DCN Talks to our Director, Anthony Harte
DCN: Can you tell our readers a little bit about yourself, and your role in the built environment?
AH: I’ll keep it fairly brief – 17 Years in Architecture, 16 of those years in Retail Architecture with 1 year in social housing. Started my BIM or Digital Construction journey in 2008 converting Asda’s New Store Prototype information from 2d CAD to a more Digital approach. Landed Asda’s first new build using a collaborative BIM approach in 2009 and currently sit within the Construction Team as we continue to develop the business’s aspirations for a connected digital estate. I have a passion for technology both in the workplace and home life, and at the moment enjoy building racing drones and competing with other FPV pilots.
DCN: What for you is the most exciting thing about working in the built environment?
AH: It’s the amount of opportunity that currently presents itself and the new skillsets that are being developed from an evolving industry. Growing up I either pursued Computer Animation or Architecture, and making the choice of Architecture I’ve been rewarded with the development of 3D visual design and animation in what we do every day. And that’s the exciting thing, what we’re doing right now will evolve as technology advances and this creates a diversity in any role in the industry at the moment.
DCN: What do you feel would help improve and encourage greater collaboration in the built environment?
AH: There are more conferences / seminars than ever before which is great, but I feel more work still needs to be done on Contracts, Procurement routes and implementation together with educating the Clients in order to allow for this collaboration within project programmes.
DCN: What challenge in your work life would you most like a technology or process to help solve?
AH: The implementation of the evolving industry standards is proving to be a real talking point on many social platforms, and the key here is to push Vendors to solve this through imbedded technology in which would require a more automated approach rather than training, policies and audits to ensure all teams implement these in the same way. Automation of standard processes has to be the biggest area for saving overheads and wasted resource.
DCN: Tell us about a recent innovation or technology that you’ve been most impressed by?
AH: Augmented Reality built into PPE such as the DAQRI Smart Helmet has potential to be massive, and the benefits this will bring to our industry is vast. Whether this is on site, or a variation for being sat in the office it will still bring significant benefits and additional safety to the construction industry.
DCN: Can you tell us a bit about the projects you’re working on and what role (if any) innovation and technology is playing?
AH: We are currently working closely with our clients to create a component based way of working where API’s between connected systems will play a key role. This will enable far quicker Life Cycle Calculations to be developed and with advancement in connectivity such as IoT, real time calculations on expected asset replacement dates and maintenance will start to emerge.
DCN: What do you fear or struggle with the most in terms of technology?
AH: It’s people, and not a fear of people, but people overcoming the fear of technology. Learning new “stuff” is hard work when doing a day job, so people see technology as something to be afraid of rather than embracing it.
DCN: What is Digital Construction to you and why is it important?
AH: Simply put, it’s just life, it’s inevitable and it’s evolution, in which we have to go along with and embrace.
DCN: What does the next 12 months have in store for you?
AH: I’ll probably build many more racing drones, and maybe if I’m lucky my passion for drones will overlap with my day job in the future as my passion for 3D animation did all those years ago.
DCN: What is your favourite sci-fi movie?
AH: I can’t choose just one, so I’ll give 3… Matrix, Minority Report and I-Robot.