Shoegnome http://www.shoegnome.com Being an Architect in the 21st Century Ain't Easy Thu, 05 Mar 2015 18:02:48 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=4.1.1 Modelport by AECobjects.com http://www.shoegnome.com/2015/03/05/modelport/ http://www.shoegnome.com/2015/03/05/modelport/#comments Thu, 05 Mar 2015 17:45:01 +0000 http://www.shoegnome.com/?p=2434 The Modelport add-on by AECobjects provides a way to import 3DS, DAE, FBX, and OBJ files directly into ArchiCAD.

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Modelport by AECobjects.com

From my ArchiCAD resources page:

AECobjects (a division of ARCHIVISTA, inc) has Modelport, which is an add-on that will import OBJ, FBX, DAE, and 3DS files into ArchiCAD as Objects. “MODELPORT uses the Autodesk FBX SDK, which is the same code used by Autodesk to create a bridge between their popular 3D software: Maya, Softimage XSI, 3DStudio MAX, etc.”

modelport formatsThis isn’t new; it’s been out for a few months. But I’m so far behind. I kept putting this post off because I wanted to test the add-on out myself. I knew exactly what I’d download. I’d find an OBJ or FBX of the Noguchi coffee table and import it into ArchiCAD. If you’ve downloaded my template, you might have noticed there’s a 2D symbol for the Noguchi coffee table in the embedded library. The only coffee table I show in plans is that table. The only coffee table I want to show in 3D views is that table. It is perfection in coffee table form. It’s the only coffee table I’ll ever own (I’ve had two—my first got damaged in the move from Boston to Seattle; I was pissed). Alas, I’m so far behind on everything that spending some time playing with this add-on keeps getting put off. Eventually I’ll get to it and then write a post about the experience. Unless…anyone have time to experiment with this add-on? If someone wants to write a guest post, that’d be awesome. Maybe you could write about importing the Noguchi Coffee table?????? E-mail me.

living roomThe great thing about an add-on like this is that it helps push rendering farther. With the CineRender rendering engine in ArchiCAD 18, we finally have the capability (for non-Lightworks geniuses) to make really good renderings directly out of ArchiCAD. I’ve done a few and I’ve been very pleased with the results. Mostly I’ve just stuck with the defaults—I love Graphisoft’s analogy of using an automatic camera vs actually using all the settings manually. I’m happy to use the automatic scenes, with some subtle tweaks. Okay a few more tweaks each time…which is the way we become masters, right? Baby steps.

rendering1We can now make great renderings, but what ArchiCAD lacks is an endless supply of entourage: the perfect couch, the right teapot on the counter, the client’s favorite flowers or sports car, all the stuff that takes a rendering from very good to very special. Modelport offers one solution: access to millions of OBJ, FBX, DAE, and 3DS files imported directly into ArchiCAD.

Last minute update: for more on Modelport, check out AECObject’s webinar on demand.

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Webinar: Master your BIM workflow with BIMcollab http://www.shoegnome.com/2015/03/04/webinar-master-your-bim-workflow-with-bimcollab/ http://www.shoegnome.com/2015/03/04/webinar-master-your-bim-workflow-with-bimcollab/#comments Wed, 04 Mar 2015 17:45:48 +0000 http://www.shoegnome.com/?p=2584 Learn about BIMcollab and the benefits of using it for BIM coordination and issue management in one of these upcoming webinars.

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If you aren’t familiar with BIMcollab, here are some posts that explain more.

BIMcollab webinarReserve your webinar seat now

Kubus is hosting a series of webinars about how to master your BIM workflow with BIMcollab®.
Do you want to learn more about the possibilities of issue management for BIM, or learn about
the main functionalities? This is your chance. There will be room for questions to ask our BIMcollab-expert at the end of every seminar.

New version BIMcollab®

Kubus is about to release a new version of the BIMcollab web application and all our BCF Managers. Including the Navisworks BCF Manager, which will be added soon to our platform. During our webinars we show you existing and new features of BIMcollab.

Register and select the time and date that works best for you. The duration of the webinar will be approximately 45 minutes.

Register Now

For more information visit www.bimcollab.com

BIMcollab Network

About KUBUS

KUBUS offers BIM for Design & Build and is exclusive distributor for Graphisoft and Gold partner of Solibri, Inc. in the Benelux. KUBUS promotes OpenBIM and IFC workflow solutions and is developer of the most widely used software for Building Specifications for Dutch standards, cost-calculations and eco-cost material analysis based on BIM. KUBUS developed BIMcollab®, world’s first cloud based issue management system for BIM. From offices in Eindhoven, Amsterdam, and Belgrade, KUBUS services currently over 3,000 customers within the construction industry of the Benelux.

www.bimcollab.com
www.kubusinfo.nl

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Live Online Webinar: Share More with BIMx! http://www.shoegnome.com/2015/03/03/live-online-webinar-share-more-with-bimx/ http://www.shoegnome.com/2015/03/03/live-online-webinar-share-more-with-bimx/#comments Tue, 03 Mar 2015 18:30:40 +0000 http://www.shoegnome.com/?p=2583 Graphisoft has a webinar coming up about BIMx and BIMx Pro. I'm sure they'll aim to answer all your questions about the latest versions (and pricing).

