BIM Coordinator Program (INT) April 22, 2024

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Modeling
About Archicad's design tools, element connections, modeling concepts, etc.

ArchiCAD is dying

Bruce
Expert
I know that's a controversial subject line, but I believe it's true. Not because I want it to be, but because Autodesk is an advancing monster; ArchiCAD firms are switching to Revit, and Revit-based firms are buying ArchiCAD firms...and switching them to Revit.

ArchiCAD is a great program, but if it keeps going the way it is, I fear it will gradually dwindle until it's finally gone. On a level playing field, it comes out more or less even with Revit (I have done a detailed analysis that has been vetted by Revit experts) - but it's not a level playing field.

In my opinion, Graphisoft needs to do a handful of things to even the odds (yes, I will compare to Revit, as that's the main competition):

1. Rebrand & revamp the UI: CAD is an obsolete term. Even though ArchiCAD was BIM way before the term was even coined, I think the "CAD" in the name does it a disservice. Also, the user interface is old and tired. Should it go to the ribbon? No way. Should it be brought into the 21st century? Absolutely - there are plenty of excellent examples out there. Blender, a free 3D program, is undergoing its second UI redesign in about 5 years. If Blender can do it, Graphisoft can.

2. Introduce type-based elements. At the moment, pretty much everything is instance based. If you place 100 doors 900mm wide throughout the project, you have to select and change every single instance (this is an example, so please don't tell me the workarounds - that misses the point). Essentially, this is extending the attributes database to other objects. This makes project-wide changes so much more consistent, with no fear of missing an element.

3. Easier creation of parametric custom content: A beginner user in Revit can create a basic parametric object by using geometry and dimensions. It is intuitive and accessible. This does have its limits, but GDL is completely inaccessible to any but the advanced user with a programming mind...something architects and drafties generally don't have - otherwise they'd be programmers. A mix of the two would be extremely powerful - maybe an interface similar to Visual Basic, or Grasshopper? Not only for 3D elements, but also for 2D labels.

4. Better labelling & keynote tools: At the moment it's one label per element per view. What if I want to tag more than the ID? What about material, thickness, height etc. Revit is excellent in this regard, and also in the ability to create your label format as specific as you please. Key notes are also critical.

These are only four key improvements that I think are critical. There are many others that I could list, but this post is already too long. I say the above not to criticise ArchiCAD, but to try and help (misguided however it may be).

I could be wrong - I would be happy to be wrong...but the Autodesk monster is advancing...

These changes should be done the Graphisoft way: not to match what Revit does, but to equal and better it.
Bruce Walker
www.brucepwalker.com
Barking Dog BIM YouTube
Mindmeister Mindmap
-- since v8.1 --
AC26 5002 INT Full | Windows 11 64 Pro | 12th Gen Intel i7-12700H 2.30 GHz | 64 Gb RAM | NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 32 Gb
181 REPLIES 181
NandoMogollon
Advocate
oh god....
not again...please
Nando Mogollon
Director @ BuilDigital
nando@buildigital.com.au
Using, Archicad Latest AU and INT. Revit Latest (have to keep comparing notes)
More and more... IFC.js, IFCOpenShell
All things Solibri and BIMCollab
Anonymous
Not applicable
NandoMogollon wrote:
oh god....
not again...please
But look at your tag, working in the dark side...REVIT 2014
keeping one foot on AC17 INT
What's up with that?
NandoMogollon
Advocate
oh, my signature...

well, I'm BIM-Bilingual and at the moment I'm working in Revit.
Do I like it? yep, is ok. but I prefer ArchiCAD.
Is it better? well, better for...?

I just think that the tittle of the post is not controversial, is just plain unrealistic. ( and funded by fears I believe)

.... but this is all my opinion.
Nando Mogollon
Director @ BuilDigital
nando@buildigital.com.au
Using, Archicad Latest AU and INT. Revit Latest (have to keep comparing notes)
More and more... IFC.js, IFCOpenShell
All things Solibri and BIMCollab
Bruce
Expert
I think I've been misunderstood: I'm not bashing ArchiCAD. I'm looking at reality. I know of two practices that have switched / are switching in the last year from ArchiCAD to Revit. Goodbye 100 licenses.

