Monday, September 15, 2014

BIM Levels Explained

Ever wanted to know what the BIM Levels mean?
  • BIM Level 1
  • BIM Level 2
  • BIM Level 3
Check out this great sketch:

via BIR Leaflet Number 1 at:
http://www.bouwinformatieraad.nl/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/bim_kaart01v2ENG.pdf

Heads-up via Case

Saturday, September 13, 2014

Determine Originating Application for an IFC using Tekla BIMsight

Just use the Objects - Application option:

This will also detect the Revit version that a given IFC was exported from.

Friday, September 12, 2014

3 hours of Dynamo Lessons from AutodeskEd (embedded playlist)

Including:
  • image read
  • excel read and write
  • family by points
  • working with SATs
  • Python

Properties+ gives you a free custom Properties pane in Navisworks

This great tip comes via Kate Buckle, one of my colleagues here on the nRAH. Basically, when using the Properties pane in Navisworks, you often have to switch between many Tabs to find the Property that you want to view. This addin (or app) allows you to create a custom Properties view that can be docked and used instead of the built-in Navisworks properties pane.

Once installed, you can copy values, and even convert straight to a Search Set via the Find Items option:
Download at:
Properties+ | Autodesk Navisworks | Autodesk Exchange Apps

Help at:
Properties+ | Autodesk Navisworks | Autodesk Exchange Apps

Screencast at:
 


While you are at it, get the Navisworks App Manager, so you can easily check for updates to Navisworks plugins:




And for historical purposes, there are only 10 apps currently on the Navisworks App store - this is certain to change!

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Considerations when Network pathing RPCs and Material Textures for use in Revit

Aaron Maller provided some useful insight about how he paths RPC on a network location in the comments:
"The .rpc library we have is 12.3 GB of stuff. Admittedly, thats not THAT much space, but i cant justify having it on the hard drives. Since our Material JPG's are on the network as well (Additional render appearance paths) if someone is trying to render at home we have issues anyway, unless their machine has configured Offline Files, which we do with the libraries when people have to work off site. Then its local, but still pathed to the network. :)"

Note: one of the nice things about the recent updates to Archvision Dashboard is that it supports license login / logout, meaning you can logout of Dashboard in the office, then go home and login again without using an extra license. This would give you access to the cloud library of RPCs, which could be downloaded and used wherever you are.

via
http://whatrevitwants.blogspot.com.au/2014/08/thumbnail-images-for-entourage-families.html?showComment=1408037235781#c8556667987637110547

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Modifying 3Dconnexion mapping XML file to utilise Keyboard shortcut correctly

If you use a 3Dconnexion mouse with Navisworks, and you have installed the latest drivers (which I highly recommend), you may struggle to find out how to map a Spacebar to a button on your Spacemouse. Obviously, in Navis it is important to be able to hold down the Space key for selection purposes. If you try to record a macro for Spacebar in the 3Dconnexion management menu, you will find that it has both a 'press' and 'release' action.

You need to use the Keyboard list to map a key press correctly. However, Spacebar does not appear in the default menu... Happily, you can directly modify your profile XML to map the KB_Space action to a button on your 3d mouse. The images below show where to find this file, and how to edit it:


This method will fix the 'press and release' nature of macros, meaning you can "hold" the 3d mouse button for a Spacebar or Shift+Spacebar multiselection in Navisworks.


Using Annotation Symbols in Locked 3D Views in Revit

This workaround idea is quite simple - just use a Spot Coordinate or Spot Elevation with an applied Symbol family to use Symbols in locked 3D views.

You will need to start the symbol with a Spot Elevation Symbol family template...

You can also nest Generic Annotations into Tags, like a Wall or Keynote Tag. Unfortunately, all of the above will disappear if the hosting item is deleted. So, what about a View Reference Tag?

If we make a View Reference to a Drafting View called DO NOT DELETE, then nest our Symbol into the View Reference, it all works very nicely. The only thing that will break this is if someone deletes the 'do not delete' view :-)

Here is a download with the whole thing already set up. And if you want to see me playing around in Revit figuring a few things out, here is a Screencast:

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Align Topography to underside of a Shape Edited Floor

Paolo has posted an interesting bit of code that basically allows you to pick a floor element, and it will add points to a topography so that the topo follows the "points" on the Floor.

