Architectural Softwares: Tips on How to Choose and Discover the Right Programs

Courtesy of The Midnight Charette

The Midnight Charette is an explicit podcast about design, architecture, and the everyday. Hosted by architectural designers David Lee and Marina Bourderonnet, it features a variety of creative professionals in unscripted conversations that allow for thoughtful takes and personal discussions. A wide array of subjects are covered with honesty and humor: some episodes provide useful tips for designers, while others are project reviews, interviews, or explorations of everyday life and design. The Midnight Charette is also available on iTunes, Spotify, and YouTube.

This week David and Marina discuss software in design and architecture. It's not as boring as it sounds! The two cover the more pragmatic and specific issues and the more conceptual ones: everything from what programs you need to know to design and to get hired different offices; how to learn programs; balancing technical skillsets with conceptual thinking; why working in the computer is both advantageous and dangerous; 2D drafting versus 3D modeling; things to consider when choosing a software; the failures of successes of BIM programs for employers and employees; key issues to consider before transitioning to BIM; what BIM programs are best (Revit or ArchiCAD) for small and large offices and which project types (the more office-focused and BIM-focused conversation starts at 37:30) and workflows between different programs. If you have any questions or advice about portfolios or any other design-related topics, leave a voicemail at The Midnight Charette hotline: 213-222-6950.

This podcast episode is available on The Midnight Charette's website, iTunes, Spotify, and all other podcast apps.


  • Learning software for the first time; the negatives of taking computer courses in universities (03:53). 

  • Which programs allow you to design architecture and be hirable to employers? Balancing design, technical and professional skills (13:50).

  • Upgrading to the latest software versions; choosing the right operating system; a case for not being an expert in any particular software (21:48).

  • Key workflows in software use: shortcuts, menus, and fluid design processes (29:53). 

  • Why working in the computer can be a hindrance; maintaining a critical eye while working in an office (33:55).

  • BIM: Building Information Modeling Program pros and cons (37:29).

  • Why young designers should not use BIM (Building Information Modeling) programs too early in their career; visualizing 3d information from 2d drawings and working in a single program space  (37:29).

  • As an established professional, should you transition to BIM? Key things to consider before making the change; strategies for making the transition smoothly; practitioners who should not adopt BIM  (47:39).

  • How working in BIM is different from working in other strictly 2d or 3d programs: The flexibility of different softwares (57:15).

  • The pros and cons of different BIM programs: Revit and ArchiCAD (01:00:55). 

  • The challenges of designing in BIM programs: Using different software at different phases of the project and key features (01:12:19).

About this author
Cite: The Second Studio Podcast. "Architectural Softwares: Tips on How to Choose and Discover the Right Programs " 24 Oct 2019. ArchDaily. Accessed . <> ISSN 0719-8884

You've started following your first account!

Did you know?

You'll now receive updates based on what you follow! Personalize your stream and start following your favorite authors, offices and users.