Tag Archives: Learning

Virtual #AU2011

Move along, there’s something to see here!

Every year, Autodesk University occurs the week after Thanksgiving. For those of you who would like to take part in this exciting learning opportunity, you can attend virtually. Previews of online classes are available on November 15, and you can watch prior AU video courses or download handouts at anytime. Sign up for AU Virtual today and join thousands of your colleagues online November 29–30 for AU Virtual 2011! Choose to Sign In, using your Autodesk single sign-on account.

For those of you following me on Twitter who are not attending AU in person, let me apologize in advance for the ridiculous number of tweets you will see in about 30 days. Search for #AU2011 (the official hash-tag) if you care to follow the conversation.


Let’s Talk Vasari

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

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.

CADLearning Revit Architecture 2011 Tutorials Published

Why so quiet? What’s going on with the blog? I’ve heard lot’s of this in the more than six months since I last posted. It’s nice to know faithful readers care. Besides being very busy at NBBJ, I’ve been a part of a team working on a project that was in the works since December of 2009.

With great fanfare…I’m pleased to announce that the big project is finally published. Over 700 pages of scripted material were written, then recorded to produce these tutorial lessons. But you don’t have to read them. Narrated by yours truly, I hope you enjoy and learn something new.

Revit Architecture 2011

CADLearning Revit Architecture 2011 Tutorials

  • Over 29 hours of training
  • 421 video tutorials
  • Exercise files included

    Go check them out here, or login in with a free membership to view samples: http://www.member.cadlearning.com/

    These projects are truly collaborative efforts. Many thanks to Dan Dolan, David Cohn, David Harrington, Matt Murphy, David Redding, Michael Bass, Temesgen, and the entire production team at 4D Technologies. A special shout out to Phil Read for putting me back in touch the team after having worked with them on ADT videos way back in the day – was it really 2004?

    Most importantly, thanks to Betsy, my sweet and understanding wife, for putting up with those long nights and weekends and me forgetting to take out the garbage.

    And now… some final work to polish up the more advanced content, and back to my day job (and more blogging). Autodesk University is around the corner, don’t you know.

    Read the press release here: CADLearning Revit Architecture 2011 Tutorials Published

    Thoughts on the AU Keynote

    Some very amazing things have been shown and talked about at Autodesk University 2009 this week. If you have been hiding under a rock, then you may not know that the attendees, both in Vegas and virtually have invaded the Twitter-sphere or Tweet-Zone or whatever… Go to Twitter, sign up now and follow the conversations by searching for #AU2009.

    So, on to the Tuesday Keynote and three ah-ha moments:

    1. It’s not about Revit… or BIM, but Digital Design tool synergies! Best of breed products that work well together to create new opportunities and break new ground. Use things not necessarily as designed. Maya can make buildings, Revit can make movie sets. Put everything in a bowl, mix and see what pops out. These are exciting times.
    2. Sustainability, talk by Amory Lovins, co-founder and Chief Scientist of the Rocky Mountain Institute, approaches design with whole systems thinking. If a design feature can have more than one purpose, and is efficient,  it can drastically reduce energy use by leaps and bounds over traditional design, engineer, then build workflows. If you can make an SUV that is just as luxurious as a traditional model, but gets over 80MPG, why aren’t we all doing this now? If you can build a building that is so efficient you require no conventional systems to be comfortable, and it costs less to build, why not do it. Renovate the Empire State Building such that the energy savings are $4M annually and has a three year payback? That’s how you fix the economy. If we can upgrade just a portion of the existing building stock… think of the potential for jobs, increased profits, and reduced need for imported energy.
    3. Jeff Kowalski from Autodesk showed some radically amazing possibilities for integrated workflows within Revit. Sustainable design in the tool is a natural next step. The API in Revit 2010, thanks Matt Mason, already has the ability to cast rays and analyze points in the model which is much of the power available in Ecotect today. This has the potential to enable thermal, daylighting, visibility, and acoustic analysis in Revit. Let’s hope it’s in 2011… Time will tell. Along similar lines, which validates this assumption, Jeff talked about the current disconnected workflow of Design -> Analysis. Obviously, this removes the ability to iterate through design ideas either quickly or often. When he turned that workflow around with the idea of Analysis -> Design people literally had their tongues on the floor. The scenario went like this (with fabulous imagery): input some criteria about the site, and the building, and the analysis engine test many iterations of form, orientation, and massing. Comparing these to hit the sweet spot for efficiency, or daylighting allows the designer to move forward with a concept quickly.

    Interesting times. Be Visual!

    AU 2009 Schedule

    Being the first AU since 2005 where I’m not just a customer, but also an attendee. I was determined not to submit any class proposals this year, and will be enjoying the learning/networking and fun like most everyone – such a welcome change of pace.

