Thursday, 18 June 2009

Revit 2010: Behavioural changes to dual-category elements

Dual-category elements? What are these?

Well, following on from an earlier post about curtain panel doors I sought some support from the API team at A'desk and I got a very thorough response which I thought was worth sharing as it might be of some interest, and would save them having to repeat themselves :)

In Revit, elements usually belong to a single category. But in two special cases, both related to curtain panels, it was possible for an element to belong to two categories. Let's call them the "normal category" and the "schedule category." Some parts of the software would use the normal category and other parts would use the schedule category, resulting in inconsistent behavior for such elements.

The first case is curtain panels that schedule as doors or windows. Such panels have a normal category of Curtain Panels and a schedule category of Doors or Windows.

The second case has to do with the ability to select a curtain panel and change its type to a wall type. Such a wall always has a normal category of Walls, and if its parameter "Categorize as:" is set to panel, then the wall will have a schedule category of Curtain Panels.

This project is to eliminate the dual-category nature of the above elements, and make them behave consistently as belonging to their schedule category. Thus, parts of the software that previously used the normal category will have different behavior now.

Behavior changes:
- Status prompt and selection filter: For dual category elements, Revit will show the schedule category instead of the normal category before.

- Marks: Dual category elements will warn when they share a mark with elements in their schedule category rather than their normal category. Unique type marks will be assigned to curtain panel door and window types.

- Visibility: For curtain panel doors and windows, they are hidden only when the schedule category (doors or windows) is hidden.

- Project browser: Curtain panel door and window types will be listed under Doors and Windows rather than Curtain Panels.

- Family category and parameters dialog: In the family editor, the dialog shows the category as Doors or Windows for curtain panel doors and windows, and all three categories (Curtain Panels, Doors and Windows) are listed in the list box, providing UI to change it.

- Family types dialog: For curtain panel doors and windows, Revit will show the parameters from Doors (Rough Width, Rough Height, Thickness, Fire Rating, Operation) or Windows (Rough Width, Rough Height, Operation) and but not those from Curtain Panels (Finish).

- ODBC export: Dual category elements will show in the tables corresponding to their schedule categories. The foreign key constraint between the Curtain Panels table and the Curtain Panel Types table will not be created.

- Graphic overrides (including pattern, halftone, transparent, and detail level): Curtain panel doors/windows will show the Doors/Windows overrides instead of the Curtain Panels overrides. Wall panels categorized as panels will show the Curtain Panels overrides instead of the Walls overrides.

- View filters: Curtain panel doors/windows will be hidden or overridden if they match the Doors/Windows filter criteria instead of the Curtain Panels filter criteria. Wall panels categorized as panels will be hidden or overridden if they match the Curtain Panels filter criteria instead of the Walls filter criteria.

- Tab order: Curtain panel doors/windows get a higher priority, and can be picked without tabbing. Wall panels categorized as panels get a lower priority, and can be picked using tabbing.

So now you know! :)

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