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Saturday, May 31, 2008

Got a new job because Revit

Here's an email I just got 30 seconds ago from another very happy customer of mine...
PS. A year ago, Mario was using ADT and didn't want to switch to Revit.

Just a note:
I got a new job because Revit.
When my client saw my work done with Revit, he didn't even
want to see any other architect.

1931 Commerce Ln
Suite 4
Jupiter Fl 33458
tel. 561-743-5111

Friday, May 30, 2008

64bit Revit in just a bit

I was talking yesterday with someone who's very engaged in the Revit community. He said he's actually seen someone beta testing Revit Architecture 64bit.

Although this information is completely hearsay and we have no official word from Autodesk, we're hoping there will be a release in the fall. Of course, if you're not on subscription, you'll probably be out of luck.

I'll keep you posted as I hear more on the subject. Read more...

Going Green to make Green - Walmart goes solar - Are you LEED Accredited yet?

Don't let the economy get you down. Get creative in your business to find alternate ways to grow your business.

TheStar.com | Business | Seeking a new place in the sun: "Struggling auto-parts maker Woodbine is taking on work for solar-tech firm Menova
May 24, 2008 04:30 AM
Tyler Hamilton
Energy Reporter

Struggling auto-parts maker Woodbine is taking on work for solar-tech firm Menova

May 24, 2008 04:30 AM

Energy Reporter

Tibor Urbanek is down, but certainly not out.

The founder and president of Markham-based Woodbine Tool & Die, a supplier of components to the automotive sector, has seen better days during his three decades in business. Auto sales are declining. Parts suppliers from China, Korea and other cheap-labour markets are luring work away. The strong Canadian dollar isn't helping.

"It's a very dark situation," said Urbanek, echoing comments made earlier this week by Rob Wildeboer, chair of Martinrea International Inc., who said the country's second-largest auto-parts supplier was "getting killed" in the market.

Auto-parts production is expected to fall for the third straight year, down 8 per cent in 2008, according to a report this week from the Conference Board of Canada. The impact on Woodbine Tool & Die has already been painful. After reaching a high of 330 employees only two years ago, the company has been forced to cut more than a third of the workforce.

"We have no choice but to look for alternative work for our employees," said Urbanek. "If we're going to stay in business, we have to be flexible and reach out to anything available."

Green technology is proving to be one possibility. An Ottawa-based solar technology company, Menova Energy Inc., announced yesterday that it has taken up 25,000 square feet, or nearly 20 per cent, of Woodbine Tool & Die's stamping facility in Markham, with an option to double that capacity. Staff at the struggling auto-parts maker will manufacture and ship Menova's new solar power and heat systems to customers around the world.

"They're just stoked, and they've really been super accommodating," said Dave Gerwing, president and founder of Menova. "They offer the kind of scale we needed."

Work has already begun. Gerwing revealed yesterday that Wal-Mart Canada, as part of a multimillion-dollar demonstration project partly funded by the Ontario Ministry of Research and Innovation, will install Menova's Power-Spar solar power and heating system atop a new Supercentre to be built in Markham later this year.

The new store, just a stone's throw away from Woodbine Tool & Die, expects to generate 850 kilowatts of electricity – enough to power more than 10,000 light bulbs – and get the equivalent amount of heat energy from the system. It will be the largest solar rooftop installation in Canada. If the system is successful, Wal-Mart may choose to replicate the installation chainwide.

Gerwing said it's an example of how skilled yet struggling industries can adapt to new opportunities, such as solar, if the will is there.

"We have a great shot at a global business from Ontario."

The potential for "green-collar" jobs comes as traditional positions in the automotive and forestry sectors are fading. If one-quarter of all Wal-Mart stores in Canada purchased the solar-energy system being installed in Markham, Urbanek said, Ontario would have $250 million in new manufacturing activity over four years.

"To support that level of demand, Woodbine Tool & Die's operations in Ontario would grow by 85 employees and spin off another 240 indirect support jobs in primary metals and installations," Urbanek said.

The company, he added, is happy to take the work on.

"Physically, we are ready to expand in this new direction. We have a large enough property to renovate the building if needed," he said. "This project is exciting."

Mark Winfield, a professor of environmental studies at York University, commended Menova and Woodbine Tool & Die for their partnership but called it a "one-off" initiative that doesn't reflect the bigger picture in Ontario.

He said the province, unlike many jurisdictions in Europe and the United States, lacks a broader green industrial strategy.

"It's great that individual companies are doing this, but the potential and need is much larger than this announcement," said Winfield. "What we need to see is a more explicit strategy on the part of the province to facilitate this kind of transition."

If the province doesn't move quickly, added Winfield, it will lose out to other jurisdictions such as New York State, Michigan and Pennsylvania.


You could call it solar hat trick

Menova Energy Inc. has created a "concentrated" solar-energy system called Power-Spar that magnifies sunlight by 1,000 times onto tiny solar cells, resulting in a dramatic reduction in cost and highly efficient electricity production. The heat from this intense focusing of sunlight is also captured, creating another source of emission-free energy that can replace fossil fuels typically used for space and hot-water heating.

