Asite’s website has revealed the “major new development” announced at last week’s half-day conference (see previous post). It was two ‘new’ products: Asite Workspace and Asite Building Information Model (BIM).
Asite Workspace is described in Asite’s press release as:
“an entry level collaboration tool, addressing the concerns of the industry highlighted by the 2006 NCCTP research… removing the barriers to collaboration by providing a cost effective entry point. Project teams and supply chain can now start to collaborate right at the start of a project, when the advanced features of sister product Asite Project Workflow are not yet required. Smaller projects can also have access to affordable collaborative technology.”
Don’t all rush at once…. Workspace apparently isn’t available until December 2006.
Asite had a previous product called Workspace (“document management systems”), similarly positioned below Project Workflow, two years ago – see p.3 of 2004 Annual Report – is this perhaps an upgrade or a replacement? Certainly, the name’s not new within Asite, and nor is it new within the British AEC software market: Union Square has a product of the same name (and the name has also been used by Groove and IBM, among other software vendors). Will Union Square take kindly to Asite (re)launching a competing product with the same name?
Asite BIM is:
“More than just a 3D model which only stores graphical information, BIM incorporates “Smart Objects”; For example an air conditioning unit within a BIM would also contain data about its supplier, lead in times, operation and maintenance procedures, flow rates and clearance requirements.”
I was struck by the similarity of this description and that of “i-components” (‘intelligent components’) developed by BIW over half a decade ago (see January 2001 press cutting). Again, the Asite product doesn’t seem to be available yet – the release is said by Asite to be “forthcoming”.