San Francisco, CA, July 12, 2022 – Ideate Software, an Autodesk® AEC Industry Partner and Autodesk® Authorized Developer, announced enhancements to its Revit plugin applications. In addition to aligning its software with Revit 2023, Ideate Software made significant improvements that will help Revit users deliver high-quality models in less time.

Perform Time-Intensive Tasks in the Background with Ideate Automation 2.0

“One of the most significant changes made is the release of Ideate Automation 2.0, a scripting solution that links to all our Revit plugins to run time-intensive tasks in the background, including the much-requested .pdf export process,” said Glynnis Patterson, Director of Software Development, Ideate Software. “With Ideate Automation, users no longer need to wait for their computers to open Revit models and chug through all their data. Not only does task automation free staff for higher level engineering and design work, it also has the benefit of ensuring that task outcomes are highly predictable and standardized.”

Improve Revit Data Management with Several Enhancements

  • Reviewing 2D annotations and clashes is now possible with Ideate Annotate, a new tool added to the IdeateApps collection that simplifies common tasks performed by daily Revit users.  
  • Revit users can now use extended search capabilities to find Revit elements by their respective tag values, such as for door, structural framing, or mechanical equipment tags with Ideate Explorer, a powerful model auditing engine. 
  • Maintaining model health is easier than ever with enhancements to Ideate BIMLink:
    • Health Check folder has two new library links: HC-Ideate Types and HC-Worksets
    • The ability to rename worksets and review number of Revit elements assigned has been added
    • Detail Groups and Attached Detail Groups are available within many link definitions
    • Excel macro template for creating spreadsheets of all sheet revisions on the sheet now includes numeric, alphanumeric, and custom revision numbering settings
    • Several new library link definitions added for Industry Foundation Class data exchange and support for newly built-in IFC parameters
    • New ability to report on shared, non-shared project, and global parameters  
  • The addition of Parameters and Global Parameters to the main ribbon menu in Ideate StyleManager simplifies the complex process of managing Revit Parameters in Revit models; users can now understand exactly where and how these parameters are being used.

Current subscribers have access to the current Revit-compatible version plus three earlier versions as well as access to point release improvements made during the subscription period. Those who aren’t subscribers yet can download trial versions from the Ideate Software website or purchase our “get-to-know-us” bundle for access to Revit plugins Ideate Explorer, Ideate BIMLink, Ideate Sticky, Ideate StyleManager, and IdeateApps by Ideate Software. Free trials of Ideate Automation are also available.

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.

Microsoft Excel is a registered trademark of Microsoft Corporation in the United States and other countries. All other brand names, product names or trademarks belong to their respective holders.


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We all love a good Revit model. It helps architects finetune and share their visions, it enables all engineering teams to confirm their designs don’t clash with others, and it increases the productivity of construction and maintenance crews. Through detailed 3D models, Revit speeds the design process and reduces the chances of costly mistakes. 

What makes a Revit model so powerful? Data! Massive amounts of data. 

While all that data is what gives a model its strength, it also can be a model’s downfall: obsolete elements, imported data, incorrect styles, and more can cause performance and documentation issues. 

To avoid these issues and keep your projects moving along smoothly, it’s important to manage that data. Proactively managing the data is best. Knowing where to turn when things take a turn for the worse is also important. 

In this post, I share information about what causes Revit model problems, symptoms of unhealthy models, and how Ideate Software plugins for Revit can help you proactively audit files and to clean up problem items. 


How does all that extra data get into models?  


Too Much Revit DataWhen done correctly, using copy/paste to bring existing data into a model and linking to previous projects can save a lot of time, but when done incorrectly, they can bring in massive amounts of unnecessary data associated with the original files.  
When you do any of the following activities, you run the risk of bringing unneeded data into the Revit file:

  1. Load unvetted families 
  2. Link and bind Revit files 
  3. Link, import, or explode CAD files
  4. Transfer project standards
  5. Insert views and schedules
  6. Create a large quantity of lines and text objects

An Excessive Number of Warnings

A Revit error requires users to resolve the issue before continuing. However, a Revit warning simply informs of a condition that may affect the model, but it allows users to continue working. With looming deadlines, it can be tempting to put the warnings on a back burner. This practice can be problematic, because if the number of warnings climbs, it can impact model performance. 