In what could be called a solar hat trick, Menova's technology is also unique for being capable of capturing sunlight in fibre-optic cables and redirecting it inside a building, reducing its reliance during the day on conventional electric lighting.

A typical Power-Spar array, composed of reflective lenses that focus sunlight, sits about 1.5 metres off the ground and takes up 13 by 13 metres of space, making the system ideal for the rooftops of some big-box retailers, schools and other flat-roof buildings. The array rotates on a turntable-like platform, tracking the sun with the help of special software. Each array can produce enough electricity and heat for a dozen or so homes, and can produce enough light to replace 560 fluorescent-tube lights.

Four-year-old Menova has decided to make the leading-edge systems in Markham and has leased space from Woodbine Tool & Die. Woodbine, traditionally an automotive-parts supplier, will contribute employees, manage the manufacturing and handle shipping of the Power-Spar product.


Thursday, May 29, 2008

CSI Launches New BIM Committee - Cadalyst AEC


New group to guide CSI's initiatives for building information modeling planning and education.

The Construction Specifications Institute (CSI) announced that it has formed a Building Information Modeling (BIM) Committee. The new group reportedly will guide initiatives within CSI to advance the use of BIM in the planning, design, construction, and operation of the built environment.

"CSI has an important role to fulfill in the implementation of BIM by developing knowledge classification systems, formats, standards, practice guidelines, and education to support collaborative practice," said CSI Executive Director and CEO Walter Marlowe. "This group will be essential to creating the support structures that the industry needs to fully implement BIM."

One of the first actions of the new committee is the formation of a BIM Practice Group to gather together practitioners inside and outside of CSI that are dealing with the information management aspects of BIM implementation. To respond to the industry's need for BIM information structures, practice support, education, and infrastructure, CSI is developing a "BIM roadmap" to identify requirements and define programs the institute will be pursuing to meet industry needs.

Representatives of the BIM Steering Committee will be on hand at CSI's booth during the CONSTRUCT2008 & CSI Annual Convention, June 3 to 6, in Las Vegas. Interested individuals can sign up to join the Practice Group at that time.

In conjunction with the buildingSMART alliance, CSI has also launched a free AudioCast Web series titled bimWITS. The programs reportedly draw on the knowledge of BIM experts who share their experiences with other practitioners about how BIM affects the way they do their jobs.

...personal note....do I tell them I own BIMwit.com?


Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Miami AUGI REVIT & CAD Camp 2 for 1 special pricing - 5/29/08 Hilton Miami Downtown

It's not too late...There is still room left in some of the Revit classes.
Register 1 person from your company and receive a free pass for another person to join you.

* Once you register you will receive an email confirmation with a discount code for the free pass. Register your co-worker with the free pass.
Register Today!

Schedule for Revit Training"
08:55a - 10:25a Breakouts - Course Session 1
* Conceptual Design and Massing - Building Outside the Box!

10:30a - 12:00a Breakouts - Course Session 2
* Creating Functional Families in Revit

01:00p - 02:30p Breakouts - Course Session 3
* How to Schedule Anything and Everything in Revit

03:00p - 04:30p Breakouts - Course Session 4
* Phasing and Design Analysis in Revit
* Lighting and Rendering - A Whole New "Virtual" World with 3ds Max

Our exceptional Revit experts, Joe Vivirito and Mark Rothman will be teaching. They're some of the top Revit instructors in the nation, so you'll definitely want to attend.

Special Promotion
Register Today!
Don't miss this exciting opportunity to kick up your on-the-job productivity a notch!
Join AUGI May 29, 2008 at the Hilton Miami Downtown

Miami AUGI CAD Camp is extending it's Early Bird Registration Fee: $207.00
Apply Discount Code: Earlybird to the payment page when registering.
CADD Centers of Florida & Revit3D.com are the official host sponsors of AUGI CAD Camp - Miami.

Architecture and Building
Revit® Architecture 2008/2009
(S1 - 3)Conceptual Design and Massing – Building Outside the Box!
Skill Level Guideline: Beginner/Intermediate
Instructor: Mark Rothman

This course is designed for those people that want to think outside the box and start modeling large complex-shaped buildings. Whether it’s the Freedom Tower in new York or the Burj Al Arab Hotel in Dubai, it’s possible today using Revit massing. We’ll look at the powerful massing tools, including extrusions, sweeps and blends. We’ll create voids for spaces and quickly add floors, walls and curtain wall systems. Conceptual design is NOT one line at a time.

Architecture and Building
Revit® Architecture 2008/2009
(S2 - 3)Creating Functional Families in Revit
Skill Level Guideline: Intermediate/Advanced
Instructor: Joe Vivirito

Revit’s stock families cater for a wide range of requirements and uses, but what happens when you need a custom family? The family editor can seem a daunting place without the right instruction with its use of parameters, constraints and solid modeling. However, with a few basic tips and tricks, you will be creating custom families in no time. This session will take you from start to finish in the production of a family including nested families, family parameters, materials and more. Creating custom content for Revit products is your next step in productivity.


