Bob Mayer, COO, of IMSI/Design talked about the latest release of TurboSite, TurboSite v1.2, a mobile app that does field documentation.
Archive for 2013
Greg Bentley, CEO of Bentley Systems, last week gave an overview of the company’s financial position as a private company. The company’s focus is infrastructure, meaning “everything people build to improve our planet,” according to Mr. Bentley.
Bentley is a “no drama company” when it comes to reporting, said Mr. Bentley. In their 30th year, he said that historical GAP revenues are $550 million. These GAP revenues grew 8% percent in constant currencies, and organic growth grew by 6%.
“Since the majority of revenues are from annual subscription, 75% of our revenues from subscriptions, up from 72% in 2011, and that’s from ongoing relationships, not ‘customers,’” said Mr. Bentley.
Tekla, a provider of building information modeling (BIM) software and online tools to the architectural, engineering and construction (AEC) markets, announced a new version of its 3D modeling software, Tekla Structures 19. Tekla Structures 19 delivers new features designed to further enable structural engineers, fabricators, detailers and concrete contractors to have more integration with third party software and coordinate with the project team.
Michael Gustafson, product team manager with Tekla – North America, answered some questions about the new release.
AECCafe Voice: Does the new release of Tekla Structures integrate with other BIM models and if so, which ones?
Michael Gustafson: Tekla Structures integrates with all leading BIM software such as Autodesk Revit, Bentley and Archicad. Tekla Structures imports and exports several formats such as IFC, CIS/2, DSTV, SDNF, DGN, DXF, DWG, IGES, and STEP. Also several integrations utilize direct links using APIs.
Richard Humphrey, senior director, Industry Strategy at Autodesk, spoke about the company’s newly announced 2014 software portfolio in a press conference held Tuesday, March 26th.
Autodesk has completed the acquisition of Firehole Technologies (DBA Firehole Composites), a privately held software company that specializes in design and analysis software for composite materials. This acquisition will enable Autodesk to expand its expertise and technology to help its customers manage the next generation of lighter, stronger, safer and more energy efficient materials.
Based in Laramie, Wyoming, Firehole Composites answers the need for new simulation technology that can predict and optimize the performance of the new light weight composite materials. With this acquisition, Autodesk can deliver this technology to a broad spectrum of design and engineering industries. According to Buzz Kross, senior vice president for Design, Lifecycle and Simulation products at Autodesk, the Firehole team will add significant expertise in next generation materials and non-linear analysis, as well as industry-leading technologies that strongly complement the company’s solutions for structural, thermal and plastics analysis.
It is expected that Autodesk will sell and support the existing Firehole Composites product line, which includes Helius:MCT and Helius:CompositePro. Ultimately the technology will be geared up for closer integration with Autodesk products.
Bob Batcheler, co-founder and executive vice president of Strategy for Newforma, talked with AECCafe Voice about the new spring 2013 release of the Newforma product line. The company is well known for its Newforma Project Center, a project information management software (PIM). The product line also includes Newforma Building Information Management, Newforma Contract Management, Newforma Project Analyzer and Newforma Project Cloud. Its new enterprise project resource management software, Newforma Project Analyzer, is a product built expressly for project managers and principals in architecture and engineering firms.
VIZERRA introduced the next generation of its Revizto cloud-based collaboration software to make it even easier for architects, engineers and contractors (AEC) to communicate their design intent with project owners in a 3-D environment. The new version of the Interactive 3-D platform allows users to view their Revizto interactive 3-D designs via iPad and Android tablets to communicate easily in the field.
Additionally, smoother control and navigation make this new version simpler to use and can be used by those who are not design professionals. Revizto – Latin for “visual check” – helps AEC professionals avoid project complications by working in real time through 3-D technology, without having to learn a new software program. An Autodesk Revit or Trimble SketchUp project can be turned into an interactive, data-rich 3-D environment in minutes. The result is a Visual Information Model (VIM) that can easily be shared with the entire team via the Revizto Viewer in a cloud environment, including the associated video notes, markers and screenshots.
