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Design forum

AI BIM. Can ArchiCAD be ready for that?

Podolsky
Ace
Hi there!

I have decided to start a separate thread about Artificial Intelligence in AEC. I hope here we will able to collect as much information as what happens today in the AI world, show examples of using AI in BIM programs and programs driven by AI, and discuss what architects and other AEC professionals would like to expect from it.

I have a very strong opinion, that these technologies will come to us very, very soon (because AI already exists in many things we are using every day - like search engines or digital photo applications) and this might be a very interesting subject to review.

Please find below a scheme I have prepared, showing how AI for BIM might look like.

Building elements (as we know tools in ArchiCAD) are controlled by placement algorithms, that coming from building classification databases). For example - placing partition walls in the office with the right chosen sound insulation, fire ratings, correct corridors lengths, fire escapes, etc.

I/O engine responsible for Input / Output - but in architectural terms - automatic drawings generation and publishing, remote communication, including communication via e-mails, teamwork, IFC exchange. It is something like a secretary-robot, that supervising the BIM project.

Language analyzer transforming languages into commands, understandable by the system (software). It can understand human language and communicate with him as a chatbot, it’s also can understand different languages - like Python, JavaScript, AutoLisp, etc. Even read IFC (because IFC is a script).

Physical simulations help to improve correct element placement. Simulations shall be 100% on physics (more like physical engines in 3D animation software). Includes loads, earthquakes, heat distribution and loss, fire spread, wind load, radiosity, and photon tracing, similar to Monte Carlo.

Additional block called construction simulations helps to represent the construction process, including delivery, animation of cranes and installation process, construction timeline, and similar.

Each building element has two additional layers - assembly (if it’s a wall, then it might be studs, cover, insulation, and brackets) and behavior. Behaviour is connected to both physical and construction simulations.
67 REPLIES 67

Podolsky
Ace
I have recently found an article about AI. Quite interesting:

https://medium.com/built-horizons/ai-architecture-4c1ec34a42b8

Some previews from it:

Podolsky
Ace
I would like to mention, that when new stair tool has been introduced in ArchiCAD 21, Graphisoft wrote about built-in AI, that helps to design better stair shape.

There is also an article on AECCafe web-site, where Tibor Szolnoki, ARCHICAD Implementation Team Leader at GRAPHISOFT speaks about AI:

https://www10.aeccafe.com/blogs/aeccafevoice/2019/01/17/aeccafe-industry-predictions-for-2019-part-2...

“The adoption of BIM will continue to grow in the foreseeable future. The release of ISO 19650 standards will give an additional boost to this trend in 2019.

New prefabrication and modular construction processes will be implemented by major construction companies. These methods will increase the efficiency of the construction industry and result better quality, more eco-friendly buildings.

The implementations of Artificial Intelligence & machine learning solutions in BIM applications has already started and this trend will continue to grow in the future. The primary focus of these developments will be assisting design decisions and optimizing building quality and performance. These technologies will fundamentally change the dynamics of the labor market and the role of humans in the construction industry going forward.

The need for Automation will continue to grow, both during the design process – where many repetitive tasks previously done by humans can be replaced by algorithms – and in construction, where the share of prefabrication is rapidly growing. Robots, 3D printing and other technologies that used to exist in factories only, will find their way to the building site. Remote controlled construction robots, futuristic exoskeletons, autonomous -driving vehicles have already been put to test by innovative construction firms Cloud computing and the development of online collaboration and data sharing platforms continue to be a major focus for the key players of the BIM industry.

Augmented Reality becomes common practice: in collaborative design processes, in job-site applications, and in consumer applications (like home-design solutions).

“Smart home” solutions such as virtual home assistants and intelligent devices connected to the Internet (IoT) will be accessible for significantly more people until the end of this decade. These new technologies will transform the way we design, construct and operate buildings.”

