Stay tuned for a comparison between these two structural engineering software programs that have the ability to both design and analyze. So far my initial impression of Bentley's product, STAAD PRO v8i, is inconclusive. STAAD PRO seems very complicated, has many features that make you feel lost and will undoubtedly take a long time to learn. My closest comparison would be comparing my first time learning 2D CAD, but even more overwhelming. However, there does seem to be some features that stood out, namely the openSTAAD feature, but also the pre-made grid lines, and the vast amount of country codes available.
On the other hand, Autodesk's Revit Structure 2012 seems like the simpler program, but it will need to be used with another Autodesk program, Robot Structural Analysis Professional, in order to do both the design and analysis. My first impression is that I am quite impressed and really enjoy the more 'visual' nature of the program. In my opinion, Revit Structure is more of a true BIM program than STAAD PRO, namely because it seems (upon my initial impression) to have better 3D capabilities. However, this does not necessarily mean that it is a better program, but when I think BIM, Revit Structure is much closer to what I imagine than STAAD PRO. It is also important to note that one is a 2012 program, the other is a 2008 program.