October

25

2021

Every day, our Ideate Software Support team fields all types of questions from AECO professionals all around the world.

I recently had the pleasure of demonstrating Ideate Automation to one of our longtime customers. During the demonstration, I was asked if Ideate Automation could be used to process custom Ideate BIMLink definitions, specifically Revision Cloud Comments. Their goal was to periodically export certain Revision Cloud information for review. The data review could be read manually using pivot tables, Excel macros, or by other means, such as Power BI. Although we ship Ideate Automation with scripts that point to standard Ideate BIMLink link definition files, users can indeed use Ideate Automation to process custom Ideate BIMLink link definitions.

Here is the process to accomplish the requested task.

Step 1

In Ideate BIMLink, begin with a pre-configured link that meets most of your criteria. In this example, we began with the Revision_Clouds-Review link definition.

Ideate BIMLink and Ideate Automation

 
Step 2

Add or remove parameters, as necessary, until the link definition meets your criteria. In this case, we removed a few parameters that were not needed for the QA/QC task.

If there are other links that you want to customize, go ahead and do so. It may be a good idea to rename the link definitions and edit the comments section, so they describe the link in detail.

Step 3

After customizing the link(s), right click on them and save them to a folder location that Ideate Automation can access. Once completed, close out of all open Revit versions and launch Ideate Automation.

Ideate BIMLink and Ideate Automation

Step 4

For the example that was presented, we used the IBL-MP-Export_Publish task. The advantage of using this script is that we can process the custom link definition(s) exported from Ideate BIMLink for multiple Revit files and export multiple links to one excel file on a per-project basis.

Ideate BIMLink and Ideate Automation


The Ideate Automation steps for this workflow are as follow:

  1. Select the IBL-MP-Export_Publish script
  2. Browse and select the Revit file(s) you wish to process
  3. Select a folder where the Revision information for each Revit project will be exported. For this script, all file exports will end up in the export folder location you choose
  4. Modify the Excel export file names, if required. The default setting for this script is the Revit file name, plus today’s date, followed by the Excel file extension of .xlsx
  5. Browse to the folder location where you exported your custom BIMLink link definitions. ALL links in this folder will be processed by Ideate Automation, so if there are any links that you do not want to process, you may want to move those links to a different folder
  6. Select Create & Run to let Ideate Automation process the selected Revit files from Step 2
  7. Be sure to review the Ideate Automation Queue for any errors. A successful process will return an Error Code 0

Shown here is an example of the files that were outputted as a result. In this example, we chose four Revit files for Ideate Automation to process and export revision data from:

Ideate BIMLink and Ideate Automation

The results of the demonstration with our customer was an Excel file that exported their required Revision Cloud comments. From there, the data could be edited and imported back into the Revit model using Ideate BIMLink or the data can simply be reviewed as part of their QA/QC process.

Browse our website for more information on our Revit productivity tools. Give them a try with a free trial version or subscribe today

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About the Author

Sash Kazeminejad - AIA, LEED AP - Customer Success Manager
Sash earned his Master of Architecture from Montana State University and is a California registered architect, LEED Accredited Professional. He has extensive experience in project management; BIM management; design for architectural firms in California, Montana, and Oregon; and leading classroom and online BIM training. He provides consulting, sales, support, and training solutions to AECO customers around the globe. Find Sash on LinkedIn.

 

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June

17

2021

Are you looking to reduce the time you spend on Revit model management? Start using Ideate BIMLink + Ideate Automation, Ideate Explorer and Ideate StyleManager to address your Revit model’s health and prevent:

  • Slowness during opening, closing and while working in models
  • Crashing
  • “Save” issues
  • Printing and exporting problems
  • Model upgrade difficulties
  • Noncompliance with company standards

With Ideate BIMLink, you can push large amounts of model health check and QA/QC-related data from your Revit model into Microsoft Excel for review in Excel and Power BI. 

Using Ideate Automation, you can export large amounts of data from multiple Revit files to Excel without being present, so you can run it overnight and the next day, your data will be ready for review. 

Use Ideate Explorer for on-demand reviews of QA/QC tasks such as finding and removing CAD imports, addressing group usage and querying a selection of elements to determine if they are pinned, flipped, modeled as in-place families and so much more. Going a step further, use features built into Ideate Explorer to help manage and address warnings, ensuring models are in good health.

