Monday, September 12, 2011


Apologies to Shakespeare, but we are heading for winter (good news here in the UAE) and Revit Content does seem to be popping up all over the place these days.

It took a long time for manufacturers to wake up to the world of BIM, and some of the content is barely useable, but the important thing is that the wheels are starting to turn.  More and more people are getting involved, arguments are erupting over naming standards.  The hive is buzzing away.

For example take a look at this site: REVIT WORKS

New Zealand based content providers who are churning out some excellent stuff.  Will be interesting to see the "Door Factory" which takes more of an ArchiCAD style approach to making doors via a series of carefully designed dialogues.  Andersen have adapted their Window Studio software to work in a similar manner as a Revit plug-in that generates door & window families.  This is a good first attempt and a big time saver if you are specifying from their very extensive range, but the resulting families are not parametric in any way. 

It will be interesting to see how this evolves with feedback from end users.     

We had a CPD from the local Zumtobel team not long ago and as usual I quizzed them about getting their lights in Revit format.  They promised to get in touch with the head office in Austria, and sure enought about 6 weeks later I go this link  ZUMTOBEL LIGHT FAMILIES

They appear to be perfectly useable families too.  Only a fraction of their full product range but if you check the dates, they haven't been doing this very long yet.  Will be interesting to see how it develops.

Don't know if you noticed but we've been to NZ, US & Austria.  So this is an interesting global network building up.  David Light posted a link to more NZ content the other day.  Plumbing Fittings what is more !  Not many decent Revit toilet families around yet, as I have mentioned before.  Previous Post 

Turns out there is a whole bunch of interesting content on this site.  Well worth keeping a regular eye on.  Seems to be a very pro-active Revit community down there in NZ.  Product Spec NZ

 I met Tim Bates from Newforma this week and it was interesting that he cited Content as one of the big issues in the BIM world at present, not just availability, but also standards setting and how to manage all that information as it grows.  Let's face it there's going to be an enormous amount of stuff out there once Manufacturers really start pumping out there entire product line.  Type catalogues are all very well, but there has to be a better way of selecting what you want from thousands of options and of keeping your content up to date too.  Will Revit libraries get constant upgrade warnings when product ranges change ?   At present I am downloading anything I can get my hands on and putting it into "Collections" files, just to make it accessible to my Revit users.

Lots of this is stuff we create ourselves of course, but a fair amount comes from the web, some of it tweaked to work better.  Once we start getting really good stuff from the manufacturers though, either they go the Andersen plug-in type of route with automatic upgrades when new content arrives, or they have really good download sites.  And these are rare. Usually you spend far too much time navigating backwards and forwards trying to understand what is available, then remembering the name of the range you want, and selecting CAD items to put in a cart, only to have to unzip them all at the other end and arrange them into folders so you can remember later on what those cryptic file names mean.

So I can't wait to see what the NBS guys come up with.  We use the NBS on-line system for all our specifications and I just think it's so well written and presented.  So I was excited to hear about the new National BIM Library that will come on line in November.

Winter of Revit Content indeed.

NBS BIM library

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