Fortunately, model health problems typically start off small and show signs that indicate that problems are accumulating. Watch out for:  

  1. “Save” issues
  2. Long sync times
  3. Slow performance
    • Dialog boxes that take a long time to load
    • Slow commands
    • Slow opening views
  4. Linework that jumps while you zoom and pan
  5. Exporting and printing problems
  6. Model upgrade difficulties
  7. Crashing 

If you spot any of these signs, take action! If left unchecked, the problems can continue to compound, and you may end up getting a message that requires immediate, difficult, and time-consuming attention, such as: 

  • “A fatal error has occurred”
  • “Unrecoverable error”
  • “Missing elements”
  • “This model is incompatible with…”


It is much easier, less time consuming, and better for everyone involved in the project to prevent problems from reaching the tipping point than to try to fix a model on its deathbed. 


Before I joined Ideate Software in 2021, I had used its Revit plugins for more than 10 years; I knew they worked, and I knew the company was committed to developing solutions to real challenges faced by Revit users. In fact, I was part of several beta testing programs to verify that enhancements and new products addressed real needs, performed as described, and delivered exceptional value. 

Ideate Software products helped me keep my Revit models in top working condition, and I know they will do the same for you. 

Here are some ways Ideate Software add-ins for Revit can help you maintain model health: 

  • With Ideate BIMLink, you can export health check and QA/QC data from Revit into Microsoft Excel for review in Excel and Power BI where it is easy to locate, identify, and flag QA/QC issues or areas of concern.  

    Ideate BIMLink comes with more than 300 preconfigured links, or series of parameter data mapped together for export to Excel. These links make it easy for users to choose the items they want to review in Excel. And, because exporting a large amount of data from multiple files can take a long time, Ideate Software developed Ideate Automation to automates the process. You can set it to run manually or schedule it to run at a more convenient time, such as overnight. 
  • Dig deep into your Revit models with our model browser, Ideate Explorer. Revit has a project browser, which isn’t as powerful. With Ideate Explorer you can easily complete on-demand reviews of QA/QC tasks such as finding and removing CAD imports; addressing group usage; querying element selections to determine if they are pinned, flipped, modelled as in-place families; and more. To give you added control over the data in your Revit model, Ideate Explorer comes with three components: 
    • As mentioned earlier in this article, Revit warnings can indicate that a model is unhealthy. With the Warnings Manager that comes with Ideate Explorer, warnings management is easy. The program ranks warnings, notifies users when models contain high-ranking warnings, and allows users to correct problems using tools in Revit when the Warnings Manager dialog box is open. 
    • Moving through view-based elements is not a problem with the Navigate function in our Revit add-in Ideate Explorer. With it, you can easily find unused sheets and views; find and filter legends, schedules, sheets, or views by category and/or keyword; and customize working environments without altering the project browser. 
    • Use the Query function that comes with Ideate Explorer to search within set parameters for elements such as unused annotations, revisions, in-place usage, design options, structure usage/area scheme, and more.  
  • Standard styles keep documentation looking nice and brand compliant. Non-standard styles can make documents look sloppy while also bloating file sizes and negatively impacting model performance. With Ideate StyleManager, another Revit plugin by Ideate Software, users can analyze, merge, or delete non-standard Revit styles faster and more accurately than they can when using the style management system that comes with Revit. 


The article above provides some information about how Ideate Software plugin tools for Revit help companies maintain Revit model health. Here’s a link to a webinar recording with more information as well as demonstrations. 

Webinar Recording: Step into the Clinic: Advanced Revit Model Health Checks


Considering the time, money, and frustrations you will save by keeping your Revit models healthy, don’t you owe it to yourself and your team to learn more about Ideate Software plugins? 