Tuesday, May 27, 2008

HDR Increases Investment in Autodesk BIM Solutions - Autodesk - Press Room - Press Releases

Global Architecture and Engineering Firm to Expand Use of BIM to Foster Interdisciplinary Design Collaboration and Increase Productivity

SAN RAFAEL, Calif. and BALTIMORE, May 27 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Autodesk, Inc. (NASDAQ: ADSK) today announced that HDR, Inc. is adding the Revit platform as one of its tools for building information modeling (BIM) to help increase productivity and foster greater interdisciplinary design collaboration across the firm. HDR has signed a three-year, multi-million dollar agreement that includes nearly 1,800 seats of Autodesk software plus consulting services from both Autodesk and their reseller. In addition to the Revit platform, the agreement also includes seats of AutoCAD Architecture and AutoCAD MEP software.

"HDR has been practicing BIM for more than three years," said Brandt Karstens, vice president, architecture director of systems for HDR. "The architectural practice is adding the Revit platform to fully embrace BIM's 3D modeling and database approach. Our Engineering practice is also using AutoCAD Architecture and AutoCAD MEP for our Water and Environmental and Resource Management Business Classes. The HDR management team sees this new agreement and Autodesk BIM solutions as keys to achieving our goal of becoming a completely BIM-based operation by 2010."

HDR is an employee-owned architectural, engineering and consulting firm with more than 6,800 professionals in over 150 locations worldwide. The firm is recognized for its expertise in a wide range of diverse project areas from healthcare and nanotechnology architecture to transportation, water/wastewater and environmental engineering. In addition to commercial projects, HDR's clients also include major federal government agencies such as the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and the National Park Service. Utilizing the Autodesk platforms will help HDR continue to facilitate design collaboration throughout the firm and improve overall services by identifying constructability problems earlier in the design process, helping to reduce delays, and materials costs.

BIM is an integrated workflow built on coordinated, reliable information about a project from design through construction and into operations. By adopting BIM, architects, engineers, contractors and owners can easily create coordinated, digital design information and documentation; use that information to accurately visualize, simulate, and analyze performance, appearance and cost; and reliably deliver the project faster, more economically and with reduced environmental impact.

"HDR shares Autodesk's vision for BIM as the ideal process for integrated project delivery," said Jay Bhatt, senior vice president, Autodesk AEC Solutions. "We're particularly pleased to see leading firms such as HDR use our Revit platform, along with other Autodesk BIM solutions such as AutoCAD Civil 3D, to create a inter-discipline BIM practice that spans civil engineering, architecture, MEP engineering and construction."


Monday, May 26, 2008

VEIL Solar-Shades. What a bright idea.

Wow, finally a good idea from someone in Australia. And you only liked them because of Foster's Beer. Yes, Matt, we all know that Little Creatures Pale Ale is really the best beer in your neighborhood.
PS. What do you call an computer network in Australia? A LAN down under.

Now, on to our great green idea from halfway around the world.

Is This a Green Idea?

from: http://uglydoggy.com/2008/05/is-this-green-idea.html

An Australian government funded initiative, the VEIL solar-shade is a future possibility for the integration of solar-energy harvesting technologies into a form that is pragmatic (providing shade & energy), evocative and educational.

The idea is very simple: instead of having simple canopies outside the school to protect the kids from the heat of the sun, with one small tweak they can be used for collecting sun’s energy at the same time. Adding solar cells on top and handles on the base that can rotate the canopy to get the most efficient orientation in relation to the sun, these canopies can provide at the same time shade and energy.

Here you can see how these canopies look on a school yard:

According to Buro North, the group behind this redesign, "current Australian school curriculums utilize information around consumption and energy as an educational device, and we have designed this interactive concept to explore the visual connection between energy collection and consumption".

A nice, green idea.

BTW, have you noticed how the meaning of "green idea" has changed in the last years? Not so many years ago, "green idea" meant an incomplete idea, a concept in development, not finished yet. Nowadays -most of the time-, is used to indicate that is an eco-friendly one.

What takes us to another thing to have in mind when brainstorming ideas related to writing (copywriting, jokes, movies): language is always changing -as we do-, and there is a huge potential in their history and evolution to play with them. In fact, while today we trademark slogans, those were in the beginning a slighty different type of "communication".

Thursday, May 22, 2008

The Patry Copyright Blog: First Sale Victory in Vernor

This is totally not related to Revit and I kind of found it by accident on reddit.com. I don't know why I even clicked on the original link, but all you Autodesk fans may find this interesting. You may want to consult your copyright attorney before selling your software on Ebay.

On Tuesday, Judge Richard Jones of the U.S. District Court in Seattle handed down an opinion in Timothy Vernor v. Autodesk, Inc., handing Vernor victory in an important exposition of the first sale doctrine. (H.T. and congrats to Greg Beck). The case also illustrates why notice and notice is a better system for safe harbor regimes than the U.S. notice and take down approach USTR is trying to force on other countries.

