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February 20, 2012
IMAGINiT Launches Clarity for Revit
Please note that contributed articles, blog entries, and comments posted on AECcafe.com are the views and opinion of the author and do not necessarily represent the views and opinions of the management and staff of Internet Business Systems and its subsidiary web-sites.
Susan Smith - Managing Editor

by Susan Smith - Managing Editor
Each AEC Weekly Review delivers to its readers news concerning the latest developments in the AEC industry, AEC product and company news, featured downloads, customer wins, and coming events, along with a selection of other articles that we feel you might find interesting. Brought to you by AECCafe.com. If we miss a story or subject that you feel deserves to be included, or you just want to suggest a future topic, please contact us! Questions? Feedback? Click here. Thank you!

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Industry News
IMAGINiT Launches Clarity for Revit
By Susan Smith

The new Clarity for Revit was devised as a result of IMAGINiT’s partnership with Autodesk, to specifically enhance the Autodesk Revit Server platform.Beau Turner, director of Business Development, IMAGINiT Technologies, talked about the Clarity for Revit product from IMAGINiT, a division of Rand Technologies.

Clarity works on top of Autodesk Revit Server, allowing users to work with multiple offices. An example is a company with three offices – Omaha, Boston and Tampa – where users can work between those offices and do workshare. This works well for the single office, and pushes little changes up to where the central model is hosted. “If the firm is based out of Omaha, then people in Tampa and Boston use Revit Server when they save to the central database – they’re publishing or pushing that piece up,” explained Turner. “That’s what Revit Server does by itself. There are a lot more opportunities that need to go around that to make it a full collaboration suite.”

Turner points out that the term “collaboration” has been used for ten or twenty years, but no one has really gotten it right. “This is a step in the right direction -- at least around a single platform. You take the Autodesk Revit Server platform, obviously marketshare and the type of tools it has available and also fundamentally it’s a bit different way of working, integrated between architecture, structure, mechanical, electrical, piping, plumbing and fire protection – and brings all that together.”

What Clarity does is put a couple of layers right on top of the Revit Server platform. Clarity enables real time BIM collaboration, making use of it inside a web environment. The web environment lets users treat it like a platform, as a centerpiece, to which users can add a couple of layers.

“One layer we add is security,” said Turner. “Security for us means extending beyond what Revit Server has which is, if you have ten projects on the server, that means all ten are visible to everybody who sees that. So these people should only be connected to project 1 and project 3 but are going to see all the other projects on there. With Clarity we can actually do project level security so these users should only see this project. When we’re working inside of Revit we’re completely transparent. We add that layer of security, and they never know we’re running. When we open up a model file and go to a project, they only see the projects that they’re connected to.”

The initial up front configuration for Clarity is really good for working with partner sites. Revit Server works very well by itself in a multi-office set up. However when you begin to bring in outside partners or outside firms, it doesn’t have a great way to handle manage and monitor multi-firm setups. With Clarity multi-firm support is provided.

“We can bring up another location, another partner and add them to a project and get them up and running in as little as ten minutes,” Said Turner. “When we first to set up Revit Server by ourselves when it came out, it took us a couple of weeks with a couple of IT people all going back and forth trying to figure this piece out.  With Clarity we were able to get this up and running in minutes. This is a huge time saver.”

To a Revit user, this experience is seamless; they continue to work directly inside of Revit. Administrators have the tools to be able to be proactive; the model data is hosted inside their own organization so they take the location or data center – and they’ve already gotten their servers and can make use of those resources.  “We put tools to manage and monitor that on top of that,” Turner said. “The central models, the different accelerators, all the different components let us actually drill down and see the help, the status and get the notifications, so right up front we start seeing that there’s an issue or a trend. One of the companies that’s involved in the beta, when they were looking at this piece, they noticed that their IP configuration had gone down, the web was slower, but they could look at the logs and records from this and be proactive about it versus reactive later.”

Non-Revit users have the ability to work with the project, and can login to the website and see everything from DWF files to PDF files to database as well as reports and some dashboard associated with it.

“So if they’re not comfortable working inside of Revit but maybe they can use the same type of data and can transform the model data into PDFs or Excel spreadsheets, manipulate inside of Excel, and they can log in and view that data as well as export to Excel where they need to.”

Clarity has a task automator for low value tasks, such as generating a PDF set of 200 drawings. Users do not want to tie up their machine with such an onerous task that doesn’t allow them to use their machine for anything else while it is processing. The task automation system pushes the task to another machine and automatically generates the PDFs or database export. This frees up the user’s machine to continue working.