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bimx-license-types

WHO:

GRAPHISOFT, the leading Building Information Modeling (BIM) software vendor

WHAT:

Accessing BIM projects on smartphones and tablets is now easier than ever with the new BIMx licensing options. This free webinar will present the entire, detailed workflow of creating, publishing and sharing BIMx Hyper-models.

The following, flexible BIMx licensing options are now available in the Apple Appstore and will be presented during the webinar on March 10, 2015:

BIMx — Recommended for clients, BIMx provides FREE of charge access to the 3D part of any building models in BIMx format. This license can be upgraded to a PRO license to gain access to the full scope of BIM projects published in BIMx format;

BIMx PRO — Recommended for architects, BIMx PRO provides access to the full scope of BIM projects, including both 2D and 3D content (Hyper-model). Gain access to any number of full BIMx projects on one particular device for US$49.99;

BIMx Model Sharing – Recommended for architects, BIMx Model Sharing offers an option to grant access to individual BIMx Hyper-models (including 2D and 3D content) for an unlimited number of clients on any of their devices without a time limit for US$49.99.

Register at http://www.graphisoft.com/learning/online-seminars/registration.html

WHEN:

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Please register for any of the dates/times below to join the free, online seminar!

For Australia and Asia (English):

For Europe, Middle-East and Africa (English):

For the Americas (English):

BIMx and BIMx ProAbout GRAPHISOFT

GRAPHISOFT® ignited the BIM revolution in 1984 with ArchiCAD®, the industry first BIM software for architects. GRAPHISOFT continues to lead the industry with innovative solutions such as its revolutionary BIMcloud®, the world’s first real-time BIM collaboration environment, EcoDesigner™, the world’s first fully BIM-integrated “GREEN” design solution and BIMx®, the world’s leading mobile app for BIM visualization. GRAPHISOFT has been a part of the Nemetschek Group since its acquisition in 2007. Visit archicad.com to see the most important milestones in ArchiCAD’s 30-year history.

 

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Become an ArchiCAD 19 Beta Tester http://www.shoegnome.com/2015/02/26/become-an-archicad-19-beta-tester/ http://www.shoegnome.com/2015/02/26/become-an-archicad-19-beta-tester/#comments Thu, 26 Feb 2015 18:33:43 +0000 http://www.shoegnome.com/?p=2577 ArchiCAD 19. It just feels good to write that. Are you excited about what's next? Do more than just dream about the next version. Apply to be a beta tester.

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ArchiCAD 19 beta program

This year Graphisoft is trying something new. They are opening up their application to become a beta tester for ArchiCAD 19 to the entire community. If you are interested, click the image above or this link to apply.

Being a part of the beta test is awesome for so many reasons. Some of which I can’t actually share because of NDAs and such. But here’s what I think I can say:

  1. You get to see the next release of ArchiCAD before everyone else.
  2. You get to test the software, find bugs, and help the next release be the best it possibly can be.
  3. You get to influence the future of the software, by being involved in discussions about the beta.
  4. You get to talk with other passionate users about the future of ArchiCAD in a private environment.
  5. You get to talk with the DEVELOPERS of ArchiCAD about the future of AchiCAD.
  6. Doors open.

Okay, let’s talk about that last one. Being an active member of the beta tester community is a great opportunity to expand your presence in the ArchiCAD and BIM community. Being an active member of the beta tester community helps you get noticed by other ArchiCAD experts and by key people on the development side of Graphisoft. Do you have a passion for a certain aspect of ArchiCAD or BIM? Imagine you can share that passion in a way that improves the next release of ArchiCAD and catches the eye of Graphisoft. What happens next? I know. Others do too.

If you want to take your passion for the future of the practice of architecture, BIM, and ArchiCAD to new levels, consider applying to be a part of the ArchiCAD 19 Beta community. It’ll be the start of something awesome.

02/27/15 Update: For the last question in the sign up questionnaire, check one box. If you check other, write a short sentence. For some of us the application wasn’t going through. The form wasn’t prepared to handle more than 250 characters of text, so those of us who checked all the boxes and/or wrote something long caused the form to freak out. Punishment for being a wordy over-achiever. I was obviously tripped up by this too!

If you are just a little curious and will only half-ass it, don’t bother signing up. Beta testing is a great opportunity but also a responsibility. Subscribe to my blog to read more about the tricky world of being an Architect in the 21st century. Shoegnome on Facebook, Twitter, and the RSS feed.

