NEWS: BIM tools to get direct access to Revit data

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New Open Design Alliance (ODA) toolkit will allow other BIM tools to read and write data in the Autodesk Revit 3D format

Open Design Alliance (ODA) has announced “Teigha BIM Kernel” for CAD software developers to read and write data in the Autodesk Revit 3D format. ODA is best known for Teigha Kernel, software used by more than 1,300 software vendors to create, translate, edit, and publish AutoCAD .DWG files.

“There is nothing else for Revit, not even from Autodesk,” said ODA President Neil Peterson. Peterson sees three strategic reasons why software developers and users need a Revit translator. First, Revit is “a mature technology and a clear market leader” yet there is no independent access to data created in the product. Second, many users of Revit — either directly or because of collaborative projects — consider it “strategically important” to have more than one way to read and write their important data. Third, there is “strong demand” for new products that work with Revit data, but none of the standard software assets are available to developers, not even directly from Autodesk.

“Revit users are not happy with the existing API,” claims Peterson. “They want a better toolset to work with Revit data.”

The initial release of Teigha BIM Kernel is now available to members of the ODA. Members will be able to build rudimentary read / write features from it. Peterson said a robust kernel to match what ODA offers for .DWG is “years away.” Features include support for Revit .RFA and .RTA formats from Revit 2011 and newer versions; direct read/write of Revit data without resorting to an intermediary data standard like IFC; write support to Revit 2017; selective input of Revit data for export.

Work on Teigha BIM Kernel started with planning sessions in 2013; programming began in 2014 as a Special Interest Group (SIG) among motivated ODA members. Although the names of specific companies who formed the SIG were not released, members with a known interest in BIM include Bentley Systems, Bricsys, Graebert Software, Dassault Systemes, IMSI/Design, and various divisions of Nemetschek including Graphisoft, Vectorworks, Allplan, Bluebeam, and Solibri.

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