360° developments from HoloBuilder and Panono

HoloBuilder launches SiteAI progress control

HoloBuilder LogoHoloBuilder, San Francisco-based provider of 360° reality capture for construction sites, is adding an Artificial Intelligence solution, “SiteAI”, to automate  progress control. The solution (released at Autodesk University 2018 in November) uses computer vision and deep learning to analyze materials, objects and structures captured in 360° imagery data on the HoloBuilder platform. SiteAI allows for automation of construction processes, especially focused on progress tracking.
HoloBuilder SiteAI ProcessAutomated progress control calculates progress reports without additional effort from capturing weekly 360° progress photos. The progress can be automatically tracked, analyzed and compared to the planned schedule to detect discrepancies as fast as possible. When SiteAI is implemented across projects, it allows processing progress payments faster, knowing the quantity for specific materials, comparing construction progress to schedules and much more.
SiteAI has been developed in collaboration with US Hensel Phelps – also a collaborator in developing HoloBuilder’s 360 Documentation solution (July 2017 post), available in Europe. With tens of thousands of 360° images captured, Hensel Phelps has been actively piloting HoloBuilder’s Computer Vision algorithm to automatically analyze the work put in place by location. Will Plato, VDC Manager of the Southwest District at Hensel Phelps said:
“The partnership that Hensel Phelps has created with Holobuilder is built around their understanding of our jobsite photo documentation process and how their solution brought immediate improvements and efficiencies to our people. Their capability to do more with data through the development of SiteAI brings additional value and analytics to our construction scheduling and execution. I am excited about the future as the possibility of bringing data silos to an end is truly going to be obtainable.  They are letting us document the landmarks of today so that we can construct the reality of tomorrow.”
SiteAI is in an early-access program stage for selected customers with the company asking more customers to join the waitlist. It will be accessible to HoloBuilder users in early 2019.


Panono 360 cameraI don’t know what devices are used to provide imagery to Holobuilder, but I recently saw a novel reality capture tool: a 360° camera from Germany-based Panono was demonstrated at the recent COMIT community day in London. The ball-shaped device has 36 cameras which trigger simultaneously to capture their environment in a spherical panoramic photo. With a total resolution of 108MP it is the highest resolution 360° camera on the market.

Panono provides a cloud-based, fully-automated hosting environment in which images (‘spheres’) can be stitched together in minutes, and viewed using Panono’s viewer software. Spheres can also be downloaded as high resolution JPG files (16k Equirectangular) for VR application or analog use. Panono logoThe camera costs €2141 (including VAT and shipping – c. £1931 or US$2441) but a November special offer dropped the price by 25% to €1545.

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