Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Turning the Page

Recently, I turned the page and started a new chapter in my work life.  I’ve moved on from being an Application Engineer for an Autodesk reseller in the Chicago area and am happy to announce that I am now the Technical Application Manager for a General Contractor in the Chicago area!

I’ll continue to keep this blog going, just may have a slightly different twist on some of the items I’ll be posting about. I’ll now be dealing with much more that just Autodesk products, so you may start to see some info coming across about how non-Autodesk products are being utilized in conjunction with Navisworks and the BIM 360 products.  You may even start to see posts about non-Autodesk products in general!

It’s definitely a different world being back in the AEC industry…should be a fun ride!

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Shortest Distance comes to BIM 360 Glue

If you haven’t opened up BIM 360 Glue (desktop application) in a few weeks, an update was published and Glue now has a new Measure Tool….Shortest Distance!  This was one of the tools I couldn’t believe Glue didn’t have when I first started working with Glue and coming from using Navisworks.

A much welcomed addition!!


Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Latest Update to BIM 360 Glue–Clash Status and Markup

If I have a dollar for every time someone asked me if Glue had a status for it’s clashes I’d be writing this blog from a beach in Maui…ah, who am I kidding, I wouldn’t be writing this blog Smile

Anyway, I won’t be (theoretically) collecting those dollars anymore! The latest update to BIM 360 Glue is the introduction of Clash Status.  You can now mark your clashes to be Open, Ignored or Closed and fixed clashes will now become Resolved instead of being removed.  As for Ignored & Closed status, here’s an explanation from the Help

Clashes can be marked as "ignored" by the team members working on the merged model. Only admins can "close" clashes, providing a more formal level of control for the VDC/BIM manager. Clash status can be changed back to "open" if needed. Glue recognizes if a clash from a previous version has been fixed. If the clash no longer exists, it will be automatically marked as "resolved."


Another update is the ability to add a Markup directly to the Clash.  In the past, you could kind-of do this, but it was held as a Markup outside of the Clashes. Now you can just select a clash and add a Markup to it.  The nice thing about the Markup in Clash is that it also adds a Markup to the Markup “tool”, so even Clash Markups can be viewed with the iPad app!

Note though, if you use the Filtering/Grouping, you can’t add a Markup to the Group, you have to pick individual clashes to add a Markup.


Oh, one more thing….these updates are available to ALL projects, new or old.  Old projects (old meaning before July 11, 2014 basically) will prompt you for an update when you go into your Clash Test.  It does a “one time update” and then you have the new functionality!

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Updating the Navisworks NWC Exporters

With (practically) each and every Service Pack/Update that Autodesk puts out for Navisworks, there is a corresponding update for the NWC Exporters…


How many of you actually download and install the update for the NWC Exporters?

Well, if you don’t, you should be.  I ran across an issue the other day where a customer was exporting a Revit 2014 model to NWC (2014) and many of the walls weren’t showing up when opening/appending the NWC file in Navisworks, even though the walls were visible in the Revit view. I got the file and tried it myself, worked perfectly. I knew the customer had SP1 for Navisworks 2014 installed, so I asked if they had also updated the Exporters…nope. Once they installed the update for the Exporters, all was good.

It’s very easy to miss, or should I say look over, when you go grab an update for Navisworks. But the next time Autodesk rolls out an update for Navisworks, make sure you also install the update for the Exporters (if it’s available).

Thursday, March 27, 2014

What’s New in Navisworks 2015

Wow, time has flown this year, the 2015 Autodesk products have been announced!

In regards to Navisworks, here’s my highlights of the new features for 2015…

  • 2D Quantification Tools (Incorporating similar tools that were in QTO)
  • 3D Quantification Improvements
    • Property Mapping now available (similar functionality was in QTO)
  • Autodesk Rendering Enhancements
    • Navis get’s cloud rendering!
  • ReCap/Point Cloud Improvements
    • Navis has new ways to “convert” the point cloud, which will help with performance and being able to select portions of a point cloud.
  • Redline Toolset now includes and Arrow tool (finally, no more manual arrows!)

This isn’t an all-encompassing list, just a few highlights.  As I get more time to actually get into some of the new features, I’ll report back Smile

Monday, March 10, 2014

Autodesk 360 vs BIM 360

This topic seems to come up quite a bit and it usually starts off with “isn’t BIM 360 part of my Autodesk 360 account services?”  It’s a pretty easy question to answer…”No”.  Thanks for asking, talk to you later Smile

No, I don’t just leave it at that…

In reality, it’s pretty common for folks to think that BIM 360 is part of their “subscription cloud services” since Autodesk has gone to utilizing the “360” badge for most, if not all, of their cloud based services.  If you take a look at Autodesk’s Autodesk 360 Cloud Services website, it talks about what services are available in the cloud.  It discusses the freebies like storage, access anywhere, etc., then talks about “advanced” features, which includes Clash Detection and Field Management….i.e. Glue and Field (respectively).

However, the BIM 360 services/products are completely separate from the Autodesk 360 cloud services…no tie-in whatsoever.  Yes, BIM 360 Glue/Field are cloud based software/services, but I have yet to see anything, whether it’s my own usage of Glue/Field or any demo/presentation/literature from Autodesk that shows a workflow that allows you to access information you’ve saved to your Autodesk 360 account.

