June 13, 2011
Free Tool for BIM Model Collaboration
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Susan Smith - Managing Editor

by Susan Smith - Managing Editor
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AECWeekly examines select top news each week, picks out worthwhile reading from around the web, and special interest items you might not find elsewhere. This issue will feature Industry News, Top News of the Week, Alliances/Agreements/Acquisitions, Announcements, New Products, Around the Web and Upcoming Events.

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Susan Smith, Managing Editor

Industry News
Free Tool for BIM Model Collaboration

By Susan Smith

Ville Kyytsönen, Manager, Tekla BIMsight, Tekla B&C Project Delivery answers questions 1-6 below about Tekla BIMsight, a free tool that brings modeling collaboration capability to everyone in construction. Tekla may also be acquired by Trimble, and maintains partnerships with many software vendors.

BIMsight – Bringing models from different trades together, independent from the modeling tools.

1) Can you tell me what file format BIMsight is based on?
Ville Kyytsönen: The central idea behind Tekla BIMsight is to allow design coordination to be done between project participants regardless of which tools they use for model authoring / modeling. The preferred file format is IFC(s) but it also supports DWG and DGN.

BIM supported model formats

Collaboration between project participants

2) How does this product complement the rest of your product line?
Ville Kyytsönen: Tekla BIMsight is a free tool that brings the model collaboration capability to everyone in construction. At Tekla we see this important as it will educate the market and drive the demand for models. This is supported by the detailing configurations of Tekla Structures. The principle target group for Tekla BIMsight is the contractors who will also benefit from use of Tekla Structures for Construction Management.

Tekla Construction Management

Usable on-site and creating demand for the detailed models

3) I know that you use a data model approach – can you explain a little about that and how it differs from other BIM products on the market?
Ville Kyytsönen; Tekla BIMsight uses the same technology base as Tekla Structures. The model is proprietary technology of Tekla and has the advantage compared to competing solutions that it can handle more data, details and support combined models.

4) Tekla has important relationships with IES as well as Trimble and possibly other companies. How do these relationships enhance or extend the Tekla product line?
Ville Kyytsönen: Tekla doesn’t aim to be BIM for everyone but focuses on the part Tekla excels in, for example all structures, construction management, linking to manufacturing and supply chain management. Tekla wants to be in the center of BIM and provide the process for the BIM projects. It is necessary to partner with other software vendors in the AEC market to give supplementary offering for customers. One example is the way Tekla is actively promoting Open BIM with Graphisoft who provides BIM software for architects.

5) Is BIMSight or another Tekla product capable of extending into operations and maintenance management and enterprise management?
Ville Kyytsönen: Tekla solutions and Tekla BIMsight make it possible to integrate the BIM models into ERP and facility management systems. Tekla tools provide the input and the process that these management solutions require.

6)  Do you have examples of #5?
Ville Kyytsönen: An interesting example might be that one big user of Tekla BIMsight in the US is a big and significant facility management company.

What do you see as benefits, if you are able to speak about them, to Tekla being acquired by Trimble?

In addition to what has been said in our joint press release (below) here is what Trimble says about the possible combination:

The combination creates significant strategic and financial leverage

  • A unique portfolio of workflow & productivity solutions for complex projects
  • A highly capable, worldwide distribution organization with significant cross-sell opportunities
  • Scale to both companies’ infrastructure & energy businesses
  • Leverage in enabling significant incremental revenue growth off the current cost structure

press release

Top News of the Week

Autodesk’s Project Photofly 2.0 is now available. Photofly is their free technology preview of a service that converts your sets of photographs into a 3D model. With a common point and shoot digital camera, if you follow shooting guidelines, you can take a handful of photographs and the service will construct a 3D model from the photographs.

Photo Scene Editor for Project Photofly 2.0 now available -- this version allow you to generate a fully textured mesh from a set of photographs.

Maxwell Render for SketchUp Version 2.5.15 Release Notes --In addition to its Maxwell Fire-based material preview, this version brings Maxwell Fire to the plugin for rendering the scene, along with some other new features and fixes.

Integrated CADD Services has opened up registration for ArchiCAD Best Practice Courses, allowing individuals to increase their speed and confidence. Well aware of the upcoming ArchiCAD 15, ICS will be up-to-date, offering a “New Features in ArchiCAD 15″ Class. ICS expects updates on many other ArchiCAD tools and add-ons as well.
See details on the Best Practices Course and all of the free ArchiCAD tutorials at acbestpractices.com.

Newforma announced that the latest edition of the Newforma PIM solution is commercially available to new and existing A, E and C customers worldwide. The solution includes Newforma Project Center Eighth Edition and its new add-on products, Newforma Mobile, Newforma Contract Management, and Newforma Add-in for Autodesk Revit. The software streamlines AEC project delivery workflows that customers use every day, freeing them from overbearing administrative burdens and helping A, E and C firms work together more effectively.


From now until July 15, 2011, you can access the latest Autodesk software and take advantage of significant savings. Bring winning ideas to life and produce stunning visualizations with the latest releases — including an all-new family of design suites. Now you can accelerate the creation and delivery of ideas by purchasing a complete and cost-effective set of tools.

Building on a lengthy history of successful BIM training and implementation, as well as their full lifecycle BIM services, CDV Systems is proud to introduce to the AEC+O, Facilities Management (FM), and GIS communities a paper entitled “Growing BIM and CAD Investments into Facility GIS Rewards”.

The growing interest in applying Indoor GIS technology to facilities management applications has now led BIM, CAD and GIS practitioners into a realm which necessitates a clear and defined passage from legacy and new design BIM & CAD data to a fully constructed GIS GeoDatabase server environment.

New Products

Extending its commitment to providing the most complete, open and integrated tools for Java Platform, Enterprise Edition (Java EE), SOA and Web 2.0 application development, Oracle  announced the availability of Oracle JDeveloper 11g Release 2.
The new release further enhances the overall development experience by delivering an improved Integrated Development Environment (IDE), including support for new technologies and standards, as well as updates to Oracle Application Development Framework (ADF) 11g.

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