Rethinking Revit: Our Stockholm syndrome

Over recent weeks there has been a furore surrounding Autodesk and their flagship product, Revit. An open letter to Autodesk called into question Revit’s value given escalating licencing costs with stagnant product development. Some long-term customers have even begun considering abandoning Revit altogether and switching to rival software. So how has all of this come about and what’s to take away from the situation? This article offers an alternative view on the matter, suggesting a whole rethink of our relationship with Revit altogether. The Autodesk open letter For years, Architects have complained… Read More

Unintended consequences: Why a LOD400 model is not always desirable

Building Information Modelling (BIM) has brought about significant improvement to the Architecture, Engineering and Construction (AEC) industry. As this article will explore, however, is that the enforcement of specific BIM deliverables can be counterproductive and result in worse project outcomes. Specifically, the article unpacks the requirement of a fabrication-level model, known as ‘LOD400’. When challenging the fitness-for-purpose of BIM, some readers may be inclined to jump to the conclusion that if you are challenging BIM, you must be advocating CAD. This assumption is misguided. For those that know the work of Parametric… Read More

Finding North

Henry Ford once said, ‘The only real mistake is the one from which we learn nothing.’ This article, Finding North, is a tale of how a simple oversight in understanding north can have devastating consequences. The background The story begins some 20 years ago when a recent architectural graduate was working on a multi-residential project. There was nothing particularly out of the ordinary about the project apart from its beachfront location. Yet the size and bulk of the project were sure to raise eyebrows from the local council. And sure enough, it… Read More

Improving operational effectiveness with Dynamo

Across the Architecture, Engineering and Construction (AEC) industry, there are vast differences in how well companies execute basic tasks. The performing of these tasks better than how rivals perform them is known as ‘operational effectiveness’.1 Operational effectiveness is important because it improves productivity and profitability. While many might be quick to point out that operational effectiveness is fundamentally different and not a substitute for a carefully defined strategy, if a company can’t get the operational basics right, it doesn’t matter how brilliant their strategy is.2 This article explores how companies can improve… Read More

Putting BIM in perspective

Building Information Modelling, or BIM, is often portrayed as the saviour of the Architecture, Engineering and Construction (AEC) industry. On the whole, BIM can be seen as a positive direction for the industry, attempting to address the inefficiencies and waste in the industry. Yet at the same time, numerous fractions of the BIM movement are threatening to hinder its cause. Go into any architectural office in the world today, and you’ll find someone ‘doing BIM’. Typically with a technical background, they are known as evangelists, preaching the word of BIM. Listen to… Read More

BIM ecosystem

Building Information Modelling (BIM) entails interdependencies between technological, process and organisational/cultural aspects. These mutual dependencies have created a BIM ecosystem in which BIM-related products form a complex network of interactions.¹ For a long time interoperability between these products has been virtually non-existent, resulting in users unwilling to interchange between different software platforms. Rather than using the best product for the job, users have preferred to remain in the software that they are most familiar with, possibly to the detriment of the design. One such example of this is conceptual massing within Autodesk… Read More