Browse our website for more information. You can read our blog posts, view our short how-to videos, and take a look at our robust Help files. And reach out to us at [email protected] to start the discussion on how Ideate Software plug-ins for Revit can help you improve the performance of your Revit models. 


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.

About the Author

Steve Deadman - Customer Success Manager - EMEA
Steve provides support to customers and helps them get a strong return on their software investment. He has a B.Eng (Hons) degree in Mechanical Engineering and various certifications in engineering. Before joining Ideate Software, he worked at several top architectural firm in the United Kingdom where he specialized in the implementation and management of BIM processes and technology. Find Steve on LinkedIn.



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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 Revit 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.

A recent customer contacted us to ask why the cell fill color and the colored text in Excel was displaying only black and white when they linked the Excel file into Revit as a Sticky schedule.

Several situations can prevent the desired colors from displaying within Revit.

  1. Excel may have an override Black and White setting selected within the Sheet tab of the Page Setup dialog. This will cause any Excel file to be black and white within either a Schedule or Image for Ideate Sticky. It’s important to understand that this setting will override any color setting you may have selected within Ideate Sticky Images method shown below.

    Ideate Sticky - Print Setting dialog within Excel
    Access the Page Setup – Print Settings dialog within Excel to review Sheet settings to ensure the Black and White override is not selected.
  2. If you are using the Images method within Ideate Sticky, there are additional settings to override the Excel, PDF, or Word document to Black and White or Grayscale. You can also make the background transparent which is extremely useful when you have multiple images on a view or sheet that are close to each other.

    Ideate Sticky Images Method
    For Ideate Sticky Images method, there are additional color, greyscale, and transparent settings.
  3. Conditional formatting is currently not supported within the Ideate Sticky Schedules method. Color fills, text overrides, etc., that are a result of conditional formatting will be ignored. The underlying cell formatting, which can be seen when you place your cursor within the cell, will be utilized instead.   However, this conditional formatting is now supported within the Ideate Sticky Images method. 

Here is an excellent blog post on color fills that was written before we introduced our Ideate Sticky images method. All the information within this blog is still valid for the Ideate Sticky Schedules method. If you want to see the conditional formatting, you should now use the Ideate Sticky Images method instead.

At the end of the day, this specific customer had the override Black and White checkbox selected within Excel. Unchecking that selection within Excel produced the desired colors within the Ideate Sticky schedule.

Keep those amazing questions coming to [email protected] and we will keep answering them!

Learn More

Browse our website to learn more about our Revit plugin tools. Download a free trial or subscribe today

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

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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More and more companies across the architecture, engineering, construction, and building-owner community (AECO) are adopting building information modeling (BIM) to improve decisions, communications, win rates, and employee and client relations while at the same time reducing on-site changes and enhancing efficiency during building maintenance and updates. As they move to BIM, many choose Autodesk Revit software, one of the most popular BIM authoring tools in the industry. They use it to create high-quality buildings and infrastructure by:

  • Modeling shapes, structures, and systems in 3D
  • Simplifying documentation work
  • Enabling analysis on the digital model that would not be possible without BIM
  • Empowering multidisciplinary teams in varied locations

A single source of truth for every stage of a building project, Revit provides project teams with access to current information, which increases accuracy, reduces rework, and helps keep projects on time and on budget. Here are just a few of the many ways AECO firms use Revit software: 

  • Building Information Modeling (BIM)Architects optimize building performance during the design stage and run cost estimates
  • Structural engineers create more detailed documentation of steel and concrete designs
  • MEP engineers conduct simulations and interference detection early in the design process
  • Construction teams make better planning and preconstruction decisions earlier
  • Building owners locate components in walls before beginning remodel activities

Revit Limitations

As powerful as Revit is, it does have limitations. Many processes, like updating elements, styles, and data such as room numbers, are manual, and some processes, like search, warnings management, and spellcheck don’t dig as deep as users would like. While completing these tasks in Revit is possible, the processes can be incredibly time consuming and monotonous, which means that the people performing the tasks can easily miss items, make mistakes, or spend hours trying to find hidden elements or repairing model damage done inadvertently. This not only frustrates the users, it also delays the project, frustrating internal project team members, external project team members, customers, and ultimately the company’s reputation. Because time is money, slow manual work costs a company a significant amount of money, and rework is an additional hit to the bottom line.