Finally, with Ideate StyleManager, dive deeply into projects, templates and families for usage of styles, such as object styles, line patterns, fill patterns, materials, fonts, text and much more, to determine usage and if needed, remove unused styles and merge and purge unwanted styles, ensuring that Revit projects, templates, and families are lean, healthy, and in compliance with standards.

Here’s a link to a recording of our recent webinar in which we highlighted the importance of addressing Revit model health and demonstrated how our tools make the process easy and accurate.


 

Browse our website for more information on our Revit productivity tools. Give them a try with a free trial version, or subscribe today


About the Author

Sash Kazeminejad - AIA, LEED AP - Customer Success Manager
Sash earned his Master of Architecture from Montana State University and is a California registered architect, LEED Accredited Professional. He has extensive experience in project management; BIM management; design for architectural firms in California, Montana, and Oregon; and leading classroom and online BIM training. He provides consulting, sales, support, and training solutions to AECO customers around the globe. Find Sash on LinkedIn.

 

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May

10

2021

For those of you who are new to Ideate Software or need a refresher course on the capabilities our products, this webinar recording is for you. Spend one hour watching to get a high-level overview of all Ideate Software solutions and how they relate to BIM managers and BIM management.

  • Ideate BIMLink – The industry standard for exporting information from a Revit model to Microsoft Excel, so you can modify the data and import it back into Revit to update the model
    • Ideate Automation for Ideate BIMLink – Script and run Ideate BIMLink on multiple models during non-business hours, so data is in Excel spreadsheets when you return
  • Ideate Sticky – Live-link Excel data as schedules or Word, Excel and PDFs as images in your Revit projects, so they automatically update when changes are made to the original documents
  • Ideate Explorer – See every element and instance of every element in the Revit model, so you can easily select and swap elements, audit the project, and review and manage warnings
  • Ideate StyleManager – Review styles (e.g., object styles, line styles, fonts, and dimensions), so you can merge and purge unwanted styles and delete those not being used
  • IdeateApps – Decrease the time spent on common Revit tasks and increase the accuracy of BIM data in a Revit model with these nine focus-driven tools

Watch the recording and share it with others who will benefit from its content.

 
This webinar was presented in three regions over a two-day period. This recording is of the presentation made in the Americas region. The content is the same as the other presentations, except for the specific attendee questions asked during the webinar.

Browse our website for more information on our Revit productivity tools. Give them a try with a free trial version, or subscribe today
 


About the Author

Richard W. Taylor, Associate AIA – Technical Evangelist 
Richard has more than 30 years of experience working for companies that develop architectural and engineering software solutions, such as Intergraph, Bentley, and Autodesk. He has over 20 years of Revit experience, and he was part of the original development of Revit while at Revit Technology Corporation. He worked for 12 years at Autodesk, where he presented, taught, and worked to improve features in Revit. Richard holds both a Bachelor of Science in Architectural Studies and Master of Architecture from the University of Nebraska, Lincoln. As Technical Evangelist, Richard works with AECO clients worldwide, developing and consulting on BIM solutions. Find Richard on Twitter and LinkedIn.

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February

18

2021

For those of you who have had experience with revisions in Revit, you probably know there are a lot of benefits and limitations to the revision tools. For example, we can customize the numbering schemes to match our office standards or client requirements. Clouding and tagging views and sheets are generally easy, though there are some known limitations to this process.

One of the biggest limitations to revision management in Revit is how we schedule them. To this day, Revit can only schedule revisions based on Current Revision information, such as Current Revision, Current Revision Date and so forth. While this information may be acceptable to some folks, many owners and contractors require a schedule listing all sheets and each of the revisions on each sheet. Unfortunately, this scheduling method is not native to Revit. 

Existing Ideate BIMLink customers who have been using our Document Issue Records (DIR) Excel template to generate a sheet list that lists all sheets and the revisions associated with those sheets are quite familiar with the two-step process: Export both the Revision Sequence and Sheet Revision data to the DIR Excel template, where it is restructured into a Document Issue Record. For customers that subscribe to Ideate Sticky as well, there is the added benefit of live-linking the DIR Excel file into their Revit models for a true round-trip process.

