I am Anthony Frausto-Robledo, editor-in-chief at I assemble the monthly INSIDER Xpresso—heir apparent to our ToshLetter—to help us understand emerging technologies (emTech) and social forces impacting CAD industries like AEC and manufacturing. 

This month. We are back to our old format, though we do spend a bit of time on the Revit Open Letter in the emTech section. Our Special Feature focuses on the complete Layer App story, with a particular focus on software integrations. In fact, "integrations" is the theme of this issue and we cover BIM interop items focused on API based integrations like the work of the AEC Delta project. And we cover AI, robotics, digital twins, AAD...along with the Biggest CAD Industry News Last Month in the last section. 
Starter Course

The Top Five Must-Reads

I've combed the Internet to find the most interesting, compelling, or controversial stories about the AEC and manufacturing industries, and the social and emerging technological forces at play on both:

1 - Artificial Intelligence Can Improve Process Management in Construction, is the title of this Forbes piece by David A. Teich, featuring the mention of Buildots, a company working to use computer vision to compare a construction site to the plans (or more correctly BIM models) of a future building. felt.  (Forbes)

What’s new about this? We have seen robots fitted with cameras collecting and streaming video to AI-instilled software to analyze a construction site to a BIM model and data. What's new here is that the camera is construction helmet-mounted. It takes video at 2-fps. It doesn't need a smooth video; it uses just lots of images. And like other systems, they are feed to AI-based software to inspect and compare. 


2 - Katerra sheds 400 more employees. The fourth round of staff cuts at construction unicorn Katerra leads to 7 percent of its workforce getting pink-slipped. This follows the replacement of founding CEO Michael Marks with Paul Kibsgaard, instituted by SoftBank which has invested USD 1.4 billion in Katerra. (Silicon Valley Bus Journal)

Katerra goes through more staff changes but the SoftBank-based company is North America's largest mass timber producer and the only company offering end-to-end mass timber design, manufacturing, and construction.  (Image: Katerra) 

What’s the low-down? SoftBank has invested a ton of money in this construction unicorn and recent changes are driven at accelerating a path to profitability. This report notes that Katerra has 6,000 multifamily units under construction and other recent reports note that the Menlo Park-based company (valued at USD 4 billion) North America's largest mass timber producer, offering end-to-end mass timber design, manufacturing, and construction. This makes it a pivotal green economy new company in the AECO space. 

3 - Computational design helps deliver Australia's largest sustainable tower. This piece in BIM Today discusses 6-8 Parramatta Square, part of one of the biggest sustainable urban projects in Australia. Designed by Johnson Pilton Walker (JPW), these stunning new towers use Bentley's GenerativeComponents (GC) technology inside Bentley OpenBuilding Designer BIM software.  (BIM Today)

A street-level rendered view of 6 & 8 Parramatta Square, which was designed and constructed using innovative computational design processes by architecture firm Johnson Pilton Walker (Image: JPW / Architosh. All rights reserved.) 

What is valuable in this story?  The important piece about 6-8 Parramatta is the unique use of computational design to solve problems for the architects and their consultants and the general contractor in the later stages of the project. Usually, we see AAD (algorithms-aided design) technology deployed in the design stage. Architosh recognized the unique aspects of this Bentley Year-in-Infrastructure Award-Winning project last year and wrote an in-depth feature here

4 -  ETH Zurich Researchers Develop Novel DFAM Framework for Multi-Flow Nozzle Designs  Unique research work coming out of ETH Zurich has implications for the world of 3D printing or computational design for additive manufacturing (DfAM).  The work focuses on a computational design framework for FDM nozzles.  (3DPI)

What’s new about this? This research is essentially saying that complex parts require complex tools, in this case, more complex 3D printing nozzles. For those interested in 3D printing or DfAM this is a must-read. The article also links to similar research at other universities, including Harvard. 

