Xbim wins Cobuilder’s battle of the APIs

Graphic to represent APIs for Xbim story
Image: Putilich |
Xbim secured victory at Cobuilder’s recent hackathon after demonstrating how its platform could integrate with Cobuilder’s Define digital data dictionary to undertake a life-cycle assessment.

Six global construction software companies took part in the hackathon. The event took place online over two days. The objective was to connect to the template application programming interface (API) found in the Define data dictionary’s demonstration context.

All organisations taking part explored a use case focusing on environmental data and looked at how Define’s API could help them obtain the information required to make carbon footprint calculations. This API integrated with each company’s digital solution or system before the results were showcased.

The winning contribution needed to offer a practical and realistic solution to making the calculation, that was relevant to the market and would provide value to end-users. To achieve this, Xbim first validated a BIM model against properties from Define, ensuring a life-cycle assessment could be made.

It then carried out an automated embodied carbon assessment, drawing on data from the model. Properties consistent with Define’s templates were augmented and the results were visualised in Xbim’s cloud-based viewer. Its BIM model was then extended using specifications and standards from Define.

Open standards and APIs

Antony Brophy, UK business development director at Cobuilder, said: “It was fantastic to see organisations connecting with our data dictionary and benefitting from the free flow of information this creates to meet complex environmental data collection requirements.

“Congratulations to the Xbim team. They presented a strong use case and we’re looking forward to seeing how we can work together moving forward.”

Martin Cerny, chief technology officer at Xbim, said: “At Xbim we’re long-standing supporters of open standards and open APIs to enable interoperability.

“Integrating Cobuilder’s Define APIs into our new ‘Flex flow’ BIM automation platform in this hackathon to address real world challenges proved to be a great demonstration of the value of building on open platforms. Winning was the icing on the cake for us!”

London-based start-up Morta was runner-up, while Norwegian technology company Catenda took third place.

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