The bcoWeb contains open source reference definitions of BC terms (called objects) that are ordered with the intention to support decision making in a hierarchical decision process.
bcoWeb supports breaking down complex decisions (what type of power plant do we use) into simpler decisions (do we need a one or two story turbine building) and again in simpler decisions (do we use a concrete or steel frame) and even simpler decisions (what type of wall covering is desired). All the way down to the materials, connections and finishes. BcoWeb allows this on the Ontology level.
Object definitions are grouped in a natural way, i.e. the groupings map one to one to the languages of the various disciplines/stakeholders.
Looking at the current bcoWeb filling and the applications surrounding it, it is clear that the idea to build hierarchies of definitions of technical solutions (or function performers) provides BC with a new mechanism for electronic information and knowledge sharing in the various chains that has a number of advantages over earlier mainly paper-based mechanisms.
FU/TS hierarchies ensure that the definition of an object is not separate from its context and from its actual usage.
The chapter shows that the open source, web-based, bcoWeb-structured, smart applications and web services-using approach can indeed be implemented and that it provides a new opportunity for the BC industry and society at large to increase the speed, controllability and quality of its processes and that it can help BC to become more dynamic, flexible, open, competitive, efficient and effective.Reinout van Rees 2006-12-13