Is laser scanning about to die?…

“Is laser scanning about to die?” Interesting opinions from Matt Mccarter regarding the technology behind laser scanning on Casey Rutlands ‘The Case for BIM’ blog.

The CASE for BIM


…. In the short term, certainly not. However, beyond the short term, without revolutionary hardware innovation the decline of laser scanning is inevitable.

I know each manufacturer has some very good features that work for it’s current customers. But where is the true innovation in hardware?  The last time I experienced a true wow factor from a laser scanner was 10 whole years ago. The first time I saw a full 360 dome scan done with a phase based scanner in around 5 minutes my mind was blown at how much data we could collect in a single shift. Prior to this a full dome scan took so long that an essential piece of site equipment was a laptop and a healthy pile of DVD’s to watch whilst scans were in progress!

Every two years or so, each laser scanning manufacturer releases a new product. The survey industry gets excited…

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PAS1192:3 now available to download

Videos – What’s New in Revit 2015

Below are a few videos from my colleague Adam Ward from Gunslingers 2013 – Here are some of the new features you have to look forward to in Revit 2015. More info coming soon!

ACCA Software – An innovative approach to software licensing

ACCA logo

Guest post by Antonietta D’Urzo – ACCA Software

ACCA software’s new and innovative “Free UPP” software distribution system (Free Use Pay Print), allows you to download, use, learn, update and get technical support all for free.
This is the exact opposite to what is currently available in the professional software industry where licensing costs, maintenance subscription fees and training costs are extremely expensive and the software very complex and difficult to use.

Free UPP chances all of this not only by meaning convenient software but also meaning highly professional and easy to use software!

The Free UPP philosophy truly revolutionizes the architectural, engineering and building industry software solutions sector bringing you professional software in a more convenient and easier manner. You can download the full version completely FREE and without having to go through any account registration procedures allowing you to install the solutions on as many computers as you like. So you can use the software, get regular updates and technical support all for FREE and also take advantage of an extensive on-line Video Tutorial service to quickly learn all the tricks and go through hundreds of practical cases.

Furthermore each software has a dedicated forum and an e-mail technical support address where you can interact directly with technicians that will solve all of your issues by means of video explanations specifically created for your needs.


Another important advantage of Free UPP is the possibility to collaborate with anyone using the same software for FREE. The sharing of projects and professional collaborations are possible with everyone: all data is saved in a single file that anyone can open and work with for FREE thanks to Free UPP.

You pay only if you print or export your documents and working drawings spending just 10 Euro cents for each page in the A4 format. You are free to duplicate purchased prints as many times as you want and the first 500 A4 page prints are completely FREE.

The cost for printing an Architectural project or a Bill of Quantities is very cost convenient. For example, to print a bill of Quantities document composed of 20 A4 standard pages only costs € 2. The cost of each print is calculated in relation to the A4 sheet format. Unit price = 10 cents. Other print format costs, such as A1, A0, A3, etc., are based on the A4 format equivalent and formats that are not perfect multiples of the A4 format will be approximated.

The Free UPP solutions that ACCA currently has available for free download are: PriMus for bill of quantities and estimates, PriMus for Ipad for mobile BoQ’s and estimates, Edificius for architecture BIM design and 3D object CAD and very soon PriMus-TO for quantity Take off.

Bentley AECOsim Building Designer Reads Manufacturer Revit Family Files

Bentley AECOsim BD now supports .RFA (Revit families) natively. A step towards openBIM or a step back? In my opinion, even as a short term fix this is a good thing for the community, even if it does slightly undermine the efforts of the team working on the .IFC file format.

Bradley BIM-Revit Resource Portal

View Bentley Corporation Website I’m pleased to publish Bentley’s formal announcement of Autodesk Revit Family support for their new AECOsim Building Designer V8i (SELECTseries 5) BIM software .

Our thanks to Bentley for using the Bradley Revit Family Library (1,000 families) as part of their larger data set –to test Revit family import stability integrity in the new AECOsim Building Designer V8i (SELECTseries 5) software.

Bradley Locker Room | Revit Toilet Partitions-Lockers-Lavatories  Bradley Revit Verge VDL 1-2-3 Station Lavatory Sink Families - Toilet - Locker Room DesignBradley Advocate AV90 Revit Family Locker Room Installation

Bentley’s Technical Manager (a former Revit Manager) for this project, focused on

  1. maintaining the Revit family geometry’s dimensional integrity,
  2. retaining the Revit family parametric & visibility control behavior,
  3. retaining the embedded parameter data type values,
  4. retaining the Revit family types (embedded or family catalogs)

This new feature immediately provides Bentley users access to 10’s of thousands of Building Product Manufacturers’ (BPM) Revit families in their native RFA file format.

Bentley will supports Revit family file formats for Revit 2009 through Revit 2014. When Autodesk Revit 2015 is released…

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Reblog: BIM Diary goes mobile

Another reminder of Rob Clark’s blog showing how to sync BIM Diary with your Outlook calendar or Android device.