The first sale doctrine (called "exhaustion" outside the U.S.) permits those who own a lawful copy of a work to sell or otherwise dispose of that copy by distribution. In the U.S., the doctrine was first developed by case law, then codified by statute in the 1909 Copyright Act, and is now found in Section 109 of title 17. While the first sale doctrine also applies to copies that are given away, what constitutes a sale is generally a question of state, not federal copyright law, and in recognition of this, many software companies have taken the position that they can convey the copy to the customer in an over-the-counter transaction for a one-time payment, but describe that transaction as a license; as a license, the first sale doctrine doesn't apply, meaning copyright owners can prevent further distribution of the copy. That is an absurd position to me, and in such cases, federal courts should take a common sense view of the transaction in order to avoid abolition of the first sale doctrine. Having made a sale at full value, there is no reason to let copyright owners preclude a rightful possessor of a copy from disposing of that copy, and no reason to force the rest of us to buy only new copies. Efforts to do so are yet another reason copyright has gotten a bad name.
...continue reading the original post The Patry Copyright Blog: First Sale Victory in Vernor:

BIMStorm, Onuma, BIM and much more

I don't even know where to start with this posting and I haven't fully dissected the information from their website. Bimstorm was mentioned in my last posting from Cadayst Magazine and yesterday, Laura Handler from bimx.blogspot.com had a posting about them as well (http://bimx.blogspot.com/2008/05/bimstorm.html), so I'm jumping on the BIM bandwagon with this one.
BIM keeps growing every day and becomes more and more encompassing on the world of architecture. The evolution from paper & pencil to CAD 25 years ago pales in comparison to today's BIM technology with the advent of the internet and capabilities of today's computer hardware and software.

This is from the http://www.onuma.com home page

A revolution is happening in the building industry to radically shift how we shape our environment using new processes and technology tools. As architects and planners we see the opportunities are huge...and the threats of complacency are even greater. The built environment has a direct impact on the natural environment. A sustainable process using Building Information Modeling (BIM) can be used to design, construct and manage our environment. Shifts in process and technology allow improved, integrated decision making with BIM, web-enabled data sharing and knowledge management tools. Better design quality and sustainable environments result from this integrated design approach. ONUMA, Inc. is a team of architects and computer programmers using advanced processes and custom tools to spearhead a building industry revolution.

and also take a look at http://www.onuma.com/services/BimStorm.php


LAX.gif MSY.gif RTM.jpg
BOS.gif YVR.gif SanDiego.gif PAS.jpg
BIMstorm™ Coming to a City Near You (or participate virtually)

From their products page http://www.onuma.com/products/

ONUMA Planning System - OPS
  • Input Data
  • Develop Knowledge
  • Expand Understanding
  • Support Wisdom
  • Output BIM
  • Capture the Process
  • Repeat and Refine
  • Work Smart

Planning, Programming, BIM Project Solution

ONUMA Inc. makes the complex simple.

And our BIM tool is simple. Our tools provide the ability to exponentially increase the value of your information with easy to use BIM products. We have been using BIM since 1994 and began developing a web-enabled BIM tool in 1995. We use the tools we build on our architectural and planning projects. In 2000 these solutions became available to our clients.

The focus of our tools have always been: ease of use, scalability and interoperability. We offer support and custom solutions using ONUMA tools along with other interoperable standard tools. ONUMA products work with Autodesk Revit, Graphisoft Archicad, and other standard business tools. Our tools do not require software installation. Being web-enabled, user friendly and user familiar environments like Internet Explorer (for PC users) and Firefox (for Mac users) let anyone quickly become a BIMmer. Don't be intimidated by BIM technology. It's really easier than you think. BIMming isn't just for the geeks!

How do we make BIM easy? ONUMA analyzes complexity, decomposes it, then we create simple interfaces to allow users to interact easily and quickly with the process. From principals with all the design knowledge, to the recently hired intern, anyone with Excel skills can be a BIMmer!

The ONUMA Planning System (OPS) knows it takes time to learn new tools, and time is money. So our simple user interface is designed for everyone on the team to be BIMmers. Principals, with their wealth of knowledge, can interact with the BIM and will actually make the BIM better. The tech team can also use OPS for other applications. We know everyone is familiar with Excel. So we took Excel, and made OPS the conversion tool to allow anyone to do BIM.

And when all team members are using BIM, the firm's BIM becomes knowledge centric and the BIM begins to "learn" and harvest all of the "information" (the "I" part of BIM) for immediate or future use. BIM should NOT be reservered for the BIM department like CAD was 15 years ago. Anyone who can operate a fax machine can pretty much be BIMming. Principals, internal staff, external disciplines, and specialists need to all become part of the BIM process.

It's really revolutionary, how we designed OPS to be the nascent building tool of the century. OPS guides users toward better processes, helping them solve problems by allowing the teams to "see" the same information from their own perspective, while allowing users to remain integrated with the big picture. Now that's integrated practice!

Lastly, take a look at these products from Onuma

I think they're on to something here....

The Summer of BIM (Tech Trends Column) - cadalyst magazine 4/2008

A counterculture design festival breaks down the usual barriers.

Cadalyst Magazine

What if one summer — or in this case, winter — a bunch of idealistic architects, designers, building owners, contractors, and consultants decided to do away with the professional hierarchies, business protocols, and legal constraints that have long prevented them from working together? What if they converged on a destination and simply spent the day exchanging ideas about the high-rises, hospitals, firehouses, and schools they envision building there?