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BIMx Docs is Dead. Long live BIMx Pro. http://www.shoegnome.com/2015/02/24/bimx-docs-is-dead-long-live-bimx-pro/ http://www.shoegnome.com/2015/02/24/bimx-docs-is-dead-long-live-bimx-pro/#comments Tue, 24 Feb 2015 19:51:50 +0000 http://www.shoegnome.com/?p=2568 BIMx Pro pricing explained perfectly, and simply. The pricing has been fixed. It's time to use BIMx Pro on every project. Read on...

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First a simple chart, then my thoughts, and finally the official press release.

Remember this? We fixed it! Okay Graphisoft fixed it, but we spoke and they listened.

BIMx Pro CostAt the end of this article there is an even better diagram than the one above, but I couldn’t resist updating my unnecessarily complex chart from last year. For those who are curious, if you already own BIMx Docs, it will automatically upgrade to BIMx Pro. I checked my iPad this morning and it’s already been updated to BIMx Pro. So that’s great. Yes I paid more the $49.99 for the app last year, but that’s okay by me.

BIMx Docs is Dead. Long live BIMx Pro.

BIMx has continuously evolved and improved since it was released as an iOS app in September 2011, and since even before that if you include the era of desktop only Virtual Building Explore—remember that? I barely do. I expect more improvements in the future, but BIMx Pro is finally ready to use on every project, without exception.

Okay there are always exceptions, like massive projects that don’t have the Layout Book in the same file as the model and which would also crash any mobile device. But I’m sure there are still numerous reasons to be able to publish just the Layout Book as a BIMx file or just the 3D model(s) without any of the Layouts (or just a few)…anyways, that’s a minor obstacle that just requires a little brainstorming. And more importantly for anyone doing residential, small scale projects, or really any project that ArchiCAD can handle in one file (which is the majority of the work done in ArchiCAD), there’s no excuse not to explore and use BIMx Pro.

BIMx Pro is now a complete solution that will only get better.

As a project documentation tool, it is now accessible to everyone, continuously throughout the life of the project. For $49.99 per project, you can send out continually updating versions of your BIMx file with all the 2D and 3D documentation. To everyone. Whenever they join the project. Client, contractor, subcontractor, facilities management… the entire AECOU spectrum can access the file (architect, engineer, contractor, owner, user) for the life of the building—and beyond.

As a marketing tool, it is now accessible as a download link from a website. Okay I haven’t tested this yet, but I see no reason why it shouldn’t work. Copy the link you typically send to someone and then add the link to your website. Now a prospective client can click on a project, see photos like usual, and download the navigable 3D model with all the documentation. You might not want to show the actual construction documents in this file, but for $49.99, you could just make a new BIMx Pro file that only has the model(s), the major drawings with no notes or dimensions, some beautiful renderings and other pertinent promo material (like a sheet listing the project team, design awards, green features, etc).

Don’t cheap out.

$49.99 for the office iPad to have access to all your models is insignificant. And it’s not $49.99 per device, not if all your office iPads share the same Apple ID account. Up to 10 devices can share the same Apple ID. So make sure all the company devices share the same account and it’s $49.99 for the entire office. If you have more than 10 iPads for you office…$100 or $200 or whatever the cost is to outfit all of them with BIMx Pro is nothing. Chump change. For Android users, it’ll be even better when BIMx Pro reaches Android devices (sadly not yet). Hopefully Android users won’t have to wait too long. There is no limit to the number of devices. As long as all the devices have the same (gmail) account, you can keep linking BIMx Pro to them. That means it’s $49.99 for the entire office. So for instance you could make a new e-mail account that is BIMx@yourcompany.com, add that to all your company Android tablets and smart phones, pay $49.99 and be all set. Remember, Android devices can have tons of gmail accounts linked to them. My crappy two year old Atrix HD has seven gmail accounts linked to it.

$49.99 per project is insignificant to have the power of BIMx Pro for every client, contractor, and collaborator. Even double that to $99.98 so that you have a project team BIMx file and a marketing file. That’s nothing. Eat the expense or charge it directly to your client. I don’t care.

Don’t be timid.

Everyone you work with has a smartphone or tablet. Every contractor has one. I’ve said this before. I’m sure every job site has more smartphones and tablets than people. They might all be personal devices, but they are there. Maybe they are sitting in a truck or job trailer, but they are there. Provide the BIMx Pro file to everyone, especially people bidding on the project. Don’t ask if they want it. Give it to them. You might not be able to recoup your measly $49.99, but so what. BIMx Pro—now that the pricing has been fixed, and the time limit for download links has been removed—is ready to transform how we communicate. It’s up to you to actually make that happen.

Don’t waffle. Do it.

