How many BIM (Building Information Modelling) experts have you heard say: “BIM Authoring application (insert name) is a great data management tool”. I don’t believe you will hear it at the moment! When we break it down; is BIM not a process involving the generation and management of digital data, representing the physical and functional characteristics of a facility; or, a shared knowledge resource for information about a facility forming a reliable basis for decisions during its life-cycle? So why can’t our BIM authoring tools adequately “manage” building information? I strongly believe our current understanding of an Object Based 3D Model with associated Meta data, is restricting the development, and implementation of Building Information and Exchange.
Understanding the data and model strengths and weaknesses:I continue to be mystified why some industry figures want all this data in the “3D Graphical Model”. There are many consequences in simply saying; “the BIM must be a 3D model containing all the embedded data”. There are several good reasons for separating the majority of the Building Data (in a database format) from the 3D Graphical Model, but still maintain a conduit link between the geometry and component data via a GUID (Global Unique Identifier). We would thus have a purpose-built accessible “Building Database”, and a 3D Model accessed via the BIM Authoring application of choice. The 3D Model could contain the minimum required data to enable documentation, coordination and any associated quality checking. Data can be driven by the “Building Database” or by the BIM authoring object-based systems; whichever format leverages the best outcomes.
- The strength of the 3D Model is in its spatial and system connections
- The strength of the “Building Database” is in its data management, manipulation, accessibility and data qualification
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