NightTec, a pioneer in “light cycling” recently announced that their latest development could save up to 212 million megawatt-hours of energy in Germany annually. By embedding phosphorescent crystals in the surface of concrete, the company has created glow in the dark concrete that charges during the day and emits a glow at light at night. The glow can be utilized in residential and commercial interiors and exteriors for everything from leading the way to emergency exits to helicopter landing pads. We love seeing technology and sustainability come together to improve construction.
Published May 17, 2013
The Construction Open Software Alliance (COSA) is collaborating on the promotion of standards data exchange within the construction industry. COSA (constructionosa.org)supports the agcXML initiative and will submit schemas that it develops for review and ratification by AGC. In addition it will provide a platform among its members for testing and promoting the use of agcXML schemas in real-life production environments.
AGC appreciates the vision of COSA and its members and expresses…
At 75 pounds and 1.5 feet tall, DPR and Trimble’s latest innovation, Project Lion, is doing big things with small technology. The two firms have been working on what they call a “laybot,” an autonomous layout robot that marks lines on slabs for interior construction. The robot can already mark slabs at twice the rate of experienced drywallers but project managers are aiming for a rate of over 6X as fast as human workers. The robot is driven by signals from a nearby robotic-total-station (RTS) loaded with the appropriate BIM files.
Casale says the pilot grew out of DPR’s work on the University of California, San Francisco, Mission Bay medical center, a one-million-sq-ft hospital with 180 beds. “We were self-performing the drywall on the project, so we had a great opportunity to see how we could leverage BIM to make ourselves more efficient,” Casale notes.
Published in Constructech Magazine
May/June 2013 Issue
By Mike Carrozzo
Although you’ll never him to admit as much, James Benham stirred the pot in construction. When the founder and president of JB Knowledge, www.jbknowledge.com, Bryan, Texas took the stage at the AGC IT Conference last fall, his announcement to the construction industry was direct: The formation of COSA (Construction Open Software Alliance). His message to the construction industry, however, was a bit more indirect: “Let’s get moving here.”
The concept he is pushing is “get moving” for open standards, which is where COSA comes in. Made up of cloud and desktop-based technology offerings, such as…
Thanks to the steady flow of feedback our clients provide, we’ve implemented the following updates to our software and they are now live for all users. Please let us know if you have any additional requests or concerns, we always want to hear how our system can serve you better.
ADMIN: System administrators can now restrict communication templates to specific users or specific offices.
ADMIN: System administrators can now restrict company groups to specific users or specific offices.
ADMIN: The system will now allow users to upload logos by internal office, the system will display this logo on corresponding subcontractor’’s project screens or prequal screens.
ADMIN: In the Audit tab, a ‘DO NOT USE’ check box has been added under Location and Company.
ADMIN: Custom Fields now have a new field type option allowing for multiple lines of text.
COMMUNICATIONS: SmartBidNet Email/Fax Summary will now list the attachments and project description of sent communications.
COMMUNICATIONS: Users will no longer be able to send abnormally sized documents via fax, all faxes must be no larger than 8.5×11 to ensure delivery as an attachment to fax machines.
PREQUAL: Primary and shared managers of prequal forms will now receive submittal notifications just like notifications in bid projects.
PREQUAL: Prequalification data will now autosave for the sub as they are completing the form.
PREQUAL: System will protect subcontractor data integrity by preventing the merge data of subcontractors actively responding to a prequalification.
PREQUAL: Users will now be notified, on the last prequal approval step, that the corresponding subcontractor profile in the system will be updated.
BID PROJECTS: A ‘MARK AS’ button has been added to Tab 6a of the Bid Approval Procedure to bulk update the Company’s project status.
BID PROJECTS: A bid’s status will ONLY be marked as ‘Open to Bid’ once the first invitation has been sent – not when a sub has an invitation pending.
BID PROJECTS: Projects in the Recycle Bin can now be sorted by office.
PLAN ROOM: Users can now copy the entire file folder structure, including sub folders, when creating a project template.
