March

15

2022

Thank you to everyone who tuned into the live webinar on Revit sheet and view Management. If you missed it or would like to listen again, here’s a link to the recording. Take just 30 minutes to learn how to use the four sheet and view tools within the IdeateApps collection to:

  1. Create plans from levels quickly and efficiently
  2. Bulk create views
  3. Create views from room objects
  4. Place views on sheets efficiently
  5. Create sheets from views

About the Sheet and View Tools

  • Ideate SheetManager – Placing views on sheets from the Revit project browser is time consuming. Ideate SheetManager streamlines the process for all Revit users who need to find, open or compose sheets with views by allowing you to place multiple views quickly and easily navigate sheets. 
     
  • Ideate Align – The process of using the guide grid to place views on sheets in Revit is time consuming, but aligned views are critical for end users to understand the project’s intent. Ideate Align makes it easy.
     
  • Ideate Clone – Autodesk Revit software doesn’t support copying and swapping sheets with different views. Ideate Clone automates these processes so you can reduce errors and improve the look of Revit project deliverables. 
     
  • Ideate ViewCreator – Eliminate the need to manually apply settings by easily creating logical, user-defined names for new views that will match existing crop, scope, scale, and dozens of other system and custom parameters.

Visit 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 all the Revit plugin solutions 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.

-------------------------------------------------------------------

More Recorded Webinars

Following all our webinars, we post short articles in our blog with summaries and links to the recordings. Here are links to four blog posts/recordings on recent webinars that provide valuable information and demonstrations for users of BIM, Revit software and Ideate Software plugin tools for Revit. 

  • 02-16-22 Online User Group Meeting on Parameters - Revit parameters are such a common topic of questions that we dedicated a whole, one-hour user group meeting to the subject. Watch the recording for a high-level overview. For those wanting more details, Parameter Primer Part 1 and Parameter Primer Part 2 are for you. The 02-16-22 user group meeting covered the different kind of parameters and described the situations in which to use one over another. In addition to discussing and demonstrating Revit parameter creation methods, we polled attendees on how they use global parameters, their biggest parameter management challenge, and how often they create parameters. Listen in to hear how your company compares with others. We also shared insight on recent changes to Revit parameters, strategies to working with parameters across Revit versions, shifting terms in Revit that cause confusion and shared parameters that don’t behave as expected. 
     
  • 01-26-22 Q&A Session with Ideate Software - Want to know how your peers are using Ideate Software plugins for Revit? Watch the recording of this Q&A session! People from throughout the architecture, engineering, construction, and building-owner (AECO) community submitted some questions ahead of time and asked more while on the call. The questions included how to document and compare Revit template settings, how to analyze parameters in families and project templates, how Ideate BIMLink works with Power BI, how to use the edit rules in Ideate ViewCreator and many more! 
     
  • 12-07-21 Panel Discussion: What’s the Current State of BIM? - Building information modeling is consistently evolving. To help customers stay current on trends and to hear thoughts from professionals with extensive experience consulting on BIM to architecture, engineering, construction and building-owner companies, we hosted this one-hour discussion. Listen to the recording to hear from Holger de Groot, CEO and Founder or Modmation; Maciej Wypych, CTO and Co-Founder of Modmation; Brian Mackey, Founder of BD Mackey Consulting; and Sheena Shook, Director of Business Development at Modulus Consulting.   
     
  • 11-30-21 Webinar: How to use Ideate Software Tools to Efficiently Manage Revit Warnings. Hosted by The Architect’s Newspaper, this 30-minute webinar details what Revit warnings are, why they are important and why Revit users should care. Richard Taylor, our Technical Evangelist, also shared how to easily manage Revit warnings with our Ideate Explorer plug-in for Revit and how to easily conduct model health checks with Ideate Automation. He and Sash Kazeminejad, Customer Success Manager, also answered questions from participants. 

Ideate Software is committed to helping customers get a strong return on their investment in our Revit plug-in tools. In addition to blog posts, we have short how-to videos, Help files, and more available 24/7 on our website. Our Support Team is also here to help. 

