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Three-dimensional information exchange over the semantic web for the domain of architecture, engineering, and construction

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  12 October 2011

Pieter Pauwels*
Affiliation:
Department of Architecture and Urban Planning, Ghent University, Ghent, Belgium Department of Electronics and Information Systems, Ghent University, Ghent, Belgium
Davy Van Deursen
Affiliation:
Department of Electronics and Information Systems, Multimedia Lab, Ghent University, IBBT, Ledeberg-Ghent, Belgium
Jos De Roo
Affiliation:
Department of Electronics and Information Systems, Multimedia Lab, Ghent University, IBBT, Ledeberg-Ghent, Belgium
Tim Van Ackere
Affiliation:
Department of Architecture and Urban Planning, Ghent University, Ghent, Belgium
Ronald De Meyer
Affiliation:
Department of Architecture and Urban Planning, Ghent University, Ghent, Belgium
Rik Van de Walle
Affiliation:
Department of Electronics and Information Systems, Multimedia Lab, Ghent University, IBBT, Ledeberg-Ghent, Belgium
Jan Van Campenhout
Affiliation:
Department of Electronics and Information Systems, Ghent University, Ghent, Belgium
*
Requests for reprints to: Pieter Pauwels, Department of Architecture and Urban Planning, Ghent University, J. Plateaustraat 22, Ghent B-9000, Belgium. E-mail: pipauwel.pauwels@ugent.be

Abstract

Three-dimensional (3-D) geometry can be described in many ways, with both a varying syntax and a varying semantics. As a result, several very diverse schemas and file formats can be deployed to describe geometry, depending on the application domain in question. In a multidisciplinary domain such as the domain of architecture, engineering, and construction, this range of specialized schemas makes file format conversions inevitable. The approach adopted by current conversion tools, however, often results in a loss of information, most often due to a “mistranslation” between different syntaxes and/or semantics, leading to errors and limitations in the design conception stage and to inefficiency due to the required remodeling efforts. An approach based on semantic web technology may reduce the loss of information significantly, leading to an improved processing of 3-D information and hence to an improved design practice in the architecture, engineering, and construction domain. This paper documents our investigation of the nature of this 3-D information conversion problem and how it may be encompassed using semantic web technology. In an exploratory double test case, we show how the specific deployment of semantic rule languages and an appropriate inference engine are to be adopted to improve this 3-D information exchange. It shows how semantic web technology allows the coexistence of diverse descriptions of the same 3-D information, interlinked through explicit conversion rules. Although only a simple example is used to document the process, and a more in-depth investigation is needed, the initial results indicate the suggested approach to be a useful alternative approach to obtain an improved 3-D information exchange.

Type
Special Issue Articles
Copyright
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 2011

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References

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