This discussion was initiated by the article Revolutions in Design published in late September. Alexander Yampolsky, a practical and experienced engineer from Tula, a city close to Moscow, argued that collaborative work at integrated 3D-model is something unpractical for real-life AEC or at least premature. By today, the article got 40+ comments - most of them substantial and profound. People explained that BIM is today already broadly applied, that one should not consider BIM as artificial intelligence, compared BIM with PLM, gave some examples of successful approaches and technologies from MCAD that is hardly a more simple domain than AEC.
The discussion promptly continued by a series of bright and very well illustrated articles by Vladimir Talapov, a professor of Novosibirsk AEC University who is known as a strong supporter and practical promoter of BIM:
BIM is actually Based on Whale (related to Frank Gehry’s sculpture of whale constructed in 1992 in Barcelona).
These articles provoked a not less stream of comments (about 50) than that of the article of A.Yampolsky – mostly supporting BIM but not always and not completely. One of the discussion lines was whether and why people today often identify BIM with Revit and Autodesk.
The Talapov’s series was followed by an article of Alexander Bausk from Ukraine entitled A less Optimistic Viewpoint at BIM in which a somewhat balanced opinion is presented.
At last (but not finally) isicad.ru published an article of Vladimir Malukh How MCAD is Used in AEC. Vladimir gives illustrated examples of how CATIA, SolidWorks, Pro/Engineer, Inventor, and KOMPAS-3D are fruitfully used in some serious industrial AEC projects. I believe that far beyond such examples AEC could adopt a lot from both design project decomposition and collaborative integration that by today are well developed and became common in MCAD. I would not be surprised to know about a profound isomorphism between design phases in MCAD and similar design actions directly or indirectly are or should be applied in AEC. To say nothing about a more or less recognized correspondence between BIM and PLM.
Note also that most of the people that contributed into the BIM discussion are professionals working in the domain for a long time. Also, it is worth noting that according to Google Analytics most of the recent isicad articles on BIM attracted a record number of the web site visitors.
Those who can read Russian or trust automatic translations can take a look at the above mentioned links. On the other hand, Alexander Bausk who, above all, contributed the AEC-BIM working group at COFES-Russia by his synchronous translation, plans to write for isicad.net a summary of our BIM discussion in English.
The picture above was originally drawn by children from a Russian orphanage, then was reconstructed in a Revit model, 3D-printed in Moscow by Consistent Software Distribution, and at last presented to the children who made the picture. NB: besides Revit, it obviously could be modelled in many other systems!:).