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Arnold J A, Teicholz P

The use of knowledge based components for automated task support in the process industry

Abstract: This in-process research project investigates u knowledge based component’ information model that is capable of supporting distributed software services for design and engineering in the process industry. The test case component information model for a control valve is based on the results of previous research that defines the information requirements [Arnold, Teicholz I W6]. It integrates an explicit description of product data (form. function, and behavior} and an engineering process to offer partial automation for the task of control valve selection in an intelligent design environment. The research also investigates the business and technical issues related to the deployment of knowledge based component information libraries on the Internet. This work seeks to uaderstand how such sofiware services can be realized, how they can integrate with work process, and how they would benefit A/E/C business practice.

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Full text: content.pdf (1,628,942 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:1996 (browse)
Cluster: papers of the same cluster (result of machine made clusters)
Class: class.represent (0.024546) class.commerce (0.022756) class.environment (0.020851)
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Permission to reproduce these papers has been graciously provided by the University of Ljubljana. The assistance of the editor, Prof. Ziga Turk, is gratefully appreciated.


Dado E, Tolman F

Support of site construction processes by product data technology

Abstract: In the last decade or so design/engineering of building and construction projects is gradually incorporating advanced information technologies, like Product Data Technology. The main drive for this development comes from the demand for meaningful electronic communication between CAxx systems of various disciplines. Getting rid of the islands of automation and information improves both the design processes and the design results. However islands of automation and information not only exist in design/engineering, but also in the construction phase. Moreover the design/engineering and the construction faces as a whole, are still very much isolated. Now that in the foreseeable future main contractors will receive a complete project description, a product model, in electronic format, the question becomes important how PDT can support site construction. In recent studies, researchers in the field of planning, scheduling and cost-estimating of construction projects, discerned the importance of the ability to deal with explicit information about construction methods and technologies is an important capability for future support systems. The main idea is that experiences and knowledge from earlier construction projects are stored in construction methods. By representing these construction methods in a standardized electronic form (i.e. databases, objects), an organization, such as a main contractor, is able to exchange information with other organizations and allows an organization to assemble a repository of techniques which they are familiar with. These computer-interpretable models for the representation of construction methods can be used to support the automated generation of plans, schedules and cost-estimations. This paper reports about a study into the question how to generate plans, schedules and cost-estimations given (1) a standardized product model and (2) a library of standardized process objects implementing information about construction methods. Initial results of a system that supports the translation of the product oriented design/engineering view into the process oriented main contractor view will be shown and discussed.

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Full text: content.pdf (112,343 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:1998 (browse)
Cluster: papers of the same cluster (result of machine made clusters)
Class: class.represent (0.026380) class.communication (0.018471) class.impact (0.016846)
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Permission to reproduce these papers has been graciously provided by Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm, Sweden. The assistance of the editors, Prof. Bo-Christer Björk and Dr. Adina Jägbeck, is gratefully appreciated.


Engdahl S

Product identification systems for construction and facility management

Abstract: This paper presents a study of the concept of a common construction product identification system with a focus on the establishment of principles for its use within computer integrated construction and facility management processes. An analysis of current systems for product identification utilized within the Swedish sector of construction and facility management is presented in an addition with a discussion of the concept of object and class identification in information systems development. The study is a part of the industry doctorate research project ‘Product information in computer-integrated construction and facility management processes’, which aims at studying methods for handling product information and contribute to the development of computer based systems for product information management. A main hypothesis within this project is that an information platform enabling efficient integration of IT in handling construction product information is composed of an identification-, classification-, and an attribute system. These components should be mutually independent and implemented as sector wide standards. This study specifically deals with the first component, a common system for identification of construction products. During recent years an increasing amount of research has been dedicated to define methods to integrate and utilize information technology in handling the vast amount of information used, created and transferred within construction and facility management processes. In Sweden, the focus has been on classification systems and product models as central means for establishing a framework for information handling. A common system for product identification would in general facilitate handling of product information in computer integrated construction and facility management processes. Specific advantages would be to enable; - Dynamic invocation of distributed components (e.g. CORBA) representing the product via a link relation residing in a database connected to the Internet. - Direct product information retrieval in case of a present identifier on a product, catalogue page or advertisement. - Exactness in production follow-up, i.e. when consumed production resources are registered. A common system for product identification is considered to be relatively easy to define and implement in comparison with common standards for product classification, attributes and product models, since the latter ones are aspect dependent and involve numerous actors and divergent interests. The purpose of this study is to identify and analyze current systems for product identification used within the Swedish sector of construction and to demonstrate the role of such systems in IT based environments for handling construction product information. The study shows that separate actors within the building process so far have developed systems for product identification without support for the process as a whole. Among the systems analyzed is EAN-13 regarded as most suitable since it is international, non-sector specific, in correspondence with a barcode standard for automatic data capture and has the widest propagation. However, the EAN-13 system, like the other systems, lacks explicit norms that guarantee valid identification in a historical perspective especially required for product information management within facility management processes. EAN-13’s main disadvantage in the construction context is its total focus on trade items, thus its deficient handling of standard product units, which is the common view for actors outside the sector of trading. The conclusion implies that a common system for product identification with characteristics of being international, non-sector specific, without property or class referencing attributes and with explicit criteria regarding changes of identifiers as a result of property alteration would be most advantageous and that such system is a central component in an information platform with means for achieving efficient utilization of IT. None of the systems in current use is featured with all these characteristics.