A very interesting solution to a common problem, namely, the (currently) limited functionality of topo tools in vanilla Revit.


Download here
"Anyway here you can find the code I've used "
via original post http://puntorevit.blogspot.com/2014/08/align-topo-macro-attempt.html

Monday, September 8, 2014

Using Dynamo to create a live Link between Excel and Revit

There are a myriad of ways to link spreadsheet data into Revit, including numerous addins to import and export data to Excel. There is also the Google Sheets connection. Recently, the BIM Troublemaker posted about using Dynamo because, as he puts it, "this was the tool that could give me an on the fly, bi-directional excel link..."

I enjoyed reading the post, because it explains Dynamo use starting from a basic level, and yet shows a practical example of something that can be built on and adapted to suit your needs.

Excel out dyn

The working example uses Dynamo commands to extract data from Revit family instances into Excel, and then push data from Excel back into Revit. Nice job!

Read the whole post:
http://bimtroublemaker.blogspot.com/2014/09/practical-dynamo-excel-linking.html

Saturday, September 6, 2014

How to do an Inplace Upgrade of Linux Mint, and use Revit on Linux (well, kinda)

I upgraded from Linux Mint 15 to Linux Mint 17 "inplace" this week. Basically, I edited /etc/apt/sources.list to match current versions (qiana and trusty), then used a few simple commands to do the upgrade. Make sure you backup everything before attempting this:
$ sudo apt-get update
$ sudo apt-get dist-upgrade
$ sudo apt-get upgrade 

I had a couple of issues to fix up. One was with fonts (I had some black squares appearing on some dialogs), so I replaced the contents of .fonts.conf with the version at this link. I also had to fix a failed hook that was stopping the final image upgrade, and for this I used:
$ sudo chmod -x /usr/share/initramfs-tools/hooks/(problem hook)
$ sudo apt-get install -f

As for the "using Revit" part - I installed Teamviewer using the deb package from http://downloadau1.teamviewer.com/download/teamviewer_linux.deb  Then, I logged into my workstation and here it is, Revit 2015 on a super-old netbook running Linux:

Other options for running Revit on Linux include:
  • Wine emulation
  • Running a VirtualBox emulation of a Windows system, and installing Revit

While I was at it, I also installed the power saving tweaks over here.  Additionally, I like to use newrez to increase my resolution (through a software buffer), meaning I can kinda have 1680x980 resolution on a 1024x600 monitor.

Oh, and one final tip: I have an Android emulator running through VirtualBox that allows me to install Android apps. This means I can theoretically install and use Autodesk mobile apps on this Linux netbook.

Friday, September 5, 2014

Getting into Revit's Head

To satisfy your inner API maths hunger (surely that's a thing?), here is how Revit "thinks" about Length:

Notice the recurring "328083..." theme? This is how it relates:

Check out the comprehensive list of Revit internal units (across all unit types) at:
Revit Units .NET API: Figure Out Revit Internal Units Per Unit Type (pt. 2) - RevitNetAddinWizard & NavisworksNetAddinWizard

Thursday, September 4, 2014

A360 Team officially launched

A360 refers to a suite of products for cloud based file sharing and team collaboration, just like BIM360 refers to the more AEC-focused cloud collaboration services. The A360 moniker currently covers products including A360, A360 Drive, A360 Rendering, and now A360 Team.
Initial pricing:

Personally, I'm interested to see if this can become a central point for collaboration across all Autodesk products and services. On a wider scale, I'm keen to investigate any collaboration tools that allow quick and easy discussion of "issues" - when I say issues, I mean "anything that needs to be discussed and solved." AEC teams have these kinds of discussions throughout the entire building design and delivery process... but there isn't a nice, clean, easy solution to manage all of those issues and conversations (yet). I can picture it in my mind, I just haven't seen one in real life (yet).

You can start a trial of A360 Team here:
A360 Team

The A360 forums:
http://forums.autodesk.com/t5/a360-products/ct-p/200

You might be interested in my previous post about the Autodesk 360 Viewer.

