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The traditional print publishing industry requires long production cycles before any book or publication can see print. This situation has become more acute for authors like myself who publish books on annual software releases. I hope to use this blog to publish information, updates, addenda, ruminations, and other "mid-cycle" missives. I hope you enjoy it.

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Wednesday, April 1, 2009

A Rose by an other name...

With the 2010 release of Autodesk applications starting to hit the streets, one of the questions on everyone's mind isn't what new features are we getting but rather, what did they call it this year? :-)

Let's take AutoCAD Architecture. When the product first came out (V1.0 - yes they did use plain old numbers back then) it was: "AutoCAD Architectural Desktop" (Although some referred to is as Softdesk V9)
Even though it was never official, everyone referred to it as "ADT"
Around V3.0 or maybe 3.3 it became "Autodesk Architectural Desktop"
Then we went to the year numbering with 2004. ADT 2004, ADT 2005, etc.
Then came 2008. Architectural Desktop was gone. Replaced by "AutoCAD Architecture" No more ADT either. Many began calling it "ACA." (Autodesk has never liked either acronym preferring the long full name or the strange Acad-A).

So we came full-circle. AutoCAD Architectural Desktop to AutoCAD Architecture. Well, 2010 is still AutoCAD Architecture. But don't worry there's always next year. Maybe we can look forward to "Autodesk AutoCAD Architectural Desktop" (AAAD)...

So what about Revit? When it was still a separate company (Charles River Software), it was just: Revit. Short, sweet. Easy.
Then Autodesk bought them and Revit became "Autodesk Revit." Then "Revit" became a "Platform" and we got "Revit Building" to distinguish it from the new "Revit Structure" and later "Revit Systems." That lasted a couple releases, and they changed all the names again. So in the same year when we got "AutoCAD Architecture 2008," "Revit Building" became "Revit Architecture 2008." So, what is it in 2010? Well, "Revit Architecture" is actually now formally "Autodesk Revit Architecture 2010." Say that five times fast. (BTW, what is the most popular acronym for Revit Architecture? "RAC" - as far as I can tell, this one is official, although I still can't figure out how they arrived at that one).

Anyhow, I just try to refer to things as officially as possible. However, I have no intention of writing "Autodesk Revit Architecture 2010" everytime I want to refer to the software. So I do use RAC on occasion (mostly in dataset naming) and I have made the decision in my new book update to simply refer to it as "Revit" most of the time. What is old is new again. My rationalle is this: In most cases, when I refer to the product by name, I am talking about something that is actually not unique to Architecture only. In other words it applies to the platform and works the same in Revit Structure or Revit MEP (the new name for Revit Systems). For example, "In Revit elements turn light blue when you select them." This is not unique to Revit Architecture, so I don't imply that it is by writing the full name. Saves me some typing and the reader some reading too.

So there you have it. A Revit or an ADT by any other name would still BIM as sweet... (or something like that, I might have messed up the quote a bit. ;-)

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