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Full text: content.pdf (527,797 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2001 (browse)
Cluster: papers of the same cluster (result of machine made clusters)
Class: class.retrieve (0.020441) class.software-software (0.015031) class.bestPractise (0.012129)
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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.


Fischer M A, Luiten G T B, Aalami F

Representing project information and construction method knowledge for computer- aided construction management

Abstract: Currently available construction management software has serious limitations that hinder further integration and automation of construction management tasks. The main limitation is the low level at which project information and knowledge is represented. This means that integration of design and construction planning information and automated reasoning about, for example, planning, are difficult to implement. In two research projects at the Center for Integrated Facility Engineering at Stanford University, we are addressing these limitations. In the SPACECAKE project we propose a higher level representation of project information that explicitly represents the relations between products, activities, construction methods and resources. A prototype system shows that it is possible to implement our conceptual model and support project management decisions. In the MOCA project we elaborate further on the representation of construction method knowledge. In this paper we propose a template to make the knowledge explicit and computer-interpretable.

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Full text: content.pdf (1,466,181 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:1995 (browse)
Cluster: papers of the same cluster (result of machine made clusters)
Class: class.synthesis (0.016915) class.bestPractise (0.009748) class.software development (0.008872)
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Permission to reproduce these papers has been graciously provided by the Stanford University, USA. The support of the editors, particularly Prof. Fischer is gratefully appreciated.


FL Ribeiro

Using experience based cases to support construction business processes

Abstract: Many business processes in the construction supply chains involve creation and consumption of massive amount of knowledge. Some construction organisations may use such knowledge as a competitive differentiator. The benefits that an organisation in the supply and value chain reaps from relevant experiences will also be beneficial to the organisation's clients, suppliers, and business partners. However, there is normally a lack of explicit knowledge about their business processes.

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Full text: content.pdf (300,091 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2005 (browse)
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Permission to reproduce these papers has been graciously provided by the Technische Universität Dresden.


Froese T, Q YU K, Liston K, Fischer M

System architectures for AEC interoperability

Abstract: "This paper discusses several issues relating to computational system architectures to support interoperability among distributed, model-based AEC/FM applications. The approach is based on tiered layers where applications interact with local “Building Objects” software components that, in turn, interact with a variety of distributed data repository alternatives in a data layer. International Foundation Classes (IFCs) models are used as the primary data model in each of the layers and communication between layers uses several XML standards. One issue is an approach to multiple meta-models within the many components of a distributed system. IFCs focus on strongly-typed models that describe AEC concepts and objects in an explicit manner. One of the requirements for applications that implement IFCs is that they must understand the semantics of the IFCs and map the IFC models to the application internal application models. However, software applications used in AEC processes are not always based on an internal model that can be explicitly mapped to a strongly-typed model such as the IFCs at development stage. Instead, it is common that some of the applications are either purely generic without an explicitly defined domain schema, or generic enough so as they must deal with run-time databases whose schemas cannot be pre-defined during the development of the applications. In order to allow this type of software to share and exchange data with other applications through the models such as the IFCs, data schemas must be mapped at a higher and abstract level that allows for run-time model schema configurations and mappings. The Interactive Workspace for Project Management (IWPM) is a CIFE (Center for Facilities Engineering) project that integrates several research decision support systems, commercial project management systems, and advanced collaborative human-computer interaction approaches using emerging industry data standards and internet technologies. To illustrate an example of using the meta-model approach, the paper applies the use cases in IWPM to demonstrate how meta-models can be used to implement IFC project management related models in such an integrated software environment."

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Full text: content.pdf (595,267 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:2000 (browse)
Cluster: papers of the same cluster (result of machine made clusters)
Class: class.represent (0.049095) class.standards (0.036666) class.communication (0.035658)
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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


Frye M J, Olynick D M, Pinkney R B

Development of an expert system for the fire protection requirements of the national building code of Canada

Abstract: In Canada, the standard for fire safety for new buildings, reconstruction of buildings including alterations and additions, and buildings involving a change in occupancy, is established in Part 3, Use andOccupancy, of the National Building Code of Canada. While the fire protection requirements contained in this section of the Code are very explicit, inexperienced or infrequent users of the Code often find it confusing and overwhelming because of the number of requirements which apply or seem to apply to a given building. An experienced code user or expert understands what information is relevant and will generally use a systematic process to determine the fire protection requirements that are applicable. Because the human approach to fire protection analysis is, in fact, systematic and logically sequential, and because the knowledge contained in codes and standards is largely in the form ofrules, an expert system can be developed to effectively simulate human competence in fire protective design. This paper describes the development of a user-friendly expert system that closely mimics the human approach used in the fire protection analysis of those buildings regulated by Part 3, Use and Occupancy of the National Building Code of Canada. The principal fire protection requirements of the Code have been incorporated into the expert system. The resulting expert system will be useful to the experienced code user as a code assistant, and to theinexperienced or infrequent code user who requires code information when no expert is available.

