Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Revit API for New Programmers (1)

This is the first document of a series of documents on Revit Application Programming Interface (API) for students in Architecture and Construction Management. I have tried to explain everything in a way that is understandable for those students with no background in programming. 

As defined by Autodesk Developers Network (ADN), Revit provides a rich and powerful .NET API which can be used to automate repetitive tasks, extend the core functionality of Revit in simulation, conceptual design, construction and building management, and much more.

What is .NET? The .NET Framework is a software framework that includes a large library of functions and routines to build user interfaces, access files, draw displays, calculate values, and perform other actions.  It provides language interoperability (each language can use code written in other languages) across several programming languages, such as C#, C++, FORTRAN, Pascal. Programs written for the .NET Framework execute in a software environment (as contrasted to hardware environment), known as the Common Language Runtime (CLR), an application virtual machine that provides services such as security, memory management, and exception handling. The idea here is that you can write your software on a Windows PC, but with minor changes, run it on a Windows computer, a mobile phone, a supercomputer or almost anything else. The class library and the CLR together constitute the .NET Framework (Wikipedia).

In order to start Revit API programming you need to have the following software installed:
  1. Autodesk Revit 2013 - You can download the student version of this software here.
  2. Microsoft Visual Studio 2010 - How to Download Microsoft Visual Studio Free for Students post illustrates the steps to download visual studio 2010 free for students. If you are not a student, you can download C# express instead here.
  3. Revit 2013 SDK - You can download Revit 2013 SDK from Autodesk Developer Network (ADN) . You can find more detail on how to install Revit 2013 SDK Revit API First Plug-in Post.

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