September

14

2022

Every day, our Ideate Software Support team fields all types of questions from AECO professionals all around the world. You can review some of these recent question and answers via our Ideate Software Support Series blog category.

Thousands of users all around the world use Ideate Sticky every day to combine the ease and flexibility of Excel, Word, and PDF editing with the convenience of a sticky note. Ideate Sticky elegantly connects non-BIM data from an Excel, Word, or PDF document into Revit projects, enhancing cross-team workflows.

Over the past few years, we’ve had several support cases where a specific user updates the Ideate Sticky schedule, and the formatting width of the Sticky schedule changes. A Sticky schedule can change size unexpectedly when updated or auto-updated on a computer with a different display scaling than the display scaling value used on the computer that originally created the Sticky schedule. This issue is most commonly manifested when using remote desktop applications or laptops with docking stations, as well as with external devices such as projectors where display scaling could be changed during a Windows session.

Display Settings

 

Formatting Differences 
Different computers might have different scaling and display resolutions that could potentially impact the width of a Sticky schedule, as shown in these images.

For our June 2022 release, we solved this condition with a new width calculation option.

Use this new project-based setting to use an improved width calculation for all Sticky schedules found within the project. This option is turned on for all new projects and off for any projects with Stickies created prior to the June 2022 release for Revit 2020-2023. Please refer to this online Help file for additional details.

Stick Settings

The improved Sticky schedule width calculation is turned on for any new projects. This can be accessed via the Settings cog from the Ideate Sticky main dialog.

All customers are encouraged to deploy the latest version of Ideate Sticky for Revit versions 2020-2023 to take advantage of this improvement. Because this feature controls the size of text it is imperative that all users within the company are utilizing the same build version for Ideate Sticky. 

Keep those amazing questions coming to [email protected], because this is critically important feedback allows us to continue to improve our software every release.
 

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September

13

2022

San Francisco, CA, September 13, 2022 – Ideate Software, an Autodesk® AEC Industry Partner and Autodesk® Authorized Developer, is pleased to announce that Nivin Nabeel joined the team as a customer success manager for the Americas region. Nivin will work with architecture, engineering, construction, and owner-operator (AECO) companies throughout North and South America to help them get a strong return on their investments in both Ideate Software tools and Autodesk Revit® software. 

Nivin NabeelNivin has extensive experience in managing and manipulating BIM data, developing and implementing BIM standards and workflows, and applying BIM workflows to ancillary project components for improved efficiency. She also has knowledge of Revit software, Ideate Software products, and the AECO industry. 

“Over the years, Nivin has worked at several architecture and design firms where she learned about our software, used it, advocated for it, implemented it, and trained coworkers and consultants on how to use it,” said Glynnis Patterson, Director of Software Development, Ideate Software. “Our customers will benefit from her knowledge, talent, and enthusiasm as she helps them gain the efficiencies possible with all our Revit add-ins.”  

“I am thrilled to be with Ideate Software,” said Nivin. “I have used all their products to streamline processes like developing quantity takeoffs, managing parameters and deliverables, and extracting data from Revit models, including ones not exposed to users through the Revit environment. I also used them to standardize internal workflows that the whole team used to maintain Revit model health. As a customer success manager, I’ll get to help so many companies realize the same efficiencies, which in turn will help them deliver a better customer experience while advancing the AECO community as a whole.”

Nivin has a Bachelor of Architectural Science degree from Toronto Metropolitan University. She is based out of Toronto, Canada. 

People attending Autodesk University 2022 in New Orleans September 27-29 are invited to stop by booth AE433 to meet Nivin and other Ideate Software team members while enjoying beignets and discussions on BIM, Revit, and Ideate Software add-ins. 


About Ideate Software - Ideate Software, an Autodesk® AEC Industry Partner and Autodesk® Authorized Developer, empowers Revit users to gain unprecedented control over their data. We developed Ideate BIMLink, Ideate Explorer, Ideate Sticky, IdeateApps, and Ideate StyleManager to solve persistent problems in architecture, engineering, and construction, and owner-operator (AECO) workflows. We developed Ideate Automation to boost the power of our Revit plugins by running time-intensive activities in the background. Ideate Software solutions enable Revit users to save time, increase accuracy, improve project deliverables, and elevate design.

Autodesk and Autodesk Revit are trademarks of Autodesk, Inc. and/or its subsidiaries and/or affiliates in the USA and/or other countries.

 

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September

9

2022

Ideate Automation is a new desktop solution from Ideate Software that leverages some of the Forge APIs but does not require the use of any Autodesk Cloud Credits. If you, like me, struggle with a few of the words in that last sentence, read on. In this blog post we’ll discuss what Forge is, how it is used by Ideate Automation, and clarify that no Autodesk Cloud Credits are used by Ideate Automation.

What is Forge?

Forge is a platform of web service APIs (application programming interface) that allow you to integrate Autodesk cloud software products such as Fusion Team and BIM 360 Docs into your workflows and embed their components into your own applications. There is a nice class from the London 2017 Autodesk University called “What the Heck is Forge” where you can learn much more on this topic. 

