Thursday, February 21, 2013


I work for one of the most prestigious and stable architectural firms in Orange County. I am the staff Revit guru, a position that allows great freedom and flexibility in determining how I approach my work. Currently, I am working with two other team members on a multi-family housing project for Brookfield Homes, a leader among home builders who have embraced Building Information Modeling.

We have two or three weeks remaining before the first CD submittal, with a lot of annotation and detailing still to to do. This is our first Revit 2013 job. Our client has expressed a desire to move to the built in keynoting system; previously we used generic annotations and note blocks. We are using Steve Faust's Keynote Manager on a 30-day trail, while waiting for approval on a site license.

In spite of all these conditions, when my project manager approached me yesterday with a request to use "dumb keynotes" as in CAD, I actually agreed!  I was immersed in another aspect of the project, and had not really considered the problem. I even created an instance-based symbol to be used in conjunction with blocks of text. Near the end of the day, when I paused to consider my accomplishments, I realized to what I had agreed. My first reaction was "KMN"

As with many firms in the housing industry, most of the work here is still being done in CAD. I recently I made a presentation to the staff here, extolling the benefits of BIM. which was entitled, "It's Not Rocket Surgery".

I quickly went to work, importing some notes from previous projects into the new keynote text file database. This morning I showed it to my PM, who is now on board. When he said, "I didn't know where to start" I realized I had failed to give the proper level of support for a new process.