I had the opportunity to return to NVIDIA’s annual GPU Technology Conference (GTC) event that was held in San Jose, California, a few weeks ago, and similar to last year, I was hard pressed to find any AEC-specific technologies. However, I did get the opportunity to learn more about some of the key advances NVIDIA has made in the broader field of graphics-enabled visualization that is also relevant to AEC in addition to other industries such as gaming, media and entertainment, manufacturing, and industrial and product design. I also got a chance to understand why the GTC is billed as a “premier AI and deep learning event” even though NVIDIA is best known as a company that makes graphics processing units (GPUs) for the gaming and professional markets.
This article explores both these aspects of NVIDIA’s technology—AI (artificial intelligence) and graphics—in more detail.
The book, BIM for Facility Managers, was originally reviewed in the Q3 2014 issue of AECbytes Magazine. That review is being republished as it still very applicable and relevant today. We still haven’t seemed to have made much progress in applying BIM in the operations and maintenance phase of a building’s lifecycle, a topic that AECbytes will explore in more detail going forward. Taking a look back at this seminal book, which still seems to be the only one on the topic, seems like a good way to start.
In the absence of open standards to facilitate interoperability between the different applications used by construction firms for project management, ERP (enterprise resource planning), and CRM (customer relationship management), the only solution is middleware that is specifically developed for this integration. This article explores one such integration solution, Frameworks, to see how it works and how it has been implemented by one of its users, Adolfson & Peterson Construction.
If there is one technology trend that stands out for generating the most “buzz” these days, it has to be AI (artificial intelligence). Hardly a day goes by when I don’t read about some interesting implementation of the technology. While the AEC industry can hardly be described as being on the “leading edge” when it comes to adopting new technologies, AI in AEC is starting to see some traction. This article provides an overview of the technology underlying AI so we have a better understanding of it and then compiles what we have so far in terms of the use of AI in AEC applications.
This review explores the new release of 4M’s IDEA, a BIM application for architectural design that is part of 4M’s multi-disciplinary BIM suite which also includes applications for building services and energy analysis. I last reviewed IDEA all the way back in 2010, and the new release, v.19, is a major one, representing a generational change to the 4M suite. Previously, it was based mostly on IntelliCAD, the low-cost DWG alternative to AutoCAD, but in the new release, the code has been completely restructured to work with the ODA (Open Design Alliance) engine, developed by the open-source DWG consortium of which 4M is an active founding member.
Kevin Nute’s Naturally Animated Architecture is a fascinating, cross-disciplinary examination of how contemporary architecture could more naturally integrate its exterior environment with its internal experience. More than simply an aesthetic endeavor, Nute provides a compelling argument for why such integration is important to the performance and wellness of the human beings that inhabit these buildings. It is important, he explains, to see the movements of the wind, see and hear the rain, glance at the shadows the sun casts on walls.
See the full review at: http://www.aecbytes.com/review/2019/NaturallyAnimatedArchitecture-Book.html
Rather than a year-end review of trends or predictions for 2019 as is common for technology publications at this time of the year, this article is a collection of some interesting news tidbits in the AEC technology field that crossed my way in 2018 which I was not able to cover. It includes key acquisitions by leading technology companies such as Oracle, Trimble, InEight and Hexagon, new products from OpenSpace and NavVis, and some significant developments related to smart cities and city information modeling.
One of the key acquisitions that Bentley announced at its recent Year in Infrastructure 2018 Conference was LEGION for pedestrian simulation. Given that human behavior is far from predictable, how does pedestrian simulation actually work? This article explores the technology in more detail, looking at other applications in the field and delving deeper into LEGION and the science behind it.
This review explores the new features and enhancements in the 2019 version of Allplan, including a new Planes palette which makes it easier to set up and manage the building structure of the project, the ability to create freeform 3D surfaces and use them as reference planes, a new Stair Modeler tool that can be used to create complex stairs more easily and accurately, a brand-new dedicated add-on for parametric bridge design, and several other enhancements for modeling, detailing, and interoperability.
Last week, Bentley held its annual Year in Infrastructure (YII) conference in London, and while the event had a similar format as earlier years—with corporate, technology, and product updates from Bentley in the many infrastructure disciplines it develops software for, and presentations from the finalists vying for the YII 2018 Awards in different project categories—there were so many new developments and updates from Bentley that it was almost impossible to keep them straight. In contrast to previous years where most of the discourse was centered around Bentley’s software, this year’s event had a more visionary tone to it, with the concepts of “digital twins” and “open source” taking center stage. With regard to the software itself, there were acquisitions and integrations galore as well as several brand-new products developed in-house, not to mention a rebranding of many existing solutions.