More info:
Autodesk A360 Team Now Available in North America, Continues to Advance Design and Engineering Project Collaboration

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Using the Default Lookup Table Location to Upgrade MEP Projects without Losing Types

So, you have received a RTE or RVT file (along with related CSV lookup tables) and want to upgrade it without getting the "One or more families in this project are missing .csv files" error. For example, you may download a Piping Template (like this one from AUGI), and it comes with CSV files but you don't know where to put them? Or you have received some other MEP template file from the wild, and you would like to upgrade and use it?

The thing with MEP content is that some of it is based on, or related to, Lookup Tables. These are text (CSV) files that contain type data, essentially making it easy to create and manage types without having to always use the Family Editor to do so. However, if these are missing, you will get an error message when you attempt to open or upgrade a project that needs them:


To fix this, you need to copy the required CSV files into the Pipe and Conduit subfolders of the Lookup Tables folder that matches the version of Revit that you are upgrading TO.

The key Project Browser tree entries are Conduit Fittings and Pipe Fittings:

If you have a Suite installed, you may find that these CSV files are duplicated in various locations, to provide support files for 3dsMax and Navisworks. Some of these paths are shown here:

You can browse to the above paths, and start to put together a "consolidated" or "combined" CSV Lookup Table folder, that you may want to maintain in a network location. Once you have collected all of the necessary CSVs, here is how you "install" them:
  1. Determine location to put the CSV files into (usually it will be near your Family Templates folder, a few example paths are provided below)
  2. Create a master folder of all required CSV files (you could maintain a consolidated folder in a network location)
  3. Copy these CSV files to the Pipe and Conduit folder locations (you shouldn't need to restart Revit).
  4. Open the MEP RVT or template file that you wish to upgrade
  5. Any CSV files that are still missing are the ones you need to find, and put in the Pipe and Conduit subfolders as per steps 1-3.
You could script some of the above steps to aid in deployment.
Revit 2014 Lookup Tables default location:
C:\ProgramData\Autodesk\RVT 2014\Lookup Tables\Pipe
C:\ProgramData\Autodesk\RVT 2014\Lookup Tables\Conduit

Revit 2015 Lookup Tables default location:
C:\ProgramData\Autodesk\RVT 2015\Lookup Tables\Pipe
C:\ProgramData\Autodesk\RVT 2015\Lookup Tables\Conduit

NOTE: Massive amounts of CSV lookup tables in the default directory may result in slow Revit performance, particularly when starting Revit.

If you want to import Lookup Tables directly into families (and you are perhaps experiencing errors with nested families), this PDF may be of interest.

Finally, you can actually modify Lookup Table location using the revit.ini file, as described here. You could therefore point your Revit installations to a network location containing all of the required CSV files for your firm.

You can download content from Seek and other places online. Sometimes you will find a CSV file, sometimes you may have to export one as per the video below:


There is some related info at:
http://revitoped.blogspot.com.au/2008/10/revit-mep-lookup-tables.html

Feel free to comment if you have any other tips related to Lookup Tables...

Zoom to Awesome download link

Phil recently posted a link for Zoom To Awesome at:
http://t.co/h645Tg2AEM

If you haven't heard of it before, Zoom To Awesome instantly zooms the active window in Revit to the selected objects. Combined with Select by ID and COINS Auto-Section Box, you can find and correct almost any error or warning in your model...

Tested and working on Revit 2013, 2014 and 2015. The Screencast below also shows how to add a keyboard shortcut to the Zoom To Awesome command.



via this tweet:

Monday, August 25, 2014

Revit 2015 Subscription Advantage Pack on the way?

Pure speculation here, but all signs point to a Subscription Advantage Pack for Revit 2015 with some awesome Sundial features:

Sources:
Inside the Factory: So, When's Sundial Coming Out?
and
Help: New in Revit 2015 Subscription Advantage

How to Install Autodesk 360 Sync for Desktop as a Standalone Package (without AutoCAD)

You probably won't find Autodesk 360 Desktop sync install package for download online, but you can install it "standalone".
  1. Find some Autodesk install media
  2. Look for a subfolder named Cloudsync (make sure it is beneath x64 or x86 as appropriate for your system)
  3. Copy this folder to USB or a network location
  4. Run the file AdSync.msi on the PC you want to install Autodesk 360 on
  5. After install, you will need to restart
  6. After restarting, you may need to sign in using your Autodesk ID
I have previously described how to use Autodesk 360 as a cloud storage location for Revit (and any application) here:
Access Autodesk 360 files in any application, including Revit

Some paths that may assist - these were from BDSU2015:
Building_Design_Suite_Ultimate_2015_English_Win_64-32bit_dlm\x64\Components\Cloudsync

\Building_Design_Suite_Ultimate_2015_English_Win_64-32bit_dlm\x64\Components\Cloudsync\AdSync.msi

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Free MEP Piping Content for Revit

Charlotte Pipe content for Revit:
http://www.charlottepipe.com/revit.aspx
"If you need a complete line of Charlotte Pipe Products, they have been grouped for download..."



