Sunday, January 27, 2013

ArchiCAD Training in Arabic - Layer Settings & Control Box

Hi All!

We had a 3 days weekend and today we are back at the office! Well, a long weekend was very much needed since we have been quite busy lately.

Of course there is a down side of a long weekend. I have around 3 million emails waiting for me to reply. Therefore I don't have much to write today.

I am very lucky though:) My hardworking colleague Fady, recorded some more training videos in Arabic. Today we will be sharing a 26 minutes video about "Layer Settings and Control Box".

Fady Londy
Diyane Koseoglu

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

ArchiCAD Trainings in Arabic!

Good Afternoon All!

I have very great news for you!

Our Cairo office has been busy with creating ArchiCAD training materials in ARABIC! I know almost everyone speaks English in the Middle East but learning ArchiCAD in your native language is a lot better:)

Before sharing it with you, I would like to thank Fady Londy for the great work!

Today we are posting 2 videos and new ones will come everyday...

Diyane Koseoglu
Fady Londy

Monday, January 21, 2013

What Makes a Good Estimating Model?

What makes a good estimating model?

It depends on the phase! A good estimating model in design phase or pre-construction phase?

Since BIMES is mostly involved in pre-construction phase, I would like to focus on this in this post:

1 - Model according to means and methods of construction:
The most important thing is doing the model according to the actual means and methods of the construction.   What do I mean?
Well, column height is the best example for this. You can model your columns as a single piece from bottom to top of the project. However in real life, the columns are constructed floor by floor. The right approach is modeling the columns floor by floor the way they are built. The start and end point of a column is also important. Is it from structural slab top to structural slab top or from structural slab top to structural slab bottom? You need to answer these kind of questions beofer starting the project.

2 - Model according to the output required:
You need to understand what output is required from the model before starting. Make sure that you understand it in detail. For instance, the concrete quantities! How to segregate it? Just a floor by floor element quantity might be enough! Or you might have to segregate it as per the concrete grade. Once you understand this, plan which information will be entered to which area? You can sort it by using layers or the custom IFC parameters introduced in ArchiCAD 16.
Image courtesy of adamr /

3 - What should be modeled? What should NOT be modeled? 
An important decision that depends on 2 main factors:
  • Time allocated for modeling
  • Future use of the model
For instance, you are modeling for tender which means you have very limited time! So you have to model smartly. For instance you can model the exterior walls conceptually and use the exterior surface area only and make assumptions for the insulation etc. It would work very well if you bid for the project but don't get it:)

However if you get the project, you will have to provides details of the wall skins/sub-components for accurate estimates as well as shop drawings. You might think, I will just replace the wall or increase it's detail level but most of the case, remodeling would be preferred by the modeler.

In another case, if the model will be used only for coordination and quantities then you can work with abstract elements and attach unit costs.

So we usually have a kick off meeting before starting the project to discuss these details and draw a road map. This is very important for a successful and efficient BIM Modeling process.

Diyane Koseoglu

Monday, January 7, 2013

BIM Dictionary

Image courtesy of wiangya /

BIM is still at the crawling phase in terms of establishing standards and processes.

BIM Tools are developing everyday and introducing significant changes. Sometimes these changes are so significant that the process should be almost rewritten.

There are also local factors effecting the processes. Many things that are standardized in Europe or North America are not accepted/implemented in the Middle East for instance.

So the BIM world is a little bit chaotic due to the speed difference between development and implementation.

I am in day-to-day BIM business and I still come up with new terminology every day. Keeping up with the latest developments is challenging even for me.

Sometimes I feel like whoever wakes up early invents a new term:)

New terms are not that bad actually. The worse is if people do not agree on the meaning of the same term.

Like 6D.

To me, 6D is Facilities Management.

But some claims it's procurement.

The difference between federated, integrated and consolidated models is totally another story.
Image courtesy of Danilo Rizzuti /

When this chaos is combined with "lack of knowledge", then all I can do is to wish you good luck:)

I wish Building Smart was more active on this and create a BIM Dictionary!

A dictionary that would be accepted by all the vendors!

A dictionary that can be refernce point for all BIM profesionalls!

Have a great day!

Diyane Koseoglu.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Are contractors scared of BIM?

My answer is a big YES!

This is understandable because BIM means process change and process changes are always painful.
Image courtesy of Ambro /

When they see the BIM Specification in the tender documents, the stress starts!

They understand it requires expertise and most of the time they decide to outsource it to a "BIM Consultant".

They start preparing an RFP for the BIM Consultant. The main target of this RFP is to make sure that all the responsibility is transferred to BIM Consultant and General Contractor is stress free.

This is also understandable but some of them exaggerates the situation.

I have recently received some RFPs that are absolutely unrealistic.

I am not sure how to explain this without going into specifics. They are almost like "BIM consultant is to be blamed if someone breaks his leg while skiing:) Whatever happens on earth, blame the BIM Consultant."

If you are not reasonable in what you want, you will receive non-reasonable proposals of course. I am not talking about extremely high costs.

I am talking about people who are not familiar with construction will send you proposals without understanding the responsibility they are taking.

Unfortunately some BIM Consultants are "software guys" not "construction" and they can not even imagine the risk they are taking.

I saw many projects the above scenario happened.
Image courtesy of Stockimages /


Unfortunately failure and many problems for all the parties involved!

My advise...
- Be reasonable in the RFP.
- Get suspicious if some BIM Consultants hesitate to provide you a proposal:)

I am sorry for such a negative post on the last day of the week but I just received another strange RFP:)

Have a fabulous weekend!

Diyane Koseoglu