Autodesk University – The Speakers: Rob Jackson, Nigel Davies and Daniel Heselwood

Continuing our theme on the Autodesk University speakers confirmed from the UK, we spoke to Rob Jackson, Nigel Davies and Daniel Heselwood about their joint effort for the upcoming event.

Nigel Davies, Evolve

Nigel is founding director of Evolve and has over 20 years extensive experience within the AEC industry. Nigel has worked full-time for a number of world-renowned practices such as Buro Happold and Ramboll Whitbybird, and as a consultant has provided pivotal services to high-profile clients including Feilden Clegg Bradley, Kohn Pedersen Fox, Oce and Rogers Stirk Harbour + Partners.

Nigel is also chair of the AEC (UK) CAD & BIM Protocols Initiative, based on British Standards, for the structuring and exchange of design documentations.


Daniel Heselwood, Evolve

Daniel has extensive experience managing and developing CAD/BIM systems from large international firms with multiple sites across a number of different regions to the single person practices.

Daniel is an approved Autodesk trainer and presents regularly at Autodesk events.


Rob Jackson, Bond Bryan Architects

Rob is an Associate at Bond Bryan Architects in Sheffield. He is an Architect by training and has a passion for technology and process improvement for project delivery. Initially this led him to develop office quality procedures combined with the construction of an office intranet but ultimately led to his current role of BIM Manager.

He is also the Chair of the sub-committee for the AEC (UK) BIM Protocols for GRAPHISOFT ArchiCAD having used the software for over 12 years.


How did your grouping come about?

We originally submitted separate proposals to speak at BIM Show Live 2013 on the subject of interoperability and IFC, something we have all had to deal with when tackling BIM. In the interests of collaboration, Rob suggested the session might be best as a joint presentation. We worked together sharing models from each of the main software platforms (Revit, AECOsim Building Designer and ArchiCAD testing the interoperability of BIM objects from real world projects. I think we all learnt a few things in the process. As it turned out, the final presentation went down very well with the audience so we decided to team up again for Autodesk University.


What are you presenting at the conference?

We are presenting a session titled “IFC: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly”, the concept is to demonstrate how three different pieces of software transfer information using the Industry Foundation Classes (IFC) format for a collaborative workflow. We each take a different authoring platform and discuss the challenges we face and what we found good, bad and ugly from both the export and import processes. We were particularly interested to see what factually was true about data exchange rather than relying on a lot of ‘sweeping statements’ about the process. Our presentation is designed to share our lessons learnt along with tips and tricks for successful exchange. In order to collaborate with other software it is important to understand each other’s workflows and identify ways of streamlining the process.


What was the process like in submitting your ideas?

The Autodesk University site is very intuitive for submitting ideas. Simply set yourself up as a user, write a few lines for your presentation title, content and learning agenda and hit the submit button. Obviously there is a lot of competition for speaking slots and we were delighted to be accepted to present at such a popular event. Of course once you have got through, the hard part is to then prepare the presentation to match up with the other 650 presentations going on during the week.


What are you looking forward to seeing / learning about there yourself?

AU is an excellent event where you can get the insight from an international audience. BIM is a huge talking point in the UK with the government mandate and the excitement about BIM in the industry, it will be really interesting to see where the UK stand in relation to the rest of the globe. It will also be interesting to look at other technology in areas outside of construction to see where is the development may be heading.


What do you hope to get out of it?

We are hoping to see new products, new ideas and new processes – there is no better place to get the latest ideas and techniques for delivering projects from some of the largest companies on the planet.


Why is this event important?

This event is important because it gives an opportunity to get a global position on where BIM is and how it’s being developed in other countries.