CAD vs BIM – The Single Source Of Truth

A common question we receive at CSD is “What is the difference between CS ArtisanRV for Revit and CS Artisan for AutoCAD?”. Our response speaks of the fundamental difference between a traditional CAD system and a fully informed BIM environment, with its focus on information.

The distinction between CS ArtisanRV (Revit) and CS Artisan (AutoCAD) is best illustrated by reference to the way planting is covered in each application.

Both CS ArtisanRV (Revit) and CS Artisan (AutoCAD) share the same Cloud based planting content (i.e. Palettes of individual plants &/or mixes). This (same) information, when downloaded into the two applications, is used to ‘dynamically create model content‘ (2D, 3D, section, schedules etc) in the Revit environment (ArtisanRV) and is ‘applied to CAD geometry’ as an additional layer of intelligence in the AutoCAD environment (Artisan). Herein lies the fundamental difference between a traditional CAD system and a fully informed BIM authoring system that is reliant on a robust centralised source of information.

By way of illustration, here is the result of a mix applied in Artisan (intelligent information overlaid onto ‘dumb’ CAD geometry)…

Here is the result of the same mix being applied in ArtisanRV (dynamically informing all views – 3D – section – plan – schedule)…

In a fully informed BIM environment, the ‘geometry’ is automatically created from the underlying information and can be displayed in either plan, elevation/section, 3D or schedule ‘view’. Modify content in any of these views and the same MODIFICATIONS ARE IMMEDIATELY VISIBLE IN ALL VIEWS.

In BIM, this concept is often referred to as the ‘single source of truth’ (SSOT)… “the practice of structuring information models and associated data such that every data element is stored exactly once” [D.Jellings, BIM+ (2017), Is a single source of truth a prerequisite for Level 3 BIM?].