The Power of ZERO: 3 Questions and Answers

By Ron

ZERO files

Recently we have seen quite a buzz about the ‘ZERO files’ capabilities from DASSAULT SYSTEMES. For example, Engineering.com recently published a video interview with ENOVIA CEO Andy Kalambi which zeroes in (pardon the pun) on reducing BOM errors. And General Electric’s Jeff Erno explains in this YouTube video the value of zero files to an engineering organization.   Not to mention all of the international press (Korea, Japan, India…).

Andy Kalambi, ENOVIA CEO    Jeff Erno, Consulting Engineer, General Electric

So what is it?

‘Zero files’ is enabled by the DASSAULT SYSTÈMES 3DEXPERIENCE data driven architecture and enables companies to collaborate more efficiently, with less errors and more security. It is a generational change within the Product Lifecycle Management domain which enables applications like ENOVIA to provide extended value to thousands of customers around the world.  While the benefits are clearly attractive, it’s not always easy to understand how this works and what it means to an individual.  Let’s break it down by addressing some commonly asked questions:

Question #1: Is the notion of ‘zero files’ achieved in other disciplines?

Answer #1: Yes. In fact, many people interact in file-less environments today for both personal and business activities. Here are a few examples:

  1. Movies: In the not so distant past, one would rent or by DVDs (basically movie files) and use their players to watch movies at home. In the zero-files world, we stream movies from service providers such as Hulu and Amazon.
  2. Banking: When is the last time you balanced your check book by comparing the paper or PDF bank statement against your home ledger? In the zero-files world, bank registers are validated by viewing on-line statements and matching them with home records for accuracy. You need not wait until the end of the month to view your credit card statement; in a data-driven world, transactions are posted and viewable shortly after purchase.
  3. Document authoring and editing: Tools like Google Docs operate in a ‘zero-files’ environment. For example, if multiple people are working on a spreadsheet, they do not need to save the file and email it to the next person for their edits; rather, they all collaborate on an on-line workbook simultaneously (without having to check-in / check-out their files). Tools like Google Docs are prolific in the college environment and have started to become more popular in the workplace.
  4. Enterprise Applications: Tools for CRM and ERP have long operated in a ‘zero-files’ environment. This has enabled a higher degree of scalability and collaboration to occur while securing intellectual property.

Question #2: What makes a ‘zero-files’ environment more secure than using a file-based PLM tool?

Answer #2: Even though your data may be secured by a file-based PLM system, local files are placed on the user’s desktop.   This leaves the door open (even for well-meaning employees) to distribute your company’s files freely via email or web based file sharing sites.  This is a much larger issue than most people realize.  A recent study shows that 40% of companies that have a PLM system in place still use public email / web storage tools to distribute CAD files within their own company.  More than 70% use public email / web storage tools to distribute CAD files to suppliers and vendors. In a zero-files environment, the data that is provided to the client workstation is abstracted so that it may not be saved and re-distributed via other tools.

Question #3: I understand that zero-files can be achieved with CATIA V6. Does that mean that the zero-files environment will not support file based applications (such as legacy CAD tools, etc.)?

Answer #3: While it is true that the zero-files environment provides maximum benefit when the authoring application, it is a fact that many enterprise applications operate in a file based manner.  Driven by the 3DEXPERIENCE PLATFORM, ENOVIA provides the ability to manage files from these legacy applications.
It’s also worth noting that zero-files applies to more than CATIA V6; requirements management, purchase orders, quality and issue management are some of the many data types in ENOVIA that operate in  zero-file files environment.

For Multi-CAD solutions, ENOVIA provides the unique capability of creating hybrid digital mock-ups based on lightweight representations – which are data driven.  This means you have the advantage of zero files while using lightweight representations from other CAD systems.  The system maintains a relationship to the originating CAD authoring tools while enabling the benefits of zero-files for design reviews and mock-ups.

Questions or comments?  Contact our user experience experts at enovia.ux.ww@3ds.com

What Is BIM Level 3?

By Marty

The following is an excerpt from End-To-End Collaboration Enabled by BIM Level 3: An Architecture, Engineering & Construction Industry Solution Based on Manufacturing Best Practices.

Download the full paper here.


Building Information Modeling (BIM) has been the Design & Construction industry’s answer to improve the flow of data through the building process, and, therefore, help to create efficiencies.

Industrialized practices work well when design information is structured appropriately for downstream application by builders, fabricators, and operators. BIM data standards have been gradually maturing to meet this purpose.

Building owners and operators are driving the industry to achieve higher levels of BIM maturity by demanding process improvements and technological innovations that reduce costs, increase value from suppliers, and increase sustainability.

Much of the industry is now moving from BIM Level 1 to Level 2, thanks in part to a directive by the U.K. government to adopt BIM practices by 2016.

An Updated Building Information Modeling (BIM) Maturity Model

From Computer-Aided Design to Building Lifecycle Management

BIM Maturity Model, Updated

Tweet: An updated #BIM Maturity Model: From CAD to BLM @Dassault3DS #AEC http://ctt.ec/7pz2C+Click to tweet: “An updated #BIM
Maturity Model: From CAD to BLM”

Some companies are trying to find efficiencies with BIM Level 2 processes, traditional workflows, and point solutions.

