The last place I worked at was at one time a growing design or build firm. On a few occasions serotonin levels trust from the Architect ure department and the Sydney Architects Construction department would gather their donuts and coffee and meet in the conference room to discuss human eye our construction pictures and how to improve them.
Our pictures had the normal problems due to the usual constraints of a busy Architect ural work environment; missing information, conflicts, coordination issues, CAD anomalies, etc.
Remember the periods when firms had drawing checkers? It seems that nobody checks pictures anymore; there is just no time in the schedule or budget. Now we call that process bidding process. It sure makes the construction guys angry. We get sensitive about our design work, but they get sensitive when money is involved. Some people are just so materialistic.
As the CAD manager, I would sit and take notes in these meetings, while trying to balance a coffee, diet pepsi and two donuts in my clapboard. After about an hour and a half, everybody had their say. Although I had a ton of notes, we were looking at just details pointing to the issue. The problem was surprisingly simple, the pictures just weren't matched up.
Architect URAL DESKTOP
As the CAD manager, I was greatly grieved by this. We were using Architect ural Desktop for all of our work. We were using it as a BIM tool, building a 3d model and extracting all the second pictures. Very cool but it was hard to do, required years of training on my part, years of setup and the breaking in and training of new people. Some of the new people were very resistant to getting work done in 3d and with tools we were looking at new to. Some were actually subversive. I called these people flat-landers because they wanted to experience Architect ure in second. I assume it was better than calling them what I really wanted to.
As difficult as it was, we were getting good results. We could create live renderings on the fly, we knew what the building became going to look like and we knew where the design problems were developing. We even made money on our Architect ural fees occasionally. So how did this problem occur?
As the project got closer to finishing and the resolution of the detail became greater, Architect ural Desktop became more difficult and finicky. When abdominal crunch time came, the subversive flat-landers would go nuts the project. Once exploded into lines, the less experienced would deconstruct the coordination in an effort to create the illusion that the project was actually finished. When the inevitable changes came along, the project CAD data degenerated even further.
REVIT Architect URE
Then along came Revit. The deal fulfilled the promise of what Architect ural Desktop was said to be. Don't get me wrong, it was a big pain to implement but I knew that if I could make Architect ural Desktop work for us, then i could implement Revit. Management was certainly not always supportive, providing no training and no setup time to make it work, but they did provide doubt and criticism. At least they paid for the required hardware and software.
In Architect ural Desktop you felt the need to invent complex systems to manage a project. In Revit he did this already taken care of. In Architect ural Desktop you felt the need to invent complex CAD standards and program them in to your system, and then train users and enforce the standards. With Revit, the standards out of the box worked for us. He did this absolutely amazing. I can pretty any office with Revit on a computer and just start working. Suppose? I can't even will tell you how much CAD customization I have done within the last 19 years. I don't do anything to Revit except to create families, (their term for parametric block styles) shared boundaries and project templates.
Architect ural desktop is rough, Revit is smooth. Architect ural Desktop is fragile and breaks, Revit is strong and solid. Upgrading Architect ural Desktop is a multi-week process involving breaking all the tons of current customization and rebuilding it after you purchase a few books, email some teachers, and find the hidden cache of secret inside information on what is really going on inside the stupid program. It takes no but at least three programming languages to make this thing work right. Then of course you have to retrain the users.
Upgrading Revit can be done over lunch, with no training. I don't even look at the readme file.
BUILDING INFORMATION MODELING (BIM)
BIM? I really didn't like that acronym. I liked SBM (Single Building Model). It didn't often suit Autodesk's marketing plan though. Nobody asked me anyway. Actually I believe that the mounds of information in every publication today and on every web site about BIM are mostly crap. All these experts who don't make use of Revit say you can do this, that and the other thing. I don't do any of those. I'm not even sure what they are. Perhaps we'll see sometime in the future.