    I’ve put together a final, but tentative schedule. Hey, anything can change this week. If you are teaching a class and I didn’t register for yours, it is only that there are so many to choose from this year – over 600 including the virtual sessions. Below is primarily an organizational attempt at figuring out where I need to be in addition to my Google calendar which I can happily read on my phone. The second, perhaps more compelling reason to share is that some of you may wish to meet up at one of these events to discuss Revit, Ecotect, the Mac, or simply come over and say hello. I resemble the image to the left on this blog’s sidebar, albeit with slightly higher color depth.

    So, here it is:

    Mon Nov 30, 2009

    • 6:30pm – 8pm AU Bloggers Social – invitation only

    Tue Dec 1, 2009

    • 8am – 9:30am     | CP104-2 The Basics of the Autodesk® Revit® API | Where: MB Ballroom F
    • 10am – 11:30am | KN108-1 AU Keynote and Welcome Address with Carl Bass | Where: North Convention Center, Events Center (Arena)
    • 11:30am – 1pm ||Lunch || Where: South Convention Center, Level 2 Shoreline A
    • 1pm – 2:30pm | AB114-1 Insanely Great Stairs and Railings with Autodesk® Revit® | Where: MB Ballroom C
    • 3pm – 4:30pm     | DV118-1 Optimizing Your Autodesk® 3ds Max® Design Models for Project Newport | Where: Jasmine F
    • 5pm – 6:30pm | Private Meeting
    • 8pm – 9:30pm | DS128-1 Cut&Paste: AU Design Slam, Preliminary Rounds | Where: MB Ballroom G
    • 9pm – 10:30pm   | AB9130-1 Autodesk® Revit® Collaboration: Shared Coordinates for Projects Big and Small | Where: VIRTUAL

    Wed Dec 2, 2009

    • 6am – 7am | CR9200-1 Introduction to a BIM Execution Plan | Where: VIRTUAL
    • 8am – 9:30am | CP204-3 Deep Dive on the Revit API: Advanced Topics | Where: Lagoon G
    • 10am – 11:30am | AB208-3 Autodesk® Revit® for Urban Design | Where: South Seas H
    • 1pm – 2:30pm      | CP214-2 Creating and Analyzing New Conceptual Massing Geometry With the Autodesk® Revit® API | Where: MB Ballroom C
    • 3pm – 4:30pm      | AB218-4 Autodesk® Revit®: A BIM Manager’s Guide to Revit-alizing Your Office | Where: MB Ballroom D
    • 5pm – 6:30pm | MA222-4 Content Is King: Working With Autodesk® Inventor® and Autodesk Revit® | Where: Banyan F
    • 6pm – 6:30pm | Private Meeting
    • 6:40pm – 8:15pm | AB226-1 Sustain Yourself With Revit® Architecture Certification | Where: South Seas F
    • BEER and AUGI stuff…
    • 8pm – 9:30pm | DS228-1 Cut&Paste: AU Design Slam Finals

    Thu Dec 3, 2009

    • 6am – 7am | ED9300-1 Incorporating Software Simulation Into Web-Based Training | Where: VIRTUAL
    • 8am – 9:30am | AB304-1 Autodesk® Revit® for Film and Stage | Where: MB Ballroom B
    • 10am – 11:30am  | DV308-3 Virtual Cinema and Architecture: A New Method of Client Visualization Is Born | Where: South Seas I
    • 11:30am – 12:45pm | SB311-1 Autodesk Subscription Customers Help Shape Autodesk University 2010 With Lynn Allen | Where: North Convention Center, Lower Level, South Pacific E
    • 1pm – 2:30pm | CM314-3 BIM Management | Where: South Seas B
    • 3pm – 4:30pm        | AB318-4L From Fabulous to Fabrication: Real-World Digital Fabrication and BIM | Where: MB Ballroom H (Lab)
    • 5pm – 6:30pm        | MA322-2 Taking the Dysfunction Out of Your Autodesk® Revit® Families:Best Practices for Manufacturer BIM Content | Where: Jasmine A
    • 6:30pm – 9:30pm  ||AU Party AU Party – Food and Fun! | Where: South Convention Center, Level 1 Bayside B, Bayside B Foyer & Shark Reef

    Fri Dec 4, 2009

    • 9am – 10am | DV9406-1 Parametric Design Modeling with Autodesk® 3ds Max® | Where: VIRTUAL
    • 11am – 12pm  | FM9410-1 Don’t Get Floored In Your Facility: Autodesk® Revit® Architecture as an Effective Facilities Management Tool | Where: VIRTUAL

    Training Classes Announced

    Webinar classes:

    Looking for ways to save money on training? Why not attend a short focused event that will provide high value at an affordable cost? The following topics are announced:

    • Nov 13 @ 10AM PST – Integrating: Revit with Ecotect – 2 hours
    • Nov 23 @ 10AM PST – Secrets of Revit Conceptual Massing – 2 hours

    Integrating Revit and EcotectIntegrating: Revit with Ecotect

    Looking for ways to integrate sustainable design into your current workflow, or simply a way to work smarter? Perform analysis of building designs when it has the most potential rewards, during conceptual design. Seating is limited, so sign up today.

