The Key Theories Behind Industry 4.0 in Construction

The Key Theories Behind Industry 4.0 in Construction

The automation trend referred to as Industry 4.0 has been around for some time now, but not everyone is clear about what it all means. For our latest blog post we have defined the Industry 4.0 concept as it applies to the future of construction, and listed a few key theories that go some way to explaining the transformational potential of digitisation.

What is Industry 4.0?

It’s easy to divide the history of industry into three periods – first came mechanisation, with power generated by water and steam. The second period of industry was characterised by electricity, as well as mass production and assembly lines. The advent of computers was the third period of industry, and we are now entering an age of cyber-physical systems – commonly referred to as Industry 4.0.

Industry 4.0 describes the recent move towards automation, analysis and data exchange. RIB is a forerunner for implementing Industry 4.0 in construction, through interoperability, technical assistance and high-level data analysis. The company is developing integrated platforms that improve sustainable building practices, eliminate unnecessary waste and allow for greater collaboration through the supply chain. In this regard, digitisation is contributing to a better built environment worldwide.  

The 6 Ds of Technological Disruption

There is often reticence to embrace digitisation in certain industries, but the tide appears to be turning. Agriculture has become digitalised through IoT, machine control and labs in an effort to improve outputs and crop quality, while the Carlsberg brewing company is even using AI in an attempt to predict the taste of different barleys in the final products from the brewing process.

Peter Diamandis, founder and chairman of the X Prize Foundation has a concept he calls ‘The 6 Ds of Technological Disruption’. This concept is largely based on Ray Kurzweil’s observation ‘The Law of Accelerating Returns’ which explains the exponential growth of IT.

This list outlines the rapid and significant impacts that technology can have upon established industries, and goes some way to explaining why humans have a hard time accepting technological potential.

1 – Digitised

Anything that becomes digitised experiences the same exponential growth that we see in computing. Digital information is easy to access, share, and distribute. It can spread at the speed of the Internet. Once something can be represented in zeros and ones – from music to biotechnology – it becomes an information-based technology and grows exponentially.

2 – Deceptive

When something starts being digitised, its initial period of growth is deceptive because exponential trends don’t seem to grow very fast at first. Doubling only .01 only gets you to .02, then .04 and so on. Exponential growth really takes off after it breaks the whole number barrier. 2 quickly becomes 32, and so on.

3 – Disruptive

The existing market for a product or service is disrupted by the new market the exponential technology creates, because digital technologies outperform their older counterparts in effectiveness and cost. Once you can stream music on your phone, why buy CDs? If you can snap, store and share photographs, why buy camera and film?

4 – Demonetised

Money is increasingly removed from the equation as the technology becomes cheaper, often to the point of being free. Software is less expensive to produce than hardware and copies can be produced consistently at a low cost. You can now download any number of apps on your phone to access terabytes of information and enjoy a multitude of services for a negligible outlay.

5 – Democratised

Once something is digitised, more people can have access to it. Powerful technologies are no longer only for governments, large organisations, or the wealthy.

6 – Dematerialised

Separate physical products are removed from the equation. Technologies that were once bulky or expensive – radio, camera, GPS, phones, maps – are now all in a smartphone that fits your pocket.

Moore’s Law of Exponential Growth

In simple terms, Moore’s Law is an observation first made in 1965 by engineer Gordon Moore, who noted that the number of components per integrated circuit doubled every year, leading him to predict that this rate of growth would continue for at least a decade. Moore revised his prediction to a doubling every two years as of 1975, a forecast which proved accurate in subsequent decades and was used to guide long-term planning and research in the industry.

RIB has found that Moore’s exponential growth theory has rung true over the past ten years. We initially experienced hardware and processing power scalability issues that limited our potential to run further services, but we accurately predicted that Moore’s Law would catch up and continued with our research and development plans. We took similar leaps with our MTWO and iTWO 4.0 platforms, offering full cloud support before GPU was publicly available.

In next month’s blog, we’ll look at the specific technologies utilised by RIB to bring Industry 4.0 to the construction industry, including GPU Accelerated Computing, Artificial Intelligence, Cloud Computing, the Internet of Things and Robotics.

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What’s New in iTWOcx? Our Transmittal and Workflow Interface Redesign

What’s New in iTWOcx? Our Transmittal and Workflow Interface Redesign

The RIB Product team are excited to announce a number of new User Interface redesigns and updates to Transmittals and Workflows, which we are sure will streamline your experience with iTWOcx.

Transmittal UI Updates

The Transmittal screen has been redesigned so that the toolbar matches what is available elsewhere in iTWOcx. All of the tools necessary to carry out Transmittals are now easily accessible.

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We’ve also added in a few controls to collapse each section so you can view only the information that is relevant to you.

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You can also Apply a Workflow to Documents on a Transmittal directly from the toolbar – Convenient? We think so!

