Tuesday, November 19, 2013

The Revit Bait And Switch

This probably won't be the first time that I've griped about the disregard for standards that the Revit hive-mind displays.

Obviously there is a whole world of design where you are allowed to go all crazy-go-nuts with dimensions, angles, creative ways to waste space, etc. - however even those designers with relaxed limitations on budget and scope can't just toss everything out the window (through the screened facade and into the intentionally exposed exterior structural members).

In the meantime, most projects have to get built on a reasonable schedule and budget (even if they start off with dreams of huge glass skylights and massive cantilevered verandas).  This requires the use of at least a handful of standards that most architects (but few Revitards) understand as the key to a successful design.

This brings me to the point of today's rant - when most projects come in, someone (usually a Revitard) is told to slap together a model based on some vague criteria, so they fill in the holes with assumptions, and try to put together something passable. 

The next step is for that model to be foisted onto someone else (a Revitard/Architect Lackey) - who may or may not have been previously aware that the project even existed, and who is now responsible for figuring out where the design criteria/scope, intent of the architect, and standard building practices were adhered to, and where they went off into space.

This isn't about limitations on design - but the second you start down that road, there needs to be a mutual awareness between everyone involved (most importantly the person with the purse-strings) that we are now deviating from what you are going to get for the $/s.f. cost that you probably based your budget on.

What I'm talking about is someone being handed a project, and basically told 'look - we helped you out by having someone who may or may not know what they are doing (or care) make a Revit model'.  This renders any argument that spending half the budget to model an existing shell building (for example) just so that you can design a tenant finish is a waste of time/money, because it's already been wasted.

Then (usually only after substantial completion of the design) it occurs to someone to take some measurements of the existing tenant space, only to find out that 'holy fuck - we've been basing everything off of an arbitrary set of dimensions that someone made up off the top of their head when they started the model'.

If it's an office space, or other simple project, no big fucking deal - if it's a restaurant, laboratory, or industrial space with specific requirements for space, clearance, connections, etc. - then it's a big fucking deal.  That's the promise of Revit though - everything will get coordinated.  The problem is that if everything is fucking wrong, then everything gets coordinated fucking wrong (a classic example of garbage in/garbage out).

Then there are the things that get completely overlooked - since  MEP doesn't get brought on board until Revitards/Retarditects already dicked around for weeks/months tweaking the design only to find out that (usually because they are inexperienced at design - but especially because they are paying more attention to Reviting than to designing) they haven't planned any room for electrical panels, water service entrances, sprinkler risers, water heaters, ductwork, HVAC units,

And that's before they start having to tweak it endlessly because a real Architect finally put their eyes on a set of hastily assembled drawings with pathetic presentation graphics, and noticed that the design did not take into account various code requirements, requiring considerable rework. 

As I said last time, it's a good thing they love Revit, because they'll get to use it to try to beat the bastardized model into something that can actually go through the permitting process, be approved, built, inspected, and occupied (and the owner finally stops fucking with it). Again - kudos to the fuckheads attempting to make (and in some cases succeeding at making) submission of a Revit model one of the requirements do just that.

Because now you get to live out your dream - of dragging everyone down into hell with you...

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