog. Join me in subscribing.


    Craig Barbieri

    Tuesday, January 11, 2011

    Unusual things

    Often I come across some unusual things here at KlingStubbins. Today it was a generic floor that was modified to represent a topo surface. This file was given to use from outside the firm and our site group is tasked with reporting on site drainage. Naturally I was asked if it was possible to show contours on a floor slab, or to convert a floor into a toposurface.

    Well of course you can….and this is how…

    1. Isolate the floor and export it as a dwg.




    The default settings are fine, just click through OK.

    2. Then Import it back in (with default settings again) and it should land in the same location.



    3. Now click the Massing & Site tab and click Toposurface. Select ‘Create from import’ button and select the import, then finish. In this case, because it was a generic floor, it was totally enclosed, having a bottom as well as a top, so I deleted the points on the bottom half.



    4. To show the contours on the newly created toposurface or adjust the contour settings, click the Site Settings button. In this case I had to adjust my contours to be 1”.


    And that’s all there is to it.

    Happy New year!

    Magritterevits Craig Barbieri