This is the second of three posts looking at publishing information from NBS so that it can be used by the wider project team. The first of these posts looked at exporting to Microsoft Word to improve the aesthetics of the published output. This post looks at the other end of the spectrum - publishing just the data regarding the systems and products that make up the built asset so that this data can then be transferred to other software applications such as FM systems.
When publishing data with interoperability in mind, it is essential that the data format is to an agreed public standard. Figure 1 below illustrates this in a simple non-construction-industry example. To take contact information from Google into Apple products there is a basic agreed data schema called vCard. 99.9% of the world needn't know anything about this. But the software developers at Google and Apple do. They can then make great products and transfer information reasonably smoothly with the complexity hidden from the 99.9%.
|Figure 1 - Interoperability and vCard|
Of course, in the construction industry it is much, much, more tricky to digitally model an entire built asset than it is to model someone's contact details. The open data schema that is defined by the UK's Level 2 BIM to do this job is the Construction Operation Building Information Exchange format (or COBie for short).
For more on COBie - please see one of the websites below:
- UK Government - www.bimtaskgroup.org/cobie-uk-2012/
- NIBS page from the USA - www.wbdg.org/resources/construction-operations-building-information-exchange-cobie
- The 'What is?' page on theNBS website: www.thenbs.com/knowledge/what-is-cobie
|Figure 2 - Concept diagram from UK BIM Task Group|
|Figure 3 - Where the specification fits|
|Figure 4 - Taking information from one software package into another|
Now it is possible to generate a COBie data file in the properly formatted Microsoft Excel template. Figure 5 shows this option in NBS Create.
|Figure 5 - Export to COBie format|
|Figure 6 - Select your classification|
|Figure 7 - Export report|
|Figure 8 - The COBie overview worksheet|
|Figure 9 - The manufacturer contact details|
|Figure 10 - All of the 'types' of systems and products|
|Figure 11 - Filtering the attributes to display the information about a specific type|
For more information about NBS for BIM projects please see the page below: