Architosh’s first BIM survey got off to a marvelous start last year but participation dropped off a bit due to our web publishing platform switch-over in the fall. Now we are close to our original goal of 500 participant architects and architecture firms from around the world taking part in a brief survey on BIM — and the first such survey to ask direct questions about Apple and its role within AEC (architecture, engineering, construction).
Architosh 2008 BIM Report Survey
As mentioned in our earlier news report on the survey, the architectural industry is undergoing a major shift in thinking regarding the use of computer-aided design (CAD) software. As computers and software have become more powerful the vision of “electronic drafting” has shifted to the idea of building the “virtual building” in a computer space (in software). BIM, which stands for “building information modeling,” seeks to both build a 3D geometric model of a given building design and load it with pertinent information (data) helpful to both the design, construction, and facilities management of the building.
In addition to the three-dimensional benefits of understanding a building prior to its construction and during its design phase, architects have realized that with additional specialized software a “virtual building” can be tested or put through special simulations. This has led to the notion of BIM as a performance optimization tool and the idea of “digital proto-typing” a building prior to its construction — much like Boeing designs and tests new aircraft for commercial aviation prior to flight.
BIM is Challenging
Transitioning to a BIM process from a CAD process is not without its challenges, some of which can be daunting.
Architosh aims to learn more about BIM adoption directly by asking its readers — of which half are architects and AEC professionals from over 170 countries around the world. So far 400 plus participants have taken the survey, including professionals from several notable large international and US-based practices. The survey is open to all staff levels within an architectural practice, and therefore does not seek out just the views of IT staff and firm directors.
New Questions within BIM Survey
This is the first BIM survey we know of that has asked a series of questions not yet discussed in reference to BIM. For instance, in a BIM conference I attended in Washington, DC, in 2006, there were several lively debates about BIM’s impact on design. Yet most BIM surveys and discussions speak only about its financial and technical abilities without any regard to the larger discussion about the production of architecture. In this survey the question of BIM’s impact on architectural production is asked.
BIM is undoubtedly more complex than 2D CAD. Not simply because it is 3D based, but because of the added complexity of data integration. Yet the question of architect’s pay and societal value in relation to BIM has not yet been deeply explored. This survey seeks to open that issue up to discussion.
Because Apple is renowned for making complex software easier to understand, and because of the complexity curve in adoption of BIM, we have asked a theoretical question about Apple and their relationship to BIM.
Last Call on Participation
We are taking a last call on participation in the Architosh 2008 BIM Survey Report. You can take it here now. All participants will be entered into a contest to win an Apple iPod touch. And all participants will receive a free report on the results.
Questions or concerns can be addressed to my attention at: [email protected]