Today. Buy BIMx Pro. Make a BIMx Pro file of your favorite current project. Buy the $49.99 e-mailable version. Then send links to everyone you are working with—clients, contractors, engineers, your parents, everyone. Make it a gift. Share your excitement. Let them enjoy it. Then watch what happens.

You use ArchiCAD.

This is your moment. Every year new versions come out of all the programs. All the big BIM players have their mobile apps. BIMx Pro has just thrown down the gauntlet. Pick it up and run.

Finally the Press Release:

BIM Project Sharing Becomes Easier with BIMx Update

BUDAPEST, February 24, 2015 — GRAPHISOFT®, the leading Building Information Modeling (BIM) architectural software developer, has introduced a simplified and more flexible licensing scheme for its award-winning BIM presentation app, BIMx.

In response to customer feedback, the following fewer, more flexible licensing options are available in the Apple Appstore effective immediately:

BIMx – Recommended for clients, BIMx provides FREE of charge access to the 3D part of any building models in BIMx format. This license can be upgraded to a PRO license to gain access to the full scope of BIM projects published in BIMx format;

BIMx PRO – Recommended for architects, BIMx PRO provides access to the full scope of BIM projects, including both 2D and 3D content (Hyper-model). Gain access to any number of full BIMx projects on one particular device for US$49.99;

BIMx Model Sharing (in-app purchase option) – Recommended for architects, BIMx Model Sharing offers an option to grant access to individual BIMx Hyper-models (including 2D and 3D content) for an unlimited number of clients on any of their devices without a time limit for US$49.99.

“By simplifying the license options available and following naming standards in the Appstore, our users will better understand whether to choose the FREE version or the paid PRO version,” said Akos Pfemeter, Vice President, Marketing at GRAPHISOFT. “The best news is that even with paid licenses, the purchase decision boils down to the following, very simple decision: All models on 1 device OR 1 model on all devices — for the same $50,” he added.

BIMx is available in the App Store and on Google Play. Visit the BIMx product site or view this short video for further details. Sign up for our upcoming BIMx Webinar on March 10 for a live demonstration of BIMx and BIMx PRO.

bimx-license-types

About GRAPHISOFT

GRAPHISOFT® ignited the BIM revolution in 1984 with ArchiCAD®, the industry first BIM software for architects. GRAPHISOFT continues to lead the industry with innovative solutions such as its revolutionary BIMcloud®, the world’s first real-time BIM collaboration environment, EcoDesigner™, the world’s first fully BIM-integrated “GREEN” design solution and BIMx®, the world’s leading mobile app for BIM visualization. GRAPHISOFT has been a part of the Nemetschek Group since its acquisition in 2007. Visit archicad.com to see the most important milestones in ArchiCAD’s 30-year history.

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ArchiCAD Rendering Tutorial and the Shoegnome Open Template 18.2 http://www.shoegnome.com/2015/02/23/archicad-rendering-tutorial-and-the-shoegnome-open-template-18-2/ http://www.shoegnome.com/2015/02/23/archicad-rendering-tutorial-and-the-shoegnome-open-template-18-2/#comments Tue, 24 Feb 2015 00:44:14 +0000 http://www.shoegnome.com/?p=2566 In addition to releasing the latest version of my Shoegnome Open Template, I've also recorded an ArchiCAD Rendering Tutorial video.

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I’ve updated my template. You can get the latest version here. Remember, it’s free, if you want it to be. There are a number of little changes from the previous versions, including fixes to the Renovation Filters, Model View Options, Favorites, Pen Sets, Labels assigned to various Tool types, and Zone color changes. But perhaps the most important update is that I have included the two rendering scenes I use to create images like this:

White model under sketch lines exampleIn addition to releasing the latest version of the Shoegnome Open Template, I’ve also recorded a video that talks about the process of creating the image above (and various aspects of my template that pertain to the efficient creation of renderings).

The process is very similar to one I shared back in January, 2013. If the concept of merging renderings interests you, you might also want to watch the original video and read the accompanying blog post. Here’s a link. It’s VERY similar, so the two videos together will do a good job of reinforcing the main concepts.

Further Thoughts:

If you want all the latest Shoegnome Open Template news, sign up for the mailing list below. I’ll only send e-mails about the template:

Sign up for the mailling list!

Thank you to everyone who has supported the template. I really appreciate the help and encouragement. Subscribe to my blog to read more about the tricky world of being an Architect in the 21st century. Shoegnome on Facebook, Twitter, and the RSS feed.

 

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BCF Manager for Navisworks http://www.shoegnome.com/2015/02/20/bcf-manager-for-navisworks/ http://www.shoegnome.com/2015/02/20/bcf-manager-for-navisworks/#comments Sat, 21 Feb 2015 03:48:53 +0000 http://www.shoegnome.com/?p=2561 Kubus increases the value of BIMcollab by introducing a BCF Manager for Navisworks.