BIM Implementation

imageIf you follow Twitter, particularly the now well established #UKBIMCrew tag you will have undoubtedly seen Benjamin Malone’s (@BenPMalone) new project, BIMDiary.

This really useful resource is simply a Google Calendar that can be viewed on their website – – or in Outlook or on a mobile device as outlined below.

It lists all the BIM events, and there are a LOT of them going on at any one time, with dates, times and usually links to additional resources or contact information. Its a great way to cherry pick the best events if you are looking to increase your knowledge of BIM process in certain areas.

Of course, we can’t rely on Ben to be able to find out every single useful event – so if you do not see your event or know of an event, you are encouraged to contact Ben via Twitter (the new…

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The Legal BIM Frontier; Contracts, execution planning and recent case developments

The Legal BIM Frontier; Contracts, execution planning and recent case developments

Speaker: Rebecca McWilliams AIA, Esq.

March 11th 2014 @ NYCRUG

Why can’t I check Revit file version before opening?

If you find yourself asking the above question, you are most definitely not alone. It would make most sense to either be given a warning when trying to open (for example) a Revit 2012 file in Revit 2014, rather than going through the sometimes lengthy process of a file upgrade which you didn’t even require!

The other logical option would be that, if you click on a Revit 2012 file (and have Revit Arch 2012 installed) it would open in the correct version of the software, rather than always trying to launch in the most updated version of Revit (2014). If Revit 2012 wasn’t installed, it would give you an option to upgrade the file to a format which you could use.

Fortunately, our friend Harry over at BoostYourBIM has yet again come up with the goods, and like most of his work – He shares it with the community at absolutely no cost!

When you open a Revit file that was last saved in a previous version, would you love it if Revit asked “Do you want to upgrade?” And would you want a “No” button?

If so, the free File Version Reporter from Boost Your BIM is for you!

  1. Check the ‘last saved version’ for a single file
  2. Check the ‘last saved version’ for all files in a folder
  3. Get a notification dialog when starting to upgrade a file from a previous version with a “No” button

Download the free tool at

You may have seen in the past that Harry has created a file version check tool for Revit projects, he has now put this on steroids and come up with “File Version Check – now with the ability to search all subfolders“. This means you can set a directory (project server?) and it will report back with file versions for every one of your Revit models on the server, very useful!

Although this is a free tool, you may wish to submit a small (or large, your choice!) donation, to say thanks for the hard work.

Copy / Monitor in Revit – Example

Here is a short video briefly demonstrating how the Copy / Monitor function works in Revit 2014. It is a very useful tool to use for multi disciplined projects where worksharing is enabled.

Copy / Monitor allows users to link in other Revit models into their project, and monitor them for any changes which are made to the model, ensuring the latest changes are reflected in their own project.

In this example, I have monitored the grid lines, and for demo purposes, moved a grid line to show how this effects the model that the file is linked in to.

BIM Dictionary and Acronyms

It is a job in itself trying to stay on top of all the acronyms and terms used in the BIM world. With new standards and classifications released regularly, the number of terms continues to grow.

Rob Jackson from Bond Bryan Architects has put together two documents which cover all of the known acronyms and terms which you may (or may not) have heard being used:

BIM Dictionary

BIM Acronyms








As these documents are updated regularly, it will be worth adding to your bookmarks to ensure you are viewing the latest revision.

Bond Bryan’s BIM blog is also well worth checking out – There are a number of excellent articles already posted and is updated regularly. Click here to view the blog.

BIM Diary – The story so far


BIM Diary is now into it’s 3rd year of activity online, sharing BIM events from all over the world. I have been independently running this calendar free of charge since May 2012 and will continue to do so while I feel it is still useful to the community. As a neutral and completely unbiased platform, I am more than happy to add events from individuals, companies, resellers, communities and software vendors – The only criteria is that the event is related to BIM or future technologies in the AEC sector.

Although this calendar is solely updated and maintained by myself – I wouldn’t be able to keep it running without the help from the BIM community.

Users either contact me via email or Twitter (as above) to add their event to the calendar. By simply Tweeting to @BIMDiary with information will allow me to add the event to the diary – I do not have time to keep track of, and hunt down all these events, so the community participation is essential to keep the diary running – Thanks to everyone who inform me of events which aren’t necessarily of any direct benefit to themselves! This is certainly not an ego project or a way to push more traffic to my blog – I have allowed websites such as BIM Crunch, BIM4SMEs and many BIM blogs to embed the calendar on their websites – The more people who benefit from this calendar, the more worthwhile the time spent maintaining it becomes!

It’s always nice to get feedback as above which reassures me that the calendar is useful to the community. @BIMDiary Twitter account has also racked up more than 1000 followers in this short period of time! This ensures that every time an event is added – at least 1000 people are made aware of this.

If you want your event added to the diary don’t hesitate to contact me and I will be happy to add and advertise it as soon as I get the time to do so.  A special thanks goes out to the #ukBIMcrew and especially Shaun Farrell & Matt Mccarter who have been the top contributors to the diary over this period.

