Keynote presentation at Autodesk University 2018 in Las Vegas, NV.
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With all Autodesk Conferences going fully online this year, more people than ever around the world will be able to join in and learn from the hundreds of professionals around the globe. 

As a user conference, a big part of that selection process rests in your hands – users of Autodesk software. From now until July 13, 2020, you can shape Autodesk University 2020 by telling Autodesk the classes you would like to see.

Among the more than 1,600 proposals submitted are nineteen from the team of experts here at CADD Microsystems. Listed below are our submissions, in alphabetical order. If any are ones you would like to see, click here to vote and type in that person’s name in the search to find their proposals.

We hope to see you (online) at AU 2020 this year!

Purvi Irwin

In the USA, the AEC industry has historically had issues with diversity in every sense of the word. Why is this? What can be done to be more inclusive and welcoming to all people? In this roundtable, we will build upon topics discussed in last year’s Women in BIM panel to continue to identify some root causes of this disparity and discuss strategies that we can all use to both advocate for ourselves and others. Discussion topics may include:• What groups are historically underrepresented in the AEC industry and why?• What strategies have worked for you to get you where you are?• Have others helped you get to where you are and if yes, in what ways?• What are ways to get out of our comfort zone?• Where can we find support in our communities?• What strategies can we start employee NOW to be more inclusive in our hiring practices, to shift our collective paradigm?• How can we actively encourage and nurture the next generation to pursue careers in the AEC industry?

Nick Sipes

Most building design project live in 2 worlds: everything inside the building, and everything outside the building. The 2 worlds’ only come together after an excessive amount of swearing and hours of unnecessary time spent. But does it have to be that way? Absolutely not. Coordinating Revit software and Civil 3D software, even in the cloud, doesn’t have to require a degree in theoretical physics, and this session is where you can learn how. Co-presented by a Revit and a Civil 3D specialist, you will gain an understanding of the expectations for each platform and learn how to configure them. With coordinated model locations in place, we’ll define effective practices for exchanging data between Revit software and Civil 3D software through BIM360. Using the full potential of each coordinated design model, you will learn how to assemble your project in the context of its surroundings using InfraWorks software, and you’ll learn how to generate a virtual reality scene.

Jason Kunkel

Keeping your Revit model in compliance with production and submittal standards has never been more essential. The free Autodesk Model Checker for Revit was built from the ground up with the single goal of accessing and confirming information within Revit parameters and the model overall. As a companion, the free Autodesk Model Checker Configurator for Revit lets you build your own checks with ease.This session will introduce you to how to setup and configure the Model Checker on your Revit models. You will see how to leverage pre-existing checks as well as using the Wizard in the Model Checker Configurator to create your own checks to validate your own standards and requirements.

Purvi Irwin

Area plans are a feature of Revit that is often underused. Any time you need to calculate the square footage of your project, use an area plan. They are a quick and easy to way to get a good idea of different ways that you can use your space, from quick test-fits on CAD backgrounds to calculating numbers of plants for planting beds.Some of the benefits of area plans:• Harnessing the power of schedules and calculated values to quickly show different scenarios based on different square footage areas• Using area schemes to show in hatches or colors different sections of something – i.e. planting, use groups, departments, etc.• Creating custom tags to show calculated values such as the number of occupants in a space, or the number of plants in a planting area• Creating existing and proposed square footage calculations when doing a test fit of a building• Creating area boundaries and their settings• Areas and phasing• Some limitations of using area plans vs regular floor plan views

T.J. Meehan

With almost a million downloads worldwide, the Autodesk BIM Interoperability Tools – which includes the Autodesk Model Checker for Revit – have become the industry standard in reviewing Revit models. This tool is now available for your BIM 360 models! Built on Forge, the Autodesk Model Checker on Forge (MCF) tool can review all your models and generate reports on their compliance with the checks you define. Whether pass/fail, counts, or lists, the check reports can be viewed individually or easily put into a Power BI dashboard. MCF allows you to select multiple models, define schedules, and of course runs automatically in the Autodesk cloud. This session will be a thorough study of this amazing new tool including how to use it and tips & tricks.

