Tuesday, September 25, 2007

What is the length in Revit?

If you want an additional tool at your disposal for inputting distances look no further than the existing Revit "distance box".

Scenario: You have an existing piece of equipment/furniture and you wish to copy another set by a calculatable measure. In this case we want to take a known distance and divide it without a calculator. Start by selecting your object(s) to copy, copy then pick a start point. Here is the "trick" portion of this. Instead of picking a second distance you can simply start typing '='. This puts the distance box in formula mode.

In the image below I took the game table and divided by a known distance (=24'/3).

My example is a simple one, of course I could have just typed 8' but you start to see how this can be used in a more complicated example. Other characters that work: +, -, * & /. I found this little trick by accident after working with Excel pretty heavily over the past few days.
If you come up with a really creative example/use please post back.

AIA Iowa | Crossing the Chasm - Your Survival Guide for a Successful BIM Transition

The AIA Iowa Convention 2007 will take place on Sept. 27 - 28.

On Friday, 9/28 I will be presenting a Workshop titled "Crossing the Chasm - Your Survival Guide for a Successful BIM Transition" during Session 4 starting at 2:30.

If you are in the area, I hope to see you there.

Monday, September 24, 2007

Revit Masking

Do you have a 2D family that you would like to mask out/hide/obscure to better show graphically in plan? Ex. 2D Table in a room with a 18"x18" floor tile, or a chair that partially sits under a table.

I have been asked this same question a few times over the last week so here is a quick, dirty example to get you through:

  • Open your 2D Family for editing. Now here is the real trick add an invisible line with a "Z" height at least slightly higher than your floor (ex 1/8", 18", etc...).
There are more examples of this in the help file (search for masking region).


Friday, September 21, 2007

Looking for a 3rd party plug-in?

During Autodesk Dev Camp, Amanda shared with me a catalog that contained various 3rd party partners for Autodesk called Autodesk Catalog. The paper catalog is free (have to request from the site) but you may find it easier to use the web version to find something in particular, including some good niche products.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

Omaha - Modern Methods

If you are in Omaha, Nebraska Modern Methods (6886 South 118th Street, 402-332-6607) is hosting an Open House on 9/21/07 from 8:00 a.m. - 5:00p.m.

Schedule of Events
• 8:00am - Doors Open with Continental Breakfast
Scheduled VIP Canon Product Demonstrations
Scheduled VIP Lanier Product Demonstrations
Factory Representatives on Hand
• 11:30am – 1:30pm BBQ Lunch and Learn
• 12:30pm – 1:30pm Beau Turner will be giving a presentation entitled "New Implications for the Design-Build Process".
Scheduled VIP Canon Product Demonstrations
Scheduled VIP Lanier Product Demonstrations
Factory Representatives on Hand
Special Skeet shooting for Discounts at this Event
• 5:00pm Doors Close
Lanier Color Gelsprinter plus other items given as door prizes at this event.

If you are in the area I hope to see you there...

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

Avast there matey

Blimey! and happy talk like a pirate day to you.

When we were last down in the Outer Banks we got a pirate flag for our little bucaneers and it is flying pround on this unofficial holiday... :)


background on TLAPD

need a pirate glossary


AutoCAD Architecture 2008 - Service Pack 1

The Service Pack for AutoCAD Architecture 2008 (Formerly ADT) was released on 9/18 and is available here.

The readme lists the fixes, etc...

I am installing now, the first thing that caught me was that it was trying to install using the default installation to the M://. Since this is not a drive I have ever had on this machine I had to repoint this. Anyone else get something similar?

* Update - this seems to be the path it is downloading from visible from Vista.

** Update - If you do not have access to the original installation .msi location your installation update will need to be aborted.

Happy cadding...

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Social Bookmarking Blogger Addition

While working with social networks and bookmarking over the past two years, it has been interesting to see how it can bring together groups of people with similar interest while not being limited by geographical boundaries.

