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Shared Parameter – Aligning Older and Newer Content

June 14, 2014

Ever get that stubborn shared parameter that seems to have a dual personality. This is especially true if you’ve inadvertently used a shared parameter in some families, deleted it from your shared parameter list and then started using it again. It’s also common when you get a file with a shared parameter name that is the same as one you are already using. A common occurrence with manufacturer’s content or consultants content. Consequently you will probably have to reconfigure any incoming content parameters to your shared parameters to get your schedules to read them.

The problem is that Revit assigns the parameter a unique GUID (Global Unique ID?). So your schedule column is looking to match the GUID assignment it has with the various families you are bringing in, not the parameter name.

I believe the default shared parameter file is located at:
C:\Program Files\Autodesk\Revit Architecture 2014\IFC Shared Parameters.txt

You can read this txt file by just double clicking on it and MS-Notepad should open it. You’ll notice the second line “# Do not edit manually” Good advice if you don’t know what you’re doing. For some of us this is like throwing down the gauntlet of a challenge. A challenge I was willing to take and was successful enough to write this post about.

I had a lot of complex content I didn’t want to reconstruct just for a single parameter so I wanted the version of the parameter that was in my shared parameter file to align with my older content’s GUID of the same parameter. The following procedure assumes you haven’t created a lot of content with the parameter that is currently in your shared parameter file. If you have then you will have to go back and delete this parameter and add the new version to that content.

> So let’s start with the schedule and use the GUID it is looking for as the baseline value we want.

> Now we need to find a family that has the parameter that is working in this specific parameter column of your schedule. That will assure us that the family has the corresponding GUID that the schedule is looking for.

> Once you find one, open the family and export the shared parameter to your share parameter file. Place it in the ‘Exported Parameters’ folder. If you need help on exporting a file try this, http://revitoped.blogspot.com/2012/01/export-shared-parameter.html

> Now open the .txt file for the Exported Parameters folder and scroll down till you find the parameter name you just exported. To the left will be the good GUID you want.

> Now open the .txt file where you were originally pulling the shared parameter of the same name. Scroll down till you find the parameter and you should see that the GUID is different.

> Select copy the GUID from your shared parameter folder for this parameter and paste it into a Word document just in case you need to back out of this procedure. This way you can return the .txt file to its original value if necessary.

> Select copy the GUID from the ‘Exported Parameters’ folder and overwrite the GUID in the shared parameter folder. Save the .txt file.

This shared parameter will now be aligned to content the schedule could not read and you can use the new version of this shared parameter in your new content by deleting the parameter and adding the new version of the shared parameter.

In this image you can see the ‘Exported Parameters’ file has the older GUID for the ‘A’ parameter and the ‘Equipment Properties’ and another family which I exported its parameter of the same name to ‘General’ are using the newer version of the GUID for ‘A’. I over wrote the ‘Equipment Properties’ GUID with the ‘Exported Parameters’ GUID to align my content and schedule.

GUID's

I typically keep my shared parameters in a folder with my Revit library content so if you are doing the same then the path I gave you earlier in this post will not be applicable. Just go to that location you are currently using for your shared parameters instead.

Hope this helps.
Carl

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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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Product Review – Bluebeam “3D PDF Converter” for Revit

February 8, 2014

I recently completed a review of the Bluebeam application for creating 3D-PDF’s and the results were favorable.

You can access the full review here:

http://www.arch-intel.info/tech—revit-3d-bluebeam.html

Bluebeam me up Scotty!
Carl

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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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Revit – Annotation (Weld Symbol)

January 26, 2014

I’ve just added a “Weld Symbol” annotation to the A.I. Dropbox.

You can access it by requesting to be added to the A.I. drop box here (http://www.arch-intel.info/contact.html).

The family link, “How to Use” descriptive and Weld Symbols legend can be found here, http://www.arch-intel.info/revit-families.html

The Youtube I posted on this family can be directly accessed here, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P81CUAJJPMA&feature=youtu.be

Although we don’t do much in the way of welding, as architects, the complexity of these symbols can be a graphic pain-in-the-backside when we do need to make these callouts.  Hopefully this little gem will make that process a little easier.

Cheers to Detailing
Carl