Wednesday, December 3, 2008

AU - Day 2

Day 2 marked the official start to AU2008 with the traditional keynote presentation. Needless to say, there was a lot less fanfare than last year. Gone was the mega circular screen, which was featured in a video recording as part of the presentation, and you could tell there were less attendees from last year. Perhaps signs of the economic downturn? One thing is for sure though: the revolution in our workflows which has picked up incredible speed and grabbed headlines all over the place over the last few years, is here to stay. I guess now is the time to painstakingly implement all this vision and dreams about moving data seamlessly between applications, consolidating existing tools and interfaces into more efficient ones. Innovation will be seen in a more toned-down fashion as work is done to solve all these issues and the marketing department is involved less in painting our future and moves on to other ventures. We get it, we're on board, now let's get it done!


I had a very interesting discussion with Jeff Hanson of Autodesk in the AEC Lounge regarding documentation, Revit in particular. The online Help that comes with Revit has been steadily getting better recently and we have also seen an increase in other forms of documentation such as subscription White Papers that are useful to BIM Managers and users, together with a slew of tutorials and guides, such as the very detailed Families Guide. I have no doubt that this trend will continue and that's great news to all. It is incredibly difficult to create such documentation due to "localization", where each piece of documentation that is released has to be translated and made relevant in other languages (I believe around 39 languages). I'm sure you can appreciate that it's not cheap or easy to achieve that task and we'll obviously continue to expect and push for more.

I met with Steven Campbell, my moral support and coach during our presentation on Thursday and Friday, and we went over the class material briefly, trying to time each section so we don't run past our period or cut it too short. I'll have to spend some time today rehearsing in my head too. You can never do enough and it'll be hard to go to bed early!

Here's how you feed hungry masses of highly intelligent design professionals, change agents and experts:


A class I attended, Successful Change Management, had some interesting information about the dynamics and psychology of change. Those of us that embrace change and know that it is the only constant in life have it easier than others, and by knowing some key things about how to approach the subject can only serve to help you and your organization while implementing new technology. It was surely worth my time to be there.

I was really excited to be part of a an "expert panel review" of some upcoming Revit features. I can't say anything about it though, bummer. I'll stay as neutral and cold as a block of ice. You'll have to wait. I know it's painful, but I had to do that myself in the past as no one would tell me anything. Please be patient. I'm kinda enjoying this unemotional portrayal of emotion...what a contradiction. If you cross me in a hallway, don't ask me about it, I'm not cracking down.

The day ended with the opening of the convention floor. Once again, it felt like there was less "uhhh ahhh" technology compared to last year. I visited around with some friends and colleagues and am still trying to meet a bunch of people from previous years and AUGI forum members. I'm looking forward to some of the Unplugged sessions and the Design Slam.




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