There is also a web project dashboard management system that gives access to reports. Reports are a different way of looking at the Revit database. They are the data itself,  and will include information on a room, for example, and everything that is in the room, from mechanical equipment, to furniture.

Turner said there is something in Revit Server called Model Lock which means the file didn’t clear so it’s locked, and no one can work because that file is out there in limbo.  “You can now log in to your project,  and it would show you there’s a Model Lock and you can hit the delete button to clear it.”

Clarity offers real time BIM collaboration, security, task automation, tools for managing and monitoring the network both multi-office and multi-firm, as well as the ability to generate reports and other data sheets. The combination of these new features offers a path toward true real-time collaboration and reduce the amount of time it takes to complete repetitive tasks.

Pricing is dependent on number of locations, users, and implementation services required.  Maintenance and subscription fees apply.  For more information, visit: imaginit.com/clarity.

Top News of the Week

Bentley Systems announced two key initiatives to support the construction phase of Crossrail – Europe’s largest construction project. The initiatives are aimed at integrating the whole Crossrail supply chain to create best practices in information modelling for construction. Moreover, they are in keeping with the U.K.’s Government Construction Strategy, which calls for replacing adversarial cultures in projects with collaborative ones.

ZWSOFT released Beta 2 for its forthcoming release of ZW3D 2012. Compared with beta 1 (released on January 18), this beta adds functions in the areas of the user interface, 2D drawings, sheet metal design, and translation.


Building Information Modeling in the Global Construction Industry 2012: Implementation and Market Trends, Profitability and Budget Forecasts in the Global Construction Industry

World Market Intelligence's, Concrete Equipment in BRIC to 2016: Market Guide provides in-depth detail on the trends and drivers of the concrete equipment market in BRIC countries. The report includes quantitative information (historic and forecast market values, segmented at channel level).

The BIMobjectcorporation with its headquarters at World Trade Center in Malmö, today launches its cloudbased portal for BIM objects. The portal is completely web based and is built around the latest technology to best be able to supply the construction industry with digital versions of building and interior products. All downloadable BIM objects from the portal are free of charge  free for architects, consultants and construction companies. Users will have access to products with all information integrated in their BIM system, manufacturers get their products visible and integrated into the design and construction process.

Deltek, Inc. announced financial results for the quarter and year ended December 31, 2011.

Q4 product revenue was $28.9 million, up 12% from Q4 2010. Total revenue for Q4 was $87.4 million, up 2% from the fourth quarter of 2010.

Q4 product bookings were $36.6 million, a 24% increase from the prior quarter and an 11% increase from the fourth quarter of 2010. Product bookings consist of the aggregate contract value of the Company’s products sold during the quarter through its various licensing models including perpetual, term and subscription.

Q4 subscription and term license revenue was $11.5 million, up 130% from the same quarter a year ago. Maintenance revenue was $40.7 million, up from $36.1 million in the fourth quarter of 2010, an increase of 13%. Consulting and other revenue was $17.8 million, compared to $24.2 million in Q4 2010.

New Products

Meridian Systemsannounced the release of Proliance software version 5.1. This release adds new mobile device capabilities to the Proliance platform, which provides capital program management capabilities to building owners managing new infrastructure construction and facility renovation programs.

ZWSOFT announced new 2X and 3X machining systems based on the forthcoming release of ZW3D 2012. The brand-new two-axis and three-axis systems will provide users with numerous milling and turning improvements, and improves speed through multi-threaded processing.

iRiseannounced general availability of a Mac-based version of its popular visualization and prototyping software.  The new software—iRise Studio for Mac—helps businesspeople visualize and experience what it's like to use new applications before they're coded, transforming communication between business and IT and slashing costs by eliminating expensive rework.

Hard Dollar Corporation announced the release of HD Version 11. HD Version 11 incorporates powerful time-phasing capabilities giving owners of engineering and construction companies the power to create cost estimate models, integrate cost and resource loaded schedules, measure progress, and accurately forecast with unprecedented ease throughout the project lifecycle. Version 11 also includes language localization to meet the needs of Hard Dollar global customers.

InterSpec Inc.announced a major new addition to its popular e-SPECS software solutions. e-SPECS for Navisworks enables intelligent and dynamic access to construction project materials data, project specifications and accompanying project related files directly within the Autodesk Navisworks application.

IMSI/Design announced TurboViewer Pro v1 for Android.

Based on TurboViewer, TurboViewer Pro for Android includes everything in TurboViewer, plus:

Around the Web

AECCafe Today

Free: Charlotte Civil User Group Meeting
Date: February 23, 2012
Place: TPM Charlotte Office
900 Pressley Road, Charlotte, NC 28217 USA

Please join your local community and peers for Charlotte’s first Civil User Group Meeting as we share tips, discuss successes and challenges, build technical skills, exchange ideas, and stay on top of the latest in Civil technology. This meeting’s topic will introducing the NEW Civil User Group and Autodesk’s Storm and Sanitary Analysis (SSA) extension included in Civil 3D.

