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Architecture Collaboration Tool for AR & VR

BIMVAR - Building Information Modeling for VR and AR

I participated in the 2016 Seattle VR Hackathon with the intent of working on an architecture-related tool, and found a group of 6 other people who were interested in building an architectural collaboration tool. For this project, we focused on Building Information Modeling, or BIM, and specifically on ways of collaboration on clash detection or resolution including both a hand controlled system for navigation using HTC's Vive controllers, and a vocal command system using Amazon's Alexa technology.

I worked on the UX design, the Unity master scene setup, editing, and integrating, and the vr setup. I also presented our project at the 2016 Immerse conference and showed our demo app in the demonstration hall.

More information about this project

When creating a large structure with many floors, there are many chances for 3d models from the various vendors to overlap with each other. These conflicts, or clashes, need to be resolved before construction begins or some pieces may need to be redone, which can cost lots of money. Clashes can also happen physically, when someone builds something in a different spot than was on the plan. ie, an electrical conduit was installed a foot to the left of where they were intended to go, and now the pipes are being installed and they won't fit where they're supposed to. On a large building, you may literally have to deal with thousands of clashes at various points in the project. A collaborative tool to resolve these points with the relevant contractor while being able to view the space together from across the country could save a large amount of money.

We showed our project at a Seattle VR Meetup the week after. One of the most amazing parts of of the project is getting to see people realizing that VR as a media is not just for gaming. I have so many thoughts on possible uses for vr. There is no limit there.

There are however limits on funding. If you have an idea for a project, attend a hackathon or a vr meetup if at all possible and talk about your ideas. Just know that it might be hard initially to find enough people to pay for your product unless it involves an industry which is willing to pay.