Archive for the ‘Uncategorized’ Category

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Just Returned from RTC-NA 2015….

July 28, 2015

This year’s Revit Technology Conference in Washington, D.C. was about as good as it gets!!!!

Although the host city, people, presenters and classes were amazing, meeting the two “Founding Fathers” of Revit was over the top!

Revit was originally the Revit Technology Corporation, which was originally called Charles River Software. Irwin Jungreis and Leonid Raiz started the company to solve what they thought was an absence of a parametric modelling platform for architecture.

Not only did we get to meet Leonid and Irwin, but we also were able to meet most of the original employees and Architects who started it all.   In the beginning, many of us used to call Revit, at any hour, so that we could speak to our Revit Architect and figure out some problem we were having.    Finally being able to put a face and a smile with the voice on the phone was so cool!   Thank you Steve & Dave, who were my support Architects.    In addition,  most of the original developers & Architects were there included Marty, David C., Matt J., Harry, Phil, along with Scott D., and Scott B. and a few others I wasn’t able to meet.    How cool is that!    Thank you Jim Balding and Wesley Benn, along with entire RTC Events Staff and Committee Members for putting on one of the very best RTC events ever!

Original Revit Rockstars RTC NA 2015 - Leonid & Irwin

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RTC – Europe 2014 “Top Rated Speaker” Awards go to……….

February 26, 2015

Hi

Well, the last 4 months of 2014 and the start of this year have been a bit “crazy” for me and I have not been very good about updating this blog, nor my own blog & web site;   however, I just saw this in my e-mail basket last night and thought that I would share.

Nice to see some familiar faces…..even while in Europe!    Thank you to everybody who attended and took the time to vote and give us feedback!

RTC-EUR 2014 Top Speakers

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Meet Lynn Allen and some Revit Rock Stars! (Rock n’ Revit)

January 25, 2015

Hi!   Just wanted to share this with the group.

Thursday, Feb. 12th @ 3:30 pm:

Lynn Allen, from Autodesk, will be in Tucson on Thursday, Feb. 12 doing a presentation at CADsoft Consulting (see attached image).    Register soon as space is limited!

Friday, Feb. 13 @ 9 pm (After the U of A Wildcats game!):

But, if this were not enough, and you want to just relax and socialize with some really cool folks……Come out to Famous Sam’s on Golf Links and Kolb the following evening (Friday the 13th) ror a Rock’n and Revit’n good time hosted by ‘yours truly’, Steven Shell and and the band “Shell Shock”.  Enjoy a great evening filled with fun, food, drinks, music, dancing, Revit and Classic Rock!   (Not to mention, giving your significant other a great big Valentine’s smooch at midnight!)

Lynn will be there, along with my favorite Australian, Wesley Benn, who is the RTC founder (Revit Technology Conference – http://www.rtcevents.com/events.htm) along with a true Revit Rock Star….. Stephen Stafford (Revit OpEd http://revitoped.blogspot.com/).   Oh yeah, Stephen will sitting on Drums too!!!!!   You don’t want to miss that!

Fun starts at 9pm.   The U of A Game starts at 7pm and you may want to get there early for a good seat and have dinner before the show.   Also, kids are welcome to come and stay until 10:30 pm.    (Family fun!)

Hoping to see you all out!

Steven

Lynn @ CADSoft

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Just returned from another conference, the Pacific Coast BIM Workshop

October 1, 2014

I just presented 3 classes & a lab at the second BIM Workshop, held in Anaheim, CA.   (BIM Workshop – Pacific Coast)

As usual….it was amazing!   The sponsors, speakers (national, regional and local), attendees and hosts were wonderful.  And, for the second time now, Lynn Allen, from Autodesk, was the Emcee and really did a bang up job and made it fun!  (Who IS she?)  Also, Lonnie & Christina at US Cad deserve a huge round of applause for all of there efforts and hard work!

Carla Edward’s Omaha based brainchild event is growing up into a very special nationally recognized must attend conference!   Congratulations Carla!   Next year, there will be 3 BIM Workshops held in Omaha, NB, L.A., CA, and Charlotte, NC.   (By 2016, they are hoping to have 6 national events across the US.)