T.J. Meehan

As the world transitions to BIM, it can sometimes be challenging to know what to ask for in a model or know if the model you are getting is meeting those requirements. Whether you are a building owner, or working for them as a consultant, this session will show you best practices for creating your own modeling standards (as part of a BIM Requirements, a BIM Execution Plan, or ISO 19650) and ensuring you are receiving valuable models. We will discuss examples of the right and wrong way to define these standards and go over tips and best practices collected over the past nine years of writing these requirements documents. Finally, you will discover ways you can perform quick model compliance checks.

Jason Kunkel

Understanding the tools of building a model in Revit is critical, but many essential parts of using Revit in a BIM project workflow can get overlooked during training or even when you are working on your early projects. This session presents a series of ‘high-end’ topics that will help you start to look at your Revit model from a more holistic point of view, and not just a series of walls, levels, and components. Collected over hundreds of hours of teaching Revit, building content, and creating project standards, and inspired by those corny ‘Hang In There, Baby’ posters that you find in some of the most bizarre places, this collection of topics is essential for pushing your Revit model and your Revit workflow understanding to the next level.

T.J. Meehan

As data requirements for BIM projects grows, so does the need to apply that data quickly and accurately to your Revit models. This session is for Revit users who want a better way to classify the elements in their models. Whether assigning classification system values (such as from UniFormat, MasterFormat, OmniClass, Uniclass, and others) or picking parameter values from a pre-defined list (sometimes called picklists), you will learn how to do this efficiently and effectively using the Autodesk Classification Manager for Revit. This tool comes with all the standard databases built in but is completely customizable. It allows you to build your own databases as well as define parameters that can be created on demand. Come see all the functionality this Autodesk tool provides from the person who is the original architect of the software.

T.J. Meehan

Are you an architect, MEP engineer, or contractor working in Revit and being asked to provide a COBie deliverable? Are you not quite sure what that means or how you can do it? If so, this is the ideal session for you. We will start with learning what COBie is and what the standard entails as well as how it is being used in the industry. We will then move into the main part of this session which will be focused on how you can work in Revit to provide a compliant COBie deliverable using the Autodesk COBie Extension for Revit. This session will be presented by the architect of that software, who is one of the leaders of the group that controls the COBie standard, and who has been teaching and providing COBie services since its infancy.

Nick Sipes

Generative Design can be used for a lot of things, most commonly overall building massing. However, it can also be used to conduct focused studies on portions of a building. As Autodesk demonstrated with their Workspace Layout and Optimize Window views. This course is going to focus on using Generative Design within Revit to conduct Case Studies on location, and sizing of individual elements within a building. We will review the things you need to consider prior to starting to create any Generative Design Case Study, including determining measurable and quantifiable results, creating a reviewing process, and return on your investment. We will look at how to use Generative Design to optimize the placement of common spacing such as Building Cores, Stairs, and other common areas.

Purvi Irwin

Worksets and View filters are two strategies within Revit that, when used in conjunction with View Templates, can standardize and streamline when and how elements appear in your views. There is been a lot of debate between Revit professionals over which is the best strategy to use when it comes to controlling the visibility of objects. During this roundtable, we will discuss how each method is set up within Revit and used by different firms. Discussion Topics:• What is the best use of each? How does your firm use them? What are some limitations of each?• How do you manage both in your projects?• What are some general rules of thumb?• Strategies to manage both these workflows including creating Dynamo scripts, seed files, 3rd party add-in, or transfer project standards.• How utilizing these strategies affects your overall project workflow, including your model maintenance procedures.

Marissa Gagné

Have you ever wanted better facilities management capabilities, but you don’t need a fancy FM database and you don’t want to spend an arm and a leg? Do you have DWG files of your floorplans and you just want the ability to tie them to some basic information? Well, you are not alone. This is the issue facing many organizations today. The good news is that this is an issue that can be solved with software you may already have! If you have Microsoft Office and Civil 3D, Map 3D, AutoCAD one, or the AEC Collection, you have the tools you need to build a simple, yet powerful, facilities management solution! In this class you will learn about how to apply Microsoft Excel and Autodesk products to prepare a spreadsheet for GIS use, create clean floorplans and rooms, link the spreadsheet to the rooms, and perform powerful GIS functions such as search, SQL and geographic filtering, as well as thematic mapping.

