We send a sincere thank you to Paul Aubin, from Paul F. Aubin Consulting Services, for reviewing our Revit productivity solutions. With 30+ years of experience, Paul is an independent architectural consultant providing Revit software training and implementation services. He has authored many books, including Renaissance Revit, and has posted dozens of Revit courses and tips and tricks videos to LinkedIn Learning.
Ideate Software Tools Have Enhanced my Revit Workflows
I have recently added Ideate Software solutions to my Revit installation and workflow. I find myself going to the Ideate Software tab on an increasingly regular basis. In these articles, I will share just a few of my favorite “go-to” tools. But first, if you are not familiar with them, Ideate Software makes Revit productivity solutions that are available individually or in bundles. They work directly inside of Revit and are accessed from their own Ideate Software tab on the ribbon.
While I focus this article on Ideate StyleManager, the complete collection of tools offered by Ideate Software is worth your taking the time to fully explore.
Ideate StyleManager offers unique functionality that becomes more valuable as your projects grow in complexity and size. Across the top of the dialog are a series of buttons that allow you to analyze several important standards items like Object Styles, Line Patterns and View Templates to name a few. Have you ever worked in a project where there seems to be endless line style or fill pattern definitions and many that are identical but with varying names? How do you even begin to clean this up? The answer is Ideate StyleManager!
Each tab is similar. In the following example, I’ll consider Line Patterns. You start with a list on the left of all items in the project. Some of these will be highlighted in color. A question mark will initially appear next to each item. You can select any item in the list and get information about it on the right. But before you do, it is best to run an analysis. Select a group of items using the SHIFT and/or CTRL keys. I usually do the whole list, but it can sometimes take a while to process, so alternatively you can select just some items. But either way, give it a few moments while it processes. To do so, click the Analyze! button at the bottom.
Figure 1 - Colors are used in the list to indicate duplicate items
After the analysis is complete, numbers will appear in the first column. These indicate how many times the element is being used. Items that list zero are not being used and can optionally be purged. Above the list is a collection of checkboxes that can be used to filter the list. These include: Used, Not Used, Duplicates, etc.
The first time I used this tool, the colors confused me a bit. I was looking for a legend that defined what the colors mean. There is no legend. All colors mean the same thing. These are duplicates. Unique colors are assigned to each corresponding group of duplicate items. So, any orange item is the same as any other orange item. The same is true for any yellow item. It will match any other yellow item and so on.
Another nice feature is the preview that appears when you select an item in the list. In the next figure, you can see a preview of the selected line pattern on the right side near the top. You also get a list of elements using this style.
Figure 2 - After you press Analyze, quantities appear on the left and information about the selected item shows on the right
Now here’s the best part of Ideate StyleManager. When you discover that you have duplicates, you can merge them! To do so, use your SHIFT or CTRL keys to select the duplicate items. (Make sure you analyze first). Then at the bottom, click the Merge button. A dialog appears with the names of the items you selected. You must choose one that you want to use. The other(s) will be replaced by the one you select. When complete, a dialog will display the results.
Figure 3 - Merge selected items into a single style of your choosing!
If you have ever tried to clean up a project and the only tool you have the is the built-in Purge Unused command, you are going to love Ideate StyleManager. They recently added some new types to it, so the tool just keeps getting more robust with each release.
That is all I have for you in this article. I hope you found those features exciting and worth a look. Ideate Software offers a free trial of their solutions. Browse this website to learn more and download them You can also subscribe to them online.
Disclosure: I have been granted a license to the Ideate Software tools in exchange for my honest review of the software. The views in this article are my own.
Since Paul’s review of Ideate StyleManager, we have added even more tools to our collection of Revit styles that can be managed. Be sure to review our website for the latest updates and videos on these new features.