This conference, like the one in Omaha last month, offered several really informative and innovative classes.    At the top of the list, of those classes which I could attend (unfortunately, I presented several classes and had to miss a few.), the ones which really taught me a thing or two, or twenty, are:

Marcello’s class on Dynamo.   This new Dynamo has really impressed me.   At the last conference, I learned how it can drive the Revit geometry from within Dynamo, very ‘graphically’ and in a very intuitive manner;   however, that being said, one needed to understand and learn how to use Dynamo.      Marcello showed us another side of Dynamo.   He explained how it can also be used do “every day” simple tasks in Revit such as moving an entire set of foundations and column bases up with out having to move each one individually.    The other part of his class which I found very refreshing was that one doesn’t have to learn a lot about using Dynamo to do these kind of simple Revit tasks since you are performing them in Revit for the most part, and using Dynamo as an outside add-in just to drive it.    Well done Marcelllo!

And, the other take away was Scott Davis’ presentation on the new release of Formit!    Way cool updates!!!!   Most all of the new features are modeling tools and other useful design features.   This class updated Scott’s class I attended on Formit in Omaha last month.    Amazing what month’s time can produce!    Thank you Scott!    He also confirmed that Autodesk really did acquire Eagle Point’s amazing Site Works!!!!   This will be huge and finally addresses all of our thoughts regarding Revit’s site tools and abilities!

Well, back to work!    Next month…..RTC Europe in Dublin, Ireland!

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Just Returned from this year’s Central States BIM Workshop in Omaha, Nebraska

August 25, 2014

I just returned from Omaha, Nebraska where I presented 2 lectures, a lab and a panel discussion at the first of two BIM Workshops to be held this year. (The organizers told me that are planning 6 BIM Workshops to be held across the US by 2016.)

Carla Edwards, who started this workshop originally (Central States Revit Workshop – CSRW) and now works for US CAD, really outdid herself, along with the entire organizing staff! Well done and thank you all!

This year, Lynn Allen was brought in as the Emcee for the event and will be as well for the Anaheim, CA event in September. Hopefully, she will be at all of the upcoming planned events since she is just amazing to listen to! Great job Lynn! (Who ARE you?)

This year, my biggest ‘take – away’ items are as listed below (not in any particular order):

1. I finally have been shown how Dynamo and Grass Hopper (visual scripting programs) can really be useful in driving geometry in Revit. Thank you to both of the presenters for “dumbing it down” for me!

2. Formit 360 and Infraworks 360 are two of the coolest and most useful ‘early design’ tools I have seen in a long time. Both of these new programs are simply amazing tools for design, evaluation and validation as well presentation of early design concepts. Well done Scott and Autodesk. Also, thank you to Scott’s mystery co-presenter on the phone with the booming deity like voice,

I just want to add that I always enjoy the opportunity to catch up with all of the ‘usual’ presenters, including Paul Aubin, Stephen Stafford, Lynn Allen, Scott Davis, Andy Jizba and Brian Mackey (we missed you Desiree!). Great seeing you all and laughing so much while still learning! Nothing better than hanging with really smart and funny people.

See you all in Anaheim in September at the BIM Workshop – Pacific Coast!
Steven Shell

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SARUG – June 2014 Meeting

June 8, 2014

It’s interesting how small group meetings become more interactive, less formal and much more relaxed. In fact I’m looking for a bar with a good internet connection just in case our group returns to it’s founder size of three people, who by the way were at this meeting.  The nice thing about the SARUG blog, SARUG linkedin and Google Hangout is that you really don’t have to be there to still get a flavor of the meeting.

So Steven had just returned from the RTC in Australia and he gave us an overview which we were able to record via Google hangout below.

OTHER TOPICS INCUDED:

Google Revit ?????

According to Globes, Google describes the invention as a cloud-based collaboration platform with “planning applications to help architects and engineers in the design process, especially for skyscrapers and large buildings. The platform includes planning tools for architects and engineers to run advance analytics and simulation tools.”

  • Genie has been released and well-received by architects and industry professionals; it is now being developed not under Google X, but under a spinoff company called Flux
  • Google X team estimated that Genie has the potential of generating $120 billion a year for Google.
  • Target Release date early 2015

Could this be a competitor to Revit?  Keep your eyes open. Our inside sources indicate that some visionary staff on the Autodesk Revit development team have left Autodesk and are rumored to be involved with this effort.  Hmmm don’t you love rumors?  They really spice up the intrigue of such an offering. I guess we really won’t know until this application hits the streets.  My guess is that it will be like an over hyped movie trailer and most of us seasoned Revit users will just yawn and sigh as we realize it falls dreadfully short of our visions of where the technology should be going.

