A shootout or bake-off between Graphisoft's Archicad and Autodesk's Revit has been proposed in user forums more times than I can keep track of. A recent thread in the AUGI forums titled "Put up or shut up" outlines some of the inherent flaws in such a demonstration. You would need different types of similar projects, expert and novice users for each platform and a realistic set of criteria to judge the performance of each program. A few years ago, we launched an investigation into the three major BIM platform providers - Autodesk, Bentley and Graphisoft - with a series of questions related to functionality we think we would need based on an extensive inward discovery process. To no one's surprise, the questionnaires returned stating that each vendor could achieve most if not all our requirements. The proof would be in HOW each platform performed these tasks.
When I want to buy a new washing machine, digital camera or television, or perhaps see a newly released movie, I will do some research and dig into user reviews on the most populated websites. I will not go see "Hot Rod" just because the critic in the Post gave it 3 stars (purely fiction, no offense to the Post). In my opinion, surveying public opinion makes for better decicions.
What's this have to do with the post title? After receiving a trial copy of Archicad 11 from Graphisoft, I was recently made aware that they now offer a free 30-day trial to anyone with an internet connection (see link below). Way back around Version 7, I attempted to learn a little about this program to gain a more objective view of competing programs, but Graphisoft insisted on participation in a training program before any testing or trials. I'm glad things have changed and as a result, I'll be embarking on a journey to review the interactive training content and teach myself Archicad. I spend about 2 hours each workday on the train during which I'll be taking copious notes and sharing them here in regular installments.
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