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Full text: content.pdf (1,290,837 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:1992 (browse)
Cluster: papers of the same cluster (result of machine made clusters)
Class: class.synthesis (0.097966) class.analysis (0.040004) class.legal (0.022945)
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Permission to reproduce these papers has been graciously provided by Research Press of the National Research Council of Canada. The support of the editor, Dr. Dana Vanier, is gratefully appreciated.


Gonzales A, Ogunlana S, Soegaard B

Technology Impact Grid A Model for Strategic IT Planning for Competitive Advantage in Construction

Abstract: The dearth of information on successful cases of strategic use of information technology (IT) in the construction industry is the motivation for an investigation of the use and impact of IT in the construction industries of Spain, France and the United Kingdom. IT has yet to saturate the construction industry. Case studies of six firms in the three European countries which have the experience of using IT in a systematic manner revealed that firms can and do gain competitive advantage and improved business performance from using IT even though there are no explicit policies to gain advantage from IT. The Technology Impact Grid (TIG) was developed from the study. The grid uses two variables, degree of necessity and competitive advantage, to separate current IT into four groups: unwanted necessity, unnecessary investment, blessed potential and strategic treasure. It can be used both as a model for a firm ' s IT position evaluation and as a tool for planning IT acquisition to gain competitive advantage.

Keywords: competitive advantage; IT planning; IT position evaluation; technology impact grid; strategic planning

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Full text: content.pdf (771,970 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:1993 (browse)
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Permission to reproduce these papers has been graciously provided by the National University of Singapore. The assistance of the editors, particularly Prof. Martin Betts, is gratefully appreciated.


Griffith E D, Hicks D K, McGraw K D, Case M P

Towards model based design - a case study: the modular design system

Abstract: The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has developed a tool called the Modular Design System (MDS) to assist design professionals in the processes of planning, design, and construction document preparation for repetitive facility types. The use of early versions of MDS has demonstrated a reduction in time by nearly two-thirds typically required to design and award a construction contract. Initially developed to support Army Reserve Training Centers, the USArmy Corps plans to expand its use over a wider range of repetitive facility types. The current implementation is a hybrid document/model approach consisting of electronic drawings linked by an external database. Data consistency issues associated with this architecture limit its scalability. To meet expanded requirements, the USArmy Corps is developing a model based information approach utilizing emerging commercially available object based CAD systems. This redesigned information infrastructure marks a fundamental change from an implicit to an explicit model-based representation. Three key capabilities make MDS a powerful tool. First, the ability to capture and reuse corporate design criteria at the architectural function level. Second, it provides an integration framework for engineering analysis. Third, it manages and integrates the contract document production.The underlying MDS information infrastructure will move towards a model based approach. Future work will focus on collaborative processes such as conflict resolution and design review. Additionally, MDS offers the opportunity to transfer an information rich model downstream to operations and maintenance.

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Full text: content.pdf (98,970 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:1999 (browse)
Cluster: papers of the same cluster (result of machine made clusters)
Class: class.communication (0.023318) class.bestPractise (0.016810) class.store (0.013255)
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Permission to reproduce these papers has been graciously provided by the Research Press of the National Research Council of Canada. The support of the editors, particularly Dr. Dana Vanier, is gratefully appreciated.


Hitchcock R J

Improving building life-cycle information management through dwumfntatiqm and communication of project objectives

Abstract: Most CurrentIy available computer tools for the building industry proffer little more than productivity improvement in the transmission of graphical drawings and textual specifications, without addressing more fundamental changes in building life-cycle information management. This paper describes preliminary research into the development of a fiamework for the aocumentation and communication of the project objectives of a building project. When implemented in an interactive networked environment, this fiamework is intended to promote multiple participant involvement in the establishment and use of a common set of explicit goals, from the earliest phase of a project throughout its life cycle. A number of potential applications for this fiamework are identified. The requirements for integrating this life-cycle information with a product model of the physical design of a building, in an attempt to document and communicate design intent, are also discussed.

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Full text: content.pdf (1,203,986 bytes) (available to registered users only)

Series: w78:1995 (browse)
Cluster: papers of the same cluster (result of machine made clusters)
Class: class.processing (0.057537) class.communication (0.038791) class.collaboration (0.018078)
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Permission to reproduce these papers has been graciously provided by the Stanford University, USA. The support of the editors, particularly Prof. Fischer is gratefully appreciated.


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