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CONCOORD: A Framework for Design, Management and Coordination in a Collaborative AEC Enviroment

TitleCONCOORD: A Framework for Design, Management and Coordination in a Collaborative AEC Enviroment
Publication TypeTechnical Report
Year of Publication1992
AuthorsEl-Bibany, H, Paulson, Jr., BC
Date Published01/1992
Publication Languageeng
KeywordsCenter for Integrated Facility Engineering, CIFE, CONCOORD, Coordination, Information Processing, Integrated Project Management Systems, Knowledge Integration, Stanford University
AbstractThis report describes a CONstraint-based design, management and COORDination framework (CONCOORD) for collaborative AEC (Architecture Engineering Construction) software. The framework offers fundamental changes to the way that project design and management computer systems arc built and used. The main goal is to define a new framework for integrated project management systems that is flexible enough to accommodate the various tasks required to create the product (facility) under a unified representation and reasoning methodology. The unified methodology could serve as the basis for robust knowledge integration, information processing, and coordination among the various participants over the life-cycle of the project. The basic approach of this research is to integrate operations research models and artificial intelligence techniques to create an architecture for the proposed framework. Low-level mathematical models represent the structure and behavior of various project objects (spaces, beams, activities, resources, etc.) in a standard representational model (mathematical constraints). Mathematical equalities and inequalities also represent project constraints (requirements) among the attributes of the various objects. The architecture handles parametric as well as logic constraints in a standard representation and inference mechanism. A sophisticated constraint-management methodology coupled with interval-based mathematics is the basis for model integration as well as the quantitative and qualitative reasoning capabilities of the framework. Formalization and categorization of domain knowledge, as related to the framework, serve as the core of future metaknowledge modules to help in setting the system in various organizations. Project participants interact with the system independently to create new project objects, browse through the system's knowledge, add or delete constraints on the project objects and perform efficient what-if queries. The advantages of such an approach include the following: • Coordinate human players over the life-cycle of the project (e.g., avoid decision conflicts); • Serve as a computer-based framework for horizontal and vertical integration, process and product coordination, knowledge integration and exchange, optimization through user interaction, and multidisciplinary education; • Create a change history for future use and liability tracking; • Provide a basis for evaluating proposed changes; • Provide a technical vehicle to achieve constructibility benefits.
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