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Jared’s Note: I’ve tested out the BCF manager for ArchiCAD by KUBUS and it’s great. So I imagine this extension of BCF collaboration via Navisworks will be just as stellar and well executed. Like the BCF Managers for ArchiCAD, Revit, and simplebim, I expect this add-on for Navisworks will be free. You have no excuses to not try the add-ons for whatever software you use. And if your BIM software isn’t one of those supported, KUBUS is providing for free everything you need to build add-ons for other BIM programs—well you being someone with software development skills.

I know a lot of people say “but working all on the same platform is just easier”; well with advances like this, that statement is more narrow-minded and shortsighted every day. Especially when you consider the model aggregation capabilities of a tool like Navisworks (and Tekla BIMsight and Solibri…).

BIMcollab NetworkEindhoven, Februari 20th 2015 - KUBUS announces the upcoming release of the new BCF Manager for Navisworks in the first week of March. Like the current BCF Managers for Revit and ArchiCAD, this version supports opening/saving BCF files and has a direct link to BIMcollab®. Issues found in one application can be visualized in another, since the relevant objects and camera-position are saved as well. The ability of Navisworks to find clashes is, thanks to the BCF Manager, now enhanced with an open communication platform to share these clashes with team members.

BIMcollab®is a cloud-based issue management system for BIM, based on BuildingSMART’s BCF file format. BCF is designed to support communication between team members about BIM models without the need of sending the complete model. A snapshot of the issue clearly explains the problem, also to non-BIM users like contractors, who can use the browser-based version.

CEO of KUBUS Erik Pijnenburg: “In all projects where Navisworks is used as a platform to collect models and check for clashes, this BCF Manager helps users to communicate clashes to other team members, no matter which BIM tools they use.”

With this release KUBUS expands the number of BIM applications linked to BIMcollab® even further, bridging the communication-gab between BIM applications. Download BCF Managers for  ArchiCAD, Revit, SimpleBIM, and the stand alone viewer here.

About KUBUS

KUBUS offers BIM for Design & Build and is exclusive distributor for Graphisoft and Gold partner of Solibri, Inc. in the Benelux. KUBUS promotes OpenBIM and IFC workflow solutions and is the developer of the most widely used software for Building Specifications for Dutch standards, cost-calculations and eco-cost material analysis based on BIM. KUBUS developed BIMcollab®, the world’s first cloud based issue management system for BIM. KUBUS is committed to make this the best issue management solution for BIM. BIMcollab® was released in December 2014. From offices in Eindhoven, Amsterdam, and Belgrade, KUBUS services currently over 3,250 customers within the construction industry of the Benelux.

For more information
Contact Lotje van Rijsoort or Rosa van Tour – marketing@kubusinfo.nl – T. +31(0)40 213 1950
www.bimcollab.com
www.kubusinfo.nl
twitter.com/KUBUSBV

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gbXML export add-on (for free from Cadimage) http://www.shoegnome.com/2015/02/20/gbxml-export-add-on-for-free-from-cadimage/ http://www.shoegnome.com/2015/02/20/gbxml-export-add-on-for-free-from-cadimage/#comments Fri, 20 Feb 2015 20:27:44 +0000 http://www.shoegnome.com/?p=2491 The ArchiCAD community is awesome. Cadimage has a free gbXML export add-on for you.

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In late December, 2014 there was a discussion on LinkedIn about how to export from ArchiCAD to a gbXML file. A long time ago Encina (now part of Cadimage) sold an add-on, but there was hardly a trace or reference to the Add-on anywhere on Cadimage’s website. So, short of buying EcoDesigner Star, the original commenter wanted to know if there was any other solution.

I didn’t have an answer, but I also wasn’t satisfied with not knowing what happened to the old Encina gbXML Add-on. So I e-mailed someone I know at Cadimage and asked—fortunately I’d just been e-mailing Cadimage about the recent post I did in conjunction with them. You know, this one about language usage. Anyways the point here is, if you don’t know, ASK. The ArchiCAD community is awesome. Everyone worth talking to is happy to hear from another passionate user and help if they can. Whether that person is part of Graphisoft, a local distributor, a third party developer, a fellow user, a trainer, a student, a blogger…everyone wants to help.

gbxml_Cadimage

Anyways it turns out Cadimage has a (very) late holiday gift for us all. If you’ve been following the thread on LinkedIn, you might have already gotten this gift: as of now the gbXML Add-on for ArchiCAD 18 (and 16 and 17) is available for free on Cadimage’s website. Here’s the link.

Go get it. It’s free.

Let me write that again.

Cadimage is giving us all the gbXML Add-on for ArchiCAD for free.

As a bonus the Add-On includes an automated Zone Placement command that works really well. I could see that as being very useful, even if you aren’t using it for the intended purpose of exporting a gbXML file.