Stay connected through Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and YouTube.

Read More

March

11

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 questions and answers via our Ideate Software Support Series blog category.

Recently, an Ideate Software customer asked us about the seemingly random colors that appear on Revit definitions within the Ideate StyleManager dialog. What do they mean? Definitions, such as Fill Patterns, assigned the same color are considered duplicates. You can more easily understand the color groupings if you select “Isolate Duplicates” as an option before you analyze.

Colors assigned for duplicate definitions with Ideate StyleManager for Revit
Colors will be assigned for duplicate definitions.

Select "Isolate Duplicates" to group and color code duplicates 
Revit elements will be grouped together and color coded together to indicate they are duplicates if the “Isolate Duplicates” option is selected. 

After a quick review of the same color combinations and naming, you may realize that a merge is required. As an example, it’s very easy to see that “diagonal up small” and “Diagonal up-small” are the SAME definitions with just different spelling and capitalization.

Check Duplicate Definitions when merging to limit list to duplicates
By checking the “Duplicate Definitions” option when you are merging, it will limit the available list to just those definitions that are considered duplicates.  This can make merging one definition into another MUCH easier to find.

If you have “Isolate Duplicates” still selected after completing the Merge operation, don’t be surprised that you can’t see your definition listed in the Ideate StyleManager dialog anymore. Since it’s not a duplicate definition anymore, you will have to uncheck that option to see the definition. For instance, you might want to now rename “Diagonal up-small” to something else.

After correcting duplicates, rename to standards

Now that we don’t have any duplicate definitions for Diagonal up-small, we can rename it to standards.

The colors within Ideate StyleManager are a quick way to review duplicate definitions and start to clean up your Revit model to match your company standards.

If you have any comments on how we can improve our user interfaces, please let us know! Just send an email to [email protected]

This post is part of a series of real questions posed to our Support team and our solutions. View more


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.

-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

In case you missed them, here are some other topics covered recently in our Support blog posts:

  1. Valentine Secrets Revealed for the Ideate BIMLink User Interface – Posted February 14, 2022, this article features our response to a customer who asked if Ideate BIMLink for Revit has the ability to apply some minor changes to Revit models without having to send the information to Excel and then import those changes back into the model. It does! In fact, this “inline editing” ability has been available within the Ideate BIMLink user interface for several years. Read the post for step-by-step instructions. 
     
  2. How do I load an existing Ideate BIMLink link definition? – Posted January 20, 2022, this article provides our detailed response to a longtime customer who contacted us about the ability to load an existing link definition, as it used to be available on the primary Ideate BIMLink dialog as a pull-down option. We shared that, in order to streamline the creation of NEW Ideate BIMLink link definitions, we moved the ability to load links under the NEW button. Read more in the article and get more information about loading link definitions via this Ideate BIMLink Help article.  
     
  3. How do I manage Revit health metrics and deploy Revit Warning standards for my company? – Live on our website starting on December 27, 2021, this blog post provides answers to the many customers managing Revit warnings data with Ideate Explorer, one of our Revit addin tool. The post details how to assign rankings to warnings, so you can focus your time on those most critical to your business. Read the related online Help topic, Deploying Warnings Standards to learn how to set up and deploy company standards that related to this Revit model health metric.
     
  4. Using Ideate BIMLink to Type Swap Revit Families While Preserving Instance Parameter Data – Posted on November 29, 2021, this blog post addresses an issue that customers reported: Some parameter data did not transfer when they type swapped old Revit families with newer ones with the same parameter data. We show how using Ideate BIMLink to type swap families and map parameter values to the new families is easier, more accurate, and takes a lot less time. 

Ideate Software is committed to helping customers get a strong return on their investment in our Revit plug-in tools. In addition to blog posts, we have short how-to videos, Help files, and more available 24/7 on our website. Our Support Team is also here to help. 

Stay connected through Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and YouTube.

