Ok... I'm sure that many of my esteemed collegues would just say that I'm "mad". And they would probably be right... But, I've persevered with the "Revisions" function in Revit for a couple of years now! On smaller projects... I managed! Could be better, but it was OK. I lived in the hope that someday soon it would just all be fixed.
But now I'm running relatively large, complex, workgrouped projects. And I find the "Revisions" functions problematic at best and down right embarassing at worst!
What really frustrates me about this aspect of Revit is that I find it difficult to understand, considering what the software is capable of doing in all other respects, that it should be so difficlut to improve the "Revisions" function.
Unfortunately, Revisions managment is a fundamental in our game. And you just simply can't afford to "balls it up"!
The following, rather long winded (I'm sorry), rant... Is summarised from a note I sent to the Autodesk Revit Help desk after a couple of long heated conversations with a couple of guys there.
I'm told that the Revisions tool has ben developed to resopond to the way that the profession works. Can this be true? Now I have even worked on the other side of the world and didn't find documenation procedures to be that different to our own.
I'm still waiting for a reply.
Does anyone else find this an important aspect of the software in need of desperate development.
So here it is:
Revision functionality must be developed if the package is to be seriously used for documentation. In my opinion the revision tool currently does not relate to accepted professional practice and is unacceptable!
Please refer to the following issues raised in respect of the revision tool:
Editing of revisions
Firstly, it is absolutely necessary to permit editing of revision descriptions, dates etc. after they have been issued. Whilst the restriction which Revit places on the editing of revisions may seem a logical QA feature, in practice, it is the cause of most of the problems related to the use of this aspect of Revit.
No matter how thoroughly this aspect of Revit is managed in practice a mistake is always possible. Typically, it is possible that a revision may be accidentally “issued”!
Maybe, it would be practical to password lock this feature so that the Project Administrator is able to edit, and take responsibility for the editing of, revision when necessary.
A new view is created by “duplicating with detail” an existing view. The existing view has revisions associated with the view. Of course the new view should not yet be revised as it’s a new view. But because the original view has been revised this new view adopts all of its revision settings. Of course this problem could have been averted given better consideration… But it wasn’t! And what is an issue is that there is no, reasonably efficient, way to reverse or correct it!
Selective display of revisions in the revision column
We need to be able to select which revisions to display on the revision column so that we don’t run out of space on the drawing title sheet.
Display of “description” text in the Revisions dialogue box
When adding text to the “Description” column under Settings>Revisions it would be much more convenient if the text wrapped so that you could see the whole text of a revision at any one time.
We generally use fairly concise descriptions of each amendment. This can mean that each revision description becomes lengthy (often 10 or more lines of text in length). Revit’s Revision editor only displays one line of text at a time. This is particularly annoying!
Ability to edit a revision from the drawing sheet
It would be even more convenient to be able to edit a current revision by selecting it from the drawing sheet.
Revisions by sheet
It would also be useful if there were an option to permit revisions to be unique to each sheet. For example Revit might provide a dialogue box with a table with each sheet and the current revision, date and description.
For convenience it would be useful if the revision parameters that relate to each sheet were to be able to be accessed through a right click on the sheet in the project browser.
Accessibility of revision parameters
Why can’t the Revision parameters be accessible such that the revision designation could be illustrated on the bottom corner of the sheet. In my experience this is typically how drawing sheets are referenced by most disciplines in the construction industry.
Flexible revision designation
Surely it must be possible to use letters (or numbers) for the designation of revisions!
Issued to / issued by / ect.
It would be useful to have additional parameters to be able to record who made an amendment, who it was issued to etc.
In the event that you would like to use an existing project a s a template for another project… Or even views and/or sheets within a current project... It would be very useful to be able to reset the revision.
This may also require password or some other sort of protection.
Automated drawing transmittal registers
I have a dream that Revit, one day, may be able to manage its own document transmittal register.
In fact, if the revision parameters were accessible to schedule this would basically be possible now.
Imagine that consultant, client and contractor contact details can be entered as project information. And revision designation, date, by, to, description etc. could be scheduled.
It would then be possible to produce a drawing, maybe the coversheet to a drawing set, that included all of the client, consultant and contractor contact details and a perfectly up-to-date, automatically generated drawing transmittal!
Maybe you could even select the sheets to print in a particular drawing set by transmittal date from this schedule.
Every time you issue drawings… they could be issued with a revised cover sheet that could summarise the current issue, all previous issues, and provide a complete list of the current revisions.
Wow… that would really be exciting! And, considering what Revit is capable of in other capacities I find it difficult to understand why this isn’t possible.
Basically, we’re very disappointed of this aspect of Revit. Whilst it is very promising it just doesn’t provide the necessary flexibility to be reliable on big and/or complex projects. Accordingly, we will be reluctant to use the “Revisions” aspect of Revit on future projects until it is better resolved. And consequently it will be difficult to consider Revit as a serious documentation tool for our major projects until this matter is better resolved, which is disappointing considering that we are generally very happy with Revit otherwise!
GCC @ Monumentum