Figure 1. The Woodstock-inspired poster for BIMStorm LA.
The Woodstock of BIM (building information modeling), as the organizers prefer to call it, took place this winter (figure 1). On January 31, soon after sunrise, 133 individuals from Boston, Maryland, Hawaii, Canada, Mexico, Japan, the Netherlands, the Philippines, and elsewhere (http://bimstorm.com/LAX/play) began to transform the 60 city blocks east of Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles (figure 2). A day later, they left behind 420 buildings, encompassing 54,755,153 square feet. Perhaps the most astonishing number is the total mileage traveled by the participants: zero.

Figure 2. The 50-million-square-foot area east of Dodger Stadium was the focus of BIMStorm LA.
How could this be? Because the 24-hour design fest took place in virtual space, courtesy of Onuma Planning System (OPS), a Web-based BIM collaboration platform.

The Fruits of a Dream

When Kimon Onuma founded his architecture practice in 1988 in Pasadena, California, he was following in the footsteps of his father, who began his Tokyo architectural firm in 1972. Onuma sincerely believes the building industry is ripe for a revolution. In December 2007, he had the idea for a free event that would bring together a cross-section of the industry. He dubbed it BIMStorm LA.

For the event to succeed, he figured it needed several crucial elements:

  • It had to be conducted in real time.
  • It had to be hosted via the Inter- net (so people could see one another's ideas).
  • It should have no lag time (so an architect wouldn't have to wait two weeks after he or she had submitted something to get feedback).
  • It had to be based on open and interoperable data standards (figure 3).

Figure 3. The use of open standards allowed projects created in different BIM tools to coexist in Google Earth's virtual terrain within the Onuma Planning System.
Onuma already had in his possession the technology that could facilitate this gathering. OPS, his company's flagship product, is the software-as-a-service (SaaS) model for BIM. You don't have to install software. You simply go online from a browser to use the OPS features.

The OPS IFC Model Server would function as the central repository to host all the projects and the entries. For modeling and analysis, players could use Graphisoft's ArchiCAD, Autodesk's Revit, Nemetschek North America's VectorWorks Architect, Roland Messerli AG Informatik's EliteCAD, Square One Research's Ecotect, Google SketchUp, or anything compatible with Industry Foundation Classes (IFC) standards. Supporting documents and site data could be supplied in Excel, Google Earth, and even pen and paper (so long as they could be scanned and brought into the communal environment).

After a planning session and a practice run, teams began to form. Team A included two architects and a government agency employee with expertise on project request submittals. Team V included an architect in North Caro- lina and two architects in Maryland, who also happened to be software developers from Nemetschek North America. In Team E, a Revit user was paired with an ArchiCAD user. Several people joined the foray as spectators. Code reviewers, structural analysts, LEED specialists, and green consultants also stood ready to offer input from the sidelines.

On the designated day, at 11 A.M. in Boston, 4 P.M. in London, and 6 A.M. in Honolulu, the BIMStorm struck.

Green Moon Rising

"Essentially, there were teams designing, teams analyzing, and they were all interacting with one another, too ... Analysts were submitting their reports without the teams even realizing that they were working in the background," said Onuma (figure 4).

Figure 4. While the design teams were working on the geometry, some analysts were running code checks (top); others were performing airflow analyses (bottom) on the available models.
One of the analysts was Karen Weber, a green-roofing consultant and cofounder of Earth Our Only Home. "I'm neither an engineer nor an architect," she admitted. "My company's main mission is to get green roofs on buildings."

Weber issued a general pitch to the teams, outlining the type of green roof that would work best in Los Angeles' climate and is currently being developed by Roofscapes (www.roofscapes.com) — "a dual-media green roof with specific drought-resistant plants that weighs about 40 pounds per square foot and costs about $15 [per square foot] to install," she said.

The Open Standards Deployed in BIMStorm
She points out that, aside from the aesthetic appeal, the green roof saves the building owner maintenance cost over time. "They won't have to replace the roof that often, because it controls roof expansion from weather, and it protects against damage from UV rays," she said.

Many of the energy-modeling software packages now include modules for solar-panel configurations, but Weber would love to see the same consideration for green roofing. "You can actually combine solar panels with green roofing," she suggested. "Solar panels are optimal at 77° F. A conventional roof on a hot day gets to 150°–200° F. So acting as temperature control, the plants can increase the solar panels' efficiency."

As a result of her input, one of the teams decided to put a green roof on a school to be built in Los Angeles. "Another team created a plan to park the cars under- ground and make a grade-level green roof," Weber said.

Weber also offered the participants an opportunity for water conservation. "The annual flushing of the fire hydrant lines [to check pressure] could cost about 1,000–2,000 gallons of water per minute. Generally, it takes about 5–10 minutes to check each," she estimated. The project site for BIMStorm contains about 300 hydrants. "That's about six million gallons of water to be flushed out of Los Angeles, where water is at a premium," she remarked. Her recommendation was to capture this water in cisterns and use it for irrigation of green roofs.