What is the Autodesk’s Storm and Sanitary Analysis?
Guest Speaker, Brian Johnson will give an overview of the Autodesk Storm and Sanitary Analysis extension (SSA). This extension is a comprehensive hydrology and hydraulic analysis application for planning and designing urban drainage systems, highway drainage systems, storm sewers, and sanitary sewers. SSA utilizes a sub basin-node-link–based model that performs hydrology, hydraulic, and water quality analysis of stormwater and wastewater drainage systems, including sewage treatment plants and water quality control devices. Brian will also demonstrate how to use the extension in a typical workflow with Civil 3D and the bidirectional transference of data between the compatible programs.

If you are an Autodesk Civil 3D user or thinking of moving to Civil 3D, but are not sure how to get started, we encourage you to attend! You have nothing to lose, but everything to gain.

This user group is FREE and open to anyone who’s interested.

Charlotte Civil User Group:
Autodesk Storm and Sanitary Analysis
When: Thursday, February 23, 2012
Time: 5:30 pm — 7:00 pm
Food and drinks will be provided*

Where: TPM Charlotte Office (900 Pressley Road, Charlotte, NC 28217)
5:30 pm - 6:00 pm— Networking / Registration
6:00 pm – 6:15 pm — Introduction of Civil User Group
6:15 pm - 7:00 pm— Autodesk Storm and Sanitary Analysis

*Please RSVP at http://www.tpm.com/autodesk-events
Columbia Civil User Group
Date: February 23, 2012
Place: TPM Columbia Office
1241 Assembly Street, Columbia, SC 29201 USA

Please join your local community and peers for Columbia’s first Civil User Group Meeting as we share tips, discuss successes and challenges, build technical skills, exchange ideas, and stay on top of the latest in Civil technology. This meeting’s topic will introducing the NEW Civil User Group and Autodesk’s Storm and Sanitary Analysis (SSA) extension included in Civil 3D.

Time: 11:30am - 1:00pm  
Charleston Revit User Group
Date: February 28, 2012
Place: Charleston Maritime Center
10 Wharfside Street, Charleston, SC 29401 USA

Please join your local community and peers for Charleston’s Revit User Group Meeting as we share tips, discuss successes and challenges, build technical skills, exchange ideas, and stay on top of the  latest in BIM technology.

Enjoy a FREE lunch while guest speaker Kaleb Schaff discusses select projects from his time at GJS Architects (GJSA) where Revit was used across multiple disciplines to better coordinate during the design process and create a better, buildable product. He will present organizational techniques that can be used to help break down complex projects (including worksets, templates, phasing and design options).

Time: 11:30am - 1:00pm
AGC’s 93rd Annual Convention
Date: March 13 - 17, 2012
Place: Honolulu, HI USA

Attending AGC’s 93rd Annual Convention is more than just an opportunity to learn about the latest construction industry best practices or gain insight into new legislative regulations, it’s an investment in the future of your company, career and the construction industry overall. AGC’s Annual Convention brings together thousands of leaders in the construction industry, from general and specialty contractors to public and private owners to technical experts and practitioners. The opportunity to build key relationships with power brokers in construction opens doors to new partnerships and projects and will help lay the foundation for your success well beyond the next year.
Think of NFMT as Your FM-University
Date: March 13 - 15, 2012
Place: The Baltimore Convention Center
1 W Pratt St, Baltimore, Maryland, USA

In 2012, NFMT will be the biggest gathering of building owners, facility managers, maintenance engineers, sustainability directors, heads of facility operations and management, and other facilities management professionals in the country. It’s a dynamic, interactive educational and networking experience that delivers revolutionary ideas and career-boosting inspiration. You’ll rethink your approach to facilities management, connect with like-minded collegues, hear from industry visionaries, and discover new tools to make your job more satisfying and productive than ever before.
27th RCI International Convention and Trade Show
Date: March 15 - 20, 2012
Place: Hilton Anatole hotel
Dallas, TX USA

The 2012 RCI Annual Convention & Trade Show will be the premiere event for roofing, waterproofing, and exterior wall consultants and related professionals. We invite you to contribute to that experience by submitting an abstract for presentation in such areas as: materials performance, forensic investigation, research, business management, case studies or environmental effects.

You can find the full AECCafe event calendar here.

To read more news, click here.

-- Susan Smith, AECCafe.com Managing Editor.