AEC Tech News (#280)

4 Nov, 2010 By: Cadalyst Staff

Bentley Honors 24 Be Inspired and Special Recognition Award Winners

Thought leadership event showcases innovative infrastructure projects from around the globe.

By Cadalyst Staff

Bentley Systems presented the 2010 Be Inspired Awards and Be Inspired Special Recognition Awards at its Be Inspired: Thought Leadership in Infrastructure event, held October 19–20 in Amsterdam, Netherlands. The awards honor Bentley users who are working to improve and sustain the world's infrastructure. A total of 24 award winners, representing projects in 16 different countries, were recognized at the annual event.

An independent panel of jurors, which included Bentley users and industry experts, selected the 19 Be Inspired Awards winners from 55 finalists. These finalists had been chosen from 320 nominations submitted by 249 organizations in 45 countries.

The five winners of Bentley's second annual Be Inspired Special Recognition Awards were placed into nomination by the same panel of independent jurors for innovative and visionary infrastructure project achievements embracing multiple Be Inspired Awards categories. The nominees were reviewed by a panel consisting of Bentley executives, as well as Bentley Infrastructure Ambassadors Council members Norbert Young, Jim Porter, and Patrick McCrory. The achievements recognized included: Attaining Return on Innovation, Advancing Interoperability, Sustaining Our Society, Sustaining Our Environment, and Sustaining the Professions.

CEO Greg Bentley said, "The recipients of this year's awards are being acknowledged for their exceptional talent and achievements in innovatively employing information modeling and collaboration technology and implementing best practices in sustaining infrastructure. On behalf of my colleagues at Bentley, I heartily congratulate these winners for their exemplary projects improving infrastructure and contributing to our world's economic and environmental resilience. Their work is an inspiration to us all!" Read more »

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CAD Clinic Civil 3D Tutorial: AutoCAD Civil 3D and Pay Items

Set up your drawings to produce reports with item counts, areas, or volumes that are updated if the drawings change.

By Phillip Zimmerman

All of the elements that implement AutoCAD Civil 3D require setup time. Although this time is usually thought of as costly, if used wisely, the resulting setup changes a job's workflow and expands the resulting work's value.

For example, a plotted sheet is passed to an estimating group, and it is marked up to produce an item count and estimation. In this workflow, if the design changes, new sheets need to be plotted and the estimating team must determine the differences and create new counts. With this process, it's possible to miss subtle changes, which are easily overlooked.

By using Civil 3D pay items, drawings can produce reports with item counts, areas, or volumes, which are used in a spreadsheet to create an estimate. The estimation spreadsheet contains a costing formula column that produces an estimate from Civil 3D's pay item reports. Should a drawing change, a new pay item report file is generated containing the changes, and when imported into the estimation spreadsheet, it produces a new estimate. While pay item reports are useful, like anything else, they are only as good as the user assigning the pay item entries to objects in a drawing.

To create a quantity take off (QTO) report, you must first create a pay item master list. The master list is an ASCII file with a CSV extension. To organize and better manage this potentially lengthy list, a category file is added to create divisions, groups, and sections, or any user-defined category system. Read more »

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Phillip Zimmerman is a senior applications engineer serving Imaginit customers throughout North America.

ArchiCAD Insights Tutorial: Share BIM Models with Virtual Building Explorer

Communicate designs to your clients with Graphisoft's visualization tools.

By Matthew Brewster

Building information modeling (BIM) assists the design process for many architects today. Being able to visualize complex structures in 3D allows designers to make better-informed decisions before earth is moved and trees are cut. Likewise, photorealistic renderings and animations help clients understand a finished design — but they can take a considerable amount of time to produce. So, how can you utilize BIM models to quickly and effectively communicate with your clients?

Among BIM's many uses, visualization is at the top of the list for most users. Early in the design process, many options are explored and materials are discussed. Common solutions involve taking clients for a tour through the virtual model as they navigate in the BIM application, or presenting them with screen snapshots that have been printed out. Historically, neither method has been ideal, because the working environment in BIM can be somewhat crude.

In answer to this dilemma, Graphisoft recently introduced new ways to view BIM models. For example, ArchiCAD 14 includes the ability to display shadows in OpenGL. For the design process, sun studies can be generated as quickly as the model is adjusted. These same views can be used to present the design model to clients with almost photorealistic quality. Read more »

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Matthew Brewster is an ArchiCAD instructor in North America, as well as the founder and president of ARCHiDEAS.


Mark Your Calendar: AEC Events


Autodesk Certification Roadshow
Through November 19, 2010
Various cities
This free roadshow will provide Autodesk certification opportunities for software products including: AutoCAD, Civil 3D, Revit Architecture, 3DS Max Design, and Autodesk Inventor. Both the Associate level, a one-hour timed exam, and the Professional level, a 1.5-hour timed exam, will be offered. Read more »

3rd Annual Carlson Software User Conference
November 7–10, 2010
Louisville, Kentucky
Carlson Software's User Conference, themed "Partnering You With the World," is designed to improve the skills and enhance the businesses of those in the land surveying, civil engineering, construction, and mining industries. Attendees can hear an international overview of where the land development industry is heading from three diverse industry representatives. Read more »

Autodesk University 2010
November 30–December 2, 2010
Las Vegas, Nevada
This learning and networking event is intended for Autodesk product users and design professionals. The event will include Autodesk product-specific and industry-focused classes, hands-on labs, and networking with the international Autodesk community. Read more »

For a complete list of CAD meetings, conferences, training sessions, and more, check out our calendar of events on Are you hosting an event that you would like to include in our calendar? Submit details at least two weeks in advance to


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About the Author: Cadalyst Staff

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