BIMcrunch Editorial: ‘BIMming with Enthusiasm’

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BIMcrunch is undergoing a transition as Jack White – who is based in-house at Space Group‘s headquarters in Newcastle – is to assume sole editorship at the end of June 2014. On the last Friday of every month, Jack will be discussing his experiences in his position and giving his take on the latest happenings within the world of Building Information Modelling. In this first instalment, Jack talks about getting to grips with BIM and advises other newcomers to not feel intimidated by all of the industry jargon that comes with it.


What do all of the above terms have in-common other than being acronyms? They all made me think to myself “Oh my good god, I have got a lot to learn.”

Allow me to introduce myself. I’m Jack White, the new Editor of BIMcrunch. After studying Broadcast Journalism at the University of Sunderland, I found myself incredibly lucky to join Space Group eleven months after my graduation. I jumped from my student digs into the deep end of the ocean that is Building Information Modelling.

Architecture has always been something that has interested me. From the creativity of the design stage to the complex elements of the building work to the intricate details just before the finish line is reached, to be a part of the construction of a piece of architecture at any stage must be a very rewarding feeling. I would finally learn more about architecture, extending way further than my current ‘knowledge’ of building construction, The Sims. Would it be a major challenge? Yes. Yet would I be up for the challenge? Absolutely.

Almost immediately, I figured that every member of the #UKBIMCrew loves a good BIM-related pun. On Twitter, there’s @itsBIMupNorth (I see what he did there), obvious Star Wars fans ‘COBie Wan’ and ‘The Revit Jedi’ (the force is with them) and there’s even @BIMReaper. Definitely laughed at the latter yet with a name playing off the Grim Reaper, perhaps I should be crying?

I also quickly learned that the professionals within the BIM community are incredibly friendly, all often engaging in discussions about the latest conference they’ve been too, retweeting useful articles they think others would be interested in reading and discussing the topic of “COBie is the Shakespeare of architecture”. An acronym that sends a shiver down many a spine being compared with a man who wrote in an entirely stylised language difficult to grasp – what a perfect metaphor for me to be introduced to COBie with!

Yet in all seriousness, I have learned that although daunting at first, the acronyms and industry jargon are easy to grasp once you take the time to learn about them. In a lot of the news stories that I have filtered through in my first month on the job, a lot of people within the AEC sector not yet adopting BIM seem to be put off by the amount of terms idiosyncratic to the BIM community. They feel that they will be unable to understand all that is needed to know or that BIM will be a phase that will eventually pass. Even I know that BIM is going absolutely nowhere. The Government know that too and are beginning to pass the torch back to the industry and its many talented companies regarding their 2016 mandate.

Another piece of reasoning as to why companies aren’t getting the most out of BIM is that they feel disconnected. Su Butcher’s fantastic article on the #UKBIMCrew highlighted that anyone can be involved in the hashtag and their opinions will be welcomed with open arms… and the BIM Reaper’s scythe! I definitely feel like a part of the community already due to the positive nature that everyone exudes and the amount of friendly interaction everyone has on social media.

Don’t be put off by terminology or the fact you’re a newbie in town just like I was a month ago. You won’t be the last to feel like that. Embrace the community spirit and be willing to get your head around the abundance of abbreviations and you’ll be fine. As aforementioned, I dove right into the deep end, yet now I’ve got my armbands and flippers on and I’m ready to attach the snorkel so I can explore what’s next.

Until next time…

You can follow Jack on his personal Twitter account @Jack5326.