Friday, August 26, 2016

Of course one can do BIM with Revit, but why should one even try?

I know. Every time I write about Revit, its shortcomings and my relationship with the software and its supporting people/companies, I lose another BIM friend or an interested in BIM -blog-reader otherwise supportive of my ramblings on the current status of the AEC industry.
So be it.

I must have matured (or got to be pickled) enough to find the ability to have all sorts of (seemingly) contradicting things living in harmony within my head.
I can admire clever people of certain skin colour, even be friends with many of them and despise others for their arrogance, again irrelevant of skin colour (same or different). I learned to enjoy painful experiences for what they are teaching me, have simultaneously opposing views on political situations and possible resolutions to them and I can maintain genuine friendships  with people that practice or ‘Havens forbid’ – even like (love) Revit.
And I accept, without holding grudges when they eventually stop being friends with me because of my dissing the named software.

Add to this the fact, that I am getting close to completing 3 years  of full-time employment within my (beloved) industry where my role has had nothing to do with BIM, confirming that I still have some marketable skills in the industry that do not rely on 20+ years of feverishly intensive self –development in the BIM field.
So, I can openly be anti-Revit.
The latter may also indicate same some other things about the industry too, but let’s leave those conclusions for another post.

Just a tool, one would say. And they do say it, regularly. ‘Them’ being those in the know, using the ‘tool just being a tool’ as the foundation to build up many an argument on something terribly sophisticated and BIMmish.

But no, it is not ‘just’ a tool.

For me (note: for me!) it had become the symbol of everything that is wrong with the AEC industry and its attempts to improve itself through a forced BIMalisation of its masses.
A word that opens doors if one wants  to look BIM-literate and shuts the same fixtures squarely in one’s face,  if uttered in a wrong sentence.
(like, ‘I find Revit to be an inferior BIM tool, at a job interview).

A word that conjures animations of Pixar quality in the minds of clients that want to look refined and as a result will mandate BIM on their projects.

A word that makes me skip over any BIM-Manager’s role advertised in the main media of AEC jobseekers.

Revit is not Autodesk, they also like to say, assuring the ‘above-the boardness’ of their BIMmish statements, so clearly soaked in everything Revit and therefore Autodesk.

But, of course it is.
In anyone but Autodesk’s hands, the promising but underdeveloped predecessor of Autodesk  Revit would have either died quickly in obscurity or got its act together and become a useful tool to a minority of discerning practitioners. Unfortunately for Revit it got selected to be the ‘front face’ of Autodesk’s BIM invasion of the last 2 decade and while achieved large coverage, failed to grow up.
No, Revit survived in its half-functioning ways, only because of Autodesk and the power it has over the global industry.

So what?
Don’t like Revit, don’t use Revit, it is a free world when it comes to software, one could argue.
What is the point in analysing the software shortcomings, its supports deficiencies the politics of its longevity?
What is the point of nailing oneself on the proverbial cross and declaring time and time again that I’d never touch Revit in my professional life again (unless to convert the data from it to something more palatable)?
What is the point of tempting faith and push oneself into a situation in life that one may want to beg to be given a BIM role with everything Revit?

There is not a lot of rational reasoning for all the whining from me on the topic of Revit, of course. Apart from maybe just creating another opportunity to publicly declare:

Want to do BIM? Don’t use Revit.
Want to use Revit? Don’t try to do BIM (seriously).


  1. Hilarious Zolna ... Your hate on Revit still continues ...

  2. Reality here UAE, everyone want Revit-BIM not BIM,
    So they will easily forgot other software.

    Enjoy your Revit - stress, and lose another friend ...

  3. For Bhanu: I don’t ‘hate’ Revit. In fact I’ll have to think hard to find anything I really ‘hate’. Dislike, yes. Annoyed by, absolutely. But, Revit does not fall even into those categories. I guess if I had to use it daily, it would move into one, then the other, maybe even to hate…
    My message was somewhere on the line, that I’d probably give no thought to Revit whatsoever (like 100 and 1000 of other software packages that I do not know and do not use) was it not its artificial importance within the industry, created and maintained by Autodesk.

    For Tamer: The title said what I accept.
    Sure, you could do BIM with Revit if you really wanted to (or was forced to) but I also wanted to say that, there are much better, easier, and more pleasurable ways to achieve the same (or better outcomes); This particular post may not have gone into the details, but I have previously published over 500 where I explain those (better) approaches. To spell out with an analogy: sure, you can get on a pushbike from Abu Dhabi to Dubai and sure you’d have lots of side effects from achieving such feat (good and bad) – but when I need to go to AD from Dubai, I still take a car.

    For Uduman: I do not stress over Revit (since I do not have to use it daily);

  4. I fear you are too late to stop it. Look at this recent graph of Top 50 Architecture firms skills required.
    More demand for hand sketching than there is for ArchiCAD.

    1. So Revit users increasingly resort to hand sketching!

  5. I concur with the general sentiment of this piece apart from one small point. It's not that I dislike revit, I loathe it with every fiber of my being.

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