5 - Parametric design: style and substance?  Computational design is not "wacky" form-finding, begins this article by Ben Knight writing for the newsroom at UNSW in Sydney, Australia. Knight is writing about the importance of "parametricism" as championed by principal architect Patrick Schumacher of Zaha Hadid Architects. This article is ultimately an argument for parametricism not as form-finding but solving more critical issues in architecture. (UNSW)

Computational design was used for this project that solved for optimal floor plan configuration to best enable efficiencies. This had little to do with the parametricism used strickly for form-finding and everything to do with building performance against a measurable and understood metric. 

A sign of the future? Quoting UNSW associate professor M. Hank Haeusler, "for us, the engagement with computational methods and tools isn't to change the way the architecture looks, as a new parametric design style." He says they are teaching computational design methods to solve the grand problems facing architects. 

Five More Stories

6 - Architecture graduate student recognized with computational design award.

7 - The Secret of AI is People.

8 - Building a Better Machine for an AI World.

9 - Apple Silicon Macs—chip production on schedule

10 - The Dusty Robotics CEO Tessa Lau Discusses Robotics Start-Ups and Autonomous Robots for Construction.

These additional stories and our analysis, commentary, and images are all available to yearly INSIDER Membership subscribers, inside our upcoming "Member Access—(emTech) Section" feature. Lands 12 September 2020 - See Architosh home page.

More (emTech) Below Our Special Feature
Our Sponsor
Special Feature

Zach Soflin Talks to Architosh About Layer App

One of the brightest new tools at AIA 2019 was the Layer App, introduced not on the show floor but within a very large and popular AIA session. (Note: we covered part of this story in the May issue).

THERE IS A VERY GOOD CHANCE a lot of Xpresso readers have not heard of the Layer App. Born out of the mid-west from within an architecture firm (BVH Architecture) and generated to tackle the needs of an extensive rehabilitation project to Bertram Goodhue's icon Nebraska State Capitol, Layer as first seen at AIA was a striking example both good "mobile-first" software design but also excellence in integration-oriented design. 

In our Curated emTech section below we continue in-depth about the importance of software integration as it relates to BIM (Building Information Modeling), but Layer too is itself born out of this recognition that interoperability—at the granular level of data—is vastly more important than interoperability of file types. 

In our discussion with Soflin, who is a licensed architect, we delve into the Layer App and why it is a key new application in AECO. 

Layer -- What It Does

Layer is an application that addresses the needs of managing the profound amounts of data (information) typical of most building projects. While the Layer App began from the side of "design" in the design-build-operate model, Soflin and his team saw early interest from both "build" and "operate" professionals.

"We have aspirations to reach every single BIM platform, including Open BIM file types."  --- Zach Soflin, AIA, Founder, Layer

Layer is a completely flexible and customizable project management application that is built for use in the field, the job site trailer, and the office. "A lot of our overall vision for what the platform can provide is aimed at beyond the design professional," says Soflin. "Layer is a platform for the entire building lifecycle."

While complete flexibility is one of Layer's core attributes, two other aspects of Layer are also intrinsic to its philosophy as an application. The first of these is this idea of "contextualizing information." Layer manages data not through directories of files and folders but stores data in the actual context of your design. This is particularly the case when Layer is used within its Revit integration. 

Asset management is just one of the many ways Layer can be used by Operations professionals.  (Image: Layer) 

"A room within a building might have a string of comments, it might have some photos, it might have some data associated with it; there might be a piece of equipment with a cut sheet and a conversation attached to it; there may be some specs attached to the room and some tasks associated with it," says Soflin, succinctly demonstrating his knowledge as an architect well-versed in the true realities of the design and construction of buildings. The truth is this long statement is true of every single building project hundreds if not thousands of times over. 

What Layer does is contextualize all of that data and associate it with the room, the elements that make up the room (eg: windows, doors, etc), and the equipment and FFE items that are constituted therein the room. 

Asset management is just one of the many ways Layer can be used by Operations professionals. From the image above, clicking on the attached manual loads that document directly in Layer.  (Image: Layer) 

When operating with Revit the Layer app appears in a sidebar palette within Revit where an architect can select an object and see all data associated with that object. She can also select rooms and see all data associated with that room. The manner in which data is broken down into this granular level within a project using Layer is customizable, and this speaks to the first intrinsic attribute of Layer. 

