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AIA: AIA National Convention 2014 Kicks Off In Chicago

The AIA National Convention and Exhibition kicks off from Chicago today…


The American Institute of Architects (AIA) kicks off its national annual convention today in the windy city of Chicago. The event runs for three days from 26 – 28 June.

AIA Chicago National Highlights

First off, let’s get things in order. To follow the AIA National this year follow on Twitter at hashtag #aiacon14. There is also an AIA Chicago Convention Twitter account at (@AIAConv). And if you are attending AIA this year please get the iOS app for your iPad and the Android app if you are, you know, one of those types of people! 😉

Today the official convention opens, that means the show floor is open at 10:00 AM. Architosh (@architosh) will be on the show floor tomorrow and—once again and for the 3rd year in a row—Architosh will be awarding BEST of SHOW honors to the brightest and most promising technology we see in the information technology space (most of which is in the dedicated Software Pavilion on the show floor).

What Looks Hot and Interesting

We will be taking a hard look again this year around technology shaping around the Cloud. Another important trend will continue from what we highlighted last year, and that is the democratization of data. And that includes processes that work with data and processes that architects have long held control over. How are architects learning to tap into the power of social? What technologies transform engagement between architects, stakeholders and the building and engineering teams that construct our world?

These are just some of the vital questions going forward.

MORE: Architosh to attend AIA National Chicago—Award ‘BEST of SHOW’ honors for third year

All four of the biggest BIM authoring package makers are at the show: Autodesk, Bentley, Graphisoft and Nemetschek Vectorworks. And while we are talking about BIM and authoring let’s start to change the tint of the spotlight that is currently on Trimble’s SketchUp. Okay?

Were you aware that since the latest version of Trimble SketchUp that favorite easy modeling program that is wildly popular now supports various data schema attached to objects in the 3D model—starting with IFC (Industry Foundation Classes)?  Here’s a small prediction: This is good news for IFC.

We are not going to run down products at the show in this article (more later!) but we should mention briefly that Gehry Technologies will also be at the show as will AutoDesSys with its upcoming formZ 8 which introduces powerful Subdivision (SubD) surface modeling features and maybe, if show attendees are lucky, they might be showing off their visual scripting computation driven modeling tech? (that might be a huge maybe…)

Good News for Architects – Spring Thaw Arrives on Billings Index

What could be more important than having work? In its convention opener email blast this morning, the AIA announced that a spring thaw has definitely arrived for architecture firm billings. The ABI score for May was 52.6, a healthy plus factor going forward (anything over 50 means growth).

MORE: In-Depth: The New and Dynamic formZ 8

The AIA’s chief economist reports that the US economy continues to steadily improve with payroll increases of over 217,000 in May. The US has now returned to pre-recession levels for payroll. You can read more over here.

Convention Live Page

If you can’t attend AIA National this year the AIA has a ConventionLIVE page where they will host live LU (learning unit) sessions. You can find this page here.

A couple of sessions that look very good are Green Retail and Hospitality: How to Capitalize on a Growing Green Market. The second one is Net-Positive Design: Creating Regenerative Buildings and Communities.

More to come…

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