This post is in response to comments by Claudio Benghi, Paul Wilkinson, and Ryan Tennyson about our "Common Data Environments (CDEs)" in this awesome conversation you had a of couple weeks ago as well as inspiration from my own pains in the industry. Big thanks to John E. for encouraging me to post this for the community's feedback. Tear it apart!
As the BIM/VDC Coordinator in a department of one, I am acutely affected by the inefficiencies of current construction software. I believe there is huge waste in my firm and thousands of others around the world using construction software. The current conversation is very much focused around interoperability of this construction data. However, I'd like to bring this to the forefront as a critical piece in the future development of construction data and software: the ability for computers to manipulate this data automatically.
The problem is no longer that systems won't sync with each other, we have solved this issue. There are multiple vendors that will take one file from one database to the next, even individual bits of information. It's that these systems are missing user-configurable work engine functionality as well.
Enter IFTT and Zapier. Web applications that will not only sync information from one program to another, but also conduct automated actions preset by the user typically done within those programs. This is an example of the solution I propose to bring to construction.
Sure, Autodesk Construction Cloud Connect is attempting this with good effort, however they are unfit to do this due to the conflicts of interest I'm sure this community is well aware of.
What are the manual and repetitive tasks still being picked and clicked by people in our industry? Importing, exporting, publishing, aligning models on a shared site, energy analysis, registering point clouds, appearance profiling, clash detection, quantity take-off... the list goes on and on. This costs me hours a week to conduct trivial and repetitive tasks we all know computers can do. "Just create a template", "just use BIM360", or "just hire another employee" are poor responses to this problem, they are band-aids over gaping wounds.
However, we will develop a solution to this issue and am looking for great conversation. Please comment on this post, contact me through LinkedIn, or visit the website: BIMAutomatic.com if this is a shared pain you have. I look forward to the response from the industry's best. :)