Category Archives: Design

Be like Bob

KHouse Modern Progress - Revit | Life of an Architect

Everybody likes Bob. Trust me. If you don’t know who I’m talking about, he’s a bit of a celebrity in the blogosphere, and an all around gentleman (so I’m told), Bob Borson. Bob is an architect who focusses on residential projects and runs the popular blog: Life of an Architect. When he’s not sketching, these days he’s taking time to learn Revit. Revit you say? For residential projects? Yes, and yes. Oh, and full disclosure: Bob’s firm does design other types of projects, however that’s a different topic.

The other 30%

You see, there’s a little secret I want to let you in on. The National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) has recently voted unanimously to “support the concept of Building Information Modeling (BIM) utilizing the open industry standards for interoperability and collaboration as defined in the National Building Information Modeling Standard – US (NBIMS-US)”.

This is a key strategy to increase efficiency and allow large home builders to offer more flexibility in providing options to their customers. Architects take note. That development is creating a halo effect in areas where just a year ago, many small architecture firms and especially residential-focused firms were vehemently against the idea of change from 2D CAD. Revit and to a larger extent BIM are becoming not only a primary gravitational force in the architecture profession, they are becoming an increasingly desirable set of tools and processes and dare I say a requirement for the future of the profession.

What Bob shows that is possible after only 16 days of use in the firm where he works is astonishing. I’ll let him tell the story, as he does so very well. Check it out: KHouse Modern Progress – Revit | Life of an Architect

For more about the NAHB efforts on BIM, see: BIM Can Only ‘Raise the Bar’ for the Built Environment

Vasari and Dynamo updates

I may need to start using Siri to dictate my blog posts if I plan to keep up this intensity of writing. Need to save my poor tired digits for more important things, like Form making.

First, Dynamo: This new version 0.5.0 supports both Revit 2013 and 2014 as well as Vasari Beta 2 or 3.

6-19-2013 4-36-46 PM

Above: Dynamic Relaxation sample file in Dynamo

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Autodesk wants to be the defacto 3D printing standard

Recently, Autodesk announced a joint partnership with Makerbot, Carl Bass has even been making the rounds across several media outlets, here’s his own words on the current limits and opportunities of this highly disruptive technology. And, as you see above, if you sign up for the Premium membership on 123D Design you’ll now get discounts on your own co-branded 3D Printer. Continue reading

Frozen music, no more

Sunday: Coffee without BIM

I’ve always struggled to read sheet music as effortlessly as some of my more musically-talented friends. It often seemed without life, just sitting there like ink someone carelessly spilled on the page. Sure, I “know” how to read the notes and symbols, but it never really comes to life until played – usually by someone better than I.

They say architecture is like frozen music. This has been attributed to Meis Van Der Rohe, or Friedrich von Schelling, and others… I never fully understood the relationship to be beyond metaphorical. I would say that more accurately, a photograph of architecture, without the experience of moving through and around it is in fact a 2-dimensional, flat and unmoving act. To truly appreciate a place, you must go there. To truly appreciate music, you must see AND hear it.

Now, only after seeing the below mathematical representation of an emotionally inspired piece of Chopin, does it really make sense. As elegant as a well-composed grasshopper or dynamo script, the visual representation of architectural and musical form seem long-lost siblings.

Please enjoy responsibly.

Chopin, Nocturne, opus 9 no. 2 from musanim on Vimeo.

Let’s Talk Vasari

Coffee with Revit - just because, you know you want it. Image credit:

Been looking for some way to learn more about conceptual modeling in Revit / Vasari? You can join the Vasari development team for some live sessions on specific topics. Join Vasari Talk every Wednesday, bring your own coffee. The announcement is here.

Back already? Good. I must admit after reading that announcement, I’m feeling a little verklempt. Talk amongst yourselves… as Steve pointed out, this slipped some of our notice, as three sessions have already happened (and luckily recorded as part of the Wiki). Read his post for more…

via: Revit OpEd: Vasari Update.

The Proving Ground by Nathan Miller: NBBJ Design Computation – Job Opening


The Proving Ground by Nathan Miller: NBBJ Design Computation – Job Opening.

Dear Computation Community,
I am happy to announce that NBBJ is expanding its efforts in the field of Design Computation. We have officially opened a search for an additional expertise to work with me on a firm-wide effort based out of the Los Angeles studio. Please review the job description below.

If you are interested in this position, apply through the NBBJ website!

NBBJ Los Angeles is seeking an expert in Design Computation who will be placed in a co-leadership position with a collaborative team of experts. The Designer we are seeking must have a proven track-record for pushing the boundaries of design by drawing upon a deep interest in science, mathematics and computing. This individual should possess experience in applying technology driven methodologies in the context of real-world design problems.

The individual will have responsibilities which include collaborating on the design of architecture projects, working with teams to develop innovative computational design tools, and mentoring design teams in computational methods. The position will offer the candidate opportunities to grow within the firm and exposure to an innovative, fast-paced and highly collaborative environment.

• 4-year degree in related field required; Architectural degree a plus
• Minimum of 4-6 years of experience in leveraging computational methods for architectural design
• Advanced knowledge of parametric design software and generative design techniques (software may include Grasshopper, Generative Components, Catia, and/or Inventor)
• Working knowledge of common computer programming languages (VB.NET, C#, Python)
• Familiarity with scripting and application programming interfaces (API) for tools such as Revit, Rhino and/or AutoCAD
• Comfortable working in common 2D and 3D design environments including Revit, Rhino, and/or AutoCAD
• Proven experience teaching design computation
• Strong critical thinking and interpersonal communication skills
• Ability to travel and lead team training seminars in all of NBBJ’s office locations



designby: Cut and Paste

Looking for architectural design problems that need solutions, or solutions to common problems. Look no further than:

Already a whiz in Revit, 3dsMax, or Rhino/Grasshopper? Respond to a challenge, so others may benefit.

Still learning how to solve a geometry problem or build a parametric component? Whether you need a component family, Revit project, GH definition, or other 3D model, sift through the various challenges or projects and their responses, and download to your heart’s content.

Be sure to post a new challenge if you have this idea that you want to crowd-source for a solution. Reward that respondent well when you find modeling Nirvana.

So the next time someone tells you that software ‘X’ cannot do ‘Y’, or ‘Z’, call their bluff and open up an example from some amazingly talented contributors. When you are ready, young padawan, you too can share your brilliance. Click for the latest activity, or search the archives. latest activity | designbymany.