Despite rapid tech advances in the architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) industries, the lack of efficient site-progress data consolidation still has costly implications for the design-build processes. San Francisco-based HoloBuilder was founded in 2016 with the aim of creating a construction progress management solution to help general contractors, engineering firms, and owners effectively document and communicate job site progress, and create 360°, virtually accessible, real-time renditions of project sites. Autodesk Platform Services has been key to the solution’s development, enabling storage of a project’s data in a single place and seamless remote access for all stakeholders, regardless of location.
The challenge facing Holobuilder
How Holobuilder used Forge APIs for virtual site access for construction
From the start, HoloBuilder sought to digitize physical job sites, and bring comprehensive, virtual job site access to all stakeholders working at all proximities to a project. Furthermore, the company knew that consolidation of documentation on job site progress would lead to clearer lines of communication between stakeholders, more-accurate decision making, better project outcomes, and smoother construction project handoffs.
HoloBuilder enables customers to visually capture the entirety of a project site with standard or 360° cameras. The images are automatically organized in the app by project, floor plan, and time, creating a 360° visual site representation accessible to stakeholders through a web browser from anywhere at any time. With minimal training, users can easily perform measurements, annotations, and issue capture within the app. This real-time documentation accurately reflects what is happening on the job site, providing the necessary information for clear collaboration between teams, more-productive planning, and data-driven decisions.
To store all the ongoing captured data in one place, HoloBuilder turned to Autodesk Platform Services. Using the Authentication API, the Data Management API, and the BIM 360 API, customers are able to bring floorplans smoothly into HoloBuilder, and also create a single source of truth for projects, increasing functionality and deepening insights into the captured data. The Authentication API allows Autodesk users to log in to HoloBuilder with their Autodesk credentials, saving the user an extra password and enabling the Autodesk Admin to manage the access to revoke the HoloBuilder access at any time for secure enterprise user management workflow. The Data Management API is used to transfer floor plans/sheets and photos (360° and 2D) between Autodesk and HoloBuilder. This enables shared users to start the HoloBuilder project with the floor plans that already live within Autodesk BIM360. The BIM 360 API is used to sync HoloBuilder 360° Markups (which are markups on 360° photos) with BIM 360 issues. This allows our users to keep the markups synced in both places at all times and to avoid creating data silos of different lists of markups/issues in different platforms.
An additional APS-based achievement is that customers can compare real-world, 360° site photographs with their intelligent project models by connecting Revit building design software or Navisworks project review software to HoloBuilder. This means any markups made on the virtual job site are shared with the intelligent model living in the design software, further clarifying the job site situation and improving decision making.
The 24/7, 360° virtual access that stakeholders have to job sites, has eliminated the need to travel, and the corresponding time, cost, and physical risk. Confusion-fueled job site errors and corresponding re-dos are also reduced, as well as problems with work holdups and payment and invoicing verification. Additionally, when the keys are handed over, the owner receives comprehensive consolidated documentation of the project’s progress from start to finish.
APS benefits utilized by Holobuilder include:
Autodesk Platform Services highlights include the following:
- Consolidates job site data in a single place, improving collaboration and decision making.
- Records digital replica annotations on corresponding intelligent models, streamlining workflow.
- Eliminates the need for travel and reduces delays and errors.
“What the future holds in our partnership with Autodesk Platform Services is exciting. We look forward to finding new and innovative ways of integrating our solutions even deeper and driving connected workflows for the industry forward.”—Mayra Soto, Head of Product, HoloBuilder
APIs and Services
Data Management API
BIM 360 API