Components of Forge
 
The Autodesk cost of using the Forge APIs is borne directly by the third-party partner/developers, and then passed along to the end customer, but only when certain APIs are used. Ideate Automation does not use the Forge APIs that consume cloud credits.

What is Ideate Automation?

You can increase productivity, eliminate the need to train staff on repetitive tasks, and ensure task outcomes are highly predictable, free of user errors, and standardized with Ideate Automation for Revit. This scripting solution runs time-intensive BIM tasks in the background while staff does more meaningful work. Either started manually or scheduled to run at night, Ideate Automation is empowering and cost effective. You can learn about some of the most common examples of Revit task automation here.

Ideate Automation

Ideate Automation utilizes some of the Autodesk Forge APIs so that customers can log in to their Autodesk user accounts to directly access their live Revit models on any BIM 360/ACC (Autodesk Construction Cloud) hubs to which our custom integration has been applied. In the image above, I have logged in to build the list of all the hubs and projects to which I have access. Once this is done, I do not need to remain logged in unless a new hub, project, or file is needed. If you are not using BIM 360/ACC to store your Revit live models, then you do not need to set up the integration in order to use Ideate Automation.

How Can I Trial Ideate Automation?

You can use Ideate Automation at no cost via our 30-day trial. To begin, download the trial and follow our Getting Started Guide.


About the Author

Glynnis Patterson, NCARB – Director of Software Development
Glynnis is a registered architect and has worked within the building information modeling (BIM) industry since 1998. A graduate of Carnegie Mellon University, she has worked as an architect, educator and construction site manager. Glynnis is the Director of Software Development Services and continues to work with AECO clients worldwide, developing, and consulting on solutions to BIM challenges. In her spare time, Glynnis volunteers for the local high school and with growitgreenmorristown.org. Find Glynnis on LinkedIn.

 

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September

7

2022

Ideate BIMLink can be utilized to batch rename and renumber sheets in your Revit project. The Revit interface has limitations in terms of editing large amount of data. Ideate BIMLink allows you to edit model data by exporting it to Excel and pushing it back into Revit. The basic steps for this process are covered in our Help topic: How to Batch Rename or Renumber Sheets.

If you need to tackle some more complex challenges, in this blog post I’ll highlight the power of Excel functions and formulas when utilizing Ideate BIMLink for sheet renumbering.

Here is an example:  

Sheet Renumbering

  1. Utilize the adjacent column to enter the following formula, then drag down to autofill the values.

    =LEFT(A1,1)&"."&TEXT((RIGHT(A1,3)+10),"000")

    List of Excel functions utilized in this function:
     
    =LEFT(text,[num_char]) Returns the specified number of characters to the start of a text string
    =RIGHT(text,[num_char])  Returns the specified number of characters to the end of a text string
    & Operator to concatenate string data by merging and combining
    “ ” Converting operators, numbers or symbols into string
     Addition
    =TEXT(value,format_text)   Converts value into text into a specific number format
  2. Copy the resulting information from column B and use the Paste Special>Values function to move the data back into Sheet Number column, save Excel, and import it back into Revit via Ideate BIMLink.

    Save Excel and Import to Revit via Ideate BIMLink

    This is the result: 

    Renumbering Sheets

   
For additional training tips, check out our Training blog series.

Browse our website to learn more about how Ideate Software add-on products help Revit users save time, increase model accuracy, improve deliverables and elevate design. You can give them a try by downloading trial versions or purchasing the bundle for access to the Revit plugin solutions Ideate BIMLink, Ideate Explorer, Ideate Sticky, Ideate StyleManager, and IdeateApps for six months. 

 


About the Author

Nivin Nabeel, Customer Success Manager, Americas

Nivin has a background in architecture, visual arts, and computer science and has extensive experience in managing and manipulating BIM data, developing and implementing BIM standards and workflows, and applying BIM workflows to ancillary project components for improved efficiency. Before joining Ideate Software, Nivin worked at several architecture and design firms where she learned about Ideate Software products, used them, advocated for them, implemented them, and trained others on how to use them. She earned her Bachelor of Architectural Science degree from Toronto Metropolitan University. Follow Nivin on LinkedIn.

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August

31

2022

Ideate Software is all about increasing the productivity, or the quality of work, plus the efficiency, or how well the resources available are used to produce that work, of architecture, engineering, construction, and owner-operator (AECO) professionals that work with Revit. As BIM tool adoption among AEC firms rises, and since Revit is the top BIM tool in the AEC community, the Ideate Software team has the opportunity to work with companies of all sizes and in all disciplines in multiple countries around the world. We learn about the workflows that create challenges, both in terms of model accuracy and time spent on model management, and we develop plugins for Revit that address those challenges. Visit our website for details about our solutions for Revit users, including product details, how-to videos, blog posts with step-by-step instructions, and information on free trials and subscription options. 

Confirming the Value of our Revit Solutions

There are many plugins for Revit on the market, and some of them are inexpensive or even free. At Ideate Software, we deliver value, and we charge appropriately (see blog post). So how do we get the message out about Ideate Software products and demonstrate that they deliver a strong return on investment? One way is by sharing the results of a survey in which we asked Ideate BIMLink and Ideate Explorer customers from around the world about the amount of time they save by using the products.  

