Communication Integration in Virtual Construction

Communication Integration in Virtual Construction

O.K.B. Barima (University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-026-4.ch099
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Abstract

In recent times the use of the virtual and allied concepts in the delivery of tasks in the construction industry has received attention in literature (Barima, 2003). However it appears there is the lack of integrated models to support the study and practice of communication in the physical world (the place) and the virtual realms (the space) in the construction industry. This chapter seeks to evolve frameworks which integrate communication paths in the traditional construction place with that of the construction space. This approach may provide an integrated perspective to support the study and practice of communication in the place and space in the construction industry. First, a review of traditional communication theories is done, and then integrated models of the construction place and space are presented, before an integrated matrix of potential communication paths across likely construction work scenarios is given. The suggestions for future studies and the conclusions to this chapter are preceded by a map of the potential communication conflicts (or agreements) in both realms (i.e., physical and virtual).
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Introduction

In recent times the use of the virtual and allied concepts in the delivery of tasks in the construction industry has received attention in literature (Barima, 2003). However it appears there is the lack of integrated models to support the study and practice of communication in the physical world (the place) and the virtual realms (the space) in the construction industry. This chapter seeks to evolve frameworks which integrate communication paths in the traditional construction place with that of the construction space. This approach may provide an integrated perspective to support the study and practice of communication in the place and space in the construction industry. First, a review of traditional communication theories is done, and then integrated models of the construction place and space are presented, before an integrated matrix of potential communication paths across likely construction work scenarios is given. The suggestions for future studies and the conclusions to this chapter are preceded by a map of the potential communication conflicts (or agreements) in both realms (i.e., physical and virtual).

Key Terms in this Chapter

Fixed Construction Place: Fixed construction place refers to the bounded construction locations where construction activities take place.

Construction Space: The “imaginary” space (via ICT terminals/tools) where construction activities are executed as imitations of the real world scenarios by means of computers.

Mobile Construction Place: Mobile construction place relates to the dynamic construction locations within the fixed locations where construction works are done.

3-D Graphics/Modeling: 3-D graphics/modeling refers to three dimensional perspectives of communicated graphics.

Inter-Boundary Communication: Inter-boundary communication refers to communication across identified systemic boundaries.

Communication Paths: Communication paths refer to the tracks of potential communications which may occur between communication objects (humans or computers).

Intra-Boundary Communication: Intra-boundary communication refers to communication within identified systemic boundaries.

Construction Place: The physical geographic locations where the construction activities take place.

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