Posts Tagged ipad

New Windows Surface Tablet Puts Revit in the Field.

With Microsoft’s announcement of Windows 8, and the unveiling of the Surface Tablet, it finally appears there will be a tablet form factor that will run Revit in the field.  According to the press release there will be two versions, one based on the ARM chip and another based on the Intel i5 chip running Windows 8 Pro.  The iPad, as much it is great for so many tasks, simply does not have the horsepower to run Revit in the field, and delivering the type of user experience one would want with heavyweight programs is a real limitation in the ‘cloud.’  I understand Autodesk is now counting solely on Citrix to provide its remote platform but even if you are driving Revit remotely would you want to rely on whatever internet connection you have?  That’s just not a funnel I would want to count on in the field.

At first glance you might say so what, not a big deal.  However, if I can have a device that toggles between my heavyweight AEC programs, and delivers content the way my my iPad does then I might have an iPad to sell you; because frankly I am sick of devices, I live between the Mac and Windows camp, I’m tired of it.  I used to be an Apple fanatic, even being the only kid in business school with a Mac, the disastrous PowerPC model, but what was not to like about Apple.  Now, how did we get to the point where Microsoft is the little guy, relatively speaking.  Now if they could get their content management into a spot that works the way you want.  Imagine the central Revit model up on the sky drive, you check it out in the field, do your work, update it, booyah.

I think single purpose, highly specific apps are great to digest data,  not for the creation of it so I am real interested in the melding of tablet like functionality with horsepower.  I’m rooting for the little guy, I’m rooting for Microsoft.


BTW anyone else bother to notice the blending and vertical integration of software/hardware.  Apple, obviously.  Google buys Motorola. Microsoft with multiple attempts, Zune, XBox, etc.  and now Surface. And more germane to AEC Trimble buys Tekla and SketchUp.  Seems to be the biz strategy du jour, watch for more.


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For Those That Like to Tweet… A Free iPad

Tweet about PKNail Pro’s Proven Field to BIM Technology, Get Entered Automatically

PointKnown is giving away a free Apple iPad to one lucky Twitterer…er, tweeter, i.e.  one who uses the service twitter to disseminate clever, witty, informative text burst in 140 characters or less.  PointKnown does not claim to be clever, witty or informative, but will claim producing kick ahh…whup ahh…Excellent productivity software tools for documenting existing buildings.



How to Enter

To participate, simply tweet using the hash tags below:

#pknail #revit #bim and mention ‘PKNail Pro’


PKNail Pro turbo charges Revit and modeling existing buildings #pknail #revit #bim

or “Capture Existing Buildings Directly In Revit with PKNail Pro, 5x-10x faster #pknail #revit #bim

less pertinent but still acceptable “We came, we saw, we conquered with PKNail Pro, #pknail, #bim , #revit

less pertinent verging to the non-sequitur but still acceptable…

beautiful software for happy people PKNail Pro, #pknail, #bim, #revit

or certainly and you are most welcome and encouraged to tweet your own stuff; as we will have a separate drawing of $100 VISA Card for best/most creative tweet as judged by anyone at our next BBQ.

Remember: follow @pointknown on Twitter for the winner announcement:

We are on the road with Microcad and have other excellent resellers including,  Seiler Instrument (ask for Harvey) and CADDFX

Legal Mumbo Jumbo

Rules & Conditions

1. This giveaway is offered by PointKnown LLC and is open to anyone with a Twitter account who is at least 16 years of age. Employees of PointKnown, LLC. and/or its affiliated companies and family members of such employees may enter the contest but are not eligible to win.

2. The giveaway will begin at the time of this post and end 62 days after initial post, a winner will be randomly chosen, much like the number 62, and announced via twitter through @pointknown

3. One giveaway will be available: a 16GB Wi-Fi Apple iPad or $499 Apple Store Credit, winner’s choice.

4. You must prove ownership of the winning entry and provide your email address to collect the prize.

5. To enter the giveaway you must send out a tweet from your own Twitter account that includes the #hash tags above in your message.

6. Entries using automated tweets will be disqualified, however there is no limit on the number of tweets you may enter.

7. PointKnown LLC will choose a winner randomly from all the entries within the specified period. The winner will be announced from our twitter account (@pointknown) once the contest ends.

8. Entrants agree to allow @pointknown to use their twitter handles and entry tweets for marketing purposes.

9. Neither PointKnown LLC. nor its affiliated companies shall have any liability for (i) any technical failures of any kind, including but not limited to malfunctions, interruptions or disconnections in phone lines or network hardware or software; (ii) technical or human error which may occur in the administration of the giveaway; (iii) any malfunction of or damage to the prize; (iv) any corruption, typos or hacking of prize winners email accounts; or (v) any restrictions or delays imposed by any customs authorities or any import or other taxes of any kind imposed by any taxation authority in respect of the prizes.


