May 14, 2015
A reader recently asked:
“I have been eyeing your book Renaissance Revit. With the release of Revit 2016, is there anything in this release that makes the current version of your book out of date?”
I thought this was a terrific question. So here is the answer. There is nothing in Revit 2015 or 2016 that invalidates anything I have written in the book. However, there are a couple new features in the family editor that would have been “nice to have”.
First, we can now reorganize the parameters in the family editor. So in a few places in the book I talk about not being able to do this, which was true in 2014, and I make suggestions for how to “trick” Revit into putting the parameters in the desired order as you create them. With 2015 and 2016 this is now easy to do with no tricks or work arounds. We can move parameters up and down in the list or sort them alphabetically. This does not change any of the instructions in the book however, as ordering parameters is really a matter of personal preference. Everything discussed in the book will work as written regardless of the order of the parameters in the list.
Second, another nice feature is that we can now add descriptions in the form of tooltips to our parameters. Very cool by the way. So for some of the more complex families that have lots of parameters, it would be nice to add the tooltip to help keep them all straight and explain to users what they are for. But again, this is a matter of personal preference, certainly nice to have, but does not warrant a change to any of the steps or instructions outlined in the book.
Finally, there is now the ability to remove a repeater. Now, I actually chose not to use repeaters in the exercises in the book. I do mention this briefly in the tutorials and give my reasons for not using them. It was not because repeaters aren’t useful, but because for the specific examples in the book, they did not help too much. Perhaps now with this new feature, I might rethink that in the future. But I do doubt it would appreciably change the process or tutorial I outlined. The bottom line is that this new functionality does make repeaters more flexible and therefore more useful, but I still think that repeaters probably would not be the best choice for duplicating the components of the Corinthian column. It is just too easy to do this with normal copy and array methods, and the repeater does not really add anything other than complexity for that specific use case. So, yes, we can now remove a repeater, but it would be unlikely to change the book.
And that’s it! So, in summary, there are some nice new features in the family editor. But not enough to warrant a new edition of the book. So for now, you can feel quite confident that everything in the book still applies as written and that all steps will work in either 2015 or 2016. Naturally, you will have to wait a few moments when opening the files as they upgrade—they were saved in 2014 format. But there are batch upgraders out there that you can download and process the entire dataset in the background while you work on something else. I am not sure if they are available for 2016 yet, but check Autodesk Exchange or just Google it.
I may make updated files available in the future to save readers the step. I just have not had a chance to upgrade them myself yet. So please stay tuned!
Thanks again to reader Ty for the question. And thank you for considering my book.