Podolsky
Ace
The last version of BricsCAD:

https://www.bricsys.com/sv-se/bricscad-bim/new

Of course, if compare to ArchiCAD, BricsCAD has very primitive interface. But interesting how BricsCAD developers concentrated more on built-in AI algorithms, that helps to solve instantly many interesting issues - making 3D models from PointCloud Scan, converts shapes into BIM elements, detects similar situation in steel intersections and applies same connections. I think this is very modern approach of developing BIM software - based on AI driven solutions.

Podolsky
Ace
It's interesting to read some comments, responding to thoughts that are really make sense on the level of school bullying. "He doesn't know difference between concrete and cement". Actually concrete is made from cement. And sometimes cement also poured on site - like cement screed.
I think, that most of architects our days completely lost control of buildings they are designing (or try to design). "Archi" - as original meaning from Ancient Greek "Chef" slowly disappearing from the word "architect". Architects are trying to be good psychologists for client, subtile artists (interesting, by the way, how many modern architects know how to make classical hand drawings and how to paint? In USSR it was knowledge by default - everyone, who wanted to be architects must pass classical drawing exam - draw gypsum head of Venus or Apollo. I'm not sure that new generation of architects ever studied it), but how about to deliver complete error free construction documentation of site - here is one big failure.
It's sad to see, how many architectural and engineering practises - even when they have advanced CAD/BIM tools in the offices - avoiding to learn them deeply, start using automation etc. I've seen quite a lot of examples in London - well, maybe in another parts of the world it's different. For example engineering company almost 2 months was placing CLT panels on the Revit model, they received from architects (5 technician team) - and at the end still were mistakes - like one window was dropped to the floor level - unacceptable error, that would be very hard to solve on site (when CLT panels were sent from another country). It would take them probably one week of making algorithm in Dynano and, with help of the algorithm complete the job maximum in 2 weeks, using only one technician. Or why big ArchiCAD driven architectural practises cannot hire programmer, who would sit and develop GDL libraries? I even have seen one practise, where use of 3D in ArchiCAD was FORBIDDEN! They used Sketchup for 3D and 3DS Max for visualisations.
I completely agree with the statement, that 90% of architects will loose they job when AI will come into Architecture. Just because they don't do their job good.
Another interesting example - when architects are saying - we are not doing this and this drawings (or complex BIM models) because we are not getting paid. OK. One year they are not getting paid, another year, but if one day someone will come to them and pay a lot of money - they will not able to deliver just because they don't know how and never did it.
I might say - yes, please start learn coding, invest into algorithmic design, hire programmers, be more tech/virtual construction company, then just an artist, who is never getting paid enough and who knows only how to speak nicely.

There is another video about algorithmic design and AI from Autodesk university from 2016. Same message to architects: learn coding.

Podolsky
Ace
New software, created in Belarus. Uses AI for quantity take offs.

https://www.kreo.net

matjashka
Enthusiast
The architects who want to rely on AI for complex projects -- if something goes not as expected, do you think that the company that provides the architectural AI analytics could be made legally responsible for any mistakes that occur?
We want to drive ArchiCAD like a Tesla, fine, but what warranties do you expect to get from Graphisoft?
Matt Krol [LinkedIn]
BHMS Architects and Planners, Chicago
AC 10 ... 26 USA

Podolsky
Ace
I don't think this is the case.
First - AI implementation will goes gradually. And projects, generated via AI (or part of it), will be checked by human beings.
I have opposite question - who is responsible today for terrible errors done by architects? I've seen quite a lot of situations - directors are busy on the meetings, young technicians are modelling or draw some crap, and when it's time to deadline - a lot of surprises appears, like building is half-meter lower when needs to be.

Or suppliers of building materials, who are providing absolutely idiotic solutions for the project - and if nobody checking them - project turns into disaster on construction site.

I see the situation, that computer able to generate less errors - just because it's mathematical machine, driven by algorithms. Computer will not cheat with you or go on vacation in most responsible time.

matjashka
Enthusiast
It looks like you're describing a severe problem with management. Whether AI can fix that, I don't know.
Matt Krol [LinkedIn]
BHMS Architects and Planners, Chicago
AC 10 ... 26 USA

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