Could also try:
https://www.mepcontent.eu/Product/localization=1-_discipline=9-P

via this LinkedIn discussion

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Autodesk Building Performance Analysis Links


I received the following list of links and resources from a helpful Building Performance Analyst at Autodesk:
· Autodesk FormIt Product Page: 3D Conceptual Design. Any time. Anywhere.
· Building Performance Analysis Blog: Read all updates on BPA tools on this blog.
· Revit 2014 Automatic Energy Analytical model Creation and Analysis. · Autodesk Project Solon Dashboard for Revit.

Get more information about Lighting Analysis for Revit from the following places.
· Lighting Analysis for Revit Product Page
· Lighting Analysis for Revit Students Page
· USGBC Reference Page

This latest version 1.23 has the following updates and new features:
· Analysis options now include LEED v4 EQ credit 7 option 2 in the Run Analysis dialog
· New Analysis Display Styles are added for LEED v4 and other styles
· Schedules are created using field id’s instead of text to fix bugs with some foreign language installs
· Schedule names are changed to include “_” in front so they are organized better in the Project Browser
· AVF view settings (9am vs. 3pm) are preserved when clicking Generate Results
· Analysis Display Styles are preserved except if type of analysis changed, and then a corresponding analysis display style will be selected automatically
· Phase filter is set automatically for view plans (unless override flag is unset in config file)
· View templates are turned off when _Lighting views are created (unless override flag is unset in config file)

Other reference material:
· Revit BPA Help – Lighting Analysis help topic
· Blog Intro – Includes video with older but still relevant workflows.
· Video0 – First instructional video on the release 1.0
· Video1 – Hour long video including Rendering Illuminance and Lighting Analysis workflows. · Article – Revit community overview article.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

Hotfix for Revit 2015 File performance problem due to multiplication of Standard Materials

Interestingly, this hotfix comes in the form of a macro to clean up your files. The issue as stated on the Autodesk Knowledge Network is:
In Revit 2015 the performance of some file is very slow. This means that
opening material browser may take an extremely long time or Revit will
hang. Typically you cannot execute the "Purge unused elements" command
as well, because Revit will freeze. 

...
Every time you edit a family and load it back in > overwrite > the
number of materials will grow substantially. For example after 5 or so
subsequent reloads in our sample file it jumps from 15551 to 186623
materials.
...

We have seen this most commonly when editing titleblock familes in the German and Japanese version of Revit. 


Download the macro:
DeleteStandardMaterials.zip

Please go through the process below to clear out the extra materials:
  1. Close Revit.
  2. Extract the zip file: It will contain a DeleteStandardMaterials folder with two subfolders (AddIn + Source).
  3. Copy the AddIn + Source folders on the following path:
    C:\ProgramData\Autodesk\Revit\Macros\2015\Revit\AppHookup\DeleteStandardMaterials
  4. Start Revit.
  5. Open the file.
  6. Open Manage/ Macro Manager/ Application Tab: The macro should
    show up in the Macro manager under application > macros as
    “DeleteStandardMaterials”.
  7. Select here "Execute" and start the command "Run" > This will delete Standard Materials.
After these steps use Save As to save the file with a new name.

Here are 2 videos showing the steps:
https://screencast.autodesk.com/Main/Details/5bfa2fff-3443-45e0-a156-4c530c594c28
https://screencast.autodesk.com/Main/Details/fb7eaa0a-b529-47b7-9e35-7d42c3944a0b


Main page:
File performance problem in Revit 2015 | Search | Autodesk Knowledge Network

Heads-up:
Be Revit - Do Family Planning: Revit streikt / Datei wird immer größer und reagiert nicht mehr?