The third attribute of Layer is the idea of real-time collaboration. "Whether is it Google Docs or Microsoft 360, everything we do from the ground up happens in real-time," says Soflin. "This leads to better transparency and collaboration." 

Looking Beyond Revit

While Layer has a deep integration with Revit, Soflin says we selected it because that is where the largest group of architects and designers are working. "We know that is different in other locations around the world," he adds, noting that the decision to support Revit first was about velocity for their small software company. 

The Layer App has deep integration with Autodesk Revit, seen here with an element (eg: chair) selected in Revit and the Layer panel (palette) operational on the right showing a cut-sheet for the actual chair. Every element in a BIM model can be associated with an element in Layer App, connecting a BIM geometry model with a data model of all the information inside a building. This sets the stage for full lifecycle management. (Image: Layer) 

However, the company is already looking beyond Revit. "We have aspirations to reach every single BIM platform, including Open BIM file types," Soflin says the company is working on other BIM tool integrations and also working on non-BIM tool integrations, things like Slack, Microsoft Teams, and different task managers. Interestingly, Soflin mentioned Layer could be integrated with regular CAD programs and even clash detection software programs (think Navisworks or Solibri or a myriad of other BIM tools out there.). 

"We recognize that the [computer] industry is going in this direction, where integrations are very important, and we have taken this approach where we want to work with as many different tools as possible, he adds." Soflin says they are working on their API (application programming interface) that will be public and hopefully released by year-end.

Looking Beyond Design

While Layer began within the design side of the whole building lifecycle, many general contractors and building operators are fast becoming new clients of the application. "We have users in the facilities management field who are using this completely outside of the context of Revit," says Soflin. So objects are just elements within Layer and have no connection to a 3D BIM model's geometric data.

"The key is," he adds, "all of my information and tasks still have context attached to them. If I click on Cafeteria 254 it shows all my data related to Cafeteria 254; it shows all my conversations, notes, and tasks associated with that room."

FM professionals are using Layer often on tablets. They need to organize data into work orders, asset management data, and compliance inspections. "We have a client user who has to inspect 7,000 fire hydrants every month," he says, "that's the kind of asset management and compliance FM professionals do every day." 

Soflin admits that the company is still figuring out how best to address construction professionals. This is an area where the software market for contractors is already quite congested with several excellent CDE (common data environment) platforms. 

What's New

As Soflin and his team were headed into the mid-year summer months, Layer had recently updated to add really important new features like Templates. "Project Templates may seem like a small thing but they a really big step for us," says Soflin. "We are a very flexible platform and it can be daunting for users when they log in and see a blank slate and don't know what to do with it."

The new project templates pre-populate Layer with different types of forms and data workflows. For example, the Construction template adds workflows for RFIs, Submittals, Punch Lists, and Field Observation Reports. The Operations template adds workflows for Work Orders, Compliance Inspections, Asset Management, and Drawings, among other things. And the Design template pre-populates with Facility Audits, Punch Lists, and Coordination workflows to help architects and engineers better handle design coordination. 

The templates contain these various workflow components and pre-populate with the correct data fields, forms, and reports. This way users can get going right away with only minor tweaking. Of course, users can build from these templates and do major customization as well. They can also pull components from across templates. 

If an architect, owner, and general contractor agree to use Layer from the beginning or prior to construction, Layer can be started from the design side early in the project starting with the Design template and gradually pull components into the Layer workflow from the Construction and Operations templates. 

Layer for All Devices and Platforms

Layer is beautifully open in many ways—not just in its intrinsic flexibility as a data management tool but in its device and OS support. 

It runs on Mac and Windows desktops and on tablets and smartphones running Apple iOS and Google Android operating systems. When it was introduced, it ran only on iOS but Android devices are now supported as well. Finally, there is a Web version that operates in a browser. 

Team communication and collaboration via a LiveLink in Layer App. Real-time technology is foundational in Layer and enables more transparency and better collaboration.  (Image: Layer) 

In speaking to Soflin about Layer's beautifully articulated UI (user interface), he mentions "everything we do has to pass the test on all device types." "We don't have a separate code base where we are developing for mobile over here and desktop over here," he says. "We work from a single code base and deploy to all platforms. Fortunately, with where technology is today, we are able to do that really effectively to the point where you can't tell if you are working on a native app or a hybrid app like ours." 