But here is where BIM and Revit Architect ure rocks. You cannot go nuts the Revit model. This means that the geometry are invariably matched up. The reference tags and bed sheet numbers cannot be edited independently of the model. These tags are not fragile; they are rock solid, from the model and the schedules. I'm not sure that you can put a Revit project out of coordination even with great effort. So just like that, the majority of our drawing problems are gone. This is also evidence of how intelligent software can make that you' better Architect. Yes I said it; Revit will make that you' better Architect.
At our firm, Revit ceased to be your job joke as our efficiency improved. When we had to hire someone for our Architect ure department, Revit experience was our the main ageda. It was starting as a focus your marketing at the time I left. The first thing that won people's spirits about our Revit results was that we were handling design problems that we may can’t you create seen in the past. Our solutions were valid right from the beginning. In a design or build office where construction guys are looking over your shoulder, this is critical.
Throughout the design process, you can place a camera and snap an almost perfect copy. The copy capabilities are amazing and also material and link best with 3DS Max if you opt to use it. The very simple Mental Ray copy dialog box created amazing results fast with little effort. Any Revit user are now able to make excellent renderings with a few minutes of training. Not only could you have high quality renderings fast, but now you can also have lots of caused to become images in a project to clearly articulate your design to your client. Revit will make that you' better Architect.
When i printed out the help system for Viz Establish, the copy tool in Architect ural Desktop, it filled two volumes and was over a thousand pages, as well as taking a great amount of time to master.
DESIGN PARADIGM SHIFT
Between getting work done in a smooth 3d slot and copy stacks of views, Architect s have a new first. They have the ability to easily see every exposed surface in a building design -- walls, floors, ceilings and roofs -- Inside and out. For the first time we can see everything before it's built. Wow, can you see the significances?
There is now no excuse for bad design or design mistakes. Most people don't know this but the majority of Architect s and designers really don't know exactly what the built design will be like. Sure they have an idea and some are way better than others, but this is a fundamental problem especially where the design fees are low and everything is in paper and second. Once while designing some ductwork, I created an MC Escher like statue. My boss was amused because he caught it, but that could have been a big problem.
Revit will make that you' better Architect simply because you are getting immediate feedback on your design. If you see the object as it will be, then you will correct and increase it. It would be absurd not to. You won't be able to sleep knowing that flaw is in your design. I think what flat-landers like is they can look at their second paper drawing and can think perfect and congratulations because it matches their imagination. 3d and color is simply just too much information for them.
Architect ural drawing without 3d is like typing a letter on a computer without a monitor. You probably got most of it right. You are not really going to be able change it. You may redo it a few times. Wouldn't the feedback from a monitor be good?
I find it interesting what size contractors are one of those leading the proceed to BIM because of smashup detectors tools and the money they save in preventing construction errors and identifying design errors. Some contractors are experiencing their in-house Revit guys model the second construction documents the Architect s issue to catch their design errors. Follow the money.
Shouldn't the Architect s be leading this? I want to believe that the Architect s not using Revit just don't know better. They don't know about its coordination features, copy capabilities, and its refined tools. They don't know it can completely replace AutoCAD. They may think that drawing in 3d harmful toxins time, rather than saves time. I didn't know all this when i started with Revit and I had to figure it out on my own.
Architect s keep hearing about how BIM is going to benefit everybody except them. They might not know it will benefit them also, and contemplate it an encumbrance.
Unfortunately we all know Architect s that use AutoCAD 14 and will say "if it was good enough for Frank Lloyd Wright to use when he designed the pyramids, then it's good enough for me. inch These guys are usually really fast and do a very specific type of work. They are also very slowly losing market share, developing carpal canal predicament and one day they will find society no longer has a need for their services. Seen any good ink on vellum hand drafting lately? How about press-on letters, pin registration mylar, leroy lettering sets, or ruling pens?
CAD really took off when Bob Suite showed an Architect using a system on "This Old House". The hardware was a Silicon Graphics workstation costing nearly $80, 000 and was not a realistic option at the time, but it created a perception that resonated with the public. Not embracing CAD was the end of a lot of design firms.