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Power BI Concepts and Tips

Converting Units using Power BI Columns

When an Autodesk Revit model is exported to the Tracer database, Revit’s underlying “decimal feet” unit values are used. That means that values representing lengths and areas are going to be based on “feet” or “square feet” (even if your model is metric based. This tutorial describes how to use Microsoft Power BI to perform simple unit conversion with Custom Columns.

  • Learn about Revit’s used of underlying units (imperial)
  • Learn how to create a custom column with a formula
  • Learn how to use a formula to convert Revit units in the report

Power BI Relationship and Data Transformations

This tutorial is an introduction to Power BI techniques for relating and transforming Building Information Model data produced with the Tracer data exports (Revit and IFC). The tutorial covers the base relationship data model present in the Tracer database and describes some use cases for using Power BI’s “Transform Data’ interface to compose and manipulate the data for reporting.

  • Learn how to create relationships between Power BI data sources
  • Learn how relationships can be used to support reporting needs with BIM
  • Learn how to Merge and Append data using Transform Data features

Troubleshooting the Display of Large Meshes

Power BI reports have a known character limit of 32,766 characters which can make it problematic to load very large text strings into the report environment. This can have impacts on the Tracer visuals ability to parse larger Revit mesh strings (gLTF) that Power BI has automatically truncated in the report environment. This video demonstrates a workaround for working with large strings of data and getting them to display.

  • Understand Power BI’s text character limits
  • Show a workflow for splitting strings into multiple columns
  • Show how to recombine (concatenate) mesh strings as a custom column

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