Tuesday, March 26, 2013

2014 Product Launches Start Today!

It's the silly season - time for Autodesk to roll out new software. David Light, as always, doe sthe best job of detailing new features, so here's his link:


But in my little part of the world, which includes AutoCAD MEP, Revit and more, I'm keenly interested to see how Autodesk 360 is going to work out. Norb and I have been actively working to develop the Revit dataset for Autodesk, putting in some non-traditional HVAC systems to show how it handles more challenging designs. One tool we've used a lot is BIM 360 Glue, a great tool for sharing files via an extension. But the fact that you can upload and markup Revit files to 360 is what really got my juices going. You don't have to strictly depend on AutoCAD WS for collaboration, which doesn't let you edit AutoCAD Architecture or MEP objects anyway. So this pushes Revit further up the food chain for us when it comes to picking the tool for the projects.

The two big Revit MEP enhancements include the ability to place an air terminal directly on a duct face, and embed CSV files into families for part selection.

I'm also glad to see you can divide systems now - how many times have you tried to connect a chemical feed to a primary pipe line? If this works the way it should, then tapping a makeup air system to a primary supply air system should work much easier.

From an energy analysis standpoint, I like the fact that you don't have to have spaces and zones defined to create an energy model. While this may stymie some of the Trane Trace users (which still requires spaces and zones), maybe we can get better results inside of Revit - we'll see...

AutoCAD MEP has a couple of neat new things - for starters, you don't have to add property set definitions after the fact. When they reside in your template, they're automatically assigned to objects as their placed in a model. This is based on how you define your definitions, and especially your classifications - don't miss this step.

And finally - irregular shaped viewports - about time!

More to come - maybe the strength of AutoCAD 14, will rise again in 2014 - could it be....?

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