Read More

March

4

2022

Recently I was approached by a couple of customers looking to solve similar challenges managing Room data:

  • One customer’s goal was to copy Room data from hundreds of rooms in one phase to rooms in the same location in another phase. The customer was unable to copy and paste the rooms to the next phase because the rooms for the next phase already existed, and the primary concern with deleting the new rooms and replacing them with the copy/pasted rooms was orphaning hundreds of room tags in consultant models that already referenced the new rooms. 
     
  • The other customer’s goal was to copy Room data from a linked architectural model into the rooms of an interiors model, since the Architectural model contained a lot of room data, and the Interiors consultant needed to match the architectural room data in their rooms so they could add additional room finish info to the rooms in their models. 

Managing these two similar situations requires some heavy lifting, and Ideate BIMLink was able to resolve these challenges easily. 

Copying Room Data to Other Places and Models with Ideate BIMLink – An Example

In the example shown below, we have Existing phase rooms (left image) that contain data that needs to be correlated with the New phase rooms (right image). Copying and pasting rooms between phases was no longer a viable option because of the situations mentioned earlier (click image to enlarge).

Copying Room Data with Ideate BIMLink
 

Rather than starting over and orphaning room tags, we can use Ideate BIMLink to list all the Existing and New phase room data, and then sort the room data by level, then by the rooms bounding box coordinates. This will help us identify rooms in the same location, even if they are in different phases. We can use the same process for linked models as well, so we can copy room data from a linked model into the active model. 

Since the room names, number, room centroid coordinates, and other (or linked models), we cannot rely on this data to match the information between the rooms, as shown here (click image to enlarge):

 Parameter data differs between the rooms in different phases

In Ideate BIMLink, we can create a link definition for rooms, and map parameters (1) such as the rooms level elevation, name, number, phase, coordinates, and any other data that we want to list, and copy over the relevant information to another phase or Revit model. We then sort the data (2) by the level elevation and then the X,Y coordinates for both the lower left and upper right corner of the rooms bounding box. Additionally, we can control which rooms phases we want to display (3) by selecting All phases – something that Revit cannot do through a schedule. Once we add the necessary room data, sort it, and filter it, we can see that the rooms listed are showing more than one phase (4) and are sorted by level elevation and X,Y bounding box coordinates (5) (click image to enlarge)

Create a link definition for rooms and map parameters with Ideate BIMLink
 
Looking at the coordinate data, we can see matches, which tells us that the rooms are in the same location in the model, even though the rooms exist in different phases and have different centroid coordinates. If we were to apply this workflow to linked models to capture linked room data so that we could copy that data to rooms in the host model, we would need to select Include linked elements (6) so that we can list the room data from the linked elements.

Now that the data has been properly sorted out, we can export this data to Excel, then copy the necessary room data from the existing phase rooms to the new phase rooms, and then import the changes back into the Revit model using Ideate BIMLink. If we review the updated data in Ideate BIMLink, we can now see that the room data between the Existing and New phase rooms is in alignment (click image to enlarge):

Room Data Between Existing and New Phase Rooms in Alignment

Using Ideate BIMLink to copy room data from one phase to another, or from one model to another, has never been so easy and powerful. Having the ability to confirm rooms that are in the same relative location by using the level elevation and X,Y coordinates for the room bounding box is key, as relying on the room centroid coordinates is unreliable since most users manually place rooms. 

Quick Tip – When a Manual Review May Be Needed

One thing to keep in mind is that if you run into some rooms that do not have the same X,Y bounding box coordinates between different phases or models, or you find a difference in room counts between phases or models, it could be an indication that additional rooms were added or removed between phases, or room bounding elements, such as walls or room boundary lines, were added or removed between phases. In these situations, a manual review of these select room elements may be necessary.

More Training Tips

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


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.

 

Read More

February

28

2022

Everyone at Ideate Software is obsessed with building information modeling (BIM). The ability to create and manage a digital model of a building and all its elements, from large complex HVAC systems to the direction a door swings is not only fascinating, but BIM has also transformed the building design and construction industries. We love being a part of that transformation.

