This morning I attended a workshop on collaborative engineering..... The one hosting the workshop was someone from a computer science background, not someone from the building industry (research). On of his most spot-on remarks was that he was surprised on how traditional (read: backwards) the building industry really was. He expected high levels of 3d-cad penetration etcetera, but was deeply dissappointed. None of the really fancy stuff.
The workshop was basically a listing of current research state-of-the-art regarding collaboration. From telephone conferencing to CAVEs. A CAVE is basically a room with a beamer pojecting a picture on every wall, with the effect that you really stand
in the scene displayed. Quite a lot of nice demos. People walking with head-mounted displays, drawing things as they walked around a building. In the process they captured the approximate form of the building. Also the person was able to walk around in the garden and
drop markers, virtually drawing the surface of the future lawn.
There were other nice demos. The question that remained after the session was where this is all going to be used in. Is it the architect that's able to show its customers around in 3D in the new building? Is it the worker on the building site that can see where to bore the hole in 3D? Is it a lorry driver that is guided with GPS to the correct location on the building site to deliver its goods?
All this is not directly usefull for building specification systems. What remains is that things like this will be used in the future. On the interaction points with a specification system (my field of research), what will that mean for the demands placed upon that specification system?
My name is Reinout van Rees and I work a lot with Python (programming language) and Django (website framework). I live in The Netherlands and I'm happily married to Annie van Rees-Kooiman.
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