An important final point about Layer is that everything you can do on the desktop app you can do on the mobile apps as well and on the web version. "From day one, all our features that were available on desktop needed to be available on the mobile app as well," he adds. 

Some RoadMap Items

Zach Soflin isn't going to tell the world their strategy but he did mention that AR (augmented reality) is an important item on the near-term roadmap. "We are working on a new field type that will allow us to capture a measurement using Apple's new AR technology in iOS. You can take a pretty accurate measurement direction on your iPhone," he says, noting that the ability to take field dimensions directly into Layer will be valuable to many users. 

"We kind of look at the overall tech sector...and one of the biggest values out there with any new tool is 'how well can this software talk to my other software?'"  --- Zach Soflin, AIA, Founder, Layer

One thing Layer isn't going to do is try to compete with similar CDE tools that support 3D model viewing with advanced BIM management features. Soflin did mention that the company is looking at the Forge Viewer as a way to bring about a simplified 3D model representation so that users can see an element and the data attached to it in a three-dimensional context without relying on in-depth BIM software. This would be valuable in the field and for operations. 

One final feature not yet discussed is the barcode support. Layer can scan barcodes and in the field bring up all related data associated with that scanned element. 

Closing Thoughts

The Layer App is a very promising new digital tool in the AECO world. It is one we are very much keeping our eye on because it is philosophically so open in spirit. As a modern mobile+cloud oriented software that runs everywhere, it seems extremely well-positioned to play an expanding role for architects, builders, and operators alike, as it takes on more integrations to other significant tools. 

In the final analysis. Layer App is looking to excel in the world of the API, where an application's success is increasingly based on its ability to connect with as many other applications in existence. "We kind of look at the overall tech sector...and one of the biggest values out there with any new tool is 'how well can this software talk with my other software?'"

Our Sponsor

Curated content: Emerging Technologies and their potential impact on CAD-based industries.


The Future of BIM Interop: 

Recently, after we published our first article on the Revit Open Letter by a group of British architects, I was contacted by the folks at 3D Repo, in the UK. Dr. Jozef Dobos, CEO of 3D Repo initially wrote in to discuss his views on the Revit Open Letter movement. He also, however, shared his views on the future of interoperability (interop) in the AECO industry. 

AEC Delta Project

Dr. Dobos chimed in on the Revit Open Letter partly because he felt the AECO industry is at an important inflection point in its digital tools history. Being that better "interoperability" was one of the main sticking points in the open letter he wanted to introduce to Architosh his company's work on an open-source technology his company helped create and shared and is known in the industry as the AEC Delta project. 

A lead slide image from the Dr. Al Fisher presentation on the AEC Delta project.  (Image: Buro Happold)

The AEC Delta project, in a nutshell, is an API technology project that enables applications to talk to each other and exchange data, including BIM applications. Some of the technology is embedded inside 3D Repo's namesake web application focused on the AECO industry. 

Dr. Dobos explained that AEC Delta is a collaboration between several companies in the UK that began in 2019. The notable engineering firm Buro Happold is one of those companies. As part of the Innovate UK-funded project, Dr. Al Fisher of Buro Happold goes through what AEC Delta is all about in this recorded event (here on YouTube), noting that AEC Delta, as a funded project, included partners Buro Happold, UCL, Rhomberg Sersa (Rail Group), and 3D Repo. Additional partners include HOK, Georgia Tech, ARUP, Hypar, SNC Lavalin, and Atkins. 

The project has three project deliverables, including an Open Delta specification, an open REST API specification, and open-source reference implementations. 

Dr. Fisher discussing the limitations of how we share information today in the AEC BIM world. 

The specific problem being addressed is how we share information in the AEC BIM industry. Today we share entire models (files we pass back and forth) but in the future, we will share only the data that has changed in models (deltas). (see the images above and below.)

Another view showing how "information" would be shared using a modern "diffing" process where software solutions pass along only the changes or "deltas" between systems which would be connected via APIs and talk to each other in often real-time methods. 

