Friday, March 27, 2009

Revit for the Unemployed

I read a facebook status update the other day from a friend who was laid off from an architecture firm due to the economy. He wrote that while unfortunate, it is allowing him time to work on his exams, study for LEED and to learn this BIM thing. It got me thinking about how he would actually learn BIM. He could download the Revit trial, use books to train and try to learn it but what can you actually do in the 30 days of the trial version. Is 30 days enough to learn? When I first started on Revit, I had gotten a demo while at Autodesk University 2004. I had demos beforehand but you just start getting into it when the demo expires. The demo that they gave at AU 2004 was either a 60 or 90 day (can't remember). What I do remember is having adequate time to learn and start implementing it.

While pondering this, I thought about whether Autodesk could do something to help the numerous unemployed which would not cost much but could lead to significant gains for Autodesk's future. What if Autodesk could provide Revit to the unemployed using the cost structure of the Student License and also have the similar 13 month license? Of course, there would need to be some type of proof (unemployment check, call to the last employer or something similar). This would allow numerous individuals with the ability to learn Revit, become proficient and be more marketable. The benefit for Autodesk is that there would be many more users of the program for when the market rebounds. When these users go into their new jobs they will essentially be your sales force within those companies. Another senerio is that many of these individuals may end up starting their own practices. After seeing the benefit of Revit, what software do you think they would choose to buy when the license expires?

Something interesting to think about and I would like to hear some of your comments.


djnelson75 3/27/2009 3:13 PM  

I agree that the more than 5,000 dollars the Autodesk charges is quite a bit of money for an individual, and that they should have more pricing options. I have also been intrigued with Ashlar-vellum's aproach of being able to lease a license by the month or by the year. Instead of paying a bunch of money for some software that is going to go out of date the next year.

Erik 3/27/2009 8:06 PM  

I certainly like the idea of a "Learning/Non-Commercial" license. It's so frustrating to download a trial version, activate it, get pulled away to something else and never get a chance to explore the product like you had planeed.

Keep in mind that after the 30 day full function trial, Revit functions in "Demo" mode. You have all tools and commands available. You can render and even plot. The only thing you can't do is SAVE. That's not a problem if you are doing tutorials and figuring out how it all works. It doesn't let you develop a Portfolio though.

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