“All PDFs Created Equal” Effort Moving Ahead
The “All PDFs Created Equal” campaign, an effort to create standardized PDFs so that they can be used instead of paper documents in construction projects, is moving ahead. (Read the previous article about this program by clicking here.)
“The campaign is now in the vetting stage,” says Sasha Reed, director of strategic alliances for Bluebeam Software, which is helping to facilitate the communication among the coalition’s general contractors who are leading the effort. “The GCs and designers are talking about the standards.”
The group of GCs behind the campaign first met in August, and has since developed a set of standards that designers are vetting. Reed notes that since all of the committee members are actively working on live projects, no set deadlines have been established for completion of their work. But the committee hopes to finish the vetting by the end of 2013, and have a revised standard for public review sometime in 2014.
Reed says that the designers now vetting the guidelines have put them into three categories:
1) Some of the suggestions are simple and easily agreed upon.
2) Some are more complex, and are still being discussed. For example, hatch fills are used by designers to visually designate certain materials, but they can cause problems in the PDFs, slowing down rendering speeds on PCs and mobile devices. The “All PDFs Created Equal” standard is designed to reflect a compromise that meets the needs of the designers and the GCs.
3) Some suggestions need to be addressed with software providers, not the designers, so those will be handled separately.
Reed says that the specifics about the suggestions are not being widely publicized at this time because the committee hopes to wait until they have been internally vetted before inviting the AEC community at large to provide feedback.
However, she notes that the general concept of a “paperless” worksite is moving ahead, and points to an example of a major project in Sweden that is being completed without paper documents. Read a case study about that project here: http://www.bluebeam.com/us/solutions/case-studies/skanska.asp