From LA to Tijuana

Finith Jernigan, the author of BIG BIM little bim (4Site Press, 2007) and an architect from Design Atlantic, was assigned to monitor the new buildings springing at the site and plan for adequate emergency services, which included uploading prototype fire stations and advising the teams about the size of the station that would be necessary to match the serviceable zone.

"At the same time, we were also helping another team build a real house in Tijuana, Mexico," Jernigan said.

Even though the event was officially meant for the 50-million-square-foot Los Angeles area known as "the Cornfield," the organizers were quite accommodating if someone wanted to explore design ideas beyond these boundaries. As participants watched, skyscrapers began showing up on Wilshire Boulevard, far beyond the project site.

To the players from Corazón, a San Diego–based group that has built more than 1,000 low-cost homes in Mexico, Jernigan advised via the support forum, "You would create what amounts to a squatters' community within the BIMStorm areas. It offers the opportunity to envision a better way to plan for people most in need. The community should include community gardens, community centers, and housing, all organized to respond to the needs of the types of people that Corazón serves."

Here Comes the Sun

Jeffrey Ouellette, a Nemetschek North America R&D specialist for VectorWorks Architect, worked with his colleague, Robert Anderson, Nemetschek North America's vice-president of Integrated Products, and Stan Rostas, AIA, a VectorWorks user and partner at Shook Kelley, to complete a project located east of the Los Angeles River. A few hours after they'd posted the building geometry and data in OPS, they found out someone from United Kingdom–based EcoDesign had performed sun studies on their project using Ecotect, an energy-modeling software, and posted the results as a PDF file.

"It's a really interesting exercise," Ouellette said. "You can find out relatively quickly how feasible it is to build two 20-story buildings instead of a single 40-story building on a site very early in the design process. A lot of architects struggle with that early design stage because they need to get the feedback, the data, that really matters, in a timely fashion."

During BIMStorm, feedback came as GIS data, demographics, county tax assessor's information on the parcels, LEED requirements, and more. "In OPS, people could bring in information like seismic zone, flood zone, building code, or public transportation access," noted Ouellette.

This feedback allows the architects to see how their geometry fits into the site and also to predict how long and how far the future occupants would have to walk to get to the nearest Metro station.

More Storms Ahead

Before it made landfall in Los Angeles, BIMStorm hit Boston in November of 2007. The storm is now heading toward New Orleans. The Janis Joplins and Jimi Hendrixes of BIM are cordially invited to grace the stage when the time comes.

http://aec.cadalyst.com/aec/Features/The-Summer-of-BIM-Tech-Trends-Column/ArticleStandard/Article/detail/507889?ref=25

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Revit Architecture: Setting the Site, Part 3 - May 2008 - AUGI

The third part in this series will involve creating a Toposurface from scratch and adding pavings and site components.

  • To follow along, start a new Revit model.
  • Go to the Site plan in the Project Browser.
  • On the Site tab of the Design toolbar, select the Toposurface button.
  • The design Toolbar turns into the Sketch toolbar. Select the Point button.
  • In the Options toolbar, change the elevation to 3'-0"
  • Pick several points on the view window as shown below.

Read the rest of this tutorial

Monday, May 19, 2008

Riverbed Technology Webinar....and PS. We're the Florida Partner for Riverbed Technology

& CADD Centers of Florida


Revit customers are finding it difficult to collaborate on projects with remote offices, and with partner firms, due to the “model-centric” Revit workflow

If you’re an Architecture firm, using Revit Architecture, how do you collaborate with an Engineering firm, using Revit MEP and/or Revit Structure?

Are your remote offices complaining about the slow speeds when trying to access the Revit Model from the Main office (Data Center)?

Are you an A/E firm using the entire Revit suite of products between multiple offices?

Bandwidth upgrades are expensive, and won’t address the real problem, which is LATENCY !!!

Please join us for an informational webinar to specifically address Revit collaboration.

Learn how we’ll prove it on your network !!!


Wednesday, May 21, 9am-10:30am REGISTER

Civil Systems Group, Inc.

Collaboration Systems Group Division


Revit - 300,000 sold and counting....what are you waiting for?

BOSTON, May 13 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- At the VisMasters Design, Modeling and Visualization Conference, Autodesk, Inc. (Nasdaq: ADSK - News) highlighted how architects around the world are adopting Revit Architecture software for building information modeling (BIM) and Autodesk 3ds Max Design software for 3D visualization. Over 300,000 architects, designers and engineers have moved to building information modeling by adopting the Revit platform for BIM. SHoP Architects and Archaus Architects are among the firms reaping the benefits of a Revit Architecture and 3ds Max Design workflow.

The powerful combination of Revit Architecture and 3ds Max Design enables designers to more fully leverage the power of BIM across their processes. Used together, the products also ease the aggregation of additional scene elements, provide advanced texturing and modeling tools for quick iterations of rendered images, and allow designers to animate objects or add special effects to tell the complete story of their designs.

SHoP Architects

New York-based SHoP Architects first implemented Revit Architecture into its workflow for the 290 Mulberry project. Both Revit Architecture and 3ds Max were used to design and promote the 13-story building, which will be located in New York.

