2011 Be Together: The Bentley User Conference ‘Keynote Report’

This, he added, allows users to establish independent SELECTseries release pacing for each product, providing them with a ramp of continuity going forward. As a result, a user can employ, for example, MicroStation V8i (SELECTseries 2), InRoads V8i (SELECTseries 1), and ProjectWise V8i (SELECTseries 3) as part of the same solution with complete interoperability. This contrasts with the strategies of vendors that force users to upgrade all of their software across projects every year, requiring them to work harder and to risk incompatibilities, without substantial gains.

Integrated software and its delivery from Bentley Systems are also benefiting from significant new capabilities of Microsoft’s Windows 7 operating system. Greg explained that Microsoft Windows 7 has expanded the V8i advantage to include “immersive design,” by way of:

  • a more intelligent and immersive touch experience;
  • enhanced interactive performance in multiscreen monitors, graphics, and authoring (including the use of gestures);
  • intelligent immersive search and exploration of AEC models using Bentley’s new DGN Reader for Windows 7 (now available through Bentley’s no-cost iWare website) for searches, thumbnails, and model previews of DGNs and i-models (containers for open infrastructure information exchange) in Microsoft Outlook and Windows Explorer;
  • broader managed access to project data via Bentley Navigator and ProjectWise web parts, Internet Explorer, and SharePoint;
  • easier, more flexible software deployment through Citrix support and the delivery of software enhancements without disruption to users’ workflows through “patch” and “install over” incremental upgrades.

He then announced a new phased support strategy corresponding to Microsoft’s operating system cycles. Bentley’s Windows 7-specific development and support will be for V8i only, including in the case of forthcoming 64-bit editions of its products. Microsoft has already deprecated Windows XP support and will retire it in 2014. Bentley will not support Bentley software running on retired Microsoft operating systems, and will truncate support for V8/2004 in 2014.

On commercial aspects of working smarter for integrated software delivery, Greg highlighted:

  • Annual Portfolio Balancing that enables Bentley SELECT subscribers to annually exchange underutilized software for needed software of equal value – assuring that their Bentley software investment never depreciates;
  • Bentley’s expanding offerings of Passport Subscriptions, which include a full discipline-specific portfolio of software, training courses, technical support, and manufacturers’ content, for affordably achieving information modeling best practices.

Greg next discussed how Bentley’s integrated software delivery can help users take advantage of opportunities to provide better performance (and return on owners’ investments) through integrated project delivery, in which – irrespective of contractual format – information modeling adds value at each project phase, enabling participants to work smarter, together. Integrated projects, he said, meet three characteristic requirements – collaboration, context, and continuity – and he reviewed respects in which Bentley Systems addresses each by providing:

  • Enhanced collaboration through:
    • the ProjectWise platform for collaboration and work sharing, consisting of servers and services that can be deployed on site, by way of private or public “cloud,” or as a hybrid combination;
    • i-models, containers for open infrastructure information exchange providing precision, provenance, portability, and self-description;
    • innovations in mobility that provide anyone with a browser, anywhere, access to ProjectWise content through Bentley’s Navigator web part; and
    • forthcoming Point Cloud Management in ProjectWise to manage, stream, and share point clouds across distributed teams;
  • Comprehensive context comprising all of the disciplines involved in a project using:
    • software such as Bentley’s 3D city modeling tools that allow users to engineer in a real-world model, integrate the management of assets in the same 2D-3D platform, generate realistic visual renderings, perform more accurate analysis using a 3D model, and more;
    • design synchronization plus consensus models that provide appropriate context from multiple disciplines;
  • Unprecedented continuity in:
    • data reuse facilitated by Bentley’s iWare Apps site, which provides fast and easy access to Bentley’s no-cost iWare Apps for enhanced interoperability; new offerings extend the reach of architectural, engineering, and associated business data within information models for much broader use – through widely deployed business analytical tools and throughout enterprise systems supporting intelligent infrastructure assets – and include i-model drivers for Excel, Access, Crystal Reports, and Visual Studio, the Bentley DGN Reader for Windows 7, Bentley ODBC Driver for Windows 7, Bentley FlexUnits, and the AGS Toolkit;
    • the hand-off from design to construction, transforming it into a hands-on process, empowered by new innovations from Bentley including:
                              --   hypermodels – the revolutionary innovation to interact with required 2D drawings in their appropriate 3D context, navigating callout links to enhance and clarify the 3D model, which serves as a spatial index to all project information;
-- apps for mobile devices (such as the iPad) to immersively access – now from anywhere – design and construction model information, and to provide synchronized feedback of markups and field status;
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dynamic collaboration, design synchronization, and iterative project review empowered by ProjectWise for Construction and ProjectWise for Revit Users – packaged offerings that include Bentley Navigator V8 i , setup and configuration, training, and support;

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construction workface planning with open interfaces to the major plant engineering applications, now fully leveraging ProjectWise V8 i and Bentley Navigator V8 i , through the newly released ConstructSim V8 i ;

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integrated fabrication workflows enabled by Bentley’s ProConcrete software and Integrated Structural Modeling apps;

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real-time standards-based information exchange – including manufacturers’ content from specifications and construction through commissioning – across systems achieving the ISO 15926 requirements of the iRING user community , available through software such as Bentley's OpenPlant V8 i ;

-- tighter “hands-on” workflows among design, engineering, and construction through new Bentley partner agreements with Norconsult, Motion Computing, SMART Technologies, Synchro Ltd., Tekla Corporation, Vela Systems, and Vico Software, Inc.

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