Sunday, September 30, 2007

Interesting Note on importing View & a bit of non-Revitness

Pause in Revitness;

Whohooo! The Sox clinched the divsion and so did the Phillies! Now as long as the Boston wins the series, and the Phillies loose the league, I won't have any conflicts of interest, ;)

Pause over.

I went to load some schedules from a previous file into a new file and learned something interesting. It would seem that when you click on that wonderful option to insert views (File menu-->Insert From File-->Views). You're actually opening that whole file in memory on your local machine. Some (like me) may have thought Revit simply had a nifty way of querying other Revit files for their views. That is not the case it would seem, the reason I'm thinking that the whole file is being opened, is because of the message I received. When I selected my file, and hit Open, after it had loaded up, I got a message "Instance of Linked file needs coordination review", what!?.. The file I was working in, doesn't have any linked Revit files, and certainly none that need review, but I know for the fact that the file I wanted to grab views from does have links, and they do need review. Why does this matter? If the entire file that you want to take views from is being opened, that means what you're doing is no different, then if you went to the open command. So the question you should ask yourself, given your computer's hardware specs, when you go to get those views from a file, would you typically open both that file, and the file you're working in at the same time? Something to consider, especially if you dealing with large files. An alternative to transfer views and such, would be to create a new empty file, transfer the views you need into that file, then transfer from the new file to the file that needs the views, thus reducing the load on your computer.


So, not only does Revit open the entire file in the background (when doing "insert views") the file apparently remains in memory (for how long I don't know yet). I managed to figure this out because I went to do a "transfer project standards" and to my suprise, the file that I had inserted views from, was in the list! And, as you may also know already any files that are linked into a file, were also in the list! This means that you should definently use the Insert from File command carefully, and under strict conditions, or you may be running with a much heavier Revit then anticpated.

Thursday, September 06, 2007

AU "Unplugged"

You may have heard of the "un-conference", well the organizers at AU have decided to do something similiar. (Though I question how "random" and "spur of the moment" it will be with it being so "organized"). Editorials aside, essentially AU Unplugged will provide for small dicussion groups focused around user driven topics. I've submitted a topic inspired by a recent post on AUGI under the "AU class wishlist thread" in the Revit community. I'm suggusting a discussion on best practices for core template & content development, and distribution to the rest of your firm. Vote for me! :).

You can find out more here:


Follow-up to Type Catalogs

Justin had a question comment, and I'll try to respond. I've posted two screen shots, one of the type catalog in Excel, and another of the family types dialog box from a related family (in this case lab casework). You can see in the Revit screen shot the parameter "Rear Panel Access" essentially we want to be able to turn this on or off, as any cabinent can include an access panel, but they don't have to.
So rather then having two different familys, we use a "Yes/No" to control the visibility of some symbolic lines, and also fill in a shared parameter than can be scheduled to indicate if an access panel is required. (make sure to click on the images to get the full size image to see the details).

Breaking Up is Hard to Do

Had a problem today, where a user simply could not successfully move an element "down" (screen direction, in plan). They could move it side to side without a problem. In this case the element to be moved was a linked file, however as far as Revit is concerned, in some ways a linked file is just single large object/group. Having no success in figuring out what to do, I defaulted to my old standby trick to break any sort of constraint; "cut" (cntrl+x). The cut command has the wonderful ability to keep everything on your clipboard, but all relationships or constraints between the object you cut, and the rest of your model are completely broken. With a quick "paste aligned; same place" (under the edit menu) we were able to place the cut object back in the same exact spot, then move it down the 8" required. How the linked file originally got out of place we don't know (I highly reccomend pinning cirtical elements like links, grids, levels).

This trick of cutting, and pasting back to the same place is also effective on sketch lines or other objects that like to automatically establish relationships with other objects. On more then one occasions I've had to cut and paste the sketch lines of either a floor or ceiling in order to prevent the floor or ceiling from attempting to adapt to changes in wall configurations.