Keywords: CSCW, Design, Collaboration, Internet, Constraint Satisfaction Contact Person: Claudio Lottaz Phone: (+41 21) 693-6682 E-mail: Claudio.Lottaz@epfl.ch Partners: Chair for Computer Aided Architectural Design (CAAD of the ETH Zurich, Swiss Society of Engineers and Architects (SIA), Swiss Center for the Rationalisation of the Construction Process (CRB), Swiss Federal Office of Construction and Zwahlen und Mayr SA. in Aigle homepage: http://liawww.epfl.ch/~lottaz/ICCS/
The Swiss Architectural, Engineering and Construction (AEC) industry contributes a significant share of the Swiss Gross National Product. It is characterized by a high percentage of relatively small but competitive firms which employ a multitude of insular software solutions. Integration in the planning, design, construction and management of buildings and structures is one of the most important common goals in the AEC industry. Long-term attempts are underway to integrate AEC information on the data exchange level and on the product modeling level. Communication is essential for the successful integration.
Needed is an information, communication and collaboration system for the Swiss AEC industry to provide a common technical platform which can and will be used by all partners involved. The goal of this project is to design and engineer such an environment and to demonstrate its practical use. While the implementation of an AEC information and communication system mainly falls under the demonstrator module of the project, the development of a collaborative design system is an engineering task that requires scientific research into new design and communication methods. One of the most innovative ideas for communication among designers eplored in this projects is the use of constraints in order to provide an unambiguous and concise language for information exchange in preliminary stages of construction projects.