Even if you don’t care about gbXML

Read the Product Overview and Modeling Tips. The few pages of images and text are a perfect example of how to explain an add-on and also teach someone about modeling. Recently on BIM Engine I wrote about different kinds of ArchiCAD models and about how much you should model. The modeling tips Cadimage shares on how to maximize the benefits of the gbXML add-on fit into those discussions perfectly. Their advice runs counter to some things you’ve probably been told by experts (including me), but their advice is absolutely right. If you are modeling so that you can export to gbXML, then there are some things you should and shouldn’t do. It’s a great case study for all the things I’ve been writing about recently.

gbxml_prep

What is gbXML?

“The Green Building XML (gbXML) open schema helps facilitate the transfer of building properties stored in 3D building information models (BIM) to engineering analysis tools.” (from gbXML.org)

For more details, click here. But in simple terms, gbXML is the file type you need to get your building information from ArchiCAD to a number of energy modeling software. And I believe gbXML is of interest for Passivhaus designers as well, but I’m sure you guys will correct me if I’m wrong! In other words, gbXML is a great file type for working within an OpenBIM environment. Or is that OpenBEM? Are we there yet?

For posts, news, advice, and random stuff spilling from my brain, make sure to follow Shoegnome on FacebookTwitter, and the RSS feed.

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21st Century Residential Architecture Business Models http://www.shoegnome.com/2015/02/18/21st-century-residential-architecture-business-models/ http://www.shoegnome.com/2015/02/18/21st-century-residential-architecture-business-models/#comments Thu, 19 Feb 2015 01:05:04 +0000 http://www.shoegnome.com/?p=2550 The latest edition of the AIA CRAN Chronicle has just been released. The theme of this issue is architectural business models for residential practices.

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CRAN Logo and NameThe latest edition of the AIA CRAN Chronicle has just been released. The theme of this issue is architectural business models for residential practices. Not only did I write an article (about the underlying business model behind Shoegnome over the past five years), I also got two other architects/firms I know and respect to contribute articles. First there’s Bryan Anderson, AIA from SALA Architects. You know SALA Architects, especially if you’ve followed my adventures over the past number of years. Working with Bryan while I was at SALA was always a joy. We did some kick ass projects together. Bryan wrote an article about going from intern to principal at SALA Architects, and about the evolution of SALA over the past 30+ years. Contrasting Bryan’s article which focuses on a large, established firm, Cary Westerbeck’s article talks about starting a firm in the depths of the recession. I met Cary when I moved to Seattle, WA and we have teamed up a few times on some local work. I’ll hopefully be sharing some of our collaborations on the blog and the Facebook page in the coming months—in fact, we were just at a site this morning measuring some existing conditions. The final article in the series is by Kevin Harris, FAIA, who has run a small firm for over thirty years. I’ve gotten to know Kevin over the past few years as we are both members of the CRAN communications committee, which organizes the CRAN Chronicle, and I have recently joined him as part of the CRAN Advisory Group.

Here’s a link to the entire issue (which also includes a number of other interesting articles, videos, links, and other resources for residential architects):

February 2015 CRAN Chronicle

I’ve written a number of articles for the AIA CRAN Chronicle since 2013. If you’re curious about everything I’ve written for this online journal through February 2015, here are some handy links:

Subscribe to my blog to read more about the tricky world of being an Architect in the 21st century: Shoegnome on FacebookTwitter, and RSS feed. And now you can join the LinkedIN group too. For more about the AIA Custom Residential Architects Network, click here.

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Seattle ArchiCAD User Group – February 26th, 2015 http://www.shoegnome.com/2015/02/11/seattle-archicad-user-group-february-26th-2015/ http://www.shoegnome.com/2015/02/11/seattle-archicad-user-group-february-26th-2015/#comments Wed, 11 Feb 2015 18:46:07 +0000 http://www.shoegnome.com/?p=2546 It's time for another Seattle ArchiCAD User Group. Read on for all the details. Come join us!

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ArchiCAD User Group - 18We have our next Seattle ArchiCAD User Group scheduled. Please notice that we are meeting in a new non-downtown location at a slightly later time. Here are the details:

Date:

Thursday February 26, 2015
6:00 PM – 8:00 PM

Location:

DeForest Architects
1148 NW Leary Way
Seattle, WA 98107

Host:

Jesse Gallanar, GSNA’s sales manager for Washington, Oregon, and Alaska

Special Thanks:

Geoff Briggs, John DeForest and the whole team at DeForest Architects for letting us congregate in their new space.

What’s Happening:

When you register, you’ll see the official topics of discussion. Geoff is listed as the speaker. He’s volunteered to share what he’s working on—both a current project and his current template developments. We ArchiCAD gurus sure get nerdy and excited whenever someone says the word Template.