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AEC Apps for the IPad and IPhone : Dead simple UI will continue to accelerate its adoption

This “best of ” list was just brought to my attention and it was put together by Houston Neal at Software advice.  It’s a round up of AEC apps available for the i gadgets.  The post brings together the best, but they also posted a google doc to exhaustively list those out there.  While it was tough for me ever to imagine anyone wanting to do much content creation on the iphone, let alone deciphering floorplans, etc. the ipad is a whole different story, built in 3G out of the box can enable a whole world of construction coordination coupled with Joe Six Pack easy to use interface, well you got something.  And while not wanting to sound like a shill for Apple I’ve seen a 3 year old zip through their menus, find what he wants and start his favorite cartoon so if you think this thing isn’t a game changer, change your game.


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iPAD : BIM : Game Changer?

ipadThe launch of the iPad has brought a lot of focus back to the tablet or I guess we need to call it a slate.  Nevermind that tablets have been commercially available for over a decade; however commercial success has always seemed to elude it.  Lack of killer apps, increased expense compared to regular laptops certainly contributed  but perhaps it was the change in the UI (User Interface) zeitgeist that provided a bigger hurdle.  Apple introduced the world, in a largely commercially way, to the multi-touch interface with the iphone making many comfortable with the concept and its app store was a huge success with many programs priced around a $1 made it the equivalent of an impulse purchase at the Walgreen’s check out line. With the release of the ipad Apple has upped the ante, not just because of the user interface but with a mobile platform that is relying mostly on the web to deliver applications/data/multi-media/snacks/beverages much like the  ‘thin-client’ devices promised to us in the nascent days of the interweb.  So the question is does the iPad have the power/features/connectivity to matter in the A/E/C Industry, and if so who needs it as an always on, apple form factor in the field?

Processing power and GB of RAM, BIM tools are hogs so any true BIM authoring software would have to run remotely and accessed through the iPad or similar slate, and then the bottleneck becomes the latency in the broadband connection, in this case, most likely the 3G  connection unless you have public wifi on your job site.  And that would bring us back to something like Project Twitch from Autodesk which allows you remote control their products through an internet connection, since I don’t have an ipad I can’t vouch yet for how that would work but having your project stored remotely and using the ipad to drive through it that starts to get interesting.

Screen Shot goBIM on iPad

goBIM which was released for the iphone, yes you read that right is running on the ipad.  It is a BIM viewer that has an exporter API that will let you translate Revit and Rhino models into its own format.  Why’s it’s own format?  Visit the site for the FAQ and explanation but it seems as it matures the developer wants it to be an xml format.

One company focused on bringing BIM to field, an aptly calling it FieldBIM, Vela Systems blogged about the ipad, and beyond reiterating iPad specs and blogosphere pronouncements ends with a ‘we’ll have to wait and see.’  One of their prerequisites though was a field case which  is already available at HardCandy. Additionally, they have partnered with Motion Computing to provide ruggedized tablets for the FieldBIM.  However, what we  all just really want is to unlock data that is stuck in file rooms or servers and be able to interact with it in a meaningful way which seems to be Apple’s sweet spot.

Counterbalancing Apple’s offering is the new HP Slate, which is essentially a slate wearing Windows 7 clothing and I am not sure how compelling an argument that is going to be as we’ve had a tablet edition of XP for a long time, is a multi-touch version going to sway a lot of people?  Comes down to the applications and how they are served?  If they are running remotely, who does the best job with the interface because the slate/pad whathaveyou is just the conduit.  Which brings us to what might be the real game changer and that is the Google Chrome OS, open source/operating system, which doesn’t care what device you use and will just deliver it, this web centric open model seems more in line with our egalitarian nature and should increase adoption.  But what keeps nagging at me is Apple’s tremendous execution and if their closed ecosystem produces field tools for the laymen then they got something going on, maybe break the functionality into bits, collision bits, scheduling bits, so the app provides not just the CM with a tool but workers who can use an app designed for their function,  punch list, update, done.  And that has been the beauty off the app store, essentially singularly focused bits that are easy to understand and implement.  So if we have the true BIM up in a cloud and all these specific apps interfacing with it, that would be the equivalent of the web with user generated content (UGC) driving the system, and not the bloatware cloud we’ve been living under.  It will be in the execution, otherwise you might be seeing people treating them more like Daniel Tosh did.


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