February

2

2021

We were honored that in 2020, ZGF Architects, BD Mackey Consulting and BIM Guru participated in our webinar series on how customers use Ideate Software solutions. In case you missed the webinars or you’d like to watch them again or share them with your colleagues, below are the links. The recordings are also in our Customer Webinars Playlist on our YouTube Channel. 

If you are interested in showcasing your company, BIM management best practices and use of Ideate Software solutions, please contact us. We’d love to hear from you and share your expertise with our customers.

ZGF Architects and Ideate Software Unveil Winning Revit Strategies


 

Simplify Revit Tasks with Brian Mackey and Ideate Software


 

Revit Model Management with Gavin Crump and Ideate Software


 

We’d also encourage you to access customer-focused webinars from previous years, filled with Revit data management tips and tricks shared by BIM professionals from the following firms:

We will continue this series in 2021, so please keep an eye on our Events page for details. If you’d like to be added to our email distribution list, send a note to [email protected].


 

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January

28

2021

We continuously monitor Autodesk Forums, Revit user groups, industry blogs, newsletters, and other events to keep our pulse on AECO trends and discussions. Much of our team also subscribes to local business, real estate, construction and AEC design news from different regions around the world. So, it’s very easy for us to express that we feel very connected to the AECO community!

We would like our customers to know that we frequently monitor the Revit Public Roadmap plus the Revit Ideas Forums. We want to ensure our tools help fill some of the workflow gaps that may exist within the current Revit building information modeling ecosystem.

“We take great pride in developing tools that address persistent challenges faced by Revit users,” said Glynnis Patterson, Director of Ideate Software Development.

So today, we are launching an Ideate Software blog series entitled Wishlist Granted. Each blog article will feature real user requests and our responses to those requests. So, let’s kick things off with a top request and one of our most beloved features.

If you search the Autodesk Revit Ideas Forum, you will see many requests for sheet and view improvements and features. A top request is the ability to duplicate or copy a Revit sheet. Currently, there is no work-around to accomplish this within Revit. As you can see below, the right-click duplicate options are grayed out when trying to duplicate a Revit sheet.

This duplicate ability has been a long-standing request. The request on the Revit Ideas Forum has almost 500 votes. It was recently requested again in 2020, so we can see that it is still very much a valuable and needed workflow.

Ideate Clone to the Rescue!

Ideate Software introduced Ideate Clone as part of IdeateApps in 2017, shortly after the initial Revit ideas request listed above. Ideate Clone allows you to copy a sheet with viewports. The new sheet will match all the title block and sheet properties. Additionally, Ideate Clone lets you place unplaced views onto the newly created sheet so that they align with the previous viewports.

  • You can swap one viewport for another viewport and keep them aligned from the existing sheet to the cloned sheet.
  • You can duplicate or duplicate with detailing any viewport on the existing sheet while also enabling a search and replace or adding a prefix or suffix during the process.
  • If you choose none, the viewport will not be duplicated or swapped to the newly cloned sheet.
  • You can place the same schedule or legend from the existing sheet to the cloned sheet, since Revit allows schedules and legends to appear on multiple sheets.
  • You can select a placeholder sheet as the basis for your cloned sheet.

Ideate Clone - Duplicate a Revit Sheet

Please review this comprehensive overview video on Ideate Clone. Astute viewers will see that we have added the ability to search and replace information for the duplicated view same since this video was created. It’s always a good idea to review the Help topic on Ideate Clone, and be sure to check out the Frequently Asked Questions.

Ideate Clone is only one tool in a series of sheet and view tools within IdeateApps. Please review the recording of this recent webinar to see all the powerful tools in action.

At Ideate Software, we are focused on delighting our customers. With Ideate Software there is no need to wait for future Revit releases to see your idea turned into a reality.

Wishlist Granted!

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Please review our other Wishlist Granted posts.


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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January

27

2021

There are so many things we cannot control. Spelling errors are not out of your control. Use IdeateApps to fix all the spelling errors in your Revit projects.

Did you know that Revit’s spell check tool only covers a small fraction of the potential spelling errors in your project? 

Ideate SpellCheck vs Revit

And speaking of improving in the New Year, we are thankful for our customers who help us improve. Last year Mike Johns, Senior Project Manager at Batson Associates helped us identify a performance problem with our Ideate SpellCheck tool. It turns out that a Microsoft Windows 10 update caused the issue. With Mike’s help we were able to identify the problem, test, and then publish a fix to keep our customers up and running smoothly. Mike told us that he “did not truly realize how nice Ideate SpellCheck was until I had to spell check three large jobs.” Thanks for helping us improve Mike!

Be sure to download the latest version of IdeateApps or the latest bundled product version to get the benefits of all new features and fixes for Revit versions ,2018-2021. 


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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December

15

2020

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.   

Here is the first part of Paul’s article where he talks about Ideate QuickSelect and Ideate Explorer. We will post the second part about Ideate StyleManager in January.


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 on Ideate QuickSelect and Ideate Explorer in this article, the complete suite of Revit solutions offered by Ideate Software is worth your taking the time to fully explore. 

