Model

44. Information Management Cycle

Information-Management-Cycle

Information Management Cycle v0.3 (Full-size Image)

This high-level conceptual model describes the Information Management Cycles that Structured Project Information pass through [1]. Each Cycle includes three Information Management States, separated by varied Information Management Activities conducted by specialised Information Management Actors:

Information Management States

The three states describe how Structured Project Information can be experienced as either:

[A] Information Requirements: project specifications, protocols or similar that identify what needs to be generated by project stakeholders. Information Requirements can be represented as a set of Document Uses, Model Uses and Data Uses.

[B] Digital Deliverables: digital simulations of physical objects and how/when they’ll be constructed or fabricated. Digital Deliverables can either be documents (in digital format -e.g. CAD drawings or a PDF furniture lists), models and/or data sets.

[C] Physical Assets: information embodied within real world objects similar to whole facilities, a building, mechanical system, heating unit, or a single pump.

Information Management Activities

The transitions between these Information Management States are represented as either forward or reverse activities. Forward Cycle Activities refer to the actions executed to cross from one state to the next; while Reverse Cycle Activities refer to the measurements made to examine one state against its preceding one. Sample activities [2] are provided below:

  • Forward Execution Activities from [A] to [B]: the activities typically conducted during a project’s Design Phase which includes the planning and specifications sub-phases (e.g. drafting, drawing, detailing, and modelling); and
  • Reverse Measurement Activities from [B] to [A]: the activities necessary to verify or validate digital deliverables against information requirements (e.g. checking floor areas in a BIModel against a client’s spatial requirements).
  • Forward Execution Activities from [B] to [C]: all the activities typically conducted during the Construction Phase which includes construction planning and commissioning (e.g. laying floors, mounting ceilings, and painting walls); and
  • Reverse Measurement Activities from [C] to [B]: the activities necessary to test and confirm physical outputs against digital deliverables (e.g. checking the placement of duct hangers on site against relevant models or mechanical shop drawings).
  • Forward Execution Activities from [C] to [A]: all the activities typically conducted during the Operation Phase which includes management, maintenance and decommissioning (e.g. cleaning rooms, repairing down-pipes, replacing roof tiles); and
  • Reverse Measurement Activities from [A] to [C]: the activities necessary to capture data pertaining to a physical asset or to monitor the performance of a physical system (e.g. data capture through laser scanning and data monitoring through sensors).

Information Management Actors

The Information Management Activities separating Information Management States are conducted by actors which are either humans and/or computers. There are three main actors who operate throughout the Information Management Cycle:

  • Design Information Management Actors: executing the transition from Information Requirements to Digital Deliverables and measuring (e.g. verifying or validating) how well Digital Deliverables match with Information Requirements;
  • Construction Information Management Actors: executing the transition from Digital Deliverables to Physical Assets and measuring (e.g. testing or confirming) how well Physical Assets match with Digital Deliverables; and
  • Operation Information Management Actors: executing actions applied to Physical Assets (e.g. operating, maintaining and decommissioning). Also these actors can either (a) measure - e.g. capture or monitor - how well a Physical Asset matches with the Information Requirements covering the asset (within the same Information Management Cycle), or (b) measure one or more Physical Assets in order to generate new Information Requirements within a new Information Management Cycle.

Actors may overlap and replace each other. Depending on the current state of technologies, processes and policies within a market, two or even one Information Management Actor may be able to complete all execution and measurement activities across an Information Management Cycle [3].

 


Acknowledgements

The following colleagues have provided improvement suggestions to an earlier version of this model: AProf. Sheryl Staub-French, AProf. Julie Jupp, Ms. Marzia Bolpagni, and Mr. Victor Roig Segura. Thank you to all.

 


Endnotes

[1] Each Information Management Cycle has a nominal start (e.g. information covering the design of a new physical asset) and a nominal end (e.g. information decimated through the demolition of an asset). However, it is possible and even probable that the same information would persist over a number of Cycles (e.g. through iterative renovation of the same physical asset).

[2] Activities are a subset of ‘Relations’ within the Conceptual BIM Ontology.

[3] This model is part of the BIMe Initiative Integrated Information Platform project


43. Product Development Diagram

BIMe-Initiative-Product-Development-DiagramBIMe Initiative Product Development Diagram (full size image)

This diagram illustrates the process of delivering a BIMe Initiative Product (a Published Guide or a Software Application): a Top-Level Project must be first launched. Each Top-Level Project typically includes both existing components (e.g. a taxonomy or a classification) and new components. Existing components are (a) selected from the Knowledge Object Library, a public resource available through BIMexcellence.org. New components (e.g. a framework or a software module) are (b) generated by BIMe Members through Micro Projects. Once completed and validated, all components are (c) packaged into a new BIMe Product. Once tested and verified, the new product is (d) released through the Product Library (a webpage on BIMexcellence.org) and all newly generated components are (e) added to the Knowledge Object Library for future reuse. As opposed to the Knowledge Object Library and the Product Library, which are both publicly available resources, the generation of new components and end products are conducted within the Project Space (wiki pages, chat rooms and physical meetings) which are accessible to BIMe Members and invited international collaborators.

