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Alfredo F. Serpell, José M. Rueda

Modeling a project scope using a case-based reasoning approach

Abstract: The availability of a good, complete scope definition in the early stages of a project is widely recognized by industry practitioners as a key factor for overall project success. This paper presents a Project Scope Modeling Methodology for computerized decision support during the definition of a new project scope. The methodology is based on the effective reutilization of historical project scope definitions through the application of Case Based Reasoning (CBR), an Artificial Intelligence approach. In CBR, the previous experiences are reused in solving new situations re-ducing the complexities of modeling reasoning processes. By using CBR, the scope modeling methodology helps to find and reuse the most relevant historical information, allowing to easily consult and combine information from multiple scope definitions in a computerized environment. The resulting scope definitions are ready to serve as input information for different planning purposes. The application for conceptual cost estimating is discussed.

Keywords: project, scope, planning, modeling, case-based reasoning, methodology

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Full text: content.pdf (529,639 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2007 (browse)
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Anders Ekholm

ISO 12006-2 and IFC – could they be harmonized?

Abstract: Today, there are two major candidates for core ontologies common to the construction and facilities management sector, the ISO 12006-2 Framework for classification of information, and the Industry Foundation Classes, IFC. ISO 12006-2 has been developed as a step in harmonizing different national and regional classification systems for construction and facilities management. The main purpose of the IFC standard is to enable effective information sharing, within the AEC/FM industry throughout the project lifecycle. These standards have similar objectives but show fundamental differences in semantics and structure. The presented study compares the standards and points at differences and similarities, firstly in order to understand their structure, and secondly to initiate a discussion about the need and the possibility to co-ordinate them. The analysis indicates a fundamental difference in view between the standards. The starting point of IFC was to reject classification, and therefore a harmonization with ISO 12006-2 would require a major shift of approach.

Keywords: Product models, Process models, Ontologies, Interoperability

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Full text: content.pdf ( bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2004 (browse)
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Andresen J, Baldwin A, Betts M, Carter C, Hamilton A, Stokes E, Thorpe T

A Framework for Measuring IT Innovation Benefits

Abstract: This paper presents a new framework for measuring the benefits of IT in construction. The framework is based on the principle that benefits realisation must be managed by: planning for strategic alignment and business-driven exploitation, managing the process of predicting benefits, and by measuring resulting benefits after a system or innovation is implemented. Three distinct types of benefits are identified within the new framework associated with business efficiency, business effectiveness and business performance. A key barrier to the more effective exploitation and application of IT in the construction sector has been the lack of investment on a scale comparable with other sectors. A primary reason cited for the low level of investment is the low level of perceived benefits from IT investments amongst construction business managers. Many benefits evaluation methods exist and are widely applied in other sectors. Benefits evaluation methods in construction are under-utilised. One reason for this is the lack of fit between these methods, and their associated language, with the peculiarities of the construction sector. The new framework presented in this paper has been derived for specific application to the construction sector. The framework has been subjected to testing and application within UK construction organisations. The results of this testing suggest a number of improvements in the benefits realisation process.

Keywords: information technology, business benefits, innovation, evaluation framework

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Full text: http://www.itcon.org/2000/4 (available to registered users only)

Series: itcon:2000 (browse)
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Andrew P. McCoy, Robert Schubert, Robert Dunay, Joe Wheeler

lumenHAUS: Uses and Benefits of ICT for Design-Build Educational Environments

Abstract: By many accounts, American classrooms are not using the most effective means to properly educate and train young graduates and professionals. Common goals involve educational achievement and market advantage for students, with a wide variety of proposed solutions. Among the many solutions, technology in the classroom environment has been touted as one route for translating academic goals to the market. Education in the Architecture, Engineering and Construction (AEC) industry is no different: a rise in industry and classroom technology, paired with enrollment, justifies the need to re-focus solutions from technology to provide for the academic and market needs in the built environment. The recent Virginia Tech 2009 Solar Decathlon Competition (VTSD) offered an ideal setting for better understanding effective uses of technology in the translation of these AEC goals. VTSD was a student-led, integrated classroom environment incorporating students of all disciplines in the design and construction of an energy-efficient home. Information and communication technologies (ICT) played a major role in the educational and competitive efforts, all of which could translate to market advantage. This paper aims to explore academic uses and benefits of ICT for increased market acceptance through: 1) presenting common goals to the classroom, design-build education and the 2009 Solar Decathlon competition, 2) presenting various forms of ICT used to accomplish these goals and 3) presenting preliminary results of a survey of market acceptance for incorporated technologies.

