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Keith Bentley keynote at YII 2014: “Innovation happens in waves…”

Tuesday, November 25th, 2014

At Bentley’s Year in Infrastructure 2014 Conference in London in early November, Founder and CTO of Bentley Systems, Keith Bentley spoke on the topic of innovation.

"The ideas that start out to be the greatest start as small ideas." - Keith Bentley, Founder and CTO, Bentley Systems

“The ideas that start out to be the greatest start as small ideas.” – Keith Bentley, Founder and CTO, Bentley Systems

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Announcing Trimble Connect for collaboration across multiple markets

Wednesday, November 19th, 2014

In an interview with AECCafe Voice, John Bacus, director of SketchUp product management at Trimble, discussed the new features of Trimble Connect, that offers a new way for designers, builders, owners and operators to collaborate, share and view project information. It is based on GTeam, the collaboration platform developed by Gehry Technologies.

powerful-bim (more…)

Hikvision integrates with BIM

Monday, October 20th, 2014

The ability to integrate video surveillance into building information modeling adds a new very important dimension to the design of buildings.Vince Lupe, director of Business Development, Hikvision USA (pronounced “HikeVision”), discussed the way Hikvision’s cameras and video surveillance systems are made an integral part of all architectural design, by being considered in the Building Information Model from the early design phase.

AECCafe Voice: How are Hikvision’s cameras considered CAD elements?

Vince Lupe: System layout and camera field of view are accurately viewed at the earliest stages of the design process, improving device placement, decreasing incompatibility issues, and boosting efficiency overall. In this way, video surveillance is transformed from an afterthought to an architectural cornerstone – a trend that is especially suited for Hikvision’s user-friendly and highly scalable products.

Hikvision’s award-winning array of video surveillance solutions, including bullet, dome, box, turret, PTZ, and fisheye cameras, as well as rackmount and standalone DVRs and NVRs, are all available options. With functionality and usability as Hikvision trademarks, the BIM counterparts to the real-life technology follow suit.

AECCafe Voice: Who are your customers?

Vince Lupe:

  • Security consultants, architects and engineering firms, security specifiers
  • End-user customers, building owners, property managers
  • Security dealer/integrators/installers
  • Security distribution channels

AECCafe Voice: Do users utilize Hikvision content in Autodesk Seek or can it go directly into Autodesk Revit?

Vince Lupe: They can access the content in Seek for use in Revit.

AECCafe Voice: Is the content in the cloud?

Vince Lupe: Not yet.  It will be part of our AE portal for easy download and accessibility for our customers.

AECCafe Voice:Can you suggest a sample workflow including Hikvision?

Vince Lupe: An architect, engineer, or security system designer can download Hikvision camera models directly into their BIM model to see exactly where a camera will be placed, what the scene will look like through the camera lens, and what its blind spots might be, allowing for adjustments to be made in terms of the physical construction of the structure, or in terms of the types of cameras and where they will be placed. The BIM model can even be dropped into a three dimensional area of the neighborhood where the building will be located, in order to get a glimpse of what the fields of view of any exterior cameras would be. Important details such as product features, model numbers, and physical characteristics are included in the models for a quick reference to designers and can be changed with a click of the mouse. One of the most important elements of such a streamlined workflow is that it allows for a true collaborative process from the very earliest stages. Electrical wiring, lighting, location of building entrances, and other design elements can be taken into consideration to create the most efficient and effective video surveillance system.

AECCafe Voice:Is the federal government interested in this product or using it currently?

Vince Lupe: We’re thrilled at the prospect that the federal government will be able to incorporate Hikvision into their BIM models, and we’re eager to hear of the success stories from that market.

Next Era BIM from Autodesk

Friday, August 1st, 2014

At AIA, Autodesk’s Phil Bernstein spoke about “Next Era BIM” and how technology is evolving in the building industry. In an example, he said a Chinese developer built a 30-story building in seven days. The same developer wants to build a 202-story building in a week. The delivery implications of this are quite mind-boggling.

“Design became separated from construction in the Renaissance era,” said Bernstein, with Alberti. Now digital technology has drive ideas of construction/architecture with the following concepts:

1)    It took analog and translated it to CAD.

2)    The transition from electronic drawing to digital – making files into models

3)    Context – the advent of the cloud, social networking, design and construction in a systems context.

The evolvement of this went from diagrams to prototypes to integrated simulations. Now we can build new spaces with new types of data, according to Bernstein.

The concept of “archetypal relationships” was touched upon, but I’m not sure what was being referred to here, an Oedipal complex or the relationship between documentation and the way things are connected?

“The way I see it, the computer puts architects back in the driver’s seat, because we can control all that information,” said Frank Gehry.

Anthony Houch of Autodesk introduced Project Skyscraper, a new cloud-based collaboration software for Revit that allows architects, engineers and contractors to collaborate on the Autodesk 360 cloud platform. This allows extended teams to search, view, and provide feedback on project models on any device. The tool is in beta now with full commercial release of the software expected by the end of the year.

In addition Autodesk spotlighted Dynamo at the conference, exploring computational BIM with Dynamo and Revit, as well as generating different design options for varying elements including façade systems.

In discussion about the Case Building, the discussion turned to how architects put data to work. And how do they leverage building data in order to set the bar for future content?  Autodesk’s interest in reality capture continues on, while they work on figuring out how to turn that information into something meaningful for architects as well as the movie industry.

