I'm here at Autodesk University in Las Vegas along with 9,000 other professionals. The schedule is packed with technology company announcements and advances.
At The Reality of the Cloud innovation conference, speakers dissected how to best implement cloud storage.
Peter Leyden is the former managing editor of Wired Magazine, and had a lot to say about how the cloud among other technology is changing the way we work, and live. “It’s really starting to impact how we work," he says. "All serious work and collaboration gets done in the face-to-face realm. This is now virtualizing and it’s moving to the cloud.”
Scott Zimmerman, the manager of enterprise systems at Bechtel weighed into the conversation as well, his company built a cloud system that servers its company, internationally. He says construction companies aren't fast adapters in the cloud space, but Bechtel's chairman challenged his employees two years ago to get, "out of the trailers and into the field.” He thinks the cloud is a key link to doing this.
- Rebuilding America: Post-Sandy, technology provides tangible solutions for improvement.
From levee breaches in New Orleans to the flooding of mass transit systems in New York City, it is clear U.S. infrastructure is weak. Rather than putting a band-aid over the problem, the AECO industry must find a new approach to rebuilding that focuses on innovation and technology, and on being proactive not reactive. The tools are available, and in 2013 more firms will turn to visualization and collaborative design processes to strengthen the nation's vital infrastructure systems.
- Regulatory Compliance: Governments envisioning broader uses of BIM will prompt further adoption in the AECO industry.
Despite widespread availability of technology solutions, many firms still rely on old-fashioned design and building processes. To repair this broken, siloed workflow, in 2013 the industry will see greater requirements for BIM as more government agencies develop BIM-based workflows that add efficiencies to design review and regulatory compliance. This influence will trickle down to the rest of the industry and inspire broader adoption at every level.
- The "I" in BIM:
Big Data has been a hot topic in technology for several years, but in 2013, its influence will further infiltrate the AECO industry. BIM will make its way into field operation through purpose-built applications that allow designers and contractors to make informed decisions instantly and manage building data with the end uses of that information in mind. This will allow them to go beyond traditional project delivery by providing accurate, interconnected models that enable more efficient facility operations and maintenance.
- Mobile and the AECO Industry: The use of mobile devices in design, construction and facilities management will become commonplace in 2013.
In 2013, the use of mobile will become an industry standard – so much so that Microdesk believes this will be the last year mobile takes a spot in its predictions. Recent acquisitions by AEC software companies of social and mobile sharing technologies, including Socialcam and Qontext, further point toward this trend. In fact, the use of next-generation technologies will become "table stakes" in 2013 for any firm looking to enable collaboration, design and communication in the field.
- Collaborative Design in the Cloud: A focus on cloud technologies will facilitate improved workflows.
In 2013, the AECO industry will continue to leverage the cloud to make business more flexible and collaborative. Further adoption of cloud technologies that better enable the sharing and integration of data in the design and construction process will result in more efficient buildings, more streamlined construction processes and less waste