Building Information Modeling (BIM) is one of the most visible aspects of a deep and fundamental change that is rapidly transforming the global construction industry.
For centuries we have used symbols on paper (i.e., drawings and specifications) as the primary means to represent and communicate design intent for client approval, bidding, procurement, fabrication, construction and installation. These abstractions have no native intelligence in them and require human interpretation (i.e., reading) and manipulation (e.g., take-offs, redlines) to provide meaning and value. All other major capital and knowledge intensive industries (manufacturing, finance, etc.) have long since transitioned to datarich environments that enable virtual and automated design, analysis, fabrication and communication. And they have reaped the rewards of higher productivity, accuracy, quality and worker safety.