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Chris D

VW Architect vs Revit LT

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What platform are you thinking of switching to?

Well, this thread's topic has been quite animating. Kinda like one of those Star Trek episode's where they arrive on a seemingly innocuous, nirvana like planet, and Kirk and the rest of the crew are all smiling and dancing around and never want to leave, but they're actually ageing at a super accelerated rate under the influence of a mysterious life-force sucking entity, so Spock's got to smack the captain around the chops half-a-dozen times, "James, JAMES, snap out of it man, planet IFC is not the utopia you think it is, it's gonna suck the life out of you, we gotta get back to the Proprietary Enterprise NOW!".

One of the things that keeps me here is the native support for mac, but Revit LT looks like a good way to experiment with life on the other side without having to make any great plunge.

Edited by M5d

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Indeed.

Beam me up Scotty, there's no IFC life down here.

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Since Revit LT is the equivalent of Vw Fundamentals, perhaps the comparisons should be there. I don't think Vw Fundamentals has IFC import/export, and neither does Revit LT.

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I purchased and worked through WV 2009, 10 and 11 precisely because I'm a "Smart Sized Company" - ie: one guy with some residences to design and because I loved working in 3D after learning Revit 2009 but couldn't afford it. So then with VW on my machine, one day I add a bunch of MS legitimate fonts to my machine and now VW no longer works. Won't even start. I ask for tech help and then I complain when nothing short of reinstalling the Op sys (without the fonts I want) will solve it. I write whats-his-name in the head office and tech support twice loses my information. Still cant use VW. No longer actually care.

Now I learn that Autodesk, who I consider the dark side incarnate, will upgrade my ACAD 2010 LT with Revit LT Suite 2013 for about 750.00 US. It lacks only one tool I would like to have. At least it will start.

Why am I even here writing this? Only in the expectation that whats-his-name will read this post too, along with all the other good reasons posted here to have held out for something - anything really, including Turbocad - that responds to the needs of a "Smart Sized Office". Sad really because I got to like the VW interface. Well, I liked the user interface actually, not the customer interface....

I also have dumped Cinema 4D (after about 9 years) for much the same reasons I dumped VW. Deaf-Ness. I now have "upgraded" to MODO 601 for actually 1/2 the upgrade cost of C4D. Better faster rendering and modeling tools. I really do hate Autodesk but this time, they are leading the way for this Smart Sized Office. And Luxology has the right ear, services, tools and price. Heads up Nem.

Edited by Lloyd NB

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Regarding IFC, I think the point has little to do with architects and consultants, and everything to do with what happens to the building after we are gone ( when the most energy & expense is outlaid). Building owners are not CAD jockeys and will have little desire to be so. They want an open model / database they can harvest info from.

Also there have been many negative comments around this topic about people not wanting to code ther own plugins or pay for extra ones. I find this amazing. If you look at every other creative industry, there are huge resources applied to modding professional software. Yes VW could be more, but maybe in the amount time spent commenting here we could have created what we are missing.

Just a thought ( I am talking to myself here).

Edited by Diamond

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Also there have been many negative comments around this topic about people not wanting to code ther own plugins or pay for extra ones. I find this amazing. If you look at every other creative industry, there are huge resources applied to modding professional software. Yes VW could be more, but maybe in the amount time spent commenting here we could have created what we are missing.

And that's one of the big powers of VW and one of the reasons why I fell in love with it: The ability to customize it to a great extend in an easy way. I also want NV to build the program more in that direction to provide a better base platform and have an build-in plug-in store so users can purchase only the tools they need.

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every other creative industry, there are huge resources applied to modding professional software.

We don't have huge resources spare, or time. Architects also spend time and money on learning, upgrading and managing Adobe Creative Suite...but how many 'creatives' also have to run Revit or Vectorworks? We just need software that works without having to write our own.

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Diamond,

You seem to be dodging your own logic. Just because someone is a Cad jockey doesn't mean they want to spend their time and money learning code and rewriting what is already paid for and should be adequate in the first place.

Feel free to rewrite VW and we'll buy from you.

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and we'll buy from you.

And their is the big problem: almost no one wants to pay for plug-ins that will speed up their work and bring in money over time, even when they are good and affordable, but they do happily pay for an iApp that does nothing. There is no logic!

