My workload this year hasn't left much time for blogging, but, I've spent some time in smaller/faster formats like Twitter and Instagram just to capture some thoughts (I'm MissDorkness on Instagram and MistresDorkness & AUGIatAU on Twitter).
#ACAD2016 now supports frames on MTEXT
#AutoCAD 2016 does drag and drop for Layouts
Point clouds are much more intuitive to work with, partially thanks to Dynamic UCS in 2016.
There are other improvements that are worth reading up on...
This feature is about leaving hatch draw order unchanged... I don't know what release its from, but, it is worth mentioning.
Admit it, you guys still miss AutoCAD, right? Everybody loves the command line, because typing is soooo much faster than ribbon-surfing! For you hard core keyboarders, be sure to check out this handy Revit Shortcut Guide: http://www.autodesk.com/shortcuts/revit You either have the searchable webpage there, or a downloadable PDF. Either way, enjoy.
While I always live-tweet events from my @MistresDorkness account, I take so long to edit notes that most of the time I never actually post blog articles at all, I'm terrible! But, a discussion today on the Facebook CAD Manager's group reminded me how much I enjoyed last year's Autodesk University main stage presentation.
Lynn Allen talked history, expanded AUs.
Bldg, mfg, infra, viz, planning
AU mobile app, map, agenda, badges, connecting, checkin feeds to other social sites.
The Autodesk University app was really good in recent years, I used it a lot and made some new connections.
Fantastic opening sequence...
CTO Jeff Kowalksi
Technology improving on providing context, such as a gear knowing other parts it works with
Stop telling the computer that to do and start telling it what we need.
Generative design, mimics natures approach, starting with your goals, working through generations of ideas to reach the best solution.
Showed medical applications
Planned obsolescence... When products are completed, they begin to die.
The idea of creating items that will engage with the world and change.
Sense, respond and collaborate.
Carl Bass (@carlbass)
Computers are the driving force in how the way we make things has changed.
The real world and digital world affect how we make things, technology is breaking down the barriers between the two.
Collaboration is not an afterthought, it will always be built into our products
Collaboration across platforms
It should be natural and transparent, not an added task on top of your other priorities
3d printing has a way to go
Spark - application- spark investment fund 100mil
Integrated software and hardware would simplify the process.
Ember now available for preorder (Autodesk 3d printer)
CNC is older tech, but, still valuable.
Digitization of building construction process
Emily Pilloton @ProjectHDesign
Exciting work teaching tech to kids.
Why are we building?
What are we building? Personal and community significance
Who is creating and designing and building and leading? Anyone.
How do we use the skills and competence we've learned?
#au2014 "we have a responsibility..." to put these (design / construction) tools into any hands! http://t.co/WWz5ONQrI0
Thanks to CAD Panacea, I had a little reminder that my blog has just turned 10 years old. Evidently his first blog post was on my 25th birthday, and mine came about two weeks later.
It's been an exciting decade for me (and, luckily, not exciting in all of the awful ways of the preceding decades). I was tickled to look back at my first post, which gave the history of my naming of the blog. This week, I was discussing a FitBit challenge with my boss and had to give him my personal email address... which got the expected disbelief, followed by eyerolls. Listen!!! Nobody ever remembers my name, but, they do NOT forget my nickname once they've heard it.
Back in those days, I was heavily involved with the Gateway Autodesk Users Group, which I'd founded along with Brian Myers, after we met through the AUGI forums and wanted more local ways to learn and network. That group pretty well fizzled when I stepped down as president upon the birth of my second son. Brian and I are both peripherally involved with the Revit Users Group, headed up by Chris Link. We were happy when he approached us for advice on getting things going again, and he and Ellen Smith and all of the other local Revit gurus who serve on the advisory board and organize and present at meetings are stellar! I miss the cross-industry nature of GAUG, but, things go how they will.
At any rate, I used to edit the monthly newsletter of that group, which ended up going out to people around the world, instead of just our bi-state region as I'd expected initially. Herding authors and laying out articles takes a lot of time though, so I switched to blogging as a simpler platform.
I had also just gotten involved with doing the AUGI Salary Surveys, which I've never let go of. It is a year-round job, and probably a lot less necessary than it used to be, with the advent of so many other salary resources, but, it is near and dear to many hearts and provides a good long look at the state of our industry and disciplines.
Despite my increasied involvement in the industry, a whopping 5 years into my career, I didn't know diddly then! I've learned an unbelievable amount in the intervening years, and I'd like to thank everyone in my industry and at Autodesk and other firms and on all of the forums who have provided me with endless opportunities for insight.
And, thanks to the Beta forums and Ellen Finkelstein and diverse others, I have worked as a Technical Editor or coauthor on 16 textbooks for three different publishers, as well as having had columns in CADalyst AEC Tech News, HotNews TipNiques then Polls and Surveys, and AUGIWorld Magazine Forum highlights. As well as random articles in CADalyst Magazine, AUGIWorld and CADdigest and assisting in labs at Autodesk University, and a string of speaking appearances as a BIM panelist.
Since I started a new job at the end of 2013, I have been working longer and more stimulating hours as a system administrator, so my blogging volume has never fully recovered from it's pre-university days and I've cut back drastically on the freelancing and consulting I do.
I have taken to tweeting and instagramming tips as I think of them, usually with the aid of my #CADdork (aka, 'Lego Me' from the hard-to-find lady scientist set, look, she's got a mole and everything!).
I believe I'm now in my 5th year (of 6) serving as a Director and an Officer of the Board... because I'm obviously a glutton for punishment.
If you'd asked me back in college how my career (and life) would turn out, I'd have had no clue.