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Workflow UI Updates

The Workflow screen has been split into two modes. We call these the View mode and the Review mode.

In the View mode, the Workflow can be viewed using the panel on the right side, just like any other form on iTWOcx. This is a change from directly opening the Workflow review mode, as was the case previously.

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Information and attachments added during the upload and distribution process are now presented using the View mode. To review documents, simply click on the Review Documents button on the toolbar. This takes you to the familiar Workflow Review mode screen.

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Here we have added in the Workflow title, in addition to who has been added for Action or Info on the Workflow. A section has also been added to display any Review Notes and supplementary attachments that may have been input when the Workflow was applied.


Apply a Workflow When Uploading Drawings

To apply a Workflow in the past, users needed to upload their documents before selecting them and sending them on to Review. With our newest release we have streamlined this process.

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You can now Upload Documents and Apply a Workflow at the same time on the Distribution screen. Should you upload documents to a folder with an Automatic Workflow associated to it, you are given the ability to edit the details of that Workflow prior to issuing it.

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Editing Workflow Details

When selecting and applying a workflow you can now quickly edit the workflow title, add users and review notes and attachments on the one screen. A preview of the selected workflow has also been added to the same screen so that you are in complete control.

We have also edited document distribution within the platform. iTWOcx now allows you to add users for Action as well as for Info.

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Configure Statuses for Transmittals and Distributions

When the Publication Space was first released, statuses for Transmittals and Distributions were limited to the default selections that came with the system.

With this release you can now add your own statuses and configure whether they are an Open or Closed status. You can set either of these options to be the default that appears for document distribution. If the status is set to open, users are also provided with the option to set a due date.

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Report on Documents on a Workflow

Workflow reporting has also been expanded in our latest update, allowing users to see documents featured on a particular workflow. This report can also be exported to Excel for further customisation.

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Let Us Know What You Think

 

We think these changes will help to improve your efficiency when using iTWOcx. Feel free to try out all the new features and let us know what you think. These updates are now available on all projects using the Publication Space for Document Management.

 

 

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Track Design Review issues - Fitting another piece of the Puzzle

Track Design Review issues - Fitting another piece of the Puzzle

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2018 sees the arrival of a whole slew of new features to iTWOcx. This includes a number of great additions to our Document Management module - the Publication Space - along with some key updates to the Tenders Module.

Here are some of the highlights.

Design Review Issue Tracking

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Our workflow tools have been helping teams just like yours to manage their document reviews on all types of construction projects. iTWOcx workflows are easy to set up and use and provide you with the ability to review and track the readiness of drawings for Construction use.

However, a piece that has been missing from the workflow puzzle is providing a way to log, track and manage any Design Issues that arise from a Workflow. This changes with the new Design Review Issue Tracking feature

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Directly Integrated with Workflows

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Built directly into Workflows - Design review issue tracking lets you mark up and log a potential problem with your drawing directly from our mark up tools.

 

Link Design Issues to Markups

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Markups are linked to your Design Review Issue, with the ability to add additional notes if required. These are then automatically sent straight through to the originator of the drawings.

 

View Design Issues during Reviews

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Reviewers are able to view any existing Design Issues directly in the Workflow between each step. Outstanding design issues are tracked between each of the revisions of a drawing.

 

Collaborate on Open Issues with Ease

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Resolve and Close out Issues

Issues are accessible to all parties involved in the review process. Adding comments, resolving issues and closing them out are easy as clicking on a button.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Comprehensive Reporting

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Advanced reporting tools let you view any document with outstanding Design review issues.

The report also shows you detailed metrics for each document within your project- including the number of comments and the issues currently open and what status they are in.


Parallel Workflows

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On a busy project, reviews can be required at any time by different parties on the same set of documents. Now, with the ability to set up Parallel workflows you can create workflows where two steps can be carried out at the same time.

You can also configure and decide when to move to the next step.

 


User Fields and Attachments on Transmittal

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You can now configure user fields against your Transmittals so that they can be filled out during distribution. Additional attachments to Transmittals are also supported during distribution.

 


 

Tenders - Sharing Tender Databases Between Projects

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Managing your Tender Databases between multiple iTWOcx projects has been made easier for Tender Admins with the ability to import a Database linked with another company that you belong to now available

 


 

Tenders - Issuing your Subbies a Confidentiality Agreement

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Depending on your project's tendering needs you may need to have your Sub contractors enter into a Confidentiality Agreement prior to issuing them the package documents. In this release we've added a feature whereby you can set up such an Agreement that can be issued out to the relevant parties.

The Sub Contractors will be then be able to download and re-upload a signed copy of the Agreement on their bidder page.

 

As the Tender Admin you will be able to see the status for each Sub Contractor who has signed the Agreement and issue out the Package when all bidders have signed the Agreement.

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Should you have any questions regarding this release or would like to learn more please contact our friendly Support team via support@ribitwo.com.au

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