Of course as anyone who’s ever been to a user group that I’ve run knows, lengthy lectures aren’t the goal. The official topics are just a starting point. What I want to see—and what I hope Geoff’s topics will facilitate—is a two hour discussion about ArchiCAD that continues afterwards at a local bar**. Sound good? So bring whatever you need: questions, a project, a printout, a gripe, a coworker, a friend, a disgruntled Revit user, a prospective user. I don’t care. I just want to get a big bunch of passionate ArchiCAD and BIM users together to talk about what’s important. You in? ALSO…if you have a question or topic you’d like to have discussed, please e-mail me ahead of time. I can’t promise we’ll cover it (especially if you ask about EcoDesigner STAR), but we’ll do our best.

Please share this post and e-mail it to all your coworkers. I know not everyone gets the official e-mails about user groups—especially new and/or quieter employees.

**100% yes we will be having an after-party ArchiCAD nerdfest at a nearby bar. Geoff tells me there are a lot of great places to go close to their new office. And I think, as with the previous meetings, Jesse will be feeding us.

Seattle Area ArchiCAD User Mailing List

I’m creating a mailing list for ArchiCAD users in the Seattle Area (or people interested in Seattle Area ArchiCAD events). If that describes you, sign up by clicking here.

Subscribe to my blog to read more about the tricky world of being an Architect in the 21st century, and more info on various ArchiCAD meet-ups across the globe: Shoegnome on FacebookTwitter, and the RSS feed.

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AEC Science & Technology, LLC Launches the First Virtual Tradeshow http://www.shoegnome.com/2015/02/09/aec-science-technology-llc-launches-first-virtual-tradeshow/ http://www.shoegnome.com/2015/02/09/aec-science-technology-llc-launches-first-virtual-tradeshow/#comments Mon, 09 Feb 2015 19:39:09 +0000 http://www.shoegnome.com/?p=2543 Later this year there will be a virtual AEC Science & Technology tradeshow. This looks like a pretty interesting event and I hope it does well. It's also free, which is great.

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aecst-bannerChadds Ford, PA, February 9, 2015 — From the comfort of your home or office, you can now attend an AEC Science & Technology tradeshow. AEC-ST Principal George Borkovich announced that the first interactive event of its kind will take place this July 14-15, 2015. Best of all, it will be free to all qualified AEC professionals who register to attend. The digital platform AEC-ST will use has been developed by Hyperfair, the leading virtual events provider.

Says Borkovich, “Until now, there has not been a virtual event that addresses the information and technology needs of the entire AEC facilities and construction team…how resources and electronic data are used and exchanged; how assets are leveraged throughout the lifecycle of the facility; how information standards are defined and shared. Whether working on a building, a roadway, a bridge, or a power plant….all designers, engineers, owners, and operators are faced with the ever-growing challenges to work more efficiently together.”

Borkovich has produced scores of in-person, face-to-face conventions domestically and internationally over the past three decades, including the A/E/C SYSTEMS, Ecobuild America and AEC-ST tradeshows, but this will be the first online event to focus on the important issues of interoperability for effective facility planning, accurate design, improved construction and efficient maintenance and operations. Content to be featured includes:

  • Building Information Modeling (BIM)
  • Energy-Efficiency
  • Facility Management & Performance
  • Geographic Information Systems (GIS)
  • Green Building, Design & Construction
  • Sustainable Infrastructure
  • and more!

Attendees will create their own avatar to virtually walk through the expo hall and view the various presentations and network with their peers and vendors in a fun and interactive game-like environment. They’ll be able to exchange business cards and fill their virtual tote-bags with product information and new ideas. Exhibitors and sponsors will showcase their solutions in interactive booths with content such as videos, downloadable brochures and documents, product launches, and 3D products. No travel, no hotels, no onsite expenses. Adds Borkovich, “We’re using the latest technology to help reduce our carbon footprint, not just to attend an event, but to help make our built world better, safer, smarter and sustainable.”

To become an attendee, register for free at http://www.aecstvirtual.com/.

To learn more about becoming an exhibitor or a sponsor including fees and options, go to http://aecst.com/aec-st-virtual/

About AEC Science & Technology, LLC

AEC-ST develops sustainable, high performance & technology solutions for the built environment. It has created, managed and produced Ecobuild America and the AEC Science & Technology conferences. A company with a depth of experience in technology and event planning spanning more than 30 years for the AEC industry, including creating and managing the former A/E/C SYSTEMS International conferences and exhibitions, it focuses on bringing the entire project team together to advance interoperable design and construction solutions for the full facilities and infra-structure life-cycle. For more information, contact George Borkovich at george@aecst.com.

