Moving from CAD to BIM can be smooth, affordable, user-friendly and within the same environment and the same file format you already use. No need to start from scratch.
In the construction industry, design teams and CAD users from all over the world know that, sooner or later, they will have to move from CAD to BIM (Building Information Modeling). Many countries have already adopted a national strategy to implement BIM, mostly for the AEC industry, and they define targets, some of which are compulsory. This gives engineers, architects, contractors and other players no option but to embrace the BIM methodology, which in fact has multiple benefits: it saves both time and costs and it allows collaboration between all parties involved. However, when it comes to choosing a BIM software, it’s not easy to determine the solution that fits best one’s needs.
Let’s face it, BIM solutions available in the market today are quite complex, use old interfaces, are expensive, and difficult to learn. Moreover, most of them use proprietary file formats and do not include tools for the concept phase nor for the detailing phase of a project, which means users still need to use a CAD software anyway. This is the reason why some vendors offer suites with two or more products (BIM software + CAD software).
Today, even if you are a CAD user with 20-year experience and are an expert in the .dwg environment, you’ll still be starting from scratch when you move to BIM. It’s a different philosophy, different environment, different rules. Thus, it’s common that new BIM users need from 6 to 8 months to learn a totally new software before becoming productive, not to mention the investment and training costs for the company.
Fortunately, there is a better and smarter way to move from CAD to BIM. Bricsys (headquarters in Belgium, offices in the USA and Hong Kong and development centers in Germany, Russia, Romania and Singapore), has been developing a new BIM technology, having existing .dwg users in mind: BricsCAD® BIM. With this new BIM solution (to be announced during the Bricsys International Conference 2016, taking place at the BMW Welt, Munich, Germany, on 19-20 October), moving from CAD to BIM can be smooth, affordable, user-friendly, and within the same environment and file format users expect (.dwg).
With BricsCAD® BIM users get a one stop solution, from sketch to detail. The intuitive interface of BricsCAD allows users to draw freely, and add BIM information only when needed. Geometric data is classified automatically, using Artificial Intelligence algorithms that recognize BIM objects, such as wall, beam, column, etc. BricsCAD® BIM also comes with IFC import and export functionalities, which enables users to share design information using an open and neutral data format for BIM workflows. The buildingSMART IFC Coordination View 2.0 certification, currently the most widely implemented view of the IFC schema, is also on its way, allowing users to share building design information among the disciplines of architecture, structural engineering, and building services (mechanical). For MEP application developers, a BIM API will also be available.
Regarding online project collaboration, Bricsys suggests Chapoo®, a SAAS where users can browse through geometry & data via a powerful 3D viewer and share their projects with unlimited users. Finally, BricsCAD® BIM offers the best technical support in the industry, the ability to run on Windows, Linux and Mac and a fair price.
All this is coming very soon. Make sure to check BricsCAD® BIM V17, the new BIM on the .dwg environment, arriving in November 2016.
Carlos Brandao, Bricsys