You can find BIM Diary here on BIMopedia (under BIM Diary) or directly via

I’m an Information Manager and proud of it…..

I’m about to put my neck out on the line here I think…but I’m going to because I am passionate about what I do and will continue to be as long as there is room in the industry for me to do so….

So with no further ado…

I’m an Information MANAGER and proud of it…..

There I said it. No shame. I am an Information Manager; I am responsible for Information Management – nothing wrong with that is there? Well, you wouldn’t think so but currently there seems to be dispute over whether Information Manager is even a job title in the context of BIM.

I would argue it is – and here is why….

Anyone who knows me knows that I am a standards fan. Not a sentence goes by with me talking BIM that probably doesn’t make reference to some standard or other. I am quite a black and white person; I like consistency and order to the madness that surrounds me and as such as far as I am concerned, as an industry we can only align and work against the standards and publications that are available. So, why is there confusion over the validity of information Manager as a job title?

If we look at the PAS1192-2:2013 and the CIC BIM Protocol there seems to be a couple of different terms and definitions that make it become a bit blurred. Both of the aforementioned documents make reference to an Information Manager. Now regardless of whether this is an error or not, for me it is ‘current’ guidance.

The CIC BIM Protocol makes reference to (but not limited to) the following;

1.     Information Manager

The Protocol requires the Employer to appoint a party to undertake the Information Management Role. This is expected to form part of a wider set of duties under an existing appointment and is likely to be performed either by the Design Lead or the Project Lead, which could be a consultant or contractor at different stages of the project. In some circumstances the Employer may appoint a stand alone Information Manager.

The Scope of Services for the Role of Information Management will need to be defined in the Appointment of the party undertaking the Information Management Role. Details of the scope of services of the Information Manager have been prepared by the CIC. There are two versions: a detailed version compatible with the CIC scope of services, and another simpler version suitable for incorporation with any appointment, these are published separately on the BIM Task Group website,

1.1.4 Information Management Role means a role in connection with the Project which includes, inter alia, the establishment and management of the processes, protocols and procedures set out in the Information Requirements.

1.1.5 Information Manager means the person appointed, initially by the Employer, to perform the Information Management Role. 

The PAS1192-2:2013 makes reference to (but not limited to) the following;

NOTE 2 Employers are strongly advised to assign the role of project delivery manager to one or more individuals as early as possible to develop these requirements. Under the CIC BIM Protocol (2013) the employer is obliged to appoint a party to undertake the role of Information Manager.

NOTE 3 On projects led with the CIC BIM Protocol (2013), a key role is the information manager. The information manager has a role in facilitating the management of the federated model and the production of project outputs. The information manager is also responsible for managing the operation, standards and culture of the common data

Of further note in the PAS1192-2:2013 is the table referencing the information exchanges in respect of Information Management:

– Enable reliable information exchange through a common data environment
– Maintain and receive information into the Information Model
– Enable integration and coordination of information within the Information Model
– Configure information for Project Outputs
– Populate the information exchange format for the Information Model
– Accept/ reject information exchanges within the common data environment
– No design responsibility or right to issue instructions

Of course, let’s not also forget the CIC Outline Scope of Services for the Role of Information Management that combined with both the PAS1192-2:2013 and the CIC BIM Protocol pretty much reads like my job description…

So what does this mean? Well to me it means that, yes the role of Information Management could be facilitated by the Lead Designer or the Contractor, but what if it’s not? Perhaps either of those parties doesn’t have the skill set, or even the desire to do so? That’s where I come in. A 3rd party stand alone Information Manager, responsible for Information Management as defined in the aforementioned standards.

What if Information Management is your only role? Surely by its very nature it is your job and therefore Information Manager is your job title?

I appreciate that as more and more people increase understanding, awareness and adoption of BIM that the role of Information Management may well fall within existing commissions of those traditionally responsible for project delivery, but at this time BIM can feel very complicated and the additional undertaking of information management can be a daunting task.

To steal a quote; “BIM requires sophisticated and dedicated management” – I am a very strong believer in this. Having come from an architectural practice that has been though the journey of adopting BIM (having been personally responsible for the delivery of said implementation), there is an abundance of information and understanding that is required. Its’ easy to forget as I have said before, that when you are trailblazing to not remember there are many others that are not in the same place as you just yet.

If I’m honest, I do hope that the Information Management role is picked up in time by the design team in the traditional sense, because then it means that BIM will of succeeded; It will be embedded in the day to day job of those in industry and Information Management will just be something we do.

I’m not out to take away the role the Information Management from a Lead Designer, a Contractor or anyone else but until such time as the aforementioned wish to take up the role as an addition to a commission I will be here, promoting awareness, better process, and (I hope) ultimately facilitating better buildings.

To reiterate what I stated at the start of this post;

I’m an Information MANAGER and proud of it….

PS. Also I’m not sure my boss will be keen on changing all our business cards to reflect a new job title so if we can all just agree please that would be great :)