Huw Roberts, Bentley Systems vice president, core marketing, shared some predictions on important market trends for 2013:
There is a focus in construction on integrated projects, so my top-level prediction for the year is that the characteristic of projects and project teams will continue to become increasingly integrated. Infrastructure owners have been looking to integrate project delivery types for a number of years. There are many models, including IPD in the U.S., design-build-operate, joint ventures, and project alliancing. It’s really not important which model becomes the frontrunner; what matters is that the trend toward finding ways to integrate project teams and processes, and of eliminating silos of activity that only act sequentially, will continue to become the dominant way of delivering projects.
This is already creating some needs in the market and shaping what happens this year. To begin with, there is growing demand for information modeling for all aspects of infrastructure projects – for building design, site design, utilities, fabrication, construction, and so on – and this is fast becoming the norm. Information modeling deliverables are what owners want to receive and what designers and contractors want to produce. Design firms and construction firms see value in this approach and that perception is going to grow and accelerate demand for it.
This change in attitude is being driven by the realization that the best solution is not a “one size fits all.” What information modeling means to a building design team is different from what it means to the folks working on the roads and developing the land around that building, and also very different from what it means to the construction crews and the teams that will eventually be charged with operating and maintaining that building. So there’s a growing awareness in the market of the need for those different information modeling approaches to work together, and support for an iterative process is taking hold. Many project organizations and enterprises recognize that they have different tools, processes, and skillsets that have to work together in order to achieve an information modeling approach that serves their own purposes.
Here’s a case in point. A few years ago everyone was excited about the fact that architects and engineers were moving to smarter 3D models, and then that constructors were moving to 3D. Today, owners are soliciting projects that require the delivery team to not only design but also build and operate the building. These delivery teams quickly recognize the need to integrate multiple information modeling approaches to serve their various needs across the infrastructure lifecycle. And all of this awareness is driving growth at project and enterprise scales.
Some firms are working to apply various technologies in new areas, and many struggle by trying to “mash” information or processes into a tool or technology that’s not suited for their workflows or purpose. Increasingly, they are beginning to realize that multiple technologies need to be involved on every project. Why? Because some information is best suited to be in a CAD system, while other information can be better processed and managed in a BIM system, database system, operational control system, discipline-specific analysis system, machine control system, and so on. Anyone familiar with real-world projects knows that it makes no sense to put everything into a single system.
In a webcast this week, Autodesk CEO Carl Bass addressed the company’s financials. “As we near the 2-year anniversary of the launch of our design and creation suites, we couldn’t be more pleased with their progress and growth. Revenue from Suites increased 50% over that 2-year period. Suites now represent 30% of total revenue, up from 23% just 2 years ago. We’re delivering exceptional value to our customers, who get to utilize and experience more of our broad product portfolio. What’s more, we have seen a meaningful increase in our ASPs. It’s a win-win. Growth in our Suites help drive the record revenue results in both our AEC and Manufacturing business segments.”
Bass went on to say that the investments made over the past couple of years in major account direct sales continue to pay off. In the fourth quarter, Autodesk had a record 45 transactions that exceeded $1 million in value. This is up 25% year-on-year. The total value for these large deals increased 36% year-on-year. For FY ’13, large deals increased by 18%.
Autodesk’s AEC business had record quarterly results. Strong growth in AEC Suites to the growing implementation of BIM across all disciplines of the AEC industry, including infrastructure. BIM 360 wins in Q4 were concentrated in construction, reflecting Autodesk’s leadership role in providing cloud and mobile technologies to that industry.
While the U.S. is trying to figure out where to get the money to pay for much needed infrastructure, Japan’s Prime Minister Shinzo Abe plans to spend more than $100 billion on infrastructure in the next 15 months to help revive his country’s economy. Half of this growth is expected to be funded by government debt. Further, the country doesn’t have a great need for infrastructure, according to industry experts. It already has man-made islands, bullet trains and elevated highways, the result of its love affair with concrete and steel.