In the preliminary stages of the project, 3ds Max was used for pre-schematic and conceptual design. All aspects of the drawing set were created in Revit Architecture, including the design documents and construction documents. SHoP later relied on 3ds Max to produce photo real renderings, which were used to market the project. The Revit model is currently being used for construction coordination, and SHoP has a daily presence on-site to facilitate the use of the model.

David Fano, director of technology research at the firm noted, "Much of what architects do is dependent on deliverables. Using Revit Architecture and 3ds Max in tandem significantly reduced the time and effort that went into all aspects of the project. It was much easier to manage the drawing set through Revit Architecture, as the software allowed us to focus on the building and worry less about important yet mundane issues. 3ds Max was also great in that it gave us the ability to quickly and loosely model and render elements of the building throughout the design process."

Archaus Architects

New Zealand-based Archaus Architects have used Revit Architecture and 3ds Max to complete over 30 projects from design through to construction documentation, and are currently relying on the solutions for another 20 projects in development. These include the landmark development 'Zone One', a new 270,000 square foot mixed-use development in the New Zealand capital of Wellington.

"The use of Revit Architecture and 3ds Max on this project allowed us to analyze and test various design options quickly and easily," said Erin Collins, project architect for Archaus Architects. "Grouped components and referenced linked files were used extensively for each of the modular units both in Revit Architecture and 3ds Max. This allowed us to make design changes and update the model within minutes."

Collins adds, "Revit Architecture software's shaded 3D camera views and traditional 2D drafting views were used alongside highly detailed photorealistic renderings created in 3ds Max to more effectively communicate our design ideas and visions for the project. When it came time to move the conceptual digital 'sketches' into high resolution photorealistic marketing images, our client was blown away by the quality of the material we provided, and the short timeframe in which Revit Architecture and 3ds Max allowed us to produce them."

http://biz.yahoo.com/prnews/080513/aqtu026a.html?.v=1

LEED 2009 - Please make a difference

U.S. Green Building Council

Dear Engaged Participants:

The conversation we've been having since we started to work on LEED 2009 has gone something like this:

Person A: Global warming doesn't give us much time.
Person B: But we can't address much of anything, let alone global warming, if we're only dealing with a small fraction of the entire built environment. We need to get everyone involved.
Person A: Yes, but why get them involved in a system that doesn't take them far enough to save us from ourselves? We need our buildings to be restorative.
Person B: LEED can't save us from ourselves. LEED, as a tool, can engage the market in transformation. That transformation is about people. It is not about LEED credits.
Person A: You're missing the point. We have to be tougher. We have to go beyond.
Person B: No, you're missing the point. We have to find ways to engage a market that has never thought about these issues before.
Persons A and B: Let's find a way to do both.

These documents try to do just that. They incorporate new science and reflect a new understanding of the priorities of our world. They synthesize the countless days and nights of conversations, thoughts and ideas that have been exchanged since the inception of LEED and then build bold action steps around them.

It's a response of big ideas: a restructuring of the system that allows it to be more nimble; a mechanism for incorporating bioregional issues; a framework that supports rapid response to changes in the market and in our environment; a process for introducing the new technologies that support those changes.

You won't see the full impact of these ideas until you see how it all fits together with the new LEED Online and the certification process, but these shifts allow us to begin to address how human systems integrate with natural systems. Some of the changes are purely technical and some provide a platform for a new direction that will dramatically alter how we launch our collective concerns and common goals.

Provided here are redlined changes to the rating systems, new scorecards and a framework for the introduction of regional credits, along with background documents that can help you understand how we got here.

You are being asked to fully engage as a participant in this discussion and tell us what you think. I, personally, can't wait to hear what you say.

Scot Horst

Scot Horst
Chair, LEED Steering Committee

The first, in a series of LEED 2009 Web casts, will begin on Thursday, May 22, 2009 at 11 AM – 12 PM EST and 1 – 2 PM EST. For more information, click here.

Webinar Series

USGBC will be hosting a series of LEED 2009 Webinars. The first two Webinars will be on Thursday, May 22 2008 at 11 AM – 12 PM EST and 1 – 2 PM EST.

Letter from Scot Horst

The chair of the LEED Steering Committee explains how the changes in LEED 2009 address the integration of human systems with natural systems.

Press Release

LEED 2009 Open for Public Comment

LEED 2009 Vision & Executive Summary

Introduction to LEED 2009 and the overall changes that together make up LEED Version 3, including: LEED Rating System updates/revisions, revision and evolution of the LEED certification process, LEED Online v3. Read More

LEED 2009 Proposed Changes For Public Comment

Any member of the public may comment on the proposed changes to LEED. The public comment period will be open for 30 days, from Monday, May 19 through Sunday, June 22 at 5 pm Pacific Time. Submit Comments


Monday, May 12, 2008

RISA-3D Revit Structure Analysis Updated Versions

Isn't it time to start asking your structural engineers to add Revit Structure to their firms. So many architects that I talk to say they don't want to switch to Revit Architecture because their engineers aren't using Revit. Then I go meet with engineers who say they don't want to move to Revit because their architects aren't telling them to. What's wrong with this picture??? Architects, if you ask your engineers to start investing in Revit, they will. Wow, what a concept. Structural engineers, the architects will give you a 3d model that you can apply loads to and then magically link them to structural analysis programs like Robot and RISA. Then Revit can create your CDs and you all can make more money especially when changes need to be made during the design process. It all seems so clear to me, I hope it does to you as well.