T.J. Meehan

Are you an experienced AutoCAD user? Do you want to get even better and faster at it? Have you looked at other sessions about coding or customizing AutoCAD and thought they seemed too complicated? This session is for you! Learn how to do simple automation tasks to save you time and be more productive. Even though we will use LISP, this is not a coding class. If you can type some commands at the Command Line, we’ll use that knowledge to help you build some simple automated functions. For example, what if you could just type in 4 and you’re automatically offsetting 4′ or type in ZZ and you zoom to extents and then back out 10%? You will learn many, many more of these simple tools and how you can set them all up in one or two text files to take with you the rest of your AutoCAD career.

Purvi Irwin

How do we measure the success of a software implementation? What is success in this context? In this session we will discuss strategies that BIM Managers and Technology directors can use measure not just how well someone knows a particular software, but how willing they are to learn new workflows and adapt existing habits – their ‘enthusiasm’ score. These strategies include not just reviewing work but also the language they use when talk with their staff about adapting their current workflows. How willing someone is to do something has a deep impact on the overall success of a project.Understanding this rating also allows BIM Managers to focus their resources on those who need it most and tailor workflows for the widest adoption. It is also a way to help management understand the value of the technology and can also give you information about the staff that can help properly staff projects for efficiency and success.

Purvi Irwin

Multi-unit construction has its own unique challenges when being designed and documented using Revit. During this roundtable, we will discuss various methods for repetitive design, including linked models, model groups, and other strategies. You should come out of this roundtable with a better understand on how and when to use each strategy, both separately and together.Topics of discussion:• Pros and cons of model groups or linked models for units• Other features within the software that may be useful for these types of projects• Strategies for dividing up a project into separate Revit models• Ways to incorporate unit design into templates• Effective use of elements with model groups for overall model health and fidelity• The guidelines provided by Autodesk on how to use model groups and if they are still valid• Issues that the attendees have faced with this workflow and any strategies for efficiency• Scheduling and detailing issues that may arise from each method

Jason Kunkel

The Autodesk Model Checker for Revit has been around for several years and has become the foundation for verifying model integrity at numerous design firms, contractors, and owners organizations. If you have been using the Model Checker for a while, but feel like you have just scratched the surface, this session may be for you.This class will cover advanced techniques for looking in the Revit database and finding out new ways to build better model checks. It will feature tips and tricks from the Model Checker development team, as well as cover any new and recent released advanced features in the tool.

Purvi Irwin

Whether or not to use hosted elements in Revit projects has always been a topic of hot debate among Revit professionals. As Revit has evolved, so has this discussion and what may have been the dominant method 5 years ago may have changed based on changes to the software and/or workflows. During this roundtable we will discuss the pros and cons of using hosted families and when it might make sense or not. Below is a list of some discussion topics for the session:• How has hosting in Revit changed over the years and has this affected whether or not you utilize this feature when creating content.• Recommendations on when to use hosted families and why.• Hosted families and links – benefits and issues• How different types of hosting work differently – face-based vs. specific wall/floor/ceiling/roof• Uses of 2-level based families• Converting hosted families between hosting types or to non-hosted

Jason Kunkel

Having a dashboard for your Revit model is a great way to monitor trends, watch out for issues, and share insights about the model file with everyone in an easy to consume graphical format. In the past, dashboards were something only the big firms with the big staffs were able to create and manage. But with some free and pretty cheap tools available now, anyone can collect and share the data needed for a slick dashboard that you can share with your team. This session will cover using the Model Checker for Revit to build and generate a report that can be used to monitor model fidelity in a data visualization tool like Power BI and will discuss some best practices around that process.

Jason Kunkel

Many great sessions share excellent technical techniques and strategies for being a great design technology Manager, and rightfully so. As with many roles, especially ones so nebulous and CAD and BIM Management, there are a host of skills that many in that role have had to learn on their own over the years. With over two decades of CAD, BIM, and IT management experience plus years of working with numerous companies to help support their technical managers and staff, this session aims to fill the gaps and cover the skills and techniques that don’t involve a mouse.

Vote for AU Sessions Now

Let the Autodesk University team know what sessions you would like to see at this year’s conference. Cast your vote from now until July 13, 2020.

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