BIM Guys Want You to Think BIM is the Cat’s Meow

BIM is the new GIS? Can you dumb it down a shade?

Look, I got suckered into thinking BIM was the future.  The painful fact is BIM is only useful to talk about, not actual use.  But that won’t stop CAD companies from trying to convince you BIM is the future.

Let’s just say that BIM is the new GIS. In speaking with Mike DeLacey, CEO of Microdesk, a long time Autodesk partner and reseller, the terms are interchangeable in an Autodesk environment.

Will all do respect Mike, Neogeography (are we spelling it with our without CamelCase these days) is the new GIS.  If BIM is interchangeable with GIS in Autodesk, I fear for Autodesk users.  Given DWG is all about 0,0 (seriously though, how about require a projection Autodesk?) and unless we’re mapping null island, 0,0 is about as far from GIS as you can get.

Author: James Fee

National GIS/IT Practice Leader at Matrix New World

9 thoughts on “BIM Guys Want You to Think BIM is the Cat’s Meow”

  1. I am all about BIM – for architecture.

    Yes, they need projections (in Revit 2009 you couldn’t model more than 1 mile and now you get 20 I think. You still get the 0,0 too).

    BIM is not GIS. BIM, if in IFC format, can be imported to GIS. It is just a data type to me. But a very valuable data type.

    Autodesk is trying to sell the idea that GIS data, Building Data, Civil Data and all other data can be integrated in to a single AutoDesk Product. Map was absorbed by Civil 3D in 2009 I think. They had Project Galileo, and now InfraWorks. They have been trying to build a GIS platform that can import all the data from their other products for a long time. In the real world, Architects export their stuff to Google Earth – well, they save a screenshot from earth and scale it in CAD to make it look like the model is placed. Oh the horror. Autodesk has lost. I don’t know who is going to use their ‘GIS’ products. They should just promote BIM on its merits in architecture.

  2. If ‘Neogeography’ is what crowdsourcing data collection, target-marketing indoor mapping, & spatial components in mobile apps being called these days. Then do you think BIM might just be dead because the marketplace demand for neogeography services is overwhelming for the limited amount of developers?

  3. Ah, but we really need to look at this differently. GIS and BIM both are acronyms for processes which, at their core, are really just the storage, creation and leveraging of data. Now it’s true that the data is used very differently and for different reasons for those involved… but it’s all just data… or the I in the middle of both words, Information.

    I agree that BIM is being misused by Autodesk as a term. Heck, even in the architecture community you’ll hear people state BIM isn’t an appropriate term. But so much advertising revenue has been thrown into the term which is becoming synonymous with leveraging data, that Autodesk is running with it to communicate a concept. Leveraging data is the future and today of the entire built (and non-built) environment.

    The truth is, they can call it the “Fabulous Urban Civil Kibbutzim of the Universe” (I won’t mention that acronym, but Autodesk might pick it) and if it creates wide spread adoption of technology and improved information exchange, I’m all in. We really just need to focus on communicating to the uneducated where each tool applies; how we can leverage them effectively in practice; and communicate each chance we get areas we would be willing to spend money to see the economic advantages of programming time for solution creation.

  4. GIS Guys are Clueless When It Comes to BIM and the Building Industry In General.

    Here is a good article on just how badly geospatial people misunderstand bim.—

    Read it to recognize how spatially unadjusted almost all geospatial professionals are when it comes to bim and innovation in the building industry. Willful ignorance or “geo arrogance” is the question.

  5. BIM and GIS are just different flavors of the same kool-aid. Somewhere along the way we lost sight of the fact that these are both just tools to solve problems. Who really cares (outside of vendors) as long as it solves the problem?

  6. Yes AutoDesk doing anything GIS does usually suck, but I’ve been assigning projections in Map and Civil 3D Drawings for years. I do find their bizarre querying drawing data with Map over complicated and the interface hasn’t been updated in a decade. Linking to GIS data using their data link tools isn’t too shabby and being able to use CAD editing tools on GIS data is quite cool.

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