At AECnews.com, Randall Newton offers a Reporter’s Notebook: A Day at the Virtual Builders Roundtable, a US event organised by practitioners for practitioners. From his notes, two items stood out to me.
First: "The general consensus regarding FTP (File Transfer Protocol) as a tool for collaboration seems to be, if you still have FTP hanging around your workflow, take it out back and shoot it. Several speakers praised the use of construction-specific content management systems. (Autodesk claims that Buzzsaw, its Web-based collaboration tool, is now the second-most widely used Application Service Provider (ASP) product, after Salesforce.com.)"
Of course, I endorse the FTP comment, but the claim by Autodesk made my jaw drop a bit. I would be interested, particularly in the context of my points last week (see US collaboration market share data), to see some statistics to support this statement. Buzzsaw may, of course, be a long way behind Salesforce.com (today the latter claims 18,700 customers and 351,000 subscribers to the three editions of its CRM application), but it would be good to know which other ASP products’ user bases Autodesk has assessed – and how – to make this claim.
Second: "You have to hit the “Three Fears of BIM” head on, says Kenig. Those fears are Legal (“Who do we sue when this doesn’t work?”), Change (“Why do we have to do it that way?”), and Betamax (“What if the technology we choose loses in the marketplace?”) The specifics of how you respond will be unique to your organization."
I liked this comment because it almost exactly echoes the fears that were expressed about construction collaboration technologies when they were first introduced (to be fair, much the same points are still sometimes made today – only less often).