More on this subject :

http://www.writandraw.org/en/2013/10/30/on-google-aec-and-eli-attia/#respond

http://www.globes.co.il/en/article-1000886261

http://techcrunch.com/2014/05/06/flux-the-first-startup-to-spin-out-of-google-x-nabs-8m-for-its-eco-home-building-platform/

Bluebeam

I did a little dog and pony show with a Bluebeam 3d file I created and we reviewed the Revu 11 & 12 release upgrade youtube clips.

I’m continually updating the initial review I did on this product which you can view here. http://www.arch-intel.info/tech—revit-3d-bluebeam.html

Currently I’m running the Extreme V12 of this product via the Revit Addin and current shortcomings are the inability to completely resolve the section box limits resulting in some stray geometry being rendered outside of the SB-limits.  The other shortcoming is the inability to resolve phases.  I consistently get existing demolished geometry being rendered by Bluebeam.  I’ll be updating to the V13 in the near future and I’ll review the performance to determine if these issues have been resolved. Desipte these limitations this is a great product and appears to have been quickly adopted by the construction industry.  Take a look at this youtube clip on Setting up a Project (44 min)  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=awClK63iLQ8 but notice all the related clips on the right side bar.


Revit 2015 features

We viewed this clip on the Revit 2015 features http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MWZzeKlgdq4 which is a pretty good overview.

Surface Pro II

Although not officially part of the meeting I ran the meeting technology off my new 512gb Surface Pro II tablet, successfully I might add.  It performed flawlessly running the camera, projector, speakers without a hitch while playing youtubes, and recording the Google Hangout off the onboard mic.

I also have Revit 2015 on board and it runs fine.  What’s nice about this tablet is it runs all the Microsoft productivity software (OS = Windows 8.1) and I’ve been told is better than most of the laptops currently available.  Down side is the screen size but I purchased a ‘Rocketfish’ optical to VGA adapter and hooked it up to a 23” LED monitor and I can see everything fine, considering my aging eyes.  Also figured out how to enlarge the text in Outlook to a readable size over the default (20 year old) font point.  So far I’ve been very please with its performance.

That pretty much wraps up the June meeting.  Steve and I’ve have been extremely busy this year, which has limited our ability to have these meetings more frequently. Hopefully you will find this post useful and don’t be surprised if these meetings wind up turning to a purely remote format being recorded at a Tucson bar somewhere.  (Visions of  Wayne’s World – http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9tTLbyPEtpU )

Enjoy
Carl

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Is this BIM? (Answer: Absolutely!)

June 3, 2014

RTC - Australasia 2014 Rocked!

RTC – Australasia 2014 Rocked!

I just returned from presenting at this year’s ‘over the top’ RTC ‘down under’. Hopefully, we will have some time at the upcoming SARUG meeting on June 5th for me to share some of this year’s highlights!

Biggest ‘take away’: Antoni Gaudí’s Sagrada Familia cathedral in Barcelona was (and still is) one of the biggest and most impressive BIM projects in the world!

Cheers Mates!

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BIM Worshops for 2014 start this April with the Pacific Coast BIM & Revit Workshop

March 23, 2014

Principal/Architect at Steven C. Shell, Architect

  5 other Nationally Recognized speakers along with several Regional and Local speakers.

Thursday April 24th and Friday the 25th. Registration is NOW OPEN. Early Bird Registration Rate at $350 to the first 100 registrations. Regular Rate is $500 and registration ends April 17th http://www.bim-workshops.com/news/
BIM WORKSHOPS REGISTRATION NOW OPEN bim-workshops.com

Come see Lynn Allen, Autodesk superstar, along with nationally recognized BIM and Revit experts Andy Jizba, Brian Mackey, Doug Bowers, Steve Stafford, Steven Shell, Paul Aubin.    http://www.bim-workshops.com/news/

Image

http://www.bim-workshops.com/news/

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Six Qualities That Make Architects Ideally Suited to Lead Collaborative Integrated Teams

February 1, 2014

Re-posted by Steven C. Shell, Architect

In order to effectively lead collaborative teams, architects would do well to downplay possessing specialized knowledge. Knowledge acquired in school and practice should be thought of as the price of admission, not their “Advance to GO” card, as so many on the team in this connected age have access to and share this same knowledge. Along with specialized knowledge, as a professional duty of practice, architects will also need to reevaluate the role of professional judgment, design intent, responsible control, direct supervision, and serving as the hander-down of rulings in the shape-shifting required from working simultaneously on collaborative teams.

