Monday, April 07, 2014

Revit 2015 – Trim / Extend Multiple Elements

This is a reasonably simply improvement. If you are laying out a lot of walls, quickly being able to trim & extend so they cleanup is an essential requirement for any designer, especially if they have come from a CAD background. Over a number of releases we have seen usability enhancements which have migrated their way to the Revit platform, based on tried & tested CAD methodologies. For instance if you have ever used AutoCAD you might have used the fence command. In Revit 2015 you can now use a selection box to select multiple elements to trim or extend to a boundary defined by another element. Note; you are still able to select individual elements to trim or extend. The video clip below shows the functionality performed on walls, but it will happily work on other elements such as structural beams. A simply, but time saving, valuable enhancement.

Sunday, April 06, 2014

Revit 2015 – sketchy lines

Sometimes when using BIM for presentation purposes, especially during the design development stages, the digital outputs can look a little too polished. In the past an architect might of used hand drawn sketches & diagrams to convey the design. New for Revit 2015 is the Sketchy Lines feature which emulates a hand drawn visual style. This feature is available to be applied to any graphic display style including 3d views, perspective views, elevations, sections & plan views.

You can adjust settings for Jitter and Extension to create unique interpretations of any visual style as shown. The Jitter slider allows to vary the weighting & clarity of the line as if you had drawn it with a pen or pencil, where as the Extension slider allows you to how far lines overlap at intersections. Check out Tim Waldocks detailed overview for more examples of how this feature can be used.

A 3d view with the Jitter set to 7 & no Extension:-


A 3d view with no Jitter & the Extension set to 10:-


The combination of the Jitter set to 7 & Extension set to 10:-


Faster….Faster…..Revit 2015

train motion blur

As I noted in my previous blog post about Revit 2015, it has got faster. It feels faster to use, which is very welcomed. These are the performance enhancements suggested, but not actively highlighted.

First speed enhancement; Faster drawing of elements in views. What they have done according to what I have read & experienced is that Revit now amalgamates the drawing process so that elements are drawn in larger collections to enhance overall performance. The example that was explained to me was when you draw say 100 walls, Revit would require 200 drawing calls. In Revit 2015 it now draws the same walls using only 2 drawing calls. The overall impact of this is that redraws are substantially faster & it also makes the navigation of views faster.

Second speed improvement is that you also get Faster selection Graphics; what does this mean? Now, if you were to select a large number of elements in your model, Revit 2015 uses a new process for displaying the selected elements. Again, the outcome is improved overall performance for displaying the selected elements.

Thirdly, improved performance in MEP views. Not being an MEP user myself, it has been known for sometime that Revit MEP has been laggy, especially on large datasets. SO in Revit 2015, the underlying technologies used to display MEP components in view has been enhanced, resulting in improved performance when opening & closing & working in views. From my experience, whilst not exactly scientific, I would concur with these points. It does indeed feel & perform better. This can only add to the overall user experience. I am sure we will see more of this subtle, but essential framework performance improvements going forward.

Revit 2015 installation requirements

For more details on what you will need to consider when deploying Revit 2015 go here.

NOTE – the most substantial change is the move to full 64bit; 32bit windows of any nature is now NOT supported.

Friday, April 04, 2014

BIM360 Glue

I probably missed this one…but Glue allows you to use it as a viewer for NWD files.


The BIM 360 Glue mobile app, optimized for working with BIM 360 Glue projects, can also be used as a viewer for Autodesk® Navisworks® NWD models. Transfer NWD models directly to the app via iTunes, or use the iOS “Open In” feature to open NWD files directly from Autodesk products, including Buzzsaw and Constructware, or third party document management solutions. When using the app as an NWD viewer, the app user will not benefit from markup functionality or automatic model updates.

Try this, assuming you have an ipad.

  1. Download & install Glue (link below) on your ipad
  2. Get yourself an Autodesk ID account
  3. Write out an NWD file in Navisworks
  4. Save the file to dropbox, Box or skydrive on your desktop PC
  5. Install dropbox, Box or skydrive on your ipad, what ever cloud storage you prefer
  6. The on your ipad, login to your cloud storage, locate the NWD file you saved & choose the “Open In” another app feature & choose the Glue icon.
  7. You are then good to go….

Give it a go yourself, you can download Glue from the iTunes store.

Revit 2015


I have remained pretty tight lipped about Revit 2015, watching at distance to see what the reaction might be. There are a number of reasons for this; firstly I wasn’t sure whether it might come across a bit loaded now that I have joined the darkside :-). Secondly, after I was thrown under the bus by another blogger a couple of months ago, I didn’t really feel that compelled to go through the same thing again. My only real effort this year has been to help Eddie K & James V get the Mastering Revit Architecture 2015 version over the line, by assisting with the tech editing. There is plenty on the web from other Reviteers giving their detailed opinion & views of 2015; I will leave it to them to provide the real depth. These are all good links…& worth viewing…

Tim Waldock explains how best to get the most out of the Sketchy feature in Revit 2015.

I would read this post by Sean Burke. Sean provides some very good strategic vision & you would do well to read this, in my humble opinion.

So if you want my honest opinion (you can take it or leave it & this is my own view, not twisted); Revit 2015 is good. Ok, it might not have all the bells & whistles you want, but it fixes a number of long standing features which have been a real pain. Does it fix all of them? Nope. But there is always more to come & only so much that can be achieved in 12 months. Bigger projects take longer to cook.

If I was managing projects would I upgrade? Of course I would! If you have an iphone, whilst iOS7 looked basic, I would take a good guess you still upgraded. Before you question this comment, an iphone may not be as critical as your project data, but the circumstances are similar to a degree. Data is mission critical, yet if another discipline, say the structural engineer updates to 2015 because he or she can deliver better outcomes are you really not going to join the club by holding back? This is all about collaboration. Not all projects need to be on the latest version, that I recognise, but moving this industry forward rather than sitting & waiting is not something I personally believe is progressive. But then, maybe I am different to others & am prepared to take risks?

Finally, I have been running the beta on a Macbook Air, 8 gigs of RAM running Windows 7 under Parallels & I will say that Revit 2015 runs like a dream. Whilst I only have 4 gigs set aside for Windows it will happily open 150mb models. Performance is very good & for me, when I was working on projects, performance from the model was more critical than anything. Ultimately it’s your call whether you decide to deploy 2015 & you feel you are getting the value. All I would say, is don’t judge a books by its cover, there is always more devil in the detail & plenty more to come…..

Dynamo has a new home

image You might be interested to know that Dynamo has a new home! It can be found at As the vision states “Dynamo extends building information modelling with data & logic environment of a graphical algorithm editor.