What is BIM - Ideate SoftwareWith a staff of designers, builders, engineers, architects, and others who have hands-on experience in the field, we know the incredible benefits of being able to work together to make sure everything in the building fits together, provides easy access to parts that require manual manipulation (e.g., electrical panels, gas valves, water valves), efficiently heats and cools, meets codes and regulatory requirements, is aesthetically pleasing, etc., etc., etc. … BEFORE the building is ever built!

Benefits of BIM

BIM is a process that supports the creation and management of information across the lifecycle of a building or structure. 

What is BIM - Benefits of BIMWhen people think of BIM, they often think of the design and preconstruction phases, but BIM is beneficial at every stage of a building’s life. At Ideate Software, we talk about providing leading Revit BIM tools to the architecture, engineering, construction and building-owner (AECO) community, because like those involved in the early stage of a building’s lifecycle, building owners and managers with digital models reap significant benefits.

Some of the benefits achieved by AECO companies that leverage BIM are:

  1. Better collaboration. People in disciplines that once mainly worked independently now collaborate regularly, providing insights based on their experiences, sharing model updates, coordinating activities, verifying accuracy, and more. With everyone working together toward the same goal, many problems are avoided, and projects run more smoothly.
     
  2. Improved win rates. By providing an impressive visual experience during the proposal stage, companies demonstrate their understanding of the project, how they plan to help the prospective client achieve their goals, and their ability to accurately estimate timing and costs.
     
  3. Enhanced client relations. Using BIM throughout the building process keeps clients informed of how the building will look, how it fits into the existing environment, and how employees and visitors will interact with it. Design changes can be implemented quickly and communicated efficiently to all involved, reducing the chance of miscommunications and errors.  
     
  4. Reduced on-site changes. By verifying design efficacy in the model and performing clash detections, fewer changes are needed at the construction site. This brings projects to a close faster and for less cost. Also, BIM can greatly reduce the chance of rework caused by teams working with different versions of the plans, ordering the wrong material, or incorrectly scheduling deliveries or work crews.   
     
  5. Efficient building maintenance and updates. An accurate model of a building streamlines the process of handling emergencies, such as clogged drains or stalled elevators, or long-term projects such as reorganizing workstations, conference rooms and touchdown sites to accommodate more or fewer employees.
     
  6. Better choices, not guesses. An accurate digital model allows the designer to test different layouts for optimum energy consumption, review code compliance, and explore multiple design schemes or scenarios, and be able to know the building design is the best solution for the specified input criteria. It’s no longer a guess at which design is the best for the thousands of input specifications. Instead, designers can say with confidence that the building meets the design criteria and choices were made based on empirical data.

What are BIM tools?

Several BIM tools have been built to help companies capitalize on the advantages of BIM through design, simulation, visualization and collaboration.

Autodesk is a leading developer of BIM tools, including:

  • Revit – One of the most popular BIM authoring tools in the industry. It is used by architects, designers, MEP (mechanical, electrical and plumbing) specialists, contractors and more. 
     
  • Navisworks – The main difference between the Navisworks BIM tool and Revit is that Navisworks is more of a project review solution for AEC professionals rather than an authoring tool such as the Revit BIM tool.  It also works with other Autodesk 3D solutions to open, combine, review and navigate through models.
     
  • BIM 360/Autodesk Construction Cloud – This cloud-based software unifies different processes of design, project and construction into one single process, avoiding delays by providing disparate teams access to relevant data.
     
  • Civil 3D – Focused on developing civil engineering more accurately, this software also offers some BIM-related features and workflows. 

Ideate Software’s BIM Tools for Revit

While Autodesk Revit software is a powerful tool, some of its workflows are a bit unrefined, time consuming, or maybe even non-existent. Ideate Software was founded to address these workflow gaps and increase Revit productivity. Our experienced software engineers develop BIM tools for Revit workflows for companies in building design, engineering, construction and facilities management industries. By automating workflows that they perform over and over again as well as creating tools that fill gaps in Revit software workflows, our Revit BIM tools help users at large and small companies around the world get the most out of the software.