I once wrote a command for an architect that had to do special sun screens. They tried to do one such screen by hand and it took them 2 days. They had to do between 10 to 20 sun screens, each unique, so it would take too long. I wrote a command/script that took me 4 hours to write to do the screens automatically. This example shows that scripting/plug-ins can win you much time, and thus money.

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You did good scripting work for a specific need. That's fine.

I wasn't talking about plug-ins. I said rewrite VW. Point was we shouldn't be needing a bunch of plugins...but fully realized functionality that doesn't keep shooting itself in the foot.

I have always said I would pay more if this were the case.

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Also there have been many negative comments around this topic about people not wanting to code ther own plugins or pay for extra ones. I find this amazing. If you look at every other creative industry, there are huge resources applied to modding professional software. Yes VW could be more, but maybe in the amount time spent commenting here we could have created what we are missing.

I find it amazing that you find it amazing. We're a small business. We're in the business of building design, not software development.

My old man's a builder. He doesn't spend his time developing better hammers. He uses hammers to build buildings.

It's one of the advantages of the division of labour. We get to specialise.

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You did good scripting work for a specific need. That's fine.

I wasn't talking about plug-ins. I said rewrite VW. Point was we shouldn't be needing a bunch of plugins...but fully realized functionality that doesn't keep shooting itself in the foot.

I have always said I would pay more if this were the case.

Vectorworks is very customizable - if you don't "need a bunch of plug-ins", simply remove them from the workspace. In doing so, the "foot" can be saved. Vw Designer allows the user to switch workspaces for each version - Spotlight, Landmark, Architect and Fundamentals. I use my own workspace for some plug-ins I've had since the 1990s (Julian Carr wrote a few of them).

I recently used the Parking Space Tool plug-in - very good time saver. And after all, it's the minimal time resource that most interests me. I was amazed to see how Revit handles parking spaces in this 6 minute video:

Seeing this video reminds me of the time I spent copying and jiggling Autocad blocks around.

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Bob-H,

I believe you are slightly askew to my quoted point.

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Sorry about that, bc. I was taking your words to mean that it's better for Vectorworks to be hard-wired with the tools and commands, and lack any customizing of the workspace. You could clarify if I'm wrong about that.

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Well, you're wrong about that. I am all for customizing and plug-ins. It was the half-baked stuff that creates roadblocks I can do with out and would pay more if they didn't exist and they've all been listed here in the community board and the discussion, it seemed, morphed to be more about why should we "end users" be expected to become programmers. Whatever.

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I suppose it all depends on one's point of view. I see the opposite side of the coin. Vectorscript has lots of functions some of us can really use, and it adds an interesting realm to Vw, and adds more usability. I find it bears some resemblance to Applescript - a readable set of instructions that execute defined functions. I would tinker with both Applescript and Vectorscript more if I had the time to.

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Hi again,

The complexities of BIM are such that there are no easy answers. If it was easy, then it would already have been done. Some of the most complex BIM projects I have seen all require significant additional input into the base software (examples I refer to used Revit & ArchiCAD). Not everyone can write their own CAD software (like Gehry), but as base level, we could do some mathematics refresher exercises to get better info from our models in their current forms.

Due to the complexities, we are all going to have to make value judgements on just how far we go and invest in our own intellectual property. BIM is a disruptive technology, so old business/documentation models do not necessarily apply, and each firm will need customised solutions to suit working/project types/styles.

Instead of seeing ourselves as victims, we could see this as a massive opportunity to revolutionise the slow moving beast that is the construction / architecture industry, from the one man operator to the giant firm.

I liken the tools of choice exercise similar to getting married. You sign up with one person and enjoy all the depths of relationship it can offer. Or you can try to keep your options open for that one day, and never reach the heights you could if you simply committed to one.

There are issues with all platforms. I suggest you do your research for what you need, make a good choice and go with it 110%. That way, when issues arise (and they always will), you will want to work through them as challenges, instead of viewing them as problems.

Cheers.

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Not so sure about that. We're still looking into a switch to Revit and, for now at least, we think the best route will be to keep VW in our workflow a long side Revit.

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If your are switching to revit, you'll be learning Autocad as well (so you can finish the drawings).

Here, Revit always comes with AutoCAD so that the drawings can be finished.

With Revit, everyone on the team (inc. Consultants) has to be on the same version of Revit, there is no export to earlier versions.

