By Steve Rizer
Building information modeling (BIM) expert Finith Jernigan had plenty to tell construction professionals attending a recent WPL Publishing webinar about the types of information that owners want and need. The webinar, “Data, Collaboration and the Cloud: Prepare for Design-Build Practices of Tomorrow,” took place Jan. 26 and focused on his recently released book, entitled "Makers of the Environment: Building Resilience into Our World One Model at a Time."
“Owners are now wrestling with [the issue of] how do they get out of this process [whereby] they get information, it meets the contract requirement, but it actually in the long run gives them nothing,” Jernigan told webinar attendees. “For those of you who are sitting there saying, ‘Wow, we’ve got all of our stuff [in] electronic [format]; it’s all in files,’ well, I’m here to tell you, a long list of .dwg files that get put on a server somewhere -- or Revit files or ArchiCad files, or whatever kind of files -- they get put on a server somewhere that an owner hasn’t got the staff or resources to open and use, hasn’t got the ability to actually index and find what they need quickly, doesn’t really understand the naming conventions, all the other issues, the data is rotting.”
Owners are “looking for solutions that maintain the information we give them in a live, usable way because they need the imagery, but what they really need is the data tied to the imagery because they’re looking -- as they operate their building [and] move into the future -– [for] more certainty as they make decisions, so to do that they have to have the systems where they can collaborate with people [so] they can move forward in a way that their staffs understand and can physically implement,” Jernigan said. “They don’t want to be locked into one vendor or one approach to things. They want to be able to connect everything. They want to be able to tie to the Web. They want to be able to do the kinds of things that the travel sites allow the travel industry to do, and in order to do that everything has to be geo-referenced. Everything has to be tied to the real world. It can’t be a Revit model that’s setting out in space somewhere that has no relationship to the community and to the other things that are going on in their world.”
During the webinar, Jernigan sought to help attendees understand the following: BIM, geographic information, and other technologies such as Google Earth, Sketch-up, BIMstorms, etc.; distributed, multidimensional tools and processes that connect data from multiple sources; and rules-based tools that save time on decisions and tasks that can be automated. His presentation also focused on the ability to interact with everything in the built environment, opening two-way opportunities that benefit both the project and its relationship to its surroundings; networking and data, creating workflow efficiencies and reducing errors; and collaborative processes, rich data repositories, and advanced graphics to indicate results quickly and early to achieve least-cost, best-outcome solutions.
The webinar marked the exclusive, worldwide introduction of Makers of the Environment, Jernigan’s second book, which followed his award-winning first book, Big BIM; Little BIM. In addition to providing important content for the construction community, the 380-page Makers book is designed to serve as a model, containing links to resources and more current data.
To inquire about the availability of the webinar recordings or Makers of the Environment, call WPL Publishing at (301) 765-9525.