For those looking to automate the DIR process, either for a single Revit file or multiple Revit files, we have a simple solution that can automate the exportation of both the Revision Sequence and Sheet Revision data to the macro-enabled DIR file. The data is then updated to reflect the latest revision information for your projects. You can accomplish this task by using Ideate Automation for Ideate BIMLink.

Ideate Automation for Ideate BIMLink allows users to extract revision information from multiple models with the push of a button or through a scheduled task, allowing the project team to easily compile and update Document Issue Records demanded by many owners and jurisdictions. To assist with this process, Ideate Automation for Ideate BIMLink is pre-configured with two script files related to the DIR process, while Ideate BIMLink is delivered with five pre-defined link definitions that are configured to work with Revit Revisions and Ideate Automation.

Ideate Automation - DIR

 

Watch this short video to review the process of automating Document Issue Record exports for multiple stages of your project. In addition, please review this Help topic, Getting Started with Ideate Automation.

Existing Ideate BIMLink customers can request the Excel custom template for Document Issuance Records via [email protected].

Browse our website for more information on our Revit productivity tools. Give them a try with a free trial version, or subscribe today


About the Author

Sash Kazeminejad - AIA, LEED AP - Customer Success Manager
Sash earned his Master of Architecture from Montana State University and is a California registered architect, LEED Accredited Professional. He has extensive experience in project management; BIM management; design for architectural firms in California, Montana, and Oregon; and leading classroom and online BIM training. He provides consulting, sales, support, and training solutions to AECO customers around the globe. Find Sash on LinkedIn.

 

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February

9

2021

Yes, I know that I’m playing off the title of a television show that ran from 1959 to 1963! If you have NEVER heard of The Many Loves Dobie Gillis, you should Google it. Now, let’s get down to some serious data that certainly is NOT 62 years old and in black-and-white!

COBie is an acronym for Construction Operations Building Information Exchange, and it is a non-proprietary data format for the publication of a subset of building information models focused on delivering asset data as distinct from geometric information.

COBie Data Extraction needs to be assembled at multiple times during the life of a project, usually at the end of each work stage of the project.

Ideate Automation
 
Ideate BIMLink is delivered with 15 pre-defined link definitions that are configured to use Revit shared parameters that are created as part of the Autodesk COBie Extension for Revit, which is a subset of the Autodesk BIM Interoperability Tools.

Ideate Automation
 
Many agencies and jurisdictions around the world use this data. As an example, the U.S. General Services Administration has deployed the Autodesk COBie Extension for Revit.

You can create the necessary COBie spreadsheet by choosing to export EACH of the 15 Ideate BIMLink library link definitions, one at a time, to a single Excel spreadsheet using Ideate BIMlink.

However, assembling this information to meet project requirements can be time-consuming and tedious.

Introducing Ideate Automation for Ideate BIMLink

Ideate Automation for Ideate BIMLink allows you to extract information from multiple models and multiple COBie Ideate BIMLink Link Definitions, allowing a designer to easily meet the COBie requirements demanded by many jurisdictions such as the GSA.

Ideate BIMLink used in conjunction with Ideate Automation allows designers to extract the data they need at the push of a button.

Please watch this short video to review the process of automating COBie Data Drops for multiple stages of your project.

In addition, please review this Help topic on Getting Started with Ideate Automation.

Browse our website for more information on our Revit productivity tools. Give them a try with a free trial version, or subscribe today


About the Author

Richard W. Taylor, Associate AIA – Technical Evangelist 
Richard has more than 30 years of experience working for companies that develop architectural and engineering software solutions, such as Intergraph, Bentley, and Autodesk. He has over 20 years of Revit experience, and he was part of the original development of Revit while at Revit Technology Corporation. He worked for 12 years at Autodesk, where he presented, taught, and worked to improve features in Revit. Richard holds both a Bachelor of Science in Architectural Studies and Master of Architecture from the University of Nebraska, Lincoln. As Technical Evangelist, Richard works with AECO clients worldwide, developing and consulting on BIM solutions. Find Richard on Twitter and LinkedIn.

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