    Topics Covered:

    • Using Revit conceptual models
    • Preparing a Revit project model
    • Export options for gbXML
    • Compelling reasons for exporting to DXF
    • Optimum Ecotect import settings
    • Considering site and weather conditions
    • Applying parametric rules to Ecotect objects
    • Performing early daylight and thermal analysis
    • Iterative design and optioning

    View the full course information, and sign up today at EventBrite.com

    Revit MassingSecrets of: Revit Conceptual Massing

    Revit Architecture 2010 has some very powerful conceptual design tools, but for those migrating from earlier versions of the software using these new tools can be daunting at first. If you want to understand how to create flexible, parametric building forms this class is for you. We will cover the essentials of the conceptual mass editing environment, as well as how to create sophisticated organic forms. Seating is limited, so sign up today.

    Topics Covered:

    • The Conceptual Design environment
    • The Importance of building jigs
    • Pros and Cons of choosing a modeling method
    • Working with legacy massing objects
    • From box to organic form
    • Subtleties of the environment
    • Surface rationalization
    • Creating and extending panel families
    • Extracting data for design analysis

    View the full course information, and sign up today at EventBrite.com

    Other News:

    Additionally, full course sample agendas are now released for Revit Architecture 2010 and Ecotect Analysis 2010. For more information visit the Training page.

    Productivity. Fast!

    The Revit Architecture production training is part of the Productivity. Fast!™ implementation system. This allows you to get up to speed quickly by combining training with a live project and applied concepts. Mentoring and project assistance is provided ‘just-in-time’ so you can get your work done and capture lessons learned. Below is this four-part system of implementation which allows an entire office, or just a single pilot project to be completed with confidence. Each of these activities is a four-day period, which may be delivered all at once, or as project and team needs require.

    • Essentials Course
    • Advanced Course
    • Project Mentoring and Best Practices (Checkpoint)
    • Project Quality Assessment (Post Evaluation)

    For more information, visit the Services section of the main website.

    Video learning keeps getting easier

    etpI’m not sure about you, but I love watching movies, often for entertainment. My wife usually manages our Netflix queue, which consistently has 300+ titles on it, and I’m piling up more as I think about what I want to see. Occasionally, I like learning new things by watching videos. There are so many providers out there, and as I mentioned earlier, Autodesk now has there own YouTube channel, but then again who doesn’t? You can even watch previous years’ Autodesk University classes online at au.autodesk.com.

    Also, for those that are interested in learning Ecotect, I’ve been pointing them to the training packages available for download (see image to the left). These really give the student a head start, and when I come in to provide training, we can cover in-depth the topics that matter most to them.

    Which brings me to my own efforts to reduce communication barriers through the use of free video clips, as in the past three posts. I’ve been posting on YouTube and Screencast.com. My reason being: they both have their strengths. Screencast.com is much higher quality, and I can keep it ad free for a reasonable cost, while YouTube offers more ways to stumble upon my work. Of course, no sooner do I start using the free Jing (a free Windows and Mac OSX screen capture utility), that it’s maker, TechSmith also now has Camtasia for the Mac, and it’s only $99 until the end of the year. It’s very full-featured for such a great price.


    Now you can easily stitch together shorter videos made with other tools or other platforms, or capture the screen directly and craft highly professional looking videos, on a Mac. I especially like the “Smart Focus”, zoom in effect. This will make creating tutorials formatted for smaller screen, like an iPhone much easier to read – so look out for those in the future. Check out the tutorials, especially the getting started series to learn more: Tutorials for Camtasia for Mac. There’s also news on the site that they are in the process of developing Snagit for the Mac as well.

    I’ve been using products from TechSmith for years now on the Windows platform for creating learning videos and visual help files for architectural firms, similar to content offered at CADLearning.com. Check them out, these videos are a great complement to instructor-led training and can increase your ability to retain concepts learned. There are courses for most of the popular Autodesk products, and more are coming on line regularly. Full-disclosure: I was involved in working closely with instructor Reid Addis for the CADLearning “AutoCAD Architecture 2010 Tutorial Series”, and have authored earlier versions of the course.

    I’ll continue posting free lessons here at “Paradigm shift”, while I continue to explore new and interesting ways to combine video with live instructor-led training. It’s just another way of adding value, and helping you be more productive, at 30 frames per second.