To understand Conceptual Components (also referred to as Conceptual Constructs), please review the Conceptual Hierarchy and - as an example - how components populate the Research Continuum. Also, for more information about BIMe Initiative products, projects, and how they are managed, please refer to 103in BIMe Initiative Projects.


42. BIMe Initiative Knowledge Structure

image from www.bimframework.infoBIMe Initiative Knowledge Structure (full size image)

This model represents the Knowledge Structure which the BIMe Initiative (BIMexcellence.org) is reliant upon to deliver interconnected software applications, guides, conceptual structures and learning materials. The Knowledge Structure is composed of five complementary Knowledge Sets:

  • KS1 Knowledge Foundations represents all the research supporting the BIMe Initiative;
  • KS2 Knowledge Blocks represents the modular language developed/used by the BIMe Initiative to define inputs, processes and outputs;
  • KS3 Knowledge Tools represents all the digital and analogue tools/templates used to conduct knowledge acquisition, engineering and sharing;
  • KS4 Knowledge Workflows represents all repeatable procedures for knowledge acquisition and service delivery; and
  • KS5 Knowledge Views identifies the varied ways the BIMe Initiative activities and deliverables can be represented and communicated.

The Knowledge Sets and their subsets form the bases for all BIMe Initiative Projects (refer to 103in); organise the activities of the BIMe Initiative Network (refer to 104in); and allow the development of an expansive Knowledge Object Library.


37. Model Uses - Conceptual Structures

Model Uses are the “expected or intended project deliverables expected from generating, collaborating-on and linking 3D models to external databases” (BIM Dictionary, 2015). Each Model Use represents a set of defined requirements, specialised activities and specific project outcomes, grouped together under a single heading. 

Model Uses [1] rely on the conceptual structures of the BIM Framework, namely: the Tri-Axial Framework, Competency Framework, and BIM Ontology - Figure 1:

   Model-Uses-Conceptual-StructuresFigure 1. Conceptual Structure underlying Model Uses (Full Size v0.3 or Older Version )

As highlighted in Figure 1, Model Uses are supported by three conceptual structures [2] - Updated May 2, 2016:

  • Within the Tri-Axial Framework, Model Uses are deliverables [Tri-axial Framework>Fields>Field Components>Deliverables (Model-based Deliverables, identified through the Information Management Lens)] (refer to Papers A2 and A5);
  • According to the BIM Ontology, a Model Use is a knowledge block [BIM Ontology>Knowledge Objects>Knowledge Sets>Knowledge Blocks> Information Uses > Model Uses] (refer to Thesis, Appendix A); and
  • Within the Competency Framework, Model Uses are competency topics [Competency Framework> Competency Hierarchy>Competency Tiers (Domain)>Competency Set (Operation)>Competency Topics (9 Topics)] (Refer to Paper A6).
 

 
[1] Model Uses are discussed in detail  within Episode 24 on BIM ThinkSpace.

[2] The number of structures supporting a BIM Framework part is proportional to its conceptual strength.

 


27. Conceptual Hierarchy

image from www.bimframework.infoConceptual Hierarchy Current Version, full-size image (older version v1.0)

The BIM framework is composed of several interrelated conceptual constructs: models, taxonomies, classifications and dictionaries. A common conceptual ontology connects all conceptual constructs and makes explicit the relationship between them. Below is a generic description of the depicted conceptual parts:

Frameworks show “the gestalt, the structure, the anatomy or the morphology of a field of knowledge or the links between seemingly disparate fields or sub-disciplines” (Reisman, 1994, p. 92).

Models (conceptual models) are simplified representations and abstractions of the “enormous richness of this world” (Ritter, 2010, p. 360) (Lave & March, 1993).

Taxonomies are an efficient and effective way to organize and consolidate knowledge (Reisman, 2005) (Hedden, 2010). A well-structured taxonomy allows “the meaningful clustering of experience” (Kwasnik, 1999, p. 24).

Classifications are the “meaningful clustering of experience” (Kwasnik, 1999, p. 24) and “lies at the heart of every scientific field” (Lohse, Biolsi, Walker, & Rueter, 1994, p. 36). Classification is also a heuristic tool useful during the formative stages of discovery, analysis and theorizing (Davies, 1989).

Dictionaries constitute a a web of meaning (Cristea, 2004) connecting terms to each other and to other knowledge bases.