Data Day Speaker Chat #2

For those of you who may not have heard, Data Day plans have been progressing quietly behind the scenes.  We have three incredible speakers lined up, plus a fantastic keynote presentation.

We introduced one to you last week, by way of a speaker profile piece: Guy Messick.

This week we bring to you another of our speakers, Brian Ringley.  Brian is a Group Design Technology Specialist at Woods Bagot’s New York office.  We spoke to Brian prior to inviting him to speak:


RTC: Given the broad context for the event, how do you anticipate contributing as a speaker? 

Brian: I would discuss interoperable workflows at Woods Bagot and how the organization of project data is central to this process, whether it be building information or broader data sets such as task management or HR systems which still play a large role in project delivery. I also have some more general thoughts and opinions on data in AEC that have been published in Randy Deutsch’s Data-Driven Design and Construction, which would be worth re-hashing.


Image: Classification of model data types, originally published in Randy Deutsch’s Data-Driven Design and Construction (2016, Wiley)


RTC: What contribution could you offer to the AECO/FM industry that will support growth and reform with respect to its capability and maturity of dealing with data? 

Brian: I would illustrate how Flux is a widely available, low learning-curve tool that democratizes interoperability for designers. More broadly I’d also explain how architects can protect and manage project data through generic organizational schema such as XML and JSON.


Image: Flux’s web-based visual programming tool “Flow” being used to sort Revit level elements, expressed as JSON objects, based on Z elevation and tower location.


RTC: What lessons have you learned that would benefit others? 

Brian: There are a lot of pitfalls in interoperability workflows that come from making assumptions about how data should be exchanged between platforms and projects – I’d like to point out some of these as lessons I’ve learned through project experience in case study format.

RTC: How have you learned/what have you learnt to effectively manage data toward some greater return? 

Brian: Know your metrics before you begin sourcing and curating data – often the use of data is seen as a means to an end in itself. The curation process should be uniform to promote collaboration and interoperability between teams and platforms. Ensure that your software platform is capable of parametrically driving decisions with data – otherwise it’s a bit of a dead end, or an inefficient workflow at best.

RTC: How could that be further applied by others?  What challenges have you faced that you have overcome or are still wrestling with?

Brian: The use of data, particularly larger sets of data, is still a fairly new skill set for architects, which is why we look to urbanists and computer scientists who have been doing this for quite some time. As an industry who are just now (arguably) getting a hold on building information, there’s still much to be developed to find a standard industry way of working with databases, and also looking at a building information model as an ecosystem of models encapsulated with a query-able database and not a platform-specific entity such as a Revit model or an Archicad model.


Image: Toward a holistic model: An ecosystem of deliverable and phase-driven models for a typical project encapsulated within a single cloud database

So that’s a bit of an insight into Brian’s mind, and what to expect from him on Data Day.  Stay tuned for further news about Data Day and insights from our other speakers!  July 13 is just around the corner!


P.S. Overheard at an event I was at, at which Brian presented, spoken from a local government official: “Did you say this guy was… an architect?”  Brian is far from what most people would hold to be the ‘typical’ architect – and she meant it in a very complimentary way!

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