BOSTON, June 28 /PRNewswire/ -- Student architects are discovering inspiring new ways to perform in teams, even across great distances using the Internet as a virtual design studio.
Forty college students from North America recently demonstrated the power of long-distance collaborative design using GRAPHISOFT's ArchiCAD to co-design fictional projects such as visitor centers for Alcatraz, monuments for Detroit, and facilities for their own campuses.
"To see the live updates as we worked on the same design at the same time was incredible," said Brandon Martella of the New School of Architecture & Design in San Diego, co-winner of GRAPHISOFT's first-ever nationwide BIM Server Competition. "Although we were 100 miles apart, it was like we were in the same room. You don't need to wait for your teammate to finish with the design before you can start on it, and you can comment on one another's work in real time through the software's messaging system."
Martella partnered with Nathan Houck of California State Polytechnic University in Pomona, California, on "The Yard," an Alcatraz visitor center design that won the pair top honors. "This new technology will make our lives as architects more fun," said Houck. "In the past, it's always been a chore to manage individual changes to a single file. We'd have to link multiple files or email them to one another. With BIM Server and Teamwork, we simply communicate directly in ArchiCAD."
The collaboration project spanned the entire globe. GRAPHISOFT hosted the BIM server software at its corporate headquarters in Budapest, Hungary. US-based staffers monitored the development of competitors' designs from Boston. Contestants in the BIM Server Competition registered individually, formed teams online, and then went to work on their designs, communicating only through GRAPHISOFT's ArchiCAD BIM Server collaboration software.
Many students benefited from the remote mentoring of Ivan Azerbeghi, a professor at the Academy of Art University in San Francisco. Mr. Azerbeghi communicated with the teams from his sabbatical site in China, also via the BIM Server software.
ArchiCAD software, which includes BIM Server, is free for students. More than 1 million have downloaded it so far.
For more details on the contest, including other competitors' entries, visit: www.graphisoft.com/education/education_us/.
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