Ideate QuickSelect

Let’s start with Ideate QuickSelect. This is a very simple but highly useful tool. Whenever I deliver beginner level Revit training, element selection is one of the first things we discuss. Editing in Revit (like any graphical software package) begins with a selection of elements onscreen. The software offers many ways to do this directly with your mouse and various modifier keys on the keyboard. Such methods are fine for simple selections. However, when you need to make a more complex selection, it can sometimes be challenging and/or time consuming using the native tools. For example, let’s say you have a large plan and want a selection containing only doors and windows. You can box select (with a window or crossing selection), and then filter out all categories except Doors and Windows in the Filter dialog. This is effective, but it limits you to selecting by category only. For example, if you only want some of the doors, you must be much more strategic about your initial selection (to avoid the ones you don’t want) and then filter from there. The other out-of-the-box method that is quite handy is the right-click option to select all instances. This is effectively “select by type.” Right-click an element and then using this method, select other element of the same type as the one selected. 

But what if you want to select two types, but not a third? And what if getting that initial selection just right to avoid the ones you don’t want is too tricky? Or what if you want to add to or remove from the selection later without manually CTRL and SHIFT clicking? These are the times when Ideate QuickSelect comes in. 

Ideate QuickSelect combines the best of the filter and right-click methods into a single modeless dialog. It lets you make selections from the active view, your entire project or even from an existing selection (like Filter). Best of all, it lists all elements in their familiar hierarchical tree starting at Category and progressing through Family, Type and even Instance. You simply expand your way down the tree and check the boxes at any level to select. 

Paul Aubin Review

Figure 1 - Select items by checking the boxes next to categories, families, types or even instances

Additionally, as you expand each branch you will see the quantity of elements at that level (even before they are selected). If you expand the branch all the way, you will see each instance listed. If you double-click on an instance shown, the active view will zoom to that element. 

If you choose the “Entire Project” option from the Display drop-down at the top, and then double-click an element, an appropriate view will be found and opened to display the element (if it is not visible in the current view). Furthermore, changing the Display options at the top will not drop the selection! So, any elements already selected in the list will remain selected. Naturally, this could be a little risky when using the “Entire Project” option, so I recommend caution or sticking with the “active View” display option most of the time. 

Ideate Explorer

Want even more control over your selection? Try Ideate Explorer. Ideate Explorer has all the features of Ideate QuickSelect plus other tools useful for auditing the project. I won’t dig into all its nuances in this article and will instead remain focused on selection. (However, there are excellent videos on the Ideate Software website that cover the complete functionality of Ideate Explorer and all the other Ideate Software tools). Ideate Explorer adds sorting and filtering to the selection. This means that you can choose from several other sorting schemes rather than the default of Category. 

But what I like best is that you can use Filters. Now these are Revit View Filters that we are talking about here. So, if you have configured Filters to use in your Visibility/Graphics Overrides, they can be used in Ideate Explorer to assist in selection! 

For example, in the next figure I have a project with many elements in the Site category. The left side shows that there are 1,510 such elements in the project. However, I have added information to the properties of many of these elements and a corresponding filter that lets me customize their visibility in certain views using that information. Using that same Filter in Ideate Explorer (shown on the right), you can see that it limits the selection to only 473 elements. This makes it very easy to select exactly the elements needed and leverage all those carefully crafted Filters you may have in your projects. By far one of my favorite selection tricks available in the Ideate Software tools. 

Figure 2 - Using Ideate Explorer, you can use your Revit display Filters to assist in selection

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

Keep an eye out for the second half of my article where I will talk about Ideate StyleManager. 

Disclosure: I have been granted a license to the Ideate Software solutions in exchange for my honest review of the software. The views in this article are my own. 

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September

17

2020

Previously, I wrote a blog post on the Settings Menu for Ideate Sticky.

In addition to Ideate Sticky, we added the Settings Menu icon to many of our other applications, including Ideate BIMLink, Ideate Explorer, Ideate ReNumber, Ideate SheetManager, and Ideate ViewCreator. The settings icon, represented by a cog wheel, is generally where you will find specific settings, such as default library or rule paths, as well as any default mapping or creation settings.

Cog icon
The Ideate SheetManager settings menu can be accessed by selecting the Cog Icon in the upper right hand of the main Ideate SheetManager dialog.

Today, let us explore the Ideate SheetManager settings and see how easy it is to layout views on a sheet using the ability to set Viewport Types as well as the specific area for view placement within the defined Title Block and sheet.

The Problem

We need the ability to quickly select the proper Viewport Type and view location on a sheet. Ideate Software tools allow you to simultaneously drag and drop multiple views onto a sheet, but how can you control their default location as well as the Viewport Type for different views?

Ideate SheetManager

The Solution 

The Ideate SheetManager settings menu allows you easy control of Viewport Types as well as the Viewport locations within the Title Block area.

Ideate SheetManager

Review this short 3-minute video to see how you can use the power of the Ideate SheetManager Settings Menu to quickly configure the Title Block sheet for the tasks you need to accomplish.


 

We have a wealth of information on Ideate SheetManager and the ease of managing Sheets and Views.  Please review these additional blog posts on related topics for Ideate SheetManager:

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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