Filling the Gaps with Top Revit Plugins

The popularity of Revit software and its limitations have created opportunities for individuals and companies to create plugin software to fill the gaps. Since there are so many to choose from, how does a BIM manager or Revit user know where to turn? Some start with free applications, thinking that they are getting a good deal, only to discover that the “solutions” don’t solve anything, and in fact, they sometimes even create more problems. 

We recommend that you start with us. We are confident that you will find that our products, our people, and our company are just what you need to get the most out of your investment in Revit software. Here’s a link to a blog post with five questions to ask when evaluating Revit plug-ins and reasons Ideate Software rises to the top.

Here’s What you get When you Team with Ideate Software

Revit plugins that solve real Revit challenges

All Ideate Software products and product enhancements start with Revit users. We follow Revit forums, we talk with Revit users, and we participate in AECO industry events to learn about Revit challenges. Then we develop products or enhance existing products to address those specific challenges. Before releasing our plugins to the market, we work with users to beta test the features, get their feedback, and make adjustments as needed. You can be confident that every Ideate Software product on the market performs as described.

Here's a recorded webinar that highlights 10 features of Ideate Software products that came directly from Revit user requests:

Highlights of our why our Revit plugins are so popular:   

  1. Ideate Explorer

    Ideate Explorer users spend less time on model management by quickly finding and deleting incorrect, obsolete, and hidden problem items—including imported or linked DWG drawings—as well as finding, refining, and revising elements, even if they are not included in the Revit project browser. Ideate Explorer users also appreciate these features included with the Revit plugin:
    • Warnings Manager – Used to audit and address Revit warnings that are ranked by importance and to fix problems using tools in Revit while the Warnings Manager dialog box is open
    • Navigate – Used to navigate through the view-based elements and find unused sheets and views; find and filter legends, schedules, sheets, or views by category and/or keyword; and to customize working environments without altering the project browser 
    • Query – Used to search within set parameters for elements like unused annotations, design options, in-place usage, structure usage/area scheme, and revisions
  2. Ideate BIMLink

    Verifying and editing massive amounts of data in a Revit file can be difficult. Ideate BIMLink is on many people’s top Revit plugins list because it makes the process easy! Instead of working in Revit, Ideate BIMLink exports Revit data into Excel, where it can be viewed and manipulated, and then Ideate BIMLink imports the updated data back into Revit, and the model immediately updates. Users love that it saves them significant time and it improves the accuracy of their models. 
  3. Ideate Sticky

    Building ConstructionAll AECO project teams work with both BIM data and non-BIM data. Without Ideate Sticky, it is difficult to share nicely formatted non-BIM data with the team, and updates are not always communicated in a timely fashion. With Ideate Sticky, it’s easy. Ideate Sticky live-links Word, Excel, and PDF documents to the Revit file in what we call “Stickies.” They look nice, are easy to read, and any updates made to the original documents are automatically reflected in the Sticky. Whether it’s building codes, consultant data, abbreviation lists, general notes, or any of the many other non-BIM data critical to a project’s success, you can be sure your team has access to current information at all times.    
  4. Ideate StyleManager

    Revit users know that using the “Paste” function to get existing data into a model can bring the styles associated with that data along with it. Removing that data can be a time-consuming process, and not removing the data is risky, because it can clog up the model and cause performance problems. Ideate StyleManager is a popular Revit plugin because it solves this problem. With it, users quickly and easily analyze, merge, or delete non-standard Revit styles. They also use it to see the view filters applied to views, and to clean up object and line styles and patterns, text, fonts, and anything else that might require such attention. 
  5. IdeateApps

    Manual, tedious tasks take time away from creative activities and can contribute to mistakes, rework, and employee burnout. By providing several tools that automate hundreds of common tasks, IdeateApps has become a top plugin with Revit users around the world. The names of the tools describe what they do. Here are just a few of them: Ideate SpellCheck, Ideate Align, Ideate Clone, Ideate ViewCreator, and Ideate SheetManager. 

