Committee Confessions Chapter Nine: Come Feast with us in Aarhus!


Summer is upon us; which here in Denmark means the weather is going to alternate between ‘extraordinarily cloud dehydration (read: lots of rain) and ‘extraordinarily body re-hydration’ (read: sweat it all out at the beach).

However, I did, of course, did not post this blog for you to read about the Danish weather; but to share a few highlights from the upcoming BILT EUR 2017 event; where you will alternate between having an intellectual feast (read: excellent sessions) and an actual feast (read: we’ll keep you delightfully fed).

This year’s theme is #BeyondAutomation; which we kick off with the Danish authority on Exponential Thinking and Disruption, Anders Hvid – after which the schedule is a festive smorgasbord with no less than 7 concurring sessions to choose from at most times (and really you should pop by and just take it all in).

So what am I looking forward to? For one, there is so much talk about BIG data; but still limited action-ability on what to with ‘all that data’ – so Jay Zallan from the Cuningham Groups, ‘BIG data in AECO and How to Get there’ is on my bucket list. Jay pitched this session at last year’s Vision 20/20 competition (which you can read more about soon – but essentially it’s a 7-minute plenary pitch at the end of the conference). Jay has a great personality – and a message he wants out.

I’d also want to get a bit familiar with Unity’s 3D engine – and how to Build Your Own VR BIM Games which Johan Hanegraaf is doing a class on (and I’d love to see what you all end up creating in the VR realm). At the same time Halvor Jensen from NTI Cadcenter is speaking about the journey from OpenBIM to Facility Management; which professionally is of great interest to me – so I’ll have to make up my mind about what session to attend. Luckily we do have a good spread of sessions that address an overall topic from a different angle; so Halvors session is followed up by Piu Hung Yuens session on ‘Breaking New Ground in BIM and Asset Management for Efficient Operations and Maintenance’.

Day one for me will most likely end with either catching up with Autodesk’s Anthony Hauck giving us an update on their ventures into generative design with Project Fractal; that has been making some really cool progress lately – and the whole concept of letting algorithms crunch through design outputs is something that I believe will be a radical disruptor in our industry. My other option is Doug Williams from Leo A Daly who is aiming to answer the age old question of ‘How to Row a Boat with 20 Oars Paddling in Different Directions? ’ – a challenge many of us are facing when managing diverse interests and agendas in our firms.

Nonetheless, it’s going to be a busy day and I’ll look forward to catching up with all of you (or at least a good portion of you) during the Welcome function and get a closer look at what new offerings our exhibitors have brought with them.

Day two for me starts with getting on stage for delivering our Glorious Gadgets section and give you all a glimpse of some of the technologies we think are either straight up cool, fun, useful or simply just whacky – but still relevant for our industry (if you have seen or tried something we should take a look at being sure to give me a heads up).

Being in the MEP industry I need to catch Emil Edvardsens session on Revit MEP and MagiCAD – but if you’re into structural you would want to catch Nathan Love from AECOMs  ‘Enhancing your Structural Detailing Skills’. After lunch I’m again torn between two sessions; Kevin Fielding is showing how to do Revit to IFC properly, but I might also just want to step away from reality and get in Henning Birkbaks ‘BIM Time Travel and BIM Dream Come true’ that explores a 100.000 m2 hospital project.

Out of the thirteen sessions taking place in the afternoon there are many goodies I’m considering doing Alejandro Mata from Rambølls lab-session on Supercharge OpenBIM: Dynamo for IFC and BCF, Kyle Bernhardt from Autodesk is picking up the unicorn baton with the aptly named Unicorns and Rainbows – how they approaching the Project Deliver space; and with Unicorns in the title you know it is going to be good!

Last year I saw Greg Demchak pull off some cool stuff with Microsoft Hololens; so I’m keen on letting his session on 4D Visualisation with Mixed Reality be my warm-up for the Friday function taking place at the Moesgaard Museum; an architectural marvel in the forest dedicated to showing our Viking history. The exhibitions are state-of-the-art; the food and drinks are going to foster entertaining conversation; I’m really looking forward to it.

Now that I’ve kept you reading all the way to day three, remember these are just my highlights, there are plenty of other sessions to choose from. For me the third and last day of BILT Europe will start with looking into the Automation of Architecture – Worst Fear or Radical Opportunity; not because I’m an architect, but because I think what Brian Ringley and Andrew Heumann will address is relevant for other disciplines and stakeholders at well. I am going to follow that up with Jorge Barrero from HKS showing how 3D printed buildings actually work.

Following Lunch, I’d want to join one of two forum sessions both exploring how we collaborate and grow together. In one session Virat Manchanda facilitates a group discussion on the Human Ressource aspect of BIM implementation and in another Desiree Mackey hosts a panel that seeks to shed some light on how we work across multiple generations.

For the last round of sessions; Richard Kuppusamy from Lendlease will show how to document stupendous erections (and he is talking about high rise building mind you); simply because the title makes me laugh – or join the forum on using open standards and a parametric IFC project library definition hosted by Mark Wieringa.

Finally, I’ll jump back on stage with the rest of the team for our closing plenary and my highlight of the day which is our Pecha Kucha style competition known as Vision 20/20 where YOU can win glorious prizes (including a speaking slot for 2018) by addressing the theme of “Beyond Automation” (but we’re going to save that for another e-mail).

Now that you stayed with me for more than a thousand words; hop on over to the BILT website – make your personal schedule – register – and get ready to feast like a BIM Viking in Aarhus!

 Image credits: “Thanksgiving at the Trolls” by floodllama via flickr

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