The industry innovators are rethinking collaboration and leveraging integrated BIM Level 3 technologies to become more competitive.

Construction teams that successfully adopt BIM Level 3 processes benefit from strategic advantages: they create less waste, deliver in less time, and produce a better outcome while retaining a healthy profit margin.

BIM Level 2 vs. Level 3

In 2013, the U.K. government mandated that all government projects utilize BIM Level 2 by 2016 in order to reduce information ambiguity. While BIM Level 2 has indeed brought significant benefits to architects, Level 2 tools tend to focus on design coordination problems, and do not maintain much of a role in construction processes.

Models produced using Level 2 point solutions are ultimately exported and imported into disconnected systems. This handoff can create unintended consequences: data silos, errors, version control problems, and rework.

Tweet: #BIM Level 2 still requires exporting data, creating data silos, errors, rework, etc. @Dassault3DS #AEC http://ctt.ec/MCe44+Click to tweet: “#BIM Level 2 still requires exporting
data, creating data silos, errors, rework, etc.”

Data produced by the design team at the beginning of the project does not flow seamlessly through to the rest of the project delivery.

Architects ultimately miss the opportunity to adjust for means and methods, lose control of their design intent, and are pulled into a reactive process of responding to Requests for Information (RFIs).

Under Level 2, with no integrated system to leverage BIM data, builders and suppliers are removed from fully collaborating on the model and are left to absorb the cost of rework.

BIM Level 3 is the only approach that fully connects the data chain from start to finish, helping to create end-to-end efficiencies.

In a Level 3 system, BIM data is not converted into files and emailed or sent via FTP sites to various parties. A Single Source of Truth is established, stored in a database on the cloud, and accessible by all project contributors through web services.

BIM Level 3 allows data to be transactable for construction, fabrication, and even facility management purposes, enabling open collaboration and building lifecycle management.

A robust Product Lifecycle Management (PLM) system creates an efficient environment for coordinating complex Architecture, Engineering & Construction data.

Adding BIM data to a PLM system creates a Building Lifecycle Management (BLM) system, which enables BIM Level 3.

BIM + PLM = BLM

Tweet: #BIM + PLM = BLM @Dassault3DS #AEC http://ctt.ec/ZOAd7+Click to tweet:
“#BIM + PLM = BLM”


Cover: END-TO-END COLLABORATION ENABLED BY BIM LEVEL 3 An Industry Approach Based on Best Practices from Manufacturing

Related Resources

Download the Dassault Systèmes whitepaper, “End-To-End Collaboration Enabled by BIM Level 3: An Architecture, Engineering & Construction Industry Solution Based on Manufacturing Best Practices”

Excitement Engineered: RTT Becomes 3DXCITE

By Aurelien

RTT becomes 3DXCITE

Last December, we announced the acquisition of Realtime Technology (RTT), including Bunkspeed. We welcomed a talented team of over 750 people to the Dassault Systemes family, bringing with them breathtaking rendering technology and design services.

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Today, we’re thrilled to announce that RTT is adopting a new name and identity as the latest 3DS brand: 3DXCITE. In fact, you could say that we’re “3DXCITEd!”

The creation of the 3DXCITE brand is much more than a renaming of RTT. It embodies our conviction that 3DEXPERIENCE goes well beyond engineering, enhancing the entire business cycle across all communication channels with powerful, streamlined and efficient storytelling tools.

In today’s experience economy, competitive differentiation rarely happens from a purely technological standpoint. The emotional experience offered along with a product is often the key to opening (or expanding) new market opportunities. Listen to Monica Menghini, Dassault Systemes EVP Corporate Strategy, Industry and Marketing, explain how innovations happen in the experience economy:

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But how can this emotion be conveyed from Design and Engineering to Marketing and Sales? Take a look at the image below (via Wikipedia) showing the different stages of PLM.

PLM stages (source: Wikipedia)

Today, most PLM vendors can address the Design, Engineering or Manufacturing stages with mature solutions. But can they address the Marketing (upstream experiences) and Sales (downstream experiences) stages? With the addition of 3DXCITE, Dassault Systemes adds these capabilities. Now you can seamlessly leverage the original, single source 3D Master from Design and Engineering across Marketing and Sales, offering a virtual–and accurate–experience to your final customer or consumer. That’s 3DXCITE on the 3DEXPERIENCE Platform: Excitement Engineered.

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So, are you 3DXCITEd? Learn more about 3DXCITE on www.3ds.com/3dxcite, and follow @3DEXCITE on Twitter!

3DXCITE



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Beyond PLM (Product Lifecycle Management), Dassault Systèmes, the 3D Experience Company, provides business and people with virtual universes to imagine sustainable innovations. 3DSWYM, 3D VIA, CATIA, DELMIA, ENOVIA, EXALEAD, NETVIBES, SIMULIA and SOLIDWORKS are registered trademarks of Dassault Systèmes or its subsidiaries in the US and/or other countries.