The purpose of BIM is to give each actor just the information they need at just the right time throughout a building’s lifecycle – to support its effective design, creation and use.
The “B” in BIM stands for “Building”, since it’s about methods and technologies for the effective design, creation and use of buildings.
The “I” in BIM stands for “Information” – the 3D representations and non-graphical data in the digital model of a building. It’s the key to managing a building throughout its lifecycle.
Besides 3D information – for design, engineering, and production –, there’s 4D information incorporating time (scheduling, planning and control), while 5D adds costs and analysis, 6D sustainability, and 7D facility management over the entire lifetime of an asset.
The “M” in BIM has three meanings:
“Modelling” – the collaborative processes by which actors create, update and store relevant information about a building throughout its life.
“Model” – the ‘data container’ or digital model of a building where information about the building is stored.
“Management” – actors’ use of a building information model for their needs.
“BIM actors” are the people, systems and machines involved in a building’s lifecycle and component production: stakeholders, robots, positioning/measuring/scanning tools, CNC machines, sensors and controllers, AR/VR/MR devices, even 3D printers, for example.