Tuesday, May 7, 2019

UpCodes for Revit - Real-time Code Checking with AI

One of the coolest new things I have seen recently is UpCodes, which is an add-in for Revit. In their own word, this tool...
"is a design aid for architects and engineers. View code errors in real-time directly in Revit with a “spell check” for compliance."
I think of this tool more as a "Turbo Tax" for building codes, rather than a "spell check" as it is so sophisticated and updated every two weeks. And now... version 1.0.3 includes AI.

The most amazing thing is it just works, right out of the box on any Revit model with any Revit content... at least so far, based on my initial testing.


Keep reading to learn more...
Once installed, you open a project and immediately see the UpCodes AI palette on the right as shown in the image above. The first thing you do is edit the settings for  your project. Second, click Run on Entire Model and your done!

In just two steps you have run a code compliance check on your entire project. Of course, this is V1 and does not check everything,  but it is a good start; with ADA, Stairs, Doors and more as shown in the examples below.

I love this statement on their website:
"Empower all individuals — from principals to interns — to identify code errors. Code snippets link to the original code text, helping your team navigate the latest building codes."
Here is what you see after the initial analysis is done.


Click on an error, to expand it, you can then click a button to view the problem in a special "UpCodes" analysis view (with section box applied) with added dimensions and more. In the image below, the Revit-provided toilet family is not at the correct height; a dimension and red cylinder is added to the view to help understand the problem.



Another toilet room example...



The problems include helpful code spinets, including graphics as shown here. Unfortunately, because of this, UpCodes is being sued by the ICC as the code language is copyrighted. UpCodes is arguing that the code is the law, and the law should not be copyrighted. More on that here: https://up.codes/free-law



Interesting disclaimer after installing the tool... UpCodes does not replace a professional code review:) This reminds me of the harsh email I received once, where someone using my book was offended that I said the structural chapter is not a real project and that a structural engineer is required on real projects!



Michael Kilkelly wrote an article for ARCHITECT Magazine on this topic a while back (August 2018). You can check it out  via this link: Building Code Review Software: Feasible or Far-Fetched?

Assuming this does not get shutdown by a lawsuit, this has the potential of being one of the most amazing tools in the evolution of BIM.



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I also write blog posts for Enscape - a new paradigm in rendering, animation and VR for AEC.

2 comments:

  1. This lawsuit has caused quite the discussion in the AIA/Technology circles. For anyone interested in various perspectives, check this out: https://network.aia.org/communities/community-home/digestviewer/viewthread?GroupId=187&MessageKey=1a3d5645-f79a-4efd-a4d2-9db6c033737a&CommunityKey=79d8bdfe-0ff1-430c-b5c9-7aef1aa8fd0a&tab=digestviewer&ReturnUrl=%2fcommunities%2fcommunity-home%2fdigestviewer%3ftab%3ddigestviewer%26CommunityKey%3d79d8bdfe-0ff1-430c-b5c9-7aef1aa8fd0a

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  2. Thanks for the link... this is a very interesting conversation, indeed.

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