But, from the lack of response, it seems the ArchiCAD community thinks everything if fine just the way it is. Iceberg ahead anyone?
Bruce Walker
www.brucepwalker.com
Barking Dog BIM YouTube
Mindmeister Mindmap
-- since v8.1 --
AC26 5002 INT Full | Windows 11 64 Pro | 12th Gen Intel i7-12700H 2.30 GHz | 64 Gb RAM | NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3060 32 Gb
Anonymous
Not applicable
Bruce

In the residential game on this side of Aus, we've seen the complete opposite.
Archicad is pretty much the industry standard and there has been more companies switch to it in recent months/years!
The reason being, that is what staff are wanting to use and proficient in using.
Here in WA we are extremely lucky to have the likes of Barry Kelly, Ben Cohen and a growing number of passionate, talented people championing our industry.
Maybe what is dying over there is the passionate drivers and innovators?
I know they are over there, I've had the pleasure of dealing with them but it takes loud voices, real facts and true solutions to keep it kicking.
Anonymous
Not applicable
Actually further to that Bruce,
You're own firm could turn the tide on this!
I can not imagine any Architectural student not jumping at the chance to join your team!!!
Hit them at student level and create a new generation of Architects that REALLY understand the benefits of Archicad!!!
Anonymous
Not applicable
I agree with Bruce on this, Revit is an advancing monster. In South Africa I heard a story, albeit unsubstantiated (could be an urban legend!?) that a large firm were changing to a BIM software, were considering ArchiCAD until Autodesk gave them 10 free licenses to secure their business
as I said this might not be true, but I don't think Graphisoft are doing enough marketing to promote ArchiCAD. Personally I'd hate to see ArchiCAD fail as I believe it to be the better product of the two(marginally)
arg617
Contributor
I also don't think Graphisoft is doing enough to promote their product - especially in schools. Just take a quick look at the required and elective courses in universities (in the US at least). They all require CAD classes (at least) and some are requiring BIM. Look at the software they use to teach with - all Autodesk.

So, if you're an employer, and notice that all these young people are graduating with a fluency and proficiency at a particular software, would you waste money in training them to use something else if what they use gets the job done? Most of the time employers aren't the ones that are using the software anyway.

Heck - I can't even find a training class.....and I'm in New York City! So how can I be expected to drop this amount of money on software and then essentially be on my own? (Yes, I've tried the training that Graphisoft provides. It's lacking to say the least.)
NandoMogollon
Advocate
I also don't think Graphisoft is doing enough to promote their product
I would be interesting to know how different is the entire Graphisoft Company annual budget against just autodesk's Revit Marketing annual Budget.

But again there is the scale: Autodesk sells a broad variety of software ( > 100) Vs Graphisoft which specifically focuses on ArchiCAD and it's Support packages ( BIMx, BIM Server, MEP, Ecodesigner, -BIM Cloud-in the future)

We can't predict when or why... or even if software x will succumb before it's competitors.

What I hate is the feeling of knowing that ArchiCAD is such an elegant solution when compared to Revit, Bentley, Allplan or Vectorworks... but it's given so little publicity and recognition!

Just check this: ask an ArchiCAD user ( and Allplan, Vectorworks, Bentley users) if they are aware of Revit's capabilities... they probably are.

Now ask a Revit user if she/he is aware of any other BIM software... they probably don't even know of any other software, they don't care if there's any, they have been convinced that the only worthy BIM software must come from Autodesk... whatever else is out there must be a bad copy.

That is a big accomplishment from ADSK, with lies or without them in their propaganda.
They know you don't sell just by producing a better software, they convince their potential clients their software is so much better, that the competitors consider all other inferior and insignificant without even trying them!.

Maybe Graphisoft is playing the marketing game too nicely.
But that is different from "ArchiCAD is dying"

--I apologize for the long post--
Nando Mogollon
Director @ BuilDigital
nando@buildigital.com.au
Using, Archicad Latest AU and INT. Revit Latest (have to keep comparing notes)
More and more... IFC.js, IFCOpenShell
All things Solibri and BIMCollab
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