Thursday 25 April 2013

BIM International

NBS, through its membership of buildingSMART, is working with other members from USA, Norway, Canada, France, Sweden, Japan, Australia and Germany to try and establish an international “Data Dictionary” so that the meaning of BIM data can be shared between software applications.

NBS Head of Specification Ian Chapman (IanChapmanNBS) is on the Council of Management for buildingSMART UK and he and Birgitta Foster from the US buildingSMART alliance are two of those leading the project.

Ian commented, “Clear rules, guidance and content moderation are essential. Software vendors will need to adopt bSDD-assigned GUIDs to ensure that the items are aligned, whatever the language or term used”.

Birgitta commented, “The time is right to overcome the challenges and make the bSDD a resource for all countries to benefit from in the future”.
Call it what you want - but respect the GUID

"Face colour" - how does this translate internationally in a construction context?
For further information see:
This work is being done by NBS with one eye on the work that we have recently been doing for the UK Government BIM Task Group labs area that is starting to define the BIM level-3 vision.


  1. Hi Stephen,
    that's very interesting. Could you tell me more who is your contact in Germany?
    Thanks and all the best from Berlin

    1. hi Konrad.

      Peter Muigg has been taking part and showing interest in helping to move the dictionary forward.

      Ian Chapman

  2. You mean an actual common language across the globe? Level 3 BIM looks like it is shaping up to be very special. All we need now is to convice the States that metric measurements are also Level 3...

    1. Hi Bill,

      Many thanks for your comments. A common language or at least a means of connecting properties with the same meaning irrespective of language, personal preference, context or jurisdiction is very much the goal of the data dictionary. The data dictionary has the potential to be critical tool to enable level 3 intelligent information exchange.

      The data dictionary content schema is capable of modelling units too so it wouldn't be too difficult for an application the uses data from the dictionary to convert imperial into metric.

      Ian Chapman

  3. Konrad,

    Thanks for the comment.

    I'll speak with Ian and see if I am allowed to list the names of the contributing countries.