I remember being eighteen. Oh, I freely admit it was a very long time ago, but I remember just like it was yesterday. Now, I could wax nostalgic and tell you about how I’d love to re-live those years, and how awesome they were, but the truth is: I have no desire to be eighteen again. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying it wasn’t fun (it was a lot of fun!) but the truth is I just wouldn’t want to go back to being the person I was then. I was an immature, selfish, ignorant, self-centered knucklehead then (though I was thin and had hair, which were both pretty cool!) I can’t even conceive of being as limited as I was back in those days. I prefer the current version of me much more . . . though, if I’m honest, I still miss the hair! I often wonder about the people who knew me when I was younger, and if they still think of me as that impetuous, crazy, kid. Would they even recognize me as the same person now? I don’t mean physically, we all age after all, but in terms of personality I don’t even remotely resemble who I once was.
Software is like that as well, it starts out as one thing and ends up as another. Over time, it can completely change even its most basic functionality as times, and needs, alter. Bluebeam Revu is a product like that. Back in the day, when Bluebeam first hit the scene, it was primarily known as a PDF software: a more affordable, and slightly more functional, version of Acrobat. Over the years though, Revu has developed into a completely different beast. It still has that underlying PDF functionality it started with but it’s grown to be the premier take-off and visual communications tool in the AEC community. From those humble beginnings, it’s matured, grown, and become something so entirely different from where it started that it’s barely recognizable as the same product. The capabilities built into Revu for estimating, design review, punch lists, field inspection, and a dozen more processes are unmatched in the industry.
I remember installing Bluebeam as the PDF software for my CAD group, back in the early 2000’s and it was a solid, if simple, software. Today, at ZenTek, I’m a power user, reseller, and trainer of Revu and even though they both bear that Bluebeam name, the package I started with is nothing like the incredible tool I have at my disposal today. Back then, I couldn’t even conceive of doing the things I regularly do today with Bluebeam. Software, like a fine wine (and myself!) gets better with age. They grow, learn, and increase their capabilities at an exponential rate. They change so much that you may not even recognize them as the same software anymore, despite the name. If you remember Bluebeam from the old days, and still think of it as that “Other PDF Software” you really need to revisit and learn why it’s one of the most popular and powerful tools in the design and construction industry.
I promise that, much like me, it’s a much more capable, interesting, and robust product than it was “back in the day”!