2018 review: Top five technology stories

The application of artificial intelligence and generative design and the development of a hard-hat HoloLens combo were some of the top stories that grabbed our readers’ interest in 2018.

1. Bird powers up BIM capability with Autodesk’s Dynamo

Global engineering consultancy Robert Bird Group is using Autodesk’s Dynamo Studio to audit its BIM models, we reported in April. The script Bird has created using the software primarily checks against internal standards as well as flagging up errors in modelling such as duplicate elements.

The software also collects a host of information about the productivity and accuracy of staff producing the BIM models. Read more… 

2. AI special: all you need to know about its impact – now and in the future

The rise of artificial intelligence (AI) is already leading some forecasters to predict a startling vision of construction in a generation’s time – where roles traditionally carried out by human beings are instead performed by robots.

In the first of our special features on AI Denise Chevin examined  which areas of the industry will be most affected. Read more… 

3. Hard hat innovation brings augmented reality to site

In March Stephen Cousins revealed how a low-cost adaptation for hard hats could drive the widespread use of augmented reality on construction sites.

GPS expert Trimble has worked with Microsoft to develop the innovation, which is designed to integrate the HoloLens holographic computer with an industry-standard hard hat. Read more…

4. US developed Cheetah robot can climb stairs

A robot built to resemble a Cheetah, with the ability to navigate difficult terrain, has been developed by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Department of Mechanical Engineering. Read more…

5. Wearable AI device detects if lone workers are in trouble

A wearable device that uses artificial intelligence (AI) to detect when a lone worker has had an accident then automatically alerts emergency services is being trialled by a major UK builders’ merchant and a housebuilder. Read more…

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