New Apps Provide Users of Excel, Access, Crystal Reports, Visual Studio, and Windows 7 With Analytical Access and Intelligent Search of Model Information
PHILADELPHIA – Be Together: The Bentley User Conference – May 24, 2011 – Bentley Systems, Incorporated, the leading company dedicated to providing comprehensive software solutions for sustaining infrastructure, today announced at this annual gathering of infrastructure professionals the addition of new interoperability offerings to the iWare Apps site ( www.bentley.com/iWare) it launched this past March. The site provides fast and easy access to Bentley’s no-cost iWare Apps for enhanced interoperability, along with links to free training in their use and in-depth reference documentation. Participation on the iWare Apps site, by a varied audience that includes many new to Bentley, is impressive and growing. It provides a clear indication of the previously unmet demand among the infrastructure community for interoperability tools. The new offerings announced today 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.
Bentley Systems CEO Greg Bentley said, “Until now, it has not been possible to access the intelligence contained in AEC information modeling formats through business tools, for analytics or to flow into enterprise systems. So the value of the work of infrastructure design professionals was stranded by the opaque structure of ‘design files’ – especially for the most useful information models, which result from collaboration across applications, disciplines, and contributors, over time. Now, through i-models and our new iWare Apps, the business value of infrastructure designs can be transparently realized. With simple i-model drivers, business users can pull ‘live’ AEC information modeling formats, through familiar data structures, into their familiar analytical environments, and onward to enterprise systems. Finally, AEC projects and owners can benefit from ‘straight-through processing’ – and infrastructure professionals’ work can be fully valued!”
The new offerings 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. These iWare Apps join those already available, including Bentley View for interacting with AEC models and drawings, apps for Autodesk Revit users, and apps supporting Integrated Structural Modeling (ISM), all of which are available for download at no cost at www.bentley.com/iWare.
i-models are containers for open AEC information exchange, which provide particular advantages for this purpose such as “provenance” and self-description. They can be published by all Bentley applications (or automatically by ProjectWise Dynamic Composition Server), and Bentley’s iWare site provides plug-in apps to publish i-models from other AEC applications. i-models interpret, “normalize,” and expose the disparate data schema from any varied source, so the AEC information that any i-model contains can be programmatically accessed in a standard way.
New i-model drivers on the iWare Apps site broaden direct access to this rich project information for business tool users. These drivers include:
- i-model Driver for Excel
- i-model Driver for Access
- i-model Driver for Crystal Reports
- i-model Driver for Visual Studio
Users of these tools now can simply specify an i-model as an information source for their applications, immediately discover the “database” structure and richness of content, and fully leverage this information in their familiar analytical processes and data flows.
Bentley DGN Reader for Windows 7
This new iWare App equips Windows 7 users to fully and easily navigate DGNs and i-models. The new reader incorporates the functionality of two previous iWare Apps (Bentley DGN Thumbnail Provider and Bentley DGN IFilter), and adds model and document previewing for immersive exploration by project stakeholders.
The Bentley DGN Reader for Windows 7 features:
- a previewer – an immersive viewer for DGNs and i-models directly within Windows Explorer and Microsoft Outlook for models and drawings without the need to open them in an application;
- text search – allowing the contents of DGNs and i-models to be indexed, making this content searchable within Windows Search and Google Desktop;
- thumbnail display – enabling applications such as Windows Explorer to display the thumbnails embedded in DGNs and i-models.
Bentley ODBC Driver for Windows 7
This driver provides direct ODBC access to data within DGNs and i-models. It’s for use by any Windows 7 application that utilizes Windows ODBC.
This new iWare App allows users to easily perform conversions for virtually any type of unit, including flow, length, velocity, viscosity, area, volume, torque, temperature, and more. It also provides the ability to create custom units and dimensions that can be shared with colleagues.
The iWare Apps site also includes a new tool dedicated to the interoperability needs of the geotechnical and geoenvironmental user community. AGS Toolkit equips users to validate files in the AGS 3.1 and 4 formats, as defined by the Association of Geotechnical and Geoenvironmental Specialists, in order to ensure data quality. It also provides the ability to exchange AGS files with Excel to facilitate their analysis and editing.
To access the many new and existing interoperability offerings on Bentley’s iWare Apps site, visit www.bentley.com/iWare.
About Be Together: The Bentley User Conference
Be Together: The Bentley User Conference, taking place this week at the Pennsylvania Convention Center in Philadelphia, enables the architects, engineers, constructors, geospatial and operations professionals, and CAD managers who regularly exchange ideas virtually on the Be Communities professional networking site to connect, communicate, and learn from each other in person. In addition, guided by Bentley product experts, attendees acquire knowledge crucial to the adoption of information-modeling best practices as they earn Bentley Institute Learning Units to maximize return on time invested in professional development. The conference hosts nine tracks: Roads and Bridges, Structural, Water, Geospatial, Utilities and Communications, Building, Plant, AssetWise, and MicroStation and ProjectWise. For additional information about the conference, visit www.bentley.com/BeTogether.
About Bentley Systems, Incorporated
Bentley is the global leader dedicated to providing architects, engineers, geospatial professionals, constructors, and owner-operators with comprehensive software solutions for sustaining infrastructure. Bentley’s mission is to empower its users to leverage information modeling through integrated projects for high-performing intelligent infrastructure. Its solutions encompass the MicroStation platform for infrastructure design and modeling, the ProjectWise platform for infrastructure project team collaboration and work sharing, and the AssetWise platform for infrastructure asset operations – all supporting a broad portfolio of interoperable applications and complemented by worldwide professional services. Founded in 1984, Bentley has grown to nearly 3,000 colleagues in more than 45 countries and $500 million in annual revenues. Since 2001, the company has invested more than $1 billion in research, development, and acquisitions.
Additional information about Bentley is available at www.bentley.com and in Bentley’s annual report. For Bentley news as it happens, subscribe to an RSS feed of Bentley press releases and news alerts. To view a searchable collection of innovative infrastructure projects from the annual Be Inspired Awards, access Bentley’s Year in Infrastructure publications. To access a professional networking site that enables members of the infrastructure community to connect, communicate, and learn from each other, visit Be Communities.
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