Keywords: IT Supported Architectural and Engineering Design, Communication and Collaboration Technologies, Model Based Management Tools and Systems, Building Information Modeling

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Full text: content.pdf (236,600 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2010 (browse)
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Bakis N, Sun M

Intelligent broker for collaborative search and retrieval of construction information on the WWW

Abstract: "CONTEXT In recent years, the construction industry began to use the World Wide Web (WWW) as an information dissemination vehicle. The amount of construction information available on the WWW is increasing exponentially, ranging from product data to technical publications, from building regulations to best practice guides. However, the task of finding the right information becomes more and more difficult. At present, users rely on two types of solutions to the information discovery and retrieval problem on the Internet, “yellow pages like information gateways” and “robot-based Internet search engines”. While acknowledging the success for both solutions so far, the authors will discuss their growing evident limitations in supporting construction specific information retrieval on the WWW. OBJECTIVES AND METHODOLOGY The aim of this study is to develop an intelligent information broker for the construction information on the Internet, which will facilitate collaboration between users for the benefit of improved information search and retrieval on the WWW network. The objectives are: ·to examine the information needs of different types of users in the construction industry; ·to capture these information needs conceptually as user profiles and information context models; ·to incorporate construction domain knowledge into the information network; ·to improve speed and accuracy of users search for construction information by developing a information network that facilitates the sharing of search results and knowledge; ·to develop a hierarchical distributed client/server architecture to enable the most efficient service both Intranet and Internet users. RESULTS AND CONCLUSIONS The intelligent information broker described in paper has a client/server architecture based on software agents technology. It has two distinct features: (1) supporting user collaboration; (2) applying construction domain and user profile knowledge to improve the information search. Collaborative Information Searching Collaborative searching or social filtering is often the most effective method of ranking Internet documents. The developed information broker enables users with the same interest to share the results of their search and their rating of each document’s quality and relevance. Construction knowledge and User Profile The information broker server is in essence a construction oriented WWW searching engine. What distinguishes it from other searching engines is its evolving knowledge base of construction specific keyword sets and construction user profiles. Using the knowledge base, the information broker server is able to answer intelligent queries other than simple keyword matching."

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Full text: content.pdf (197,260 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2000 (browse)
Cluster: papers of the same cluster (result of machine made clusters)
Class: class.communication (0.054837) class.retrieve (0.047943) class.social (0.030880)
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Permission to reproduce these documents have been graciously provided by Icelandic Building Research Institute. The assistance of the editor, Mr. Gudni Gudnason, is gratefully appreciated


Bellot Matas I

BECOC: a knowledge bank and its use in construction and CAD systems

Abstract: The development of the BECOC prototype (Structured Knowledge Bank for Construction Elements) was undertaken in order to test the integration of Data and Knowledge using the SITEC model (Construction Technology Information System). After the graphical definition of a building exterior, the assignment of the construction solutions is dynamically controled using the Knowledge Bank for real time decision making. To represent the knowledge that acts on the data the knowledge bank consists of an Object Oriented Data Base and a Rule System, developed using the NEXPERT/OBJECT package. In this manner it is possible to establish relationships among properties, concepts, restrictions in values, structural relations and the control of standards compliance, which in this case has been limited to thermic, acoustic and weight requirements. The system helps the user to take decisions and it analyses the context in order to make the deductions needed to maintain internal data consistency. The positive results of this work indicate the way €or further developments, and demonstrate that expert systems and traditional technologies coupled together can be effective and give the desired answers in monitoring design in the everyday problems in construction technology.

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Full text: content.pdf (977,770 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:1991 (browse)
Cluster: papers of the same cluster (result of machine made clusters)
Class: class.store (0.066751) class.analysis (0.031103) class.synthesis (0.023636)
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Permission to reproduce these papers has been graciously provided by Eindhoven University of Technology.


