LEVERAGING NATURAL LANGUAGE PROCESSING FOR AUTOMATED INFORMATION INQUIRY FROM BUILDING INFORMATION MODELS
Journal of Information Technology in Construction
Building Information Modeling (BIM) is a trending technology in the building industry that can increase efficiency throughout construction. Various practical information can be obtained from BIM models during the project life cycle. However, accessing this information could be tedious and time-consuming for nontechnical users, who might have limited or no knowledge of working with BIM software. Automating the information inquiry process can potentially address this need. This research proposes an Artificial Intelligence-based framework to facilitate accessing information in BIM models. First, the framework uses a support vector machine (SVM) algorithm to determine the user's question type. Simultaneously, it employs natural language processing (NLP) for syntactic analysis to find the main keywords of the user's question. Then it utilizes an ontology database such as IfcOWL and an NLP method (latent semantic analysis (LSA)) for a semantic understanding of the question. The keywords are expanded through the semantic relationship in the ontologies, and eventually, a final query is formed based on keywords and their expanded concepts. A Navisworks API is developed that employs the identified question type and its parameters to extract the results from BIM and display them to the users. The proposed platform also includes a speech recognition module for a more user-friendly interface. The results show that the speed of answering the questions on the platform is up to 5 times faster than the manual use by experts while maintaining high accuracy.
Nabavi, A., Ramaji, I., Sadeghi, N., & Anderson, A. (2023). LEVERAGING NATURAL LANGUAGE PROCESSING FOR AUTOMATED INFORMATION INQUIRY FROM BUILDING INFORMATION MODELS. Journal of Information Technology in Construction, 28, 266-285. https://doi.org/10.36680/J.ITCON.2023.013