Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Model validation through scheduling

Even if you never get into providing quantities for QS purposes from your model, GET familiar with the scheduling capabilities of your modeller (as in software-application).
Automated scheduling is extremely useful for checking and validating the up-to-dateness, correctness and integrity of the model.

The idea is to use labels (metadata) within elements to reflect the stage they are at.
For example, let’s assume all the internal joinery (doors) are modelled first as ‘generic’.
Their labels will be identical with what the consultants had called them (D01 or DG1011 or ...).
As these doors get more defined (type, size, finishes, fire/acoustic ratings) – additional characters can be added to the labels. (i.e. an “F” that fire-rating has been checked and approved);

A quick listing of all doors will show up, if any of them have been missed in the updating process.

If this tip sounds totally like a ‘no-brainer’, i.e. something everyone knows, look around your office and assess what processes are used to do the same thing?
My guess is, printed/plotted drawings and schedules (of consultant info) and manual-checking through individual elements.

This approach suits construction supporting modelling particularly well, though I can see it applied at the design-end too, specially where multiple users work on the same model and/or when the decision makers aren’t necessary the ones that are doing the changes to the model.