It’s been four years since we acquired Naviate Daylight, but we remember it like it was yesterday. We remember it because all of us were very excited to get our hands on a software solution that enables you to calculate and simulate the daylight performance of your building, and on top of it, to do that based on country-specific standards. Our customers screamed for this! And again, on top of that, all within Revit!
All of us — Product Managers and Owners, Specialists, Devs, QAs, and Sales, everyone — wanted to see it, test it, and show it to our customers.
So, everything a software needed to be successful was there, the excitement was there, the market demand was there, and we had all the resources needed.
But... there was something lurking in the dark. A mythical creature, with the sole purpose to be a pain in the a$$ and make the lives of Devs and QAs a living hell.
At the time it was acquired by Symetri, Naviate Daylight only had the functionality to calculate Daylight Ratio performance, including some reporting and basic visualization features. Everything seemed to work quite well, and the workflow was very straightforward:
- open your Revit project
- run the tool
- get Daylight Ratio calculated for all rooms in the project
Naturally, we wanted to expand and improve the software features, add the possibility to calculate Daylight Factor, add more detailed visualization tools, improve the integration with Revit, and automate the process as much as possible.
That’s when the problem started.
As soon as we started introducing new code, the code architecture started to break. Then the creature called “The Bug” — actually many, many bugs — started crawling out!
The code was rigid, it didn’t allow for much change. One change caused the code to break somewhere else. It needed refactoring.
That’s when it hit us. This was not going to be the success story that we all hoped for.
Instead, it became a story about the dark side of software development.
The next two years were very hard for us. The energy we had in the beginning was disappearing, and bugs and frustration replaced our team’s excitement. At the same time, our customers wanted to see and try the software — which they did. And their excitement was replaced by disappointment.
During this period, we encountered 100+ bugs, a dozen crashes, many support cases, and so many whys, whats, and hows.
Besides that, we had to keep moving forward with the planned development roadmap for Naviate Daylight and provide new and improved features.
The good things
At the same time, there were so many good things happening. We saw our customers selflessly sharing their time, ideas, and solutions on how to improve our software. We saw team members stepping up and providing invaluable effort in development. And we learned much more than we expected.
Back in the present day, we have released a new Naviate Daylight version that showcases all the work we have done for the past four years, including:
- Fixes for all major bugs and crashes
- Updated and validated calculation standards
- Improved calculation accuracy
- Improved Revit integration workflows (working with links, materials, views, etc.)
Various visualization and reporting improvements
- …and many more.
We want to thank everyone who was and is part of the Naviate project. Your knowledge and feedback has made it possible for us to provide a stable, validated, and highly optimized version of our daylight simulation software.
Special thanks to our Product Manager, Jan Tore, for always believing in the project, thanks to our developer Pavle, for providing invaluable skills and effort, and Espen from Norconsult, for sharing his crucial expertise with us.
Together we will continue improving and expanding Naviate Daylight as part of our sustainability initiative.
Interested in testing Naviate Daylight? Download a free trial here.