Friday, April 20, 2007


I went through a few occasions briefing practitioners about BIM. There's a common "phenomena" I noticed from their understanding: - "Well, we've to push the design development to earlier stages with these tools", and "our practice should make change to accomodate this advance technology" ... This "understanding" is more deepened if they "tasted" the softwares by themselves.

As I've addressed before in "Objects, Domain Objects....": in principle there's no hassle to change our process to suit particular tool if you find no justification at all.

Subject to blame: Objects. Yes, objects again - the god and devil in one body.

People start "tasting" BIM by playing with the domain objects: walls, slabs, windows, doors, stairs ... mostly. Relevant or irrelevant they also found many details of the objects they didn't expect to think of during design stages (which they assumed when playing) e.g. finish thickness, stair nosing or railing styles.

Consequently they regard the details as a "must consideration", concluding that the "details" should be taken care of at earlier stages.

My suggestion: Master your process before master the softwares.

If it's your thinking that it's a waste of time to take care of certain detail at certain stages of design, you should look deeper into the software and ask: "How?"

Generally there are 2 approaches:

1. Modify the object's parametric template to delete the unneccessary details

2. Leave them alone as "dummies". These "dummies" could be a reminder to alert your colleagues to take care of them at later stages, or as a "backup" in case you run out of time to finish them up.

If you take the second approach I will assume that you have a organized strategy to document your design processes. You may also ask how to differentiate the "dummies" from "true details". I suggest to use the 4th syntax of a 3D model i.e. color, material, transparency, etc. Take a good look into the softwares and you should find these object properties.


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