Why do we develop Revit BIM Tools?

We love BIM, we love Revit and we love making them better!

How do we do it?

What are BIM tools - How we do itBusinesses and industries are constantly changing. To ensure we develop BIM tools that Revit users from across the AECO spectrum will find valuable, we stay connected to the Revit community throughout the world. We attend conferences, lead breakout sessions, serve as keynote speakers, survey users, track support requests, monitor Revit discussion boards, and talk with users in groups and individually.

Another critical way we stay connected to the Revit community is through our beta testing program. By asking people who use Revit and our Revit BIM tools for feature requests, running our early ideas by them, and involving them in rigorous testing, we ensure our solutions, whether new or enhancements, are wanted and work as expected.  

Ideate Software’s BIM Tools for Revit Users

Ideate Software LogoIn 2008, we launched our first BIM tool for Revit, Ideate Explorer. Since that time, we have made significant enhancements to Ideate Explorer and launched/improved four more tools that solve persistent problems in Revit workflows. Here’s a quick overview of each of our five tools:

  1. Ideate BIMLink – Verifying or updating massive amounts of data in Revit is tedious, time consuming and frustrating. Every time you think you’re done, you realize that you missed something! Ideate BIMLink eliminates this problem by enabling you to move data from Revit into Excel, where you can use its powerful functions to quickly check, correct or change data. When you move the data back to Revit, your model automatically updates and everything is correct. Tasks that used to take hours now take just minutes.
     
  2. Ideate Explorer – We developed Ideate Explorer to improve the browser within Revit, which is simply a project browser. Ideate Explorer is a model browser, which means you can easily search for and find hidden problem items including DWG imports or links, navigate through view-based elements within Revit, search on parameters such as elements assigned a certain size, and even review and manage Revit warnings. 
     
  3. Ideate Sticky – How can you elegantly share non-BIM data associated with Revit projects with the entire team? Use Ideate Sticky! Use it to link data from Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Word and PDF documents into your Revit projects, ensuring everyone has the correct information at their fingertips at all times.
     
  4. Ideate StyleManager – Copying/pasting data is a fast way to reuse information, but the process comes with challenges. Style information associated with the data often tags along, creating a mess that can cause publishing errors and end-user confusion. With Ideate StyleManager, this is never a problem, because it’s easy to analyze, delete or merge non-standard styles.
     
  5. IdeateApps – This collection of nine tools streamlines tasks identified by Revit users as tedious, time consuming and error prone. By automating these common tasks, IdeateApps improves the quality of Revit models and frees the users’ time to do more interesting and valuable activities.

Visit our website to learn more about our Revit BIM Tools. When you’re ready to take the next step, contact us, get 30-day trial versions, or choose the subscription option that best meets your needs. 

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. 
 

Read More

February

23

2022

The topic of Revit parameters never gets old. Whether you have questions about how to effectively use them or want a refresher of the positives and negatives, this one-hour high-level webinar is for you. For a deeper dive, watch the recordings of Parameter Primer Part 1 and Parameter Primer Part 2 or review our online Help topic on Instance vs. Type links.

The reason parameters are such an interesting and challenging topic is because there are so many of them! 

Project - System - Instance - Type - Shared - Global - Combined - Family - Reporting - Schedule Keys  

Understanding the situations in which to use one parameter over another can be quite challenging.

In this webinar, we:

  1. Discussed and demonstrated Revit parameter creation methods:
    • Key schedule changes
    • Global parameters
       
  2. Polled attendees. See how you compare to your peers on the answers to:
    • How are you currently using global parameters?
    • What is your biggest parameter management challenge?
    • How often do you create parameters?
       
  3. Shared insight on:
    • Recent changes to Revit parameters
    • Strategies to working with parameters across Revit versions
    • Shifting terms in Revit that cause confusion
    • Shared parameters that don’t behave as expected

 

Browse our website for more information on our Revit plugin tools. Give them a try with free 30-day trial versions 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.

Read More