The current method is just as inefficient as in the world of changing 2D drawing files, to some extend. Both methods create large payloads, create problems for tracking changes, and are inefficient. AEC Delta project technology wants to be "transactional" not on a "file basis" but on a "diff" (diffing) basis. The term "diffing" comes from the GitHub world and it relates to how modern software is developed across geography and time. 

Rhino and Grasshopper are talking to 3D Repo and Speckle Works applications using this new AEC Delta open-source technology using Buro Happold's HBoM (life adapter) that passes data across the applications shown above. Watch the video here

Dr. Al Fisher shows in his talk early work at Buro Happold linking in their internal code (a plugin inside Rhino+GH) based on AEC Delta open-source specifications connecting to Speckle Works and 3D Repo. You can see all three applications updating each other using this new open-source AEC Delta technology at 11:13 in the video here. One has to admit this technology is cool and exciting!

You can see Buro Happold's contribution to this project here at The Buildings and Habitats object model (BHoM) web page. 

ASITE and 3D Repo

The folks at 3D Repo are very serious about the future of BIM/AEC interop. As one of the partners in the AEC Delta project, they have developed their own Diff technology and APIs to pass data back and forth to other applications. Dr. Jozef Dobos shared with me several webinar recordings that have taken place in the recent past. One of those was a webinar with ASITE and 3D Repo focused on custom integrations using each other's respective APIs. 

As explained in the webinar (which you can watch here, in full) ASITE sees themselves as "primarily in the business of holding data." And of providing that data to other software systems for use. 

ASITE features "workflows" which are fully customizable and can involve third-party applications via API integrations. In this particular webinar, the focus was on the integration between ASITE and 3D Repo. To build automation between these two platforms "trigger" events are built into each application (into specific workflows in ASITE, for example). 

ASITE's Take on Software Evolution

One of the more fascinating moments in this webinar recording was the discussion about the history of software. Traditionally, when new and successful software enters the market it offers a "unique selling point" (USP). Essentially, the entire software product builds features around its USP known as its core functionality (CF). (see the diagram below.)

Rob Clifton, senior VP, ASITE, explains during this talk about how software has existed in the past (left in diagram above) and how the present and future are shaping up. Successful software begins with a USP (unique selling point). Core functionality wraps the USP, but wider features add functionality that is not intrinsic to the USP and often overlap with competitor products. (wider functionality is outside core functionality and therefore does not deepen the USP.

When software expands its feature set it moves further away from its USP. This has two often undesired consequences. A widening of features places the software application in an ever-widening overlap with competitor software, while also diminishing focus and resources on the USP. 

Tech giants try to cover everything. Because they offer "connected platforms" there is an advantage in their tools working together. (think Microsoft, Adobe, and Autodesk, as examples). But this diversity and wide breadth of coverage tend to take away from focusing on their core areas of expertise and their USPs. The giants focus on tie-ins in their suites and platforms selling the virtue of strong connections and interop via "the platform." (eg: Microsoft leveraging its OS with its own web browser -- see left side of diagram below).

In the past, the value of software was placed on the strength of the USP. The strength of connections was often based on the software being connected by a platform under one company. But today's market is shaping up differently. Through API integrations, unique USPs from diverse software solutions can be connected to each other—not by virtue of a single platform under a single company but—via APIs built on solid and open technologies freely available to all. 

ASITE says the focus today in software is building out technologies that enable great connections between tools that are owned by separate companies and our outside major platforms, offering the advantages of connected data without the disadvantages of "legacy-oriented" file-based interop limitations. This is precisely what Zach Soflin, founder of Layer App, is talking about in the special feature above.

The advantage is you get better coverage of your business' requirements (being able to use best-of-breed tools together via API connections) but also gain the advantage of setting up your solutions in a much more personalized way than one can do with limiting yourself to collections of tools in single company platforms.  

By leveraging a diverse set of USPs (multiple best-in-breed tools) and building out custom workflows via API integrations, companies to tailor digital solutions to their specific needs at ever more personalized and effective levels. 