Who could have seen this coming? In the past 10 years, I've started managing projects (construction and IT), been published (and paid for it), started implementing BIM (for MEP in FM), gotten married to a fellow CAD dork, maintained 6 plotters and two lf copiers, flown to Europe three times, finished a bachelor's degree and started a master's, bought a house, had an iPaq, three iPhones, a Kindle, an iPad a FitBit and two 3d Mice and made one major career change (still FM, aw, no more BIM!)... and, so much more.
Here's hoping I can keep writing about it for the next 10 years at least.
Yesterday, I shared my basic philosophy about leveraging social media in your professional life.
The essence of which is basically: make yourself available.
1. Sign up for all of the popular accounts.
Use similar naming and the same headshot, so people in your industry can recognize you when your networks overlap, and make yourself easy to find (or more likely to show up as a recommended connection to others).
- Naming: I started out on forums 15 years ago as Wanderer, but, for the past 10 years (since I started this blog), my primary branding has been with the nom de guerre "Mistress of the Dorkness". I could just use my name, but, let's face it, no one gets my name right. Melissa, Melinda, Miranda, Madeline... Natalie? Christine? Or, even just being confused with another young brunette Melanie in our industry. It was a hopeless case, I had to go by something more memorable.
- Headshot: I know, you're not a model, you're probably a very pragmatic down to earth guy who doesn't even like having his photo taken. BUT just follow my advice, it won't cost you anything.
- Profile: Complete your profile. Provide basic industry data with a bit of experience and personality. Have all of your contact data pointing back to a single, dedicated personal email address for simplicity's sake (and don't forget to check it at least multiple times per year, opening emails to keep addresses from being placed on an unresponsive or invalid list). If there is a field, fill it out (and use spell check), don't leave blanks.
2. Connect with others.
LinkedIn? Look up your local colleagues and send connection requests.
Twitter? Look up profiles of Autodesk or AUGI and start following some people that follow them, or those they mention or retweet. Or, just find one Twitter guru and follow a "list" they've created, so, the people they find most worth interesting are curated for you, no following required (though that does cut out some reciprocity, following would let those people know you're there).
Forums? Find the topics that interest you most and either create a shortcut for quick access or subscribe to email notifications for new posts (for me, the essential is the Facilites Management forum http://forums.augi.com/forumdisplay.php?519-Facilities-Management-In-Practice ).
Google Plus (G+)? Search the networking site for industry key words, or, ping a guru and ask them to share an industry-related Circle with you.
Facebook? Some people keep this for personal connections, and I respect that, however, loads of people started off there with only professional connections and spend loads of time there. Since my family and friends showed up, I've started posting more personal content and less shop-talk, but, it's still great for work topics. I recommend Robert Green's "CAD Manager's Unite!" group for some good folks to converse with and learn from.
3. Consume data.
Find a few minutes here or there to see article titles. Most you'll give a pass to, others you'll read and learn something from.
4. Share data.
Occasionally share content you found interesting, or create your own.
Just resharing an interesting article (or infographic or forum topic or photo of a local project, etc) can establish you as someone who understands the industry.
Have more time to share?
Find a blogger who covers your industry and offer to do a guest post. Or, contact a content manager for AUGIWorld and see if you can offer something there. http://www.augi.com/augiworld/augiworld-content-managers Those articles can serve as pointers back to you.
5. Check in on a semi-regular basis.
Sure, you could cycle through each site or app.
But, that single email address I recommended? Minimum, just run through there once a week, to see if you've got PM's, Facebook mentions, LinkedIn group notices, Twitter @ replies, G+ tags or whatever.
Just be available and be responsive, you don't have to read it all or create it all, just touch base and be accessible.
I can scroll through the most recent 30 Google+ posts or 75 most recent Twitter posts in the time it will take me to reheat leftovers for dinner tonight.
6. Go Advanced.
There are websites and apps that will push updates to all of your social media accounts at once.
I don't personally use them, but, those folks in our industry that are true social gurus do. Minimal effort for maximum exposure. No pressure either way, do what you feel comfortable with.
Professional connections are pretty invigorating to me (believe me, I'm a hardcore introvert who typically prefers the company of books to people, so, I'm as shocked by this as you are) and seeing other people excited about their projects opens my mind to the ways I could change or improve my own work and brings back some of that starry-eyed excitement and those dreams about the potential inherent in every problem we encounter in the workplace.
We spend so much of our time working, we should find ways to make that as enjoyable and fulfilling and productive as possible.
Money talks, right?
*I met local gurus and found a support network because of starting a LUG with someone I met on the AUGI forums. I was a know-nothing kid in a niche industry, but, I could still help bring people together, even though I lacked technical knowledge at that time.
*I got my first two contract gigs (working on books) because of this blog and my profile in the Autodesk beta forums.
*I got another contract gig because of my MySpace profile (yeah, I'm serious).
*I landed a recurring gig with a publisher because I reached out to one of their authors via Twitter when he was at AU and tweeted that he didn't know anyone, he made introductions as a thank you.
*I have my current job because of LinkedIn (and I've also been headhunted there numerous times).
Basically, I had a contact who was working as a consultant, when he left that company, he was contractually forbidden from contacting me, as a client or as a potential employee (as I'd been in the process of interviewing with them). A couple years later, when I had questions about his specialty, I searched for him on LinkedIn and reached out to him there. I interviewed at his new company, but, it wasn't a good fit at the time. BUT, a couple years later, when one of his clients was looking to create a new position that was right up my alley, he made the appropriate introductions, and here I am!
If you want the chance at new experiences, you have to try something different. For me, social media has been a great tool to make friends, network, expand my skillset and grow my career.
Do you have a social media success story? Please share!