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That's a misconception people have that to finish drawings in Revit you need AutoCAD. Why AutoDesk sells AutoCAD with Revit is because:

1. People are long term users of AutoCAD and they're comfortable with it. Therefore they find it faster to do something in AutoCAD than Revit but they don't know that it's actually faster in Revit. It's like the old days when people had difficulty moving from the drawing board to the computer. Also, it's the same problem VW has of pulling people away from their good OLD trusted AutoCAD.

2. It also gives people room for transition.

3. for a safety net for people that think Revit can't do 2D.

The most advanced hospital in Australia is being built in Adelaide and the whole project is being done with Revit ONLY. Everyone involved in the project is using Revit. All working drawing are being done in Revit. NO AutoCAD. I can't imagine that project being done by any other software.

I'm definitely not a fan of AutoCAD and truly believe that VW is superior to AutoCAD therefore I've used VW for so long and VW is really good at 2D with good 2D tools however similarly, I believe Revit is superior to VW when it comes to 3D and BIM and parametrics and windows and doors and... People need to let go of the past and move on. Forget about AutoCAD, forget about Mac/PC (windows has changed since win95-so stop judging windows based on that). The best solution at present is Revit/PC. Period.

NemV thinks small therefore vw will never match Revit, maybe in 5 years but then Revit will be better as well. e.g of thinking small is Instead of making 2D representation global, they create the Auto Hybrid command. Now to have a 3D symbol duplicated numerous times at various 3D orientations and automatically generate 2D, you have to create a Hybrid Object for each of these objects and god forbid you have to alter one of them. This isn't the way in Revit, it's global-so much more advanced.

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If your are switching to revit, you'll be learning Autocad as well (so you can finish the drawings).

Here, Revit always comes with AutoCAD so that the drawings can be finished.

No, that's not true Jonathan, you can do the lot in Revit (thing is you need to learn Revit first.....that's why AutoCAD is included)

The best solution at present is Revit/PC. Period.

:grin: speak for yourself..... I would say Mac/ArchiCAD is the best solution at present based on experience, based on capability it's a draw, based on taste Mac/VWs.

(Haven't used Bentley Architecture for quite a while so don't know but they were at the same level the others are now 10 years ago....)

Edited by Vincent C

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I can't yet claim I can even operate Revit proficiently, but I know for sure you don't need AutoCAD alongside it*. The 2D tools in Revit 2013 are a match for some of the great 2D features in Vectorworks. (VW is miles better than AutoCAD for 2D by the way)

*You see that star.... well Revit tutorials advise you get DWG files in good order inside AutoCAD before bringing them into Revit. But that's not the same thing as needing AutoCAD to finish the job.

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If you like to dabble, I suggest you get your head around Revit's parametrics and the Family Editor. It's hugely powerful for creating your own parametric objects without any scripting.

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Hi Jershaun,

I agree that Windows has come a long way. When I have run it on my Mac, Windows 7 has been great. As far as Revit/PC being the best (I personally would put ArchiCAD/Mac to the top for large projects), I guess that depends on how it connects to all the other tools/devices we use these days. For me VW/Mac works wonderfully.

If Revit suits your needs then go with it, and get everything you can out of it. I have issues with Autodesk and their pirate ways, but I have been encouraged by their iOS apps and the R&D they have done in this area. Hopefully they can tone down being the anti-competitive sharks they are know for. Although hearing anecdotally of the ways they are attempting to harpoon the IFC format, I am not confident.

Hi Christiaan,

Yes, you can use two CAD packages side by side. In my experience moving from VW to AutoCAD and back again, I saw sharp speed decreases as my mind had to get around the shortcuts and different working styles. It is my firm belief that a highly proficient operator (I am talking expert level) can only be expert at 2, maybe 3, software packages. That is why a person should choose wisely what tools they use.

Also I think the BIM paradigm almost takes us architects/designers back to the days when only programmers could use computers. BIM requires a high level of proficiency to understand the nature of what is trying to be achieved (certainly for CAD/IT managers). I am sure this will be simplified in the future, but at the moment trying to get ones head around all of the data to be mined, how to embed this information into drawings/objects, and how to get the correct information out at the other end, takes deep planning and rigorous diligence in maintaining the quality of information.

All of that leads me to saying, if BIM requires our highest proficiency to achieve the best information out the other end, why would I dilute my efforts between two platforms?

Cheers,

TD

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All of that leads me to saying, if BIM requires our highest proficiency to achieve the best information out the other end, why would I dilute my efforts between two platforms?

To transition between one and the other.

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