Rob Clifton, senior vice president of ASITE puts it this way: " is important when you are selecting software to work with that it is apart of this larger network of integrations. Software that sits out on its own and integrates poorly does not offer you the same potential and capacity going forward and is not as future-proof as those that are really connected to this web of software solutions." He draws the comparison to Apple's iPhone and notes the phone is the platform but all the apps on it are customized to each person. 

To watch this presentation in full go here. 

Further Analysis and Commentary:  In watching the ASITE and 3D Repo presentation the ASITE folks did note that to the uninitiated, setting up custom workflows in ASITE takes some training and experience. But it does not take any programming experience. This is a no-code / low-code environment.

In general, the larger point is that building custom workflows are worth it. One example showed the integration of SafetiBase with 3D Repo. "Pins" for the location of safety issues noticed in the field could be automatically located back in 3D Repo in the BIM model view. Likewise, another example showed how to add a barcode reader field to a custom tool built with Microsoft's Power Automate and Power Apps and have that data passed back to 3D Repo automatically upon scanning an item in the field. 

Member Acess—(emTech Section:  We provide further coverage of 3D Repo and Atkins in our special feature coming up. We also cover a list of digital tools that help users build their own software integrations. Most folks have heard of tools like Zapier but there are more tools out there that offer similar functionality. The ASITE folks touted the benefits of Power Automate but also noted that similar integrations between AEC and non-AEC tools were possible with rivals to Power Automate.

These additional stories and our analysis, commentary, and images are available to yearly INSIDER Membership subscribers, inside our upcoming
"Member Access—(emTech) Section Plus" feature. Lands 12 September 2020 -- see Architosh home page. 


The Revit Open Letter:

An Update

Over the past few weeks, I have had the opportunity to speak more with lain Godwin, the AEC industry veteran and IT consultant who has helped co-ordinate the Revit Open Letter initiated in Great Britain. I also had the opportunity to interview Autodesk CEO, Andrew Anagnost. Let's start with the update from Godwin.

The 'Letters to Autodesk" website went up in August to expedite the ability for firms to sign the letter. From my latest conversation with Godwin, the total signatories are now nearly 200 firms around the globe, in total with a significant number who signed anonymously. I understand from both Godwin and Anagnost that Anagnost and a small Autodesk team held a virtual meeting with the original British group of signatories. Anagnost on my call with him noted it was a productive call but that the contents of that call were confidential amongst the participants. Godwin was not a party to that meeting but did hear sentiment from the British firms who were attendees. 

One of the issues that is a sore point with the signatories was apparently the group's feelings about Anagnost's defense of Revit software costs. Anagnost personally penned a blog post on Autodesk's website addressing the British firms and the post had mixed reactions globally. In my call with Anagnost, he spent only a small amount of time addressing the licensing cost issue but I pushed hard to explain from an architect's experience (in this case my three-plus decades as an architect) that not everyone who works in a CAD or BIM program does so every day or even every week. I suggested that if other software companies can implement "usage-based" licensing (named or otherwise) that Autodesk could also. Anagnost agreed and said that their users' licensing issues will get addressed more fully in the near future. The named licensing model does not preclude the ability of Autodesk to implement licensing models based on usage. 

The cover image for Xpresso #18 focused on the Autodesk Revit Open Letter. 

A major feature on Architosh is planned around my conversation with Anagnost, one focused not just on the Revit Open Letter but the future of Autodesk's AEC vision and future Revit discussion. One item, however, that I wish to share here in this Xpresso #19 issue is about interoperability. 

The thrust of this Xpresso issue is about better and alternative versions of interop  (interoperability) in AEC. In the upcoming feature on Autodesk, Anagnost agrees that the future of interoperability is not passing files around, but rather data via APIs. Autodesk understands that APIs and integrations are the future of software, it is just not clear how Autodesk will go about implementing future APIs. One that got mentioned on my call with Anagnost was Autodesk Forge. But Revit's future with integration needs to step beyond Autodesk Forge platform APIs. Will it do so? Most likely...and firms are counting on it. 

