BIMing wide and deep with Professor James Woudhuysen
by Professor James Woudhuysen
Right now (February 2019) is a moment to be realistic, and in particular realistic about what IT can and cannot do.
And I wanted to share with you four of these realisms I’ll be discussing at BIM Show Live at the end of the month in my Keynote address.
1. Wage a Kulturkampf vs bad concepts!
Boosters from Silicon Valley and elsewhere still constantly tell us about IT and:
- Exponential disruption
- AI, which is ‘everywhere’
- Digital-native tech-savvy millennials
- The sharing economy
- The number of mission-critical devices in the IoT or I4.0 will be…
- ‘Data is the new oil’
But in its own legitimacy crisis – the ‘techlash’ – IT also now gets five bad raps, whether rightly or wrongly:
- Kills jobs
- Causes addiction
- Manipulates the stupid
- Gets hacked
- Could, through machine trading on stock exchanges, facilitate a global economic crash.
Now, however these two radically opposed interpretations of IT have come about, they certainly underline how BIM leaders need to:
- Know as much about the Sociology of IT as they do about its Technology
- Wage a relentless fight against glib buzzwords, both geeky and managerial
- Think: with BIM, God and LoD is in the meta-data, and thus partly in the calibre of your WRITING.
2. The new metadata, 2030
For productivity and innovation, metadata will include:
- Design Requirements, including aesthetics (RIBA Workstage 0)
- Integration with BMS, biometrics, employee tracking and goods delivery
- Record of who did what refurbishment when
- Special information around pipes, IT, vehicle access, product installation, product maintenance, fire, flood, product disposal
- Augmented Archaeology (Ghost in the building)
3. Sociology of BIM in the Office, 2030
The BIM leadership of tomorrow needs to avoid ‘I’ hubris. That means being prepared to learn more about:
- The ‘T’ bit of the IoT
- The ‘B’ bit of BIM!
There are two sides of BIM as a process to think about:
- With an ageing workforce will come weaker ears (and eyes)
Yet at the same time there will be more voice interfaces
These two trends will need managing.
In terms of BIM as a product, it will help produce Digital Twins that have user soundscapes linked to Google Earth soundscapes.
4. Is a machine about to take my job?
Instead of worrying about this, think: aided by voice interfaces, VR (education, off-site) and AR (on-site), ML and AI for BIM won’t be autonomous, but always in a continuous learning dialogue with BIMers.
It’s employers, not machines, that take and make jobs. Exactly what tasks you perform with and without the automated BIM systems of the future will always be moot. In a fluid division of labour, humans and machines will always be changing who does what, learning from mistakes, striking new postures in line with new situations.
In a property-obsessed country such as the UK, the likelihood is that you will all make a lot of money in the future.
Want to find out more?
Register for BIM Show Live 2019 and hear James deliver his keynote speech on Wednesday 27 February at 10.00am.