REPORTS: A header will now be added to PDF exports to better identify the data being downloaded.
CORRECTIONS: We also uploaded numerous corrections and bug fixes to the software.
May 8, 2013
Premier IT solutions provider, JB Knowledge Technologies, Inc. becomes one of only two companies named to both LSU 100 and Texas A&M University’s Aggie 100 for exceptional company growth.
JB Knowledge Technologies, Inc., maker of SmartBidNet and SmartCompliance business solutions, has been honored as one of the 2013 LSU 100: Fastest Growing Tiger Businesses. JBKnowledge is only the second company to be named to both the LSU 100 and Texas A&M University’s Aggie 100. Father and son duo, Jim andJames Benham, started the company in 2001 and have been recognized by their respective universities over the past several years.
LSU alum, Jim Benham successfully pioneered four companies before starting JBKnowledge with son, James, a graduate of Texas A&M University. Based upon its compounded annual growth rate from 2009-2011, JBKnowledge ranked 24th among the 2013 LSU 100 honorees.
“Since receiving my degree at LSU, I’ve had the pleasure of leading several successful companies and leading one with my son has been the icing on the cake. I’m proud of this great university and the values it instilled in me, and even prouder…
“The marketing in the commercial real estate industry is absolutely abysmal,” co-founder and CEO Dave Eisenberg said in a phone interview before Disrupt. “The two-dimensional floor plan has not evolved in decades.”
Using a 3D imaging device developed by Matterport that employs Kinect technology, Floored has created a way to transform real estate models. Within 48-92 hours of capturing digital images of a space, Floored can make the space available and editable via the web or mobile app for stakeholders to investigate its potential.
“Matterport is a pretty incredible technology company. They incorporated the Kinect into a device they built,” Eisenberg said. “It’s the first point-and-shoot solution to grab a 3D capture of your environment.”
Floored’s 3D paperless models allow for an impressive range of customization – from adding furnishings to a space to adjusting the lighting. In real-time, spaces can be displayed and manipulated for project owners, investors, or anyone else brainstorming on the build out of a piece of commercial or residential real estate.
By now, you’ve heard of 3D printing and projects like the KamerMaker promising to produce the first printed structures and homes. But MIT’s Department of Architecture, led by the awesomely-named Skylar Tibbits, is taking it one step further. 4D would mean not only printing in 3D, but printing objects that are inherently self-adapting – therefore the printed form doesn’t have to be the final product.
“What we’re saying here is, you design something, you print it, it evolves,” Tibbits said in an interview. “It’s like naturally embedding smartness into the materials.”
Now imagine self-adapting buildings, bridges, roadways, and more. Getting excited? It’s easier to be a technology nerd than you thought, huh?
Updates to Both Apps
PLAN ROOM: Users can now browse through all bid project files, see file information and quick view them.
Updates to the iOS App
PLAN ROOM: Users can open files using Safari and from there save them to a variety of third party apps such as iBooks or Dropbox.
USER INTERFACE: The UI has been updated including a redesign of the Login, Sync, and About screens.
Updates to the Android App
PLAN ROOM: Users can now browse through all bid project files, see file information, quick view and download to the local storage drive.
USER INTERFACE: The UI, including the login screen, has been updated to be consistent with the Android interface look and feel. Synchronization of data from the app to the device has also improved in quality.
DEVICES: The app is now supported on a variety of Android tablets and smart devices.
Published in Constructech Magazine
March 12, 2013
As the construction industry evolves so too does the use of construction technology on projects and in companies. One area that continues to progress is online bidding and subcontractor prequalification. Managing all this can be challenging, but construction companies are finding technology can ease processes.
Such is the case with the Swinerton Family of Companies, www.swinerton.com, San Francisco, Calif. Part of the company’s strategy is to prioritize investment in construction technology. The company has adopted technology for years, but systems and processes within the company have evolved as the industry progressed.
Looking back 15 years ago, the company was using home-grown construction management and accounting software, along with scheduling software and customized spreadsheets for estimating to access data in the field and manage business processes.