Survey Results - Ideate BIMLink 

Our Ideate BIMLink plugin for Revit saves users time and increases the accuracy of the data in their models by enabling them to export data from Revit to Excel, where they can quickly verify, correct, and update massive amounts of data, and then import that data back from Excel to Revit in order to make changes in the Revit model.

Here are some of the most significant time savings reported by Ideate BIMLink users:

In the “Common Workflows for Any Discipline” category, our customers reported that they saved an average of:

  • 40 hours per project preparing for COBie deliverables by editing and completing COBie-required data fields for the handover deliverables
     
  • 25 hours per project developing project health checks by scheduling multiple Revit properties and categories, both visible and not readily visible within the model, to make informed decisions on what to include as part of a health check
     
  • 25 hours per project managing overall schedule data by editing in Excel instead of Revit, insuring speed and accuracy of model data editing and management

Here’s a link to the information on our website, and here are links to the detailed reports by discipline:

Want to determine how much time and money you could save by using Ideate BIMLink plugin for Revit? 

Check out our Ideate BIMLink ROI Calculator. Simply select the tasks that your office performs from a list of common tasks and input:

  • How often each task is performed on a project
  • How long the task takes
  • Your average number of projects a year
  • The average billing rate of Revit users 

    Ideate BIMLink ROI Calculator

Survey Results - Ideate Explorer

Building information modeling (BIM) with this plugin for Revit is much faster because the tool reduces the time that Revit users spend searching for and editing elements in a Revit model. 

When surveying Ideate Explorer users, we asked them how they use Ideate Explorer and how often they use it. Here’s a link to the whole report. Below are three examples:

  • Frequency: Daily
    Task: Select and Filter Instances

    Ideate Explorer is a great substitution for the Revit selection filter, because it allows users to select from a list of Revit elements down to the individual instances. Then they can use its built-in functionality and Revit commands to further review or make changes to the selection.
     
  • Frequency: Weekly
    Task: Review Element Counts

    Ideate Explorer allows users to track the progress of Revit models over time by gathering total model element counts and total counts per category, such as under/over usage of certain categories and families, placed vs. unplaced views, etc. Users can drill down to element counts for each category and type used.
     
  • Frequency: Varies
    Task: Refine Element Selection

    The Query function within Ideate Explorer allows users to refine a selection of elements by selecting from a large list of parameters, including some not accessible by Revit. The many additional parameters listed include Created By, Last Edited By, Is Pinned, Is In Place, Is Flipped, and Is Nested.

To help Ideate Explorer customers calculate the time savings and convert that time savings in cost savings, we developed the Ideate Explorer ROI calculator. Stakeholders simply enter information about the average time savings per week, average number of Revit users, and average number of work weeks per year to determine the approximate hours saved per week and per year. Then simply plug in the average hourly billing rate of Revit users to get the approximate cost savings.  

Ideate Explorer ROI Calculator

By taking the time to calculate the return on investment and truly understand how money is spent and how our Revit plugins can save money, stakeholders will be well-prepared to have a discussion with leadership about recommendations.

A Customer Example - Steinberg Hart

We were pleased to present a blog post by our customer Steinberg Hart in which they shared how they got their team and leadership to support subscribing to IdeateApps, a collection of tools that automates common Revit tasks. Gautam Shenoy said, “For team buy in, I show how the technology will streamline processes, save time, and improve quality. For leadership buy in, I justify the expense by demonstrating a positive ROI based on its inference on the fee, time invested, and time spent.”

To determine the value of the tools in the IdeateApps collection, Gautam noted the relevant tasks performed by each tool, how much time he and his team spent performing them manually, and how much time they would take using the tools. He used this information to understand the value of the tools and to justify the move to IdeateApps to both his team and company leadership.

In addition to presenting the details in a blog post, we welcomed Gautam to present his process on a webinar, Developing Efficient Processes with Ideate Software and Gautam Shenoy from Steinberg Hart.  

Read Customer Success Stories

We are proud to be associated with leading architecture, engineering, constructions, and owner-operator companies around the world. To read about how some of them use our Revit plugins to save time, improve data accuracy, and increase the health of their Revit models, see the success stories we have posted on our website. 

Learn More about how to Increase Productivity and Efficiency with Plugins for Revit by Ideate Software 

If you’re interested in BIM, you likely use Revit. Our plugins for Revit are worth a look. Browse our website to explore Ideate Software’s range of Revit tools and see how they can make your Revit projects faster, simpler, and more productive and efficient.

Stay Connected

Check us out on Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook, and YouTube.

If you have any questions, reach out to us. We are here to help you understand and use our Revit plugin solutions. 

Browse our website to learn more about how Ideate Software add-on products help Revit users save time, increase model accuracy, improve deliverables and elevate design. You can give them a try by downloading trial versions or purchasing the bundle for access to the Revit plugin solutions Ideate BIMLink, Ideate Explorer, Ideate Sticky, Ideate StyleManager, and IdeateApps for six months.

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