Archive for May, 2009

Bluebeam Podcast Series: Going Paperless with PDF

May 28, 2009

It’s podcast time!  Today we have three new podcasts for your listening pleasure, all focused on how architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) firms are using Bluebeam PDF Revu to go paperless.

To listen to the podcasts, click the players:

Paperless Podcast #1 – Rethinking PDF
Gone are the days where PDF is used solely for archiving.  Listen to Bluebeam VP of Engineering Don Jacob discuss how AEC firms are rethinking PDF, and how the intelligent file format has become an integral part of the design-review process.

Paperless Podcast #2 – How Paperless Workflows Make Green Building Projects Greener
Bluebeam CEO Rich Lee shares how AEC firms are reducing their carbon footprint by using Bluebeam PDF Revu to deploy paperless workflows and sustainable business processes.

Paperless Podcast #3 – The Best Bluebeam Features for Going Paperless (According to Bluebeam Developers)
Ben and Peter, Lead Developers of Bluebeam PDF Revu, discuss their favorite PDF markup and editing features to use in paperless workflows.

Click here for more information on how firms are using Bluebeam to go paperless.  And remember, to keep on PDF’ing!


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Using Bluebeam to Count from PDFs

May 26, 2009

Did you know that you can use Bluebeam PDF Revu to count elements from PDFs?  Here’s how:

Open the Measure tab in Revu.  Click the Counter tool (the 123 icon).  Use your cursor to click on each of the elements you want to count.  Revu will place a Counter annotation everywhere you click.

For example, in the PDF below I counted the risers.  For every click, Revu placed a blue square Counter annotation.  By the way – you can change the shape and color of the counter markups in the Properties tab.

The blue squares are my counter annotations

The blue squares are my counter annotations

Cool Tip – Before counting, add a description of the element in either the Subject or Label field of the Measure tab.  For example, I used “Two Story Foyer Risers”.  This will help you in a few steps, I promise.

After you’ve counted, you can find the sum in two places – the Measure tab and the Markups list.

Find your total in the Measure Tab

Find your total in the Measure Tab

Markups List-Counter

You can also find your total in the Markups List

If you entered in a description in either the Subject or Label fields of the Properties panel before counting, that text will display in the Markups list.  This is very useful if you are counting multiple items in a single PDF.

For more information on the Counter Tool, view our Measurements PDF Tutorial.  And remember to keep on PDF’ing!


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Bluebeam PDF Revu – Great for Viewing PDFs

May 21, 2009

A lot of the topics on this blog are related to PDF markup and editing.  But viewing PDFs can be just as important.  After all, you need an intuitive interface to navigate through PDF files, especially when they are large format drawings.

Here’s a list of some of the great viewing functionality that Bluebeam PDF Revu offers.

Tabbed Navigation – Bluebeam lets you open multiple PDFs, and displays a tab for each open file at the top of the interface.  Tabbed Navigation makes it easier to switch between open PDFs.

Tabbed Navigation

Pan, Zoom and Scroll – Your mouse scroll wheel holds a lot of power in Revu.  Holding it down lets you pan.  And scrolling it either zooms in and out dynamically (in Single Page Mode) or scrolls through pages (in Continuous Page Mode).  Holding the “Ctrl” key while you scroll reverts this behavior.


MultiView – Bluebeam’s MultiView technology lets you split the screen to display multiple views simultaneously.  You can split screens horizontally or vertically (up to 16 times), sync the views and even drag them across multiple monitors.


Advanced Searching – Revu’s search feature is cool, because it lets you search for keywords or phrases in the current PDF, all open PDFs or in a folder.  You can even multi-select results to apply highlights and other markups.


What’s your favorite PDF viewing feature in Bluebeam? Let me know. And remember to keep on PDF’ing!


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Bluebeam Revamps Support Page

May 20, 2009

We recently revamped the Bluebeam Support page to make it easier to navigate and find solutions. Here are some of the improvements:

  • Better searching options so you can more easily find answers in our Q&A Database
  • Updated Top Questions list
  • Direct links to resources on installation, compatibility requirements and release notes
  • Links to the new version 7 Help File

If you don’t find what you need on the support page, you can always email us at  And remember, to keep on PDF’ing!


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Cool New Tools in Bluebeam v 7.0 You (Probably) Aren’t Using Yet

May 19, 2009

A while back I wrote about my favorite Cool Tools in Revu.  Now that version 7 (and its 20+ new features) is available, it seems fitting to update that list.  This time around, I picked features and enhancements that you may not have heard about yet.

Cool New Tool #1 – The Eye-Dropper
The eye-dropper on the color selector makes it easy to match the color of your markups to other elements in a PDF.  Just place the markup, select it and go to the style toolbar to change the color.  Instead of choosing a predefined color, select the eye-dropper.  Now, click your cursor over any colored element in the PDF to use that hue for your markup.