In that time we have seen a number of technologies grow and others start to fade away, all the while the idea of the now branded "Web 2.0" and the collaboration mash-ups and creations it has spawned have been fueling a new way to interact with individuals. Instead of having to have a large single list of your favorite websites to visit you can now have an online version, complete with other recommended sites that may match your interests (ex. Del.icio.us) or even a site that users submit sites they find interesting and add their vote showing interest (ex. Digg). This extends beyond just websites and is now including books, music, etc... Each of these offers you the ability to gather and store content in the best way that matches your personality. For me the idea of a wiki was the start to getting into this and now I am excited to see a few other possible avenues for development for the AEC community, more on that later.

So to keep my blogging and writing efforts back on track I am adding a few social bookmarking links to the bottom of each post. In looking for a way to automate this addition I ran across a few good tips out there, though none better summed this up than Amanda over at Blogger Buster with information on how to add this to the new blogger templates.

Playing with Blogger

So over the past few hours during conference calls I have been continuing to play with the latest technology release from blogger called Blogger Play. There are some incredible images that people are posting, I could see where this would be a good art/photo display at HQ. A better description from the blogger team is below:

Blogger Play will show you a never-ending stream of images that were just uploaded to public Blogger blogs. You can click the image to be taken directly to the blog post it was uploaded to, or click “show info” to see an overlay with the post title, a snippet of the body, and some profile information about the blogger who uploaded it.

* Update: This morning shortly after this post a comment was posted stating that my upgrade issue from 9 months ago is now fixed.. a quick check to a few older posts and it seems to be the case. Many thanks for the assistance/notice and of course the fix... :)

My original opening paragraph below (since I could not find a text tool to do a strike-through):
Despite waiting for the blogger support team to assist with a technical upgrade snafu on their end for the last 9 months (blogger support if your reading this, help), their latest release Blogger Play is a fun way to pass the time while waiting for the fix.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Dealing with Cad and job burnout

Ever feel like your burnt out with work or seeking alternative means of punishment for yourself instead off going to work? I seem to go through this every few years and judging from the conversations that I have had with many folks across the country this seems to be an item that many of us have in common.

I will be writing about this over the next week or so, but to get this started I would recommend the following:


Mark Middlebrook - Coping with CAD Burnout I - 1999 still applicable
Mark Middlebrook - Coping with CAD Burnout II - 2001 still applicable


The Dip: A Little Book That Teaches You When to Quit (and When to Stick) By Seth Godin

Revit MEP File Installation

Working on testing a few new Revit Utilities and updated my build of Revit MEP to the latest. 3+ hours later (not a deployment just a stand alone installation), why does the revit file installation naming have to be different in each folder?

Ex. Libraries: D:\ProgramData\Autodesk\RME 2008 vs. Program executable: D:\Program Files\Revit MEP 2008\Program

Now I know the "P" is lacking content but the naming needs to at least be consistent for library development sake... Using a staight OOTB installation on Windows Vista on the D: (not c:).

BTW, Kyle outlined this pretty well in the following location but for those who did not read it, the naming of some content and folder structure has changed in this build.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Return from Autodesk Dev Camp

We are back from the AEC-DevCamp in the Boston area (Wakefield, near Waltham). After two weeks in a row of conferences I am a bit behind and need to run through my inbox to get it "clean again". This conference was a good mix of development (for both AutoCAD and Revit platforms) and a section for business development. www.autodesk.com/AEC-DevCamp

I was fortunate to attend with 7 others from our Software Development Solutions Team and enjoyed the face time with each of them (we are all is separate cities across the US). This week also allowed a few spare minutes to tweak some soon-to-be released Revit API utilities and a new one created on the spot based on another attendees request.

We are compiling a list of the applications we will be releasing soon (in addition to the Avatech Google Earth Connector for Revit/AutoCAD platforms). If there is something you have been wanting to see developed on the Revit platform please drop me an e-mail so we can add to the list for possible future development.

Happy API hacking...

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