Digital library of construction informatics
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Paper w78-1993-2-75:
Management of Construction Information Technology

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Vanier D J, Mellon B S, Thomas R, Worling J L

Management of Construction Information Technology

Abstract: Technology transfer is a buzz word of the 1990's; in many cases this means making research results and technical information available to construction practitioners. Large government and professional organizations own, manage and distribute tomes of information to a wide selection of clients. In the existing situation the default medium is paper; most agencies in an industry work independently of each other; and the distribution network for the information is slow and uncoordinated. Conventional computer technology provides an inexpensive alternative to the paper medium. Compact Disk Read Only Memory is one of many technologies available to information suppliers; others include read-write optical disks, Compact Disk-Interactive and distributed networks such as Gopher or the World Wide Web. Off-the-shelf packages now enable information suppliers to produce and distribute their information using in-house resources without having to go to outside sources. Many technologies permit cooperative publishing and distribution ventures between industry-related suppliers without affecting the suppliers ' document pricing. In light of these new technologies, distribution could be near instantaneous and accomplished at significantly reduced costs, In addition, many software companies are now providing turnkey services to capture, organize and distribute electronic information for the information suppliers. This paper outlines the information technology activities of the Institute for Research in Construction -- past, present, and future. It describes the experience gained from the production of the Construction Resources compact disk by the Institute and summarizes the findings of a survey of the beta test sites using user-friendly, interactive software. The paper outlines technologies available to information suppliers including distributed networks, the Internet, and optical disk technology.

Keywords: information technology; technical information; building standards; computers


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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.


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