Autodesk buys Ecotect
This is awesome news! Autodesk just bought Ecotect. Ecotect is a nice modeling & analysis tool for building designers and Architects. Buildings consume something like 40% of the energy produced. So even making a building 10% more efficient has a huge effect. Also, by being able to do real analysis of a design, it's possible to predict and counter problems that might arise in heat gain, microclimates, acoustic issues, and a lot more. This is exactly what Ecotect addresses, and even makes assessable to rank-and-file designers.
However, it's always been a bit of pain to use Ecotect, for it required some redundant re-modeling of a project. You couldn't just dump out your BIM model from Revit, import it into Ecotect, and expect to get good results. While the latest beta of Ecotect supports gbXML, and it works, it's not a complete solution. Now with Autodesk buying Ecotect, we're hoping for a future where it will be trivial to take one's Revit project, and to test if our design really works the way we think it does.