Houch said that Autodesk is “agnostic about how people access information.” This appears to extend to the new way that Autodesk is delivering information to the media as well. One PR person said they don’t send out as many press releases; everything is available on their site and on their blogs, and Autodesk Labs. This presumes that we are all going to go looking for press materials rather than them arriving conveniently in the newsfeed.
Perhaps the “new spaces with new types of data” that Bernstein envisions will be places that we will all readily visit, just as we open our email each morning.

 

Autodesk’s first quarter results look strong

Friday, May 16th, 2014

Autodesk reported financial results for the first quarter of fiscal 2015 on Thursday, May 15.

From the press release, here are the following primary results:

First Quarter Fiscal 2015
• Total billings increased 10 percent, compared to the first quarter of fiscal 2014.
• Total subscriptions increased by over 89,000, compared to the fourth quarter of fiscal 2014.
• Revenue was $593 million, an increase of 4 percent, compared to the first quarter of fiscal 2014 as
reported, and increased 5 percent on a constant currency basis. Revenue contribution from the recent
acquisition of Delcam was immaterial to first quarter results.
• GAAP operating margin was 7 percent, compared to 14 percent in the first quarter of fiscal 2014.
• Non-GAAP operating margin was 17 percent, compared with 24 percent in the first quarter of fiscal
2014. A reconciliation of GAAP to non-GAAP results is provided in the accompanying tables.
• GAAP diluted earnings per share were $0.12, compared to $0.24 in the first quarter of fiscal 2014.
• Non-GAAP diluted earnings per share were $0.32, compared to $0.42 in the first quarter of fiscal 2014.
• Deferred revenue increased 13 percent to a record $964 million, compared to the first quarter of fiscal
2014.
• Cash flow from operating activities was $219 million, compared to $224 million in the first quarter of
fiscal 2014.

The full press release, complete with predictions and webcast presentations can be found here.

Reality capture for building innovation

Thursday, January 9th, 2014

Josh Lowe, senior innovation advisor and Mike Whaley, president of TURIS Systems,spoke at Autodesk University during the session entitled, “BuildX: Construction Site of the Future.” Lowe and Whaley talked about the scanning revolution, or “reality capture” as it is now called.  TURIS  develops and implements project-specific Building Innovation Systems that utilize a technology-based modular approach for knowledge management. Laser scanning or reality capture has become more accessible, portable and more applicable.

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Autodesk University 2013 Report

Thursday, December 5th, 2013

Robots for the future jobsite, flying drones for delivering packages and reality capture were all part of the show at Tuesday morning’s Mainstage presentation at Autodesk University 2013. The event kicked off with a short little skit by Penn & Teller, who will apparently provide an entire show for AU attendees on Thursday.

Iris the robot

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Tekla’s BIMsight 1.8 distinguishes itself by allowing users to work remotely

Tuesday, September 10th, 2013

Mike Gustafson, Product Manager, Tekla answered some questions about Tekla’s BIMsight 1.8 release, a free construction collaboration tool. This new version makes BIM collaboration LIVE and allows you to share models and communicate through the client instantly. The model sharing that was introduced in BIMsight 1.6 is now enhanced by the note sharing capability, thereby eliminating the need to send notes in email.

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Autodesk announces “pay-as-you-go” rental plan for software suites

Monday, September 9th, 2013

This morning Autodesk announced a pay-as-you-go model for all the company’s desktop software including the latest Design and Creation Suites, Autodesk 3ds Max, Autodesk Maya and Autodesk Maya LT. A “hangout” was held this morning on Google this morning where Andrew Anagnost, SVP, Industry Strategy & Marketing for Autodesk and other industry specialists, discussed this new offering.

Businesses are increasingly adopting this type of model for consuming services and products as opposed to owning software. Options generally include renting, sharing or purchasing subscriptions such as this “pay-as-you-go” model. This way designers, engineers and architects no longer will have to be concerned about purchasing the next version of the software. New comers will also be able to get up and running on the software with few up-front costs, and get projects started with this software.

Options include quarterly and monthly or annual rental plans for customers who want to stay current with product updates, use of Autodesk 360 cloud services and support. This is a similar option to what Autodesk Subscription customers already enjoy. The rental plan will be available beginning September 2013 and applies to Autodesk AutoCAD Design Suite, AutoCAD Inventor LT Suite, AutoCAD Revit LT Suite, Building Design Suite, Entertainment Creation Suite, Factory Design Suite, Infrastructure Design Suite, Plant Design Suite, Product Design Suite, Autodesk Maya, Autodesk 3ds Max and Maya LT.

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Getting off the Cloud

Friday, August 16th, 2013

A recent article in Wired profiled some companies that have decided to move off the cloud and instead move most of their computing to some basic computers they can manage themselves. MemSQL, a Silicon Valley company founded by Eric Frenkiel, did exactly that about two years after it was founded, taking the company assets off the Amazon cloud, and saving money on managing their own computers.

‘I’m not a big believer in the public cloud. It’s just not effective in the long run,” said Frenkiel. While the cloud is great for many tasks, including launching a startup or running a small website, it may not sense for all applications. Zynga’s online gaming empire grew to monumental sizes in 2012, and promptly shifted a large portion of its operation off the Amazon cloud into its own data center.

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