Let me take a step back for a second and explain Autodesk 360 services.  At its core, Autodesk 360 accounts give you storage capability (5GB for non-Autodesk users/non-subscription users and it’s 25GB for Autodesk Subscription accounts/users).  You can also view any document you’ve uploaded to the cloud via a mobile app, share the document with anyone (even if they don’t have an Autodesk account), and even edit a DWG file that’s been saved to your cloud storage with basic editing tools.  Then, we get into the Subscription benefits…which vary depending on what products or suite of products you have.  I’m not going to go into the whole list, but examples are analysis, rendering and simulation to name a few. What’s not included, which is where the confusion sets in, is BIM 360 Glue and BIM 360 Field.

For example, take a look at this screen shot from the Autodesk 360 Cloud Services website…


Notice how the “flow” of information goes…from Revit, to the Cloud Services (Autodesk 360), then to BIM 360 Glue/Field and even back in the opposite direction. Currently this is not a workflow that works!  You can’t access a document of any kind from the Autodesk 360 Services cloud in the BIM 360 applications, or even push information to the Autodesk 360 cloud services from the BIM 360 applications. In my eyes, the image should really look more like this…


Now, the only thing I can say about the above referenced screen-grab is this: there is a possibility that Autodesk can actually make this workflow work via their consulting/programming group, but I haven’t seen or heard of it.

So to sum up, Autodesk 360 and BIM 360 are two different cloud services that Autodesk provides. Autodesk 360 can be a Dropbox-like storage for the non-Autodesk or non-subscription users, or it can be that plus a cloud service area to perform some resource hogging tasks (rendering, analysis, etc.) for those on Autodesk Subscription.  On the other hand, BIM 360 Glue/Field are separate cloud-based applications that utilize their own cloud area to host the associated data per project (or potentially per ‘host” for Glue, which can contain more than 1 project).

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Updated Version of BIM 360 Glue Released

The folks over at Beyond Design have a great little post going over some of the new features of the Autodesk Glue iPad app (version 2.2), which can be viewed HERE.

Some of the new features include…

  • Updated User Experience
  • Select Object Property URLs
    • You can actually go to the URL from the App
  • Support for Transparent Objects in Views and Markups
  • Contextual User Assistance

You can get the new/updated version by going to the Updates in your App Store on your iPad.

Thursday, January 30, 2014

BIM 360 Field Update Coming

If you use Autodesk BIM 360 Field, you’re going to be seeing some changes very soon around how documents, specifically PDF’s, are handled when viewing them on the iPad.

When you login to Field, you’ll be seeing a message that looks like the image below…

Field_PDF Update

Now, I know many of you will be asking the question; “when is the update going to be live?”  If I knew, I’d tell you.  As with anything Autodesk pushes out for updates, the date is held confidential.  If I had to guess, it’s going to be a few weeks.  I’m sure they are pushing this notice out so that people can be prepared because you’ll need to do some “upgrading” to your documents, just like the notice says (second line from the bottom).  The upgrade is actually a one-time re-sync of your Document Library, so it’s going to take a bit longer to sync your iPad when you choose to do so. You do have the ability to wait to upgrade the Library (see below), so please choose carefully.  Just remember, once the Document Library gets updated, everyone on that project is going to have to do the re-sync of the Library to the iPad.

Field_PDF Update2

If you are going to update the Library on your iPad, I’d do this while connected to a good, strong, reliable wireless connection to make sure the update goes all the way through.

Autodesk BIM 360 Products

So I’ve been pretty quiet on the blog front this year (that’s kind-of an understatement!).  It’s not that I don’t have much to share, but it seems like every day passes way too fast.

The main reason though for my practical non-existence in the blogging world is that in the summer of 2013, I started the trek down the BIM 360 road with Glue and Field.  I was one of only a select few that were chosen by Autodesk to partake in being trained on the BIM 360 products in the US. The BIM 360 products are not like the majority of the Autodesk software and Autodesk didn’t release these products to all of the channel partners/resellers.  So much of my time that I have “free” (time that I’m not spending with customers around a handful of products), I’ve been diving into BIM 360 Glue and Field

I’ve tossed around how I wanted to share my knowledge around BIM 360 Glue and Field.  The biggest question I was asking myself was whether or not I wanted to keep this blog just Navisworks info or if I wanted to turn it into more of a Navis/BIM 360 blog.  Well, I’m going to do the latter.  With both product lines having some similarities/differences and being able to work together, I figured it was best to keep the info all in one place.

So in the near future, you’re going to start to see BIM 360 information along with Navisworks on this blog.  Hopefully I can also start to clear the air a little on the many questions people have around BIM 360 Glue and Field compared to Navisworks…specifically around Glue vs Manage.

Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Navisworks 2014 Hotfix 3

Autodesk just released a new Hotfix for Navisworks (all flavors) and it fixes/resolves the following issues…

- Problems resulting from operations that involve clicking in the first column of the Clash results grid, such as collapsing/expanding groups, dragging clashes and resizing columns.
- Issues with material and transparency inconsistency when importing FBX files.
- Issues with the automatic selection of the correct Rendering engine (Presenter or Autodesk)

Note: it is not necessary to have installed Navisworks 2014 Service Pack 1 before installing this hotfix

You can download the appropriate version HERE