RISA has a brand new release and below you will find lots of information. If you're an architect, please forward this link to a structural engineer so that they get the hint. What's the worse that could happen...they may actually buy Revit Structure and you can start coordinating your designs. Who knows, maybe you can throw out your red markup pens.

RISAFloor Version: 3.2.1 Release Date: April 25, 2008
RISA-3D Version: 7.1.1 Release Date: April 25, 2008

Revit Structure users can now leverage the full power of Building Information Modeling by synchronizing their Revit Structure models with RISA-3D and/or RISA Floor. As an Autodesk Authorized Developer, RISA Technologies has created a full-fledged bi-directional exchange link with Revit Structure.

New models can be created in either REVIT Structure or RISA software using the information available in the other program. All geometric and design information including materials, family instances, walls, slabs, openings, grid lines, boundary conditions, footings, loads and load combinations can be created/updated/deleted in either of the two programs using the information available in the other program.

The new exchange file method allows continuity of data flow throughout the exchange cycle. Users can add new elements and/or additional design to the RISA model and these changes will be retained in RISA while round-tripping.

The robust Excel based XML mapping file provides the capability to customize the processing of shapes, materials and load cases. A log file is created during every export / import operation giving a synopsis on the number of elements translated and errors/warnings encountered, if any.

RISA Floor

Items that can be added/updated/deleted in either RISA Floor or REVIT Structure

  • Units / Material Properties / Deck Definitions / Area Load Definitions / Load Combinations / Floor Information / Point Locations / Beams / Physical Columns / Walls / Line Loads / Area Loads / Decks Slab Perimeters / Openings

Additional Items available in RISA Floor

  • Design Rules / Tapered Area Loads / Floor Saved Views / Rebar Layout Data


Items that can be added/updated/deleted in either RISA 3D or REVIT Structure

  • Units / Material Properties / Section Sets / Nodes / Boundary Conditions / Members / Plates / Footings / Block Load Cases / Node Loads / Point Loads / Distributed Loads / Area Loads / Load Combinations

Additional Items available in RISA 3D

  • Design Rules / Shape List / Surface Loads / Moving Loads / EigenSolution Data / Response / Spectra Data / Saved Selected States / Saved Views / Rebar Layout Data


Download RISA-Revit Link

Description: Download the Full Installation Package for the RISA-3D/RISAFloor – REVIT Structure Component Link. The compatibility information is below.

Link Compatibility
RISA-REVIT Link 6.0 Revit Structure 2008 (SP2 or higher)

RISA-3D 7.0.2 or higher

RISAFloor 3.1.2 or higher

RISA-Revit Link 7.0 Revit Structure 2009

RISA-3D 7.0.2 or higher

RISAFloor 3.1.2 or higher

RISA-REVIT Link Documentation

RISA-REVIT Link Version 6.0 Documentation

RISA-REVIT Link Version 7.0 Documentation

Description: PDF documentation for the RISA-3D/RISAFloor - REVIT Structure Component Link.

Demo Movie

RISA-3D/RISAFloor-Revit Structure 2008 Demo Movie (4:56)

Play | Download

RISA-3D/RISAFloor-Revit Structure 2009 Demo Movie (8:48)

Play | Download

Description: The movie outlines step-by-step instructions on how to export a Revit Structure model to RISA-3D/RISAFloor, perform an analysis and design and then update the members in the original Revit Structure model. You will require a fast Internet connection and a screen resolution of at least 1024x768.


SOLAR LILY PADS Proposed for Glasgow’s Clyde River

There's nothing like a little ingenuity to help save the planet.

by Jill Fehrenbacher

SOLAR LILY PADS Planned for Glasgow’s Clyde River, Glasgow Solar Lily Pads, Floating Solar panels, Clyde River Solar, Lily Pad Solar, Zm Architecture, Peter Richardson, Solar power, solar energy, renewable energy, photovoltaic

In a stunning example of biomimicry, Scottish architecture firm ZM Architecture have come up with a brilliant scheme to provide solar power to the city of Glasgow - and do so in a way that is provocative, creative, and aesthetically appealing. The proposal? To design Solar Lily Pads which will float in Glasgow’s River Clyde and soak up the sun’s rays, sending electricity to Glasgow’s grid while also stimulating urban riverfront activity.

Taking 1st Place in the International Design Awards ‘Land and Sea’ competition, the Solar Lily Pad proposal by Peter Richardson impressed Glasgow’s City Council so much the city is now considering testing a small pilot project in conjunction with the Glasgow Science Centre.

continue reading the article: Inhabitat » SOLAR LILY PADS Proposed for Glasgow’s Clyde River:
http://www.inhabitat.com/2008/05/12/solar-lily-pads-planned-for-glasgows-clyde-river/

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