Recognizing that nothing incites a non-architect’s derision, ridicule and ire swifter than to start a sentence “The architect is uniquely qualified to.” 
Here are six qualities that make architects ideally suited to lead collaborative, integrated teams:

1. Architects can lead collaborative teams by tapping into their ability to maintain two or more opposing thoughts until an amenable solution arises.
Roger Martin’s The Opposable Mind, on the problem-solving power of integrative thinking, describes the human brain’s ability “to hold two conflicting ideas in constructive tension.” Like F. Scott Fitzgerald’s test of a first-rate intelligence as “the ability to hold two opposed ideas in the mind at the same time, and still retain the ability to function,” architects need to become even more comfortable working with and maintaining two or more opposing thoughts earlier in their careers. Architects famously can simultaneously maintain two lines of thought – e.g. their own and their client’s; their client’s and that of the public-at-large; the paying client and the non-paying client; the 99% and the 1%; the circumstantial and the ideal; science and art; reason and intuition; evidence and the ineffable; HSW and aesthetics; practical and dreamer. In an interview with the author, Phil Bernstein described the difference between young designers and older designers as the ability to manage an increasingly larger set of variables: “When I was working for Cesar Pelli, that was one of the amazing things about him – he could keep so many things in his head and he could balance them and weigh one against the other, and he could edit out what he called the systematic generation of useless alternatives. He would prevent us from going down that avenue.”

2. Architects are problem identifiers. Not only problem solvers, architects recognize that identifying the right problem to solve is often 80% of the solution.
Frequently, the problem assigned is not the one that truly requires addressing. Architects work to make sure that everyone is focused on the most pressing, pertinent problem.

3. Architects see the big picture.
Solution-oriented engineers sometimes have a difficult time seeing the forest from the trees. Malcolm Gladwell in Blink called this ability to see information in its wider context coup d’oeil, court sense or “giss,” the power of the glance, the ability to immediately make sense of situations. Architects, by the end of their formal training, have begun to develop this ability, by thinking laterally and simultaneously – not linearly. Neither exclusively right- nor left- – architects are whole-brain thinkers. In the midst of prolonged analysis, architects can help to keep things whole.

4. Architects draw by hand, mouse and wand.
Creatively ambidextrous, flexible and agile, architects are not stuck on any one means of communication or delivery. Architects make the best use of available technology to get the point across. Because architects envision what is not there, they help bring nascent ideas to life. Today, we cannot talk of leadership without the technology. We lead from the technology and the tools we use. In this way, architects lead collaboration from the middle by leading from the model.

5. Architects can lead collaborative teams by thinking like other team members, anticipating their concerns and questions before they arise.
Architects see through other’s eyes, empathize and understand what is important to others. They have both deep skills and wide wingspan breadth. Architects are the only entity who serve not only the paying but non-paying client (society-at-large.) In trying to predict the consequences for any course of action, the architect needs to anticipate the responses of each of the integrated team members. To do this, an architect must know enough about each discipline to negotiate and synthesize competing demands.

6. Architects don’t lead collaborative teams because of their specialized skills, technology know-how, or privileged knowledge, but rather because of their comfort with ambiguity and uncertainty.
Architects are best suited to lead collaborative teams by being able to extrapolate from incomplete information, and won’t let the lack of complete information stop them from moving forward.
   

Randy Deutsch’s “How We Can Make Collaboration Work:  How architects can decentralize rather than be marginalized”
Jan-Feb 2014  Design Intelligence journal

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Rendering vs Presentation

November 15, 2013

Thank you Randall!

ArchVision Blog

For years we considered RPC a “rendering” tool, designed to help create photorealistic imagery quickly and easily.  Photorealism was at the core of our DNA.  How deep? The “P” in RPC stands for “Photorealistic” (RPC = Rich Photorealistic Content)! Our ongoing observations of how imagery is created has led us to a broader definition of where and how our products are (or could be) used.  Many more people are creating “Presentations” as opposed to “Renderings”.  What’s the difference?  I think it has less to do with the technical definition than it does the workflow.  In the early days of design visualization someone created a 3D model and then created “renderings” in specialized software like 3dsMax where materials and lighting were painstakingly added to produce an image.  The workflow looked something like 2D Cad > 3D Model > Materials > Lighting > Rendering  where multiple specialists generally assumed roles along that…

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