Anagnost also shared quite a bit about IFC and the Revit file format and we had a good discussion about the work of the Open Design Alliance (ODA). I won't provide a spoiler now but in the upcoming article Autodesk's relationship with this organization definitely appears to have been changing in recent times. 


Good articles on the Revit Open Letter

A Reply To Our Customers' Open Letter on Autodesk Revit -- Autodesk

Leading architecture firms pen open letter to Autodesk over rising costs, sluggish development -- The Architects Newspaper

Autodesk AEC Customers Demand Better Value -- AEC Magazine

Xpresso Exclusive Preview: An Unhappy Marriage—Autodesk Revit Users Unite Around Open Letter -- Autodesk Xpresso

Autodesk Responds to Open Letter on Revit -- Architosh

British Designers Send Letter to Autodesk—Demand Revit Progress Fair Pricing -- Architosh

The Briefing

Biggest CAD Industry News Last Month

(the biggest news and features in August!)

Product Review: Trimble SketchUp Studio 2020 This in-depth product review focuses on the Sefaira technologies inside SketchUp Studio 2020. We walk through the process and illustrate the advantages of using Sefaira's technology for early design-phase energy and daylight analysis.  [12-15 min. read]  (Architosh). Highly recommended for AEC professionals interested in energy and daylight analysis and evidence-based design process.

Feature: Nemetschek Integrated Design—A Paradigm Shift for AECO
This feature delves into what "integrated design" means to the Nemetschek companies and how their new structural analysis model (SAM) carries data with it that enables it to talk to BIM tools, updating geometry in nearly real-time between analysis tools and BIM tools without the need for IFC.   [5-8 min. read]  (Architosh). Highly recommended for BIM professionals, especially structural engineers. 

AEC News: Bentley Moves Closer to Public Stock Offering
Bentley inches closer to offering its stock on the NASDAQ stock exchange. This is an interesting development ahead of planned-for massive infrastructure bills sitting in Washington DC. 
 [5 -min read] (Architosh). 

News: Unity Joins Blender Development Foundation
This adds further fire to Blender's arsenal of development resources as the open-source 3D tool continues to grow slowly more prominent in 3D markets.  [5 min. read]  (Architosh).

News: AU 2020 Imagine Possible—Autodesk University Goes Virtual
Like all trade shows this year AU is going virtual in November. We have it on word from Autodesk's CEO that folks will see some future AEC tools that speak to the frustration of the Revit Open Letter crowd.  [5-min read]  (Architosh).

News: Twinmotion 2020.2 is available from Epic Games

Epic announced the very latest update to Twinmotion. Version 2020.2 adds new Animator objects and a bunch more.   [5-min read]   (ArchitoshExciting news for visualization folks engaging in this tool for the first time. 

AEC News: Bluebeam Revu 20 Launched—Streamlines Remote Project Collaboration
This is the next big update of Bluebeam that didn't come with any Mac version as the Mac version is frozen while the company develops future plans for cloud-based tools. Future Macs on Apple Silicon will be able to run Revu for iOS and at that point, we believe Bluebeam will tweak the iOS codebase to provide a bit more functionality for its version for Macs with Apple Silicon.  [5-min read]  (Architosh). Big news for construction pros and architects alike!
End Note
Remember you can sign-up for architosh INSIDER Xpresso here -- a unique CAD industry newsletter with a special focus on emergent technologies (emTech) like AI, ML, robotics, 3D printing, AAD, computational design, and smart cities tech.

As we move forward, our format will evolve but will aim to focus on emTech in AEC and MCAD. We welcome your suggestions (

To see Past Issues visit this link here.  (sign-up for the newsletter here)

Anthony Frausto-Robledo, AIA, NCARB, LEED AP

This is a free newsletter and companion publication to 
Companies mentioned in this newsletter where I have a financial interest will be listed in this section. This is consistent with Architosh's Disclosure statement on our Ethics page here. 

Architosh or its owner has a financial interest in Simulicity, which was mentioned in this issue.
Architosh on Facebook
Architosh on Twitter
Architosh on LinkedIn
Architosh Readers Group on LinkedIn
Copyright © Architosh, INSIDER Xpresso, All rights reserved.

Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list.