Berto P,Cachadinha N

A BIM and AR based platform for managing non-conformances

Abstract: Defects and errors are common and occur repeatedly during construction projects. An effective management of non conformances is vital for a streamlined and efficient production progress. Large quantities of data and information are produced, which can be lost or misinterpreted. Several defect managing systems have been developed to facilitate measuring and correcting defects. However, few focus on data and information gathering and sharing, as well as providing an efficient communication tool for teams on site. Building Information Modeling (BIM) has proven to improve communication and information sharing. The lack of platforms that integrate BIM in the communication processes used on site is hindering the full exploitation of its potential in improving communication. The overarching aim of this research is to develop a unified real-time communication platform capable of providing richer information for the decision making in the non conformances management process. This study lays out the conceptual framework for the communication platform “C-BIM-thru-AR” (Communicating BIM through Augmented Reality). This platform integrates BIM models into the communication channels used on-site and offsite via Augmented Reality (AR) systems. To develop the “C-BIM-thru-AR”, first the systems functional requirements had to be established. To accomplish this, the Integrated Definition for Function Modeling (IDEF0) technique was used to create as-is maps to analyze processes included in production management and establish functional requirements. With the functional requirements gathered and by applying a system thinking approach, the platforms framework and network architecture were developed. The proposed platform aims at enhancing the management and quality of all the information produced from the management of non conformances, ultimately improving the processes productivity. In future studies, the proposed platform could be exploited in the management of subcontractors’ performance which could be stored automatically in the “C-BIM-thru-AR” platform.

Keywords: Building Information Modeling,Augmented Reality,Unified Communication Platform,Communication,Information Sharing

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Full text: content.pdf (2,100,186 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: convr:2013 (browse)
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Bloomfield D, Amor R

I-SEEC: an internet gateway to european construction resources

Abstract: For the construction industries to move into the knowledge society and knowledge economy they need to be able to build upon their existing information base. This information base is unique within individual countries (though often with significant overlap between countries, for example, with Eurocodes utilised across Europe) and usually widely dispersed. Drawing together the information resources within nations, and then connecting them with each other to form trans-national resources enables a more effective, informed and intelligent industry. I-SEEC is a collaborative project funded by the European Union with the overall goal of creating an infrastructure to enable and link high quality commercial electronic information services throughout its member countries. This project started in March 2000 and finishes in April 2001. It builds upon a previous EU project - CONNET (CONstruction information service NETwork). This paper provides a description of the final state of the infrastructure, services and business models available through I-SEEC. The countries participating in I-SEEC are Finland, Iceland, Italy, the Netherlands, Slovenia, Spain and the United Kingdom. CONNET provides access to a range of high quality Internet-based services for the construction industry in Europe. It provides both a European entry point to identify resources and national entry points for localised service delivery. The European CONNET entry point provides a range of technology park services as well as industry-specific services. These services include: · Management of security services, including installation and monitoring of security systems · Help desk, providing a point of contact for potential service providers and for problem resolution · Information broker role, enabling transparent access to information in the CONNET services · Technology observatory service, including leading edge, current and best-practice technologies · Provision of user profiles, allowing personalised delivery of updates in areas of interest · Multi-classification support, permitting handling of national systems used across the EC. · Inter-service communication services, allowing all comparable services to be identified and a query to be passed from one service to another service to answer. · Multi-language support, enabling EC languages to be handled correctly and to provide basic translations between them. The services offered by I-SEEC include a Technical Information Centre, Waste Exchange Centre, Electronic News Service, Calculation and Software Centre, Who's Who in Construction, Specialist Equipment Directory and a Best Practice Information service. The CONNET infrastructure and the I-SEEC information services provide the means to promote effective use of information by construction industry professionals in an efficient and cost-effective way. The ability to pass queries from one high quality service to another in a different country is a substantial contribution to the CIB goal of providing information to achieve performance. This paper draws out lessons learned - both technological and practical - in the course of this multi-country initiative to develop a portal for the construction industry. It also invites participation in this open initiative and describes how existing and developing services across the world can be made interoperable within a CONNET (and any Internet portal) environment.