About Hyperfair

Hyperfair is a virtual events provider revolutionizing the way business is done online with a unique, immersive, and interactive virtual reality platform. Hyperfair has hosted successful virtual events for diverse clients ranging from engineering, architecture, and design to finance, health care, travel, manufacturing, franchising, construction, sustainability, and more. For more information, contact Judy Hu at j.hu@hyperfair.com.

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Deleting Attributes and the One Layer Model http://www.shoegnome.com/2015/02/08/deleting-attributes-one-layer-model/ http://www.shoegnome.com/2015/02/08/deleting-attributes-one-layer-model/#comments Mon, 09 Feb 2015 02:38:36 +0000 http://www.shoegnome.com/?p=2535 There are all sorts of interesting things you can do in ArchiCAD if you simplify your Attributes to almost zero. Here's where to start.

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Three Color Model

Over on BIM Engine, I’ve been writing a series of articles about Layers in ArchiCAD. As part of that exploration I want to talk about the One Layer Model (or the One Surface Model or the One <insert Attribute here> Model).

Why would you want a One Layer Model, or a model with a particular Attribute distilled down to non-existence? Lots of reasons, but mostly it boils down to temporary simplification. Imagine you have a hyper detailed model, then you want to look at options for a dormer or landscaping or some other localized detail. What if you could ring-fence the model and give it an on/off switch? Or what if you could easily create: base model, option 1, option 2, option 3, etc. Or perhaps you want to create a two or three tone model (a model with just two or three Surfaces, see image above). Or maybe you want a complex model to be on one Layer so that it can become background entourage for something else (yes you could just hotlink it in or do other tricks). The point here is to explore and understand how we can misuse ArchiCAD to our advantage. To be natively creative within ArchiCAD, we need to understand how to break the rules and head down whatever path the design process leads. Sometimes that means modeling and working in a way that creates an orphaned model. That’s okay. That’s good. That’s a bigger discussion for another time.

There are a number of ways to simplify a model, and one of them is to delete and replace Attributes as fast as possible. Here’s how:

  1. Save As (we are going to do some non-undoable destructive stuff).
  2. Delete Attributes like a mad person.
  3. Work in simplified freedom.

To make this technique viable, and not tedious to do as part of your creative process (ei, to be able to simplify a model quickly and effortlessly), you need to learn a specific technique:

Notes and Further Reading:

  1. As I note in the video, the exact technique I show, while clever, is a bit unnecessary for Layers and Building Materials as you can select multiple BMats or Layers at once, delete and replace them, and no data is lost. This makes consolidating Building Materials or Layers insanely easy—as you can select as many of these Attributes as you want and merge them down without loss. So watch the video as there’s other valuable information, but just use the faster method of selecting a bunch at once. Damn. I tested this before making the video and it didn’t work for some reason. Fortunately an astute viewer caught my mistake. THANK YOU!
  2. The Power of One. Ken Huggins talked about this back in 2012 (and I’ve been thinking about it ever since). But we’re going a step further by showing how to take any model with tons of Layers and consolidate it down to just one or two.
  3. If your model relies on Layer Intersection Groups, the resulting One Layer Model will have a few goofy moments as elements will all interact. If this is problematic, you might need to consolidate down to two or three base Layers. Then again, what you are doing is creating a schematic model, so a little crudeness might be okay.
  4. If you are doing this to test options in 3D, you might want to delete everything on hidden Layers, and just merge down to one Layer the stuff you can see. Remember this is about being loose and fast. Once you have a solution, you will go back to your original file and work properly.
  5. If you are doing this delete and replace gambit, you could start by going to the Attribute Manager and deleting all the unused Attributes to speed the process up even more. This is especially important with Fills, Line Types and Surfaces, as they don’t work as smoothly with the process shown in the video (because after deleting you aren’t returned to a master list like for Layers and Building Materials AND more importantly, you can’t select multiple Attributes at once and merge them like you can with BMats and Layers). My solution with these Attributes is to just delete and replace with whatever random Attribute comes up as the Attribute to be replaced with until you get down to just a few. Then when the list is smaller, be careful, tweak, and set up the remaining Attribute(s) to be what you want. If you are deleting 100 Surfaces, it doesn’t matter what Surfaces 1-90 are merged into. Just that the final surfaces are merged correctly into the remaining ones.
  6. If you are merging down to 3 or 4 Attributes (say Solid, Transparent, and Translucent Surfaces), consolidate the Attributes that are unique first (ei, the two Surfaces that will be merged into Transparent and the four that will be merged into Translucent) before doing the bulk work of merging the rest into the remaining Attribute (Solid in this example).
  7. For more on deleting and replacing Attributes, check out the Help Center.
  8. For more on monochromatic models (there are lots of ways to do this), check out this video I did in 2014: Monochromatic Models in ArchiCAD.

Subscribe to my blog to read more about the tricky world of being an Architect in the 21st century: Shoegnome on FacebookTwitter, and RSS feed.

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