Color Picker

Cool New Tool # 2 – Show All Measurements
This enhancement to the measurements tool reduces redundancy.  Let’s say you need to calculate both the area and perimeter of a room.  Why measure both dimensions separately when you can kill two birds with one stone?

Show All Measurements

Any time you make an area or volume takeoff you can go to the Properties Panel and click the box Show All Measurements. When you select this box for an area measurement, both the area and perimeter will display.  When you select it for a volume measurement, the volume, perimeter, area and wall area will display.

Cool New Tool # 3 – Copying from the Markups List
For some time now Revu has allowed users to create a summary of the Markups List in PDF, CSV or XML.  New in version 7 is the ability to right click and copy from the Markups List. This is really useful if you only need to transfer data from one field into another file or application.  For example, use the counter tool to count the number of doors for a building, right click on the total and then paste into Excel.

Copy from Markups List

So what do you think of these cool new tools? Is there anything else you’ve discovered in version 7 that you think deserves a spot on this list? Let me know. And remember to keep on PDF’ing!


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Video Training on Bluebeam PDF Revu

May 13, 2009

I just saw the latest Bluebeam University (BU) training video.  It demonstrates how to create annotation layers in Revu.  The video is pretty clever. It uses an architectural example, and you can see it here.

Want to learn more? Well, as of Cinco de Mayo, Bluebeam University is officially in session.  You can see more workflow and training videos on the BU page.  You can also watch Don’s Tutorials to learn how to use several of Revu’s markup, editing and creation features.

If there’s a topic you want to learn about, but don’t see covered, let me know. And remember to keep on PDF’ing!


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Evolution of the Bluebeam T-Shirt

May 12, 2009

Every spring our designer Brian creates a new Bluebeam Software t-shirt for our customers and employees. This year’s design has a lot of attitude, and even depicts a motorcycle rider. Not exactly what you’d expect from a PDF software company, huh?

Take a look at this slide show demonstrating the evolution of the Bluebeam t-shirt:

Want to get your hands on a 2009 Bluebeam t-shirt? I’ll send one out to the first 20 people to email me their name and mailing address.  And remember, to keep on PDF’ing!


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Bluebeam Software a Huge Hit at the 2009 AIA Expo Software Pavilion

May 5, 2009

I spent last week in San Francisco, staffing Bluebeam Software’s booth at the American Institute of Architects (AIA) National Convention and Expo.  The AIA Expo is always a great show for Bluebeam.  After all, our PDF editor is designed specifically for the architecture, engineering and construction (AEC) industry.

But AIA 2009 was extra special.

From the very first morning, I could tell there would be something different about this year.  Almost immediately, show attendees swarmed our booth.  There was definitely a lot of excitement in the air.  You can see it in this video:

Not only did we meet a lot of interested attendees, but several current Bluebeam users, too.  I can’t count how many times I heard someone say “I use Bluebeam every day and I love it”.  We also saw a lot of Bluebeam users bring their friends and project partners to our booth, so they too could learn about Revu.

In addition to all the Bluebeam love, the buzz in our booth was about using Bluebeam to go paperless.  And it wasn’t just one feature in Bluebeam that sparked this excitement, but the product as a whole.  Attendees saw how Bluebeam’s intuitive interface, custom PDF markup and editing tools for AEC and simplicity could help them make a paperless workflow a reality.

Thank you to everyone who visited us at AIA.  You truly made it an outstanding show for us. We’re already planning a very unique way for our users to get involved in our booth at AIA 2010 in Miami, and I can’t wait to reveal the details to you.  So check back frequently for more information, and remember to keep on PDF’ing!


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Day 1 of the 2009 AIA National Convention and Expo

May 1, 2009

Thursday was the first day of the American Institute of Architects (AIA) National Convention and Expo.  Bluebeam exhibits at AIA every year to demonstrate the latest PDF editing, markup and creation software for CAD users and the architecture, engineering and construction industry.

This year the show is being held at the Moscone Center in beautiful San Francisco, CA.  Day 1 was great.  There was a lot of positive energy on the show floor, especially in the Bluebeam booth.  My favorite part – getting the opportunity to meet so many current users.  One user even referred to my coworker Sasha and I as the “Beamsters”!

Day 1 of AIA at the Bluebeam Software Booth

Day 1 of AIA at the Bluebeam Software Booth

After the show, the Bluebeam trade show team met up to swap stories from the booth and unwind.

Bluebeam trade show staffers celebrate a successful Day 1 of AIA

Bluebeam trade show staffers celebrate a successful Day 1 of AIA

Bluebeam Software will be in 1343 (South Hall) through Saturday, May 2nd.  If you’re headed to (or already at) AIA, stop by and say hi.  And remember, to keep on PDF’ing!


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