CADD On the Road – Revit Technology Conference North America 2016

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The RTC Events group puts on several design technology conferences through the year, and their namesake is the Revit Technology Conference that has been going on for years now. The 2016 North America RTC conference was held in Scottsdale from July 14-16. it is a conference that focuses on pushing Revit in new and exciting ways and getting together with your peers to see what new ways they have figured out to make Revit sing even better than it did before. It’s also a place to try out some cool new technology and possibly look like an idiot doing it, but more on that in a bit.

Looking back on the trend of one that was started back when we went to Autodesk OTX in Chicago, I tried to see what opportunities I had to do something around the two F’s… Food and Frank Lloyd Wright. Being from the east coast of the states, the food part was easy as the only time I can get In-N-Out Burger is when I fly west.

Fries - not animal style
Fries – not animal style

I thought I would be able to fulfill the second F as well. Turns out that Frank Lloyd Wright’s Taliesin West is right down the road from the conference center. Wednesday I had a nice free block of time so I headed down the road to check things out. Sadly, they are closed on Wednesday so all I got to see was a desert and a gate.

FLW inspired security system
FLW inspired security system

Back to the conference…

This year, I was thrilled to be asked to come and lead a lab covering the Model Checker and Model Checker Configurator from the BIM Interoperability toolset. It was my first time presenting at RTC and my first time doing a hands-on lab on this scale (40 laptops were setup and over 40 people showed). The session went off without any major snag, and there were some good questions asked and some great feedback given. The Model Checker is a pretty straightforward tool to use, but it was great to be able to offer up some inside tips and tricks that we have collected while supporting the software.

The view from the speaker stage – five minutes before show time

Being surrounded by people who love the software and love to push the software, you get some great opportunities for quick chats and interesting insight into workflows. The exhibit hall is also setup with vendors and solutions focused pretty heavily on Revit. There was some exciting talk and demos on Project Soane, which officially kicked off at last year’s RTC and wrapped up at this one. Crowd-sourced modeling can be done, and done pretty well. There were also some other hands-on demos on the hall floor. Since the beginning of this year, a couple of different VR hardware options have been released, and there were two stations set up to let you try it out. Warning: silly looking middle aged man having way too much fun swinging at nothing.

Overall a great conference, met some great people, several of whom I only knew through email or Twitter (which is an interesting social adjustment to make – have I actually “met” them yet?), I had a blast presenting, and I thoroughly encourage any Revit user who is looking to take that “next step” with the software to check out RTC next year.

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