An experienced team committed to customer satisfaction

One of the reasons Ideate Software plugins for Revit are so popular is because people get to know our team and experience first-hand how every person takes great pride in helping them reach their goals. From the first contact, through webinars with Q&A sessions, questions about feature requests, and responsive support teams, customers know that each person brings experience within industry, with Revit software, and with Ideate Software tools. Read a bit about our team members’ impressive qualifications.

A company that considers itself successful when its customers succeed

Ideate Software is an Autodesk Authorized Developer and is a member of the Autodesk Developer Network. Since launching our first Revit plugin more than 14 years ago, we have worked tirelessly to develop software that helps our customers get the most out of Revit. We are driven by one thing: our customers’ success.

Stay Connected

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 accurate.

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. 

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San Francisco, CA, April 12, 2022 – Ideate Software, an Autodesk® AEC Industry Partner and Autodesk® Authorized Developer, is pleased to present its latest customer spotlight, which highlights how JGMA benefits from Ideate Software add-ins for Revit. JGMA is a Chicago-based architecture and design firm with projects across North America, Latin America, Asia, and the Middle East. Its professionals look at each project as an opportunity to influence civic life and transform communities.

Bringing Ideate Software to JGMA

Esperanza Health Centers designed by JGMA
Esperanza Health Centers. JGMA designed this fully accessible building utilizing forward-thinking design to attract and unite the surrounding community.

When Darya Minosyants Stefanovic joined JGMA as the Director of Technology, she brought extensive experience with Ideate Software tools for Revit. “My last employer was a strong user and advocate of Ideate Software products,” said Darya. “I came to JGMA knowing their power, and after a few discussions and demonstrations of how we would spend less time on tedious Revit tasks, the team was sold.”

JGMA subscribed to Ideate Software plugins for Revit ((Ideate Explorer, Ideate BIMLink, Ideate Sticky, IdeateApps, and Ideate StyleManager), and within just a few weeks, the team was experiencing significant benefits:

  • Ideate StyleManager – Darya uses this Revit plug-in tool to streamline the process of managing templates and ensuring projects are set up with company standards. 
  • Ideate BIMLink – The architects and designers are digging into the functions of Ideate BIMLink for Revit. They immediately appreciated the fact that it enables them to quickly change worksets throughout a project and rename families.
  • Ideate Sticky – JGMA works extensively in MS Excel. They benefit from live-linking Excel spreadsheets to Revit projects, so the Stickies automatically reflect changes made to the Excel document.
  • Ideate Explorer – JGMA’s Senior Project Designer Ted Hogan has been advocating for the use of Ideate Explorer. As the team delves into the many ways it can help keep their models clean, they are using it get a broader understanding by isolating and previewing elements in 3D. 
  • IdeateApps – So far, JGMA’s favorite tools from the collection are Ideate SheetManager, which they use to quickly clone sheets with similar properties, place views on sheets, and align views between similar sheets and Ideate QuickSelect,which makes it easy to find out why elements are hidden and resolve problems. 

Read more about Ideate Software’s collaboration with JGMA. 

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

About Ideate Software - Ideate Software, an Autodesk® AEC Industry Partner and Autodesk® Authorized Developer, empowers Revit users to gain unprecedented control over their data. Ideate BIMLink, Ideate Explorer, Ideate Sticky, IdeateApps, and Ideate StyleManager were all developed to solve persistent problems in architecture, engineering, construction, and owner (AECO) workflows. 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.

Microsoft Excel and Microsoft Word are registered trademarks of Microsoft Corporation in the United States and other countries. All other brand names, product names or trademarks belong to their respective holders.


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