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Full text: content.pdf (416,345 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2001 (browse)
Cluster: papers of the same cluster (result of machine made clusters)
Class: class.economic (0.056731) class.deployment (0.046867) class.collaboration (0.041581)
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Permission to reproduce these documents have been graciously provided by CSIR Building and Construction Technology. The assistance of the editors, Mr. Gustav Coetzee and Mr. Frances Boshoff, is gratefully appreciated.


Bouchlaghem D, Rezgui Y, Hassanen M, Cooper G, Rose D

IT tools and support for improved briefing

Abstract: "The briefing stage is critical to the success of construction projects, however it is widely recognised that improvements are needed in this process in order to reduce the cost and optimise quality of buildings. Briefing involves understanding the client's needs and expressing them in a way that will ensure compatibility between the client's vision of the project and the resulting product. There are problems encountered in construction briefing which involve both clients and designers. There is little guidance and support for clients, whilst designers have difficulties both in capturing clients’ needs and conveying conceptual design options to them. There is a central difficulty, associated with language, communication and the exchange of information between clients and design teams, which is now gaining widespread acknowledgement. The CoBrITe (LINK/IDAC UK funded) project argues that the construction industry has yet to exploit the potential of IT systems to assist both parties during this critical phase. This is in contrast to later stages of design and construction where computer-based techniques and systems are commonplace. The overall aim of the CoBrITe project is to improve the briefing process through more efficient and effective use of existing and emerging information technologies that can support client and design teams. The project builds on the recent IDAC 88 project: Managing the Brief as a Process of Innovation, and its five key action areas for improvement: empowering the client, managing the project dynamics, appropriate team building, appropriate visualisation techniques, and appropriate user involvement. It is driven by the needs of solving challenges within the briefing and related design process, with IT a means to an end. The project brings together a group of companies from across the construction supply chain to work together towards the above aim. The methodology comprises: -An extensive literature review on construction briefing focusing on the process of briefing, human and cultural issues, and IT applications and their role within the process. ·The integration of the recent and current projects on briefing through interviews, establishing an electronic network and holding workshops. ·The formulation of a framework of enabling technologies and their potential role in facilitating the briefing process and overcoming human and organisational constraints. ·The development of a model which will facilitate the integration of activities and information sharing in the briefing process. The proposed paper will give a comprehensive overview of the CoBrITe project, including an analysis of the briefing practices and information requirement, an initial CoBrITe Briefing Process Model, the CoBrITe system architecture, and the description of the proposed framework that integrates a set of proprietary and commercial software applications aimed at supporting the briefing process."

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Full text: content.pdf (319,634 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2000 (browse)
Cluster: papers of the same cluster (result of machine made clusters)
Class: class.roadmaps (0.015409) class.processing (0.014768) class.economic (0.012134)
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Permission to reproduce these documents have been graciously provided by Icelandic Building Research Institute. The assistance of the editor, Mr. Gudni Gudnason, is gratefully appreciated


C Changxin Wang,

Ontology based Knowledge Retrieving in a Web Collaboration Environment for Construction Industry

Abstract: As the amount of information and knowledge that we deal with in construction projects are huge, computerized collaboration and management systems have been seen as effective tools for construction project participants. While a vast amount of information and knowledge can be stored in these systems, how to retrieve knowledge when needed is a challenge. Traditional keyword search usually results in high returns but low precision, as context and terminology difference are not considered. This research implements construction domain ontology into a web collaboration environment. Domain ontology provides a common understanding of a domain (a particular area) in which people and the application system communicates with each other. The ontology is composed of a network of concepts, which are clearly defined and interlinked based on their context. Knowledge items published in the web are annotated according to the ontology, and enable the semantic inference to locate a particular knowledge items during the retrieval process. In this paper, some knowledge items (knowledge stories) are published as blog entries in the web collaboration systems, and a comparison between traditional keyword search and ontology based retrieval is reported. The ontology based knowledge retrieving gives much more accurate returns, and therefore can facilitate the web-based knowledge sharing practice more efficiently in the construction industry.

Keywords: Ontology, Knowledge management, Knowledge retrieving, Construction industry, Web-based collaboration.

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Full text: content.pdf (541,967 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2011 (browse)
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