Check out this great round-up of sustainable analysis tools exhibited at AIA by Lachmi Khemlani, founder and editor of AECbytes

It includes our new VE-Gaia tool which we previewed there… “IES, the leading vendor in the performance analysis field, introduced a new application, VE-Gaia, to add to its already substantial product repertoire.”

However, it was her comments in the conclusion that really struck a chord with me. It is very encouraging to have finally reached a point where the importance of analysis tools and optimisation of building performance in sustainable design is becoming widely recognised. Enabling this ease of use and access to analysis tools is at the very center of our entire ethos. These are very exciting times for us!

“The increase in the number of analysis tools is a testament to the increasing importance of sustainable design in architecture and the need to optimize building performance. Unlike in the past, when performance analysis was primarily the purview of energy experts, academics, and research institutions, they are now becoming a part of the mainstream architectural toolset, with interfaces that non-technical people can also easily use and understand. Of course, the maxim of “garbage in, garbage out” very much holds true for sustainable design tools as well, and it is easy to be seduced by the colorful diagrams and charts and omit to question the veracity of the input and the accuracy of the output. It’s terrific that we have finally reached the point where the input of building geometry to the analysis tool directly from a BIM application has become a commonplace feature–but we have to keep in mind that geometry is only one of the inputs, and that an accurate analysis depends upon a whole host of other input data that has to be specified correctly as well. It is here that the experiences and insights of an energy expert come in and play a critical role in the design of sustainable buildings. Thus, while it is great to have the tools with their ever-increasing capabilities, it is important to not forget the human element that is ultimately needed for the creation of successful sustainable architecture.”

Lachmi has a Ph.D. in Architecture from UC Berkeley, specialising in intelligent building modelling; she both consults and writes on AEC technology. Read the full article and sign up to her newsletters at

Great news for all our US AIA members – the majority of our training courses have been registered with the AIA CES program – allowing you to gain AIA CES Learning Hours when you undertake them. Twelve courses also count towards the new mandatory Sustainable Design credits. Our FREE online introduction to IES is included […] has formed a new Green Building XML (gbXML) Advisory Board which is comprised of 11 member companies, including IES. The independent board is comprised of eleven (11) member companies that all have an interest in maintaining the gbXML schema as an open standard. The schema is the mostly widely used metadata format for transferring […]

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Posted : February 12, 2009 by Suzanne

Being home for the holidays last month I was struck by how familiar friends and family had become with terminology from our profession. In particular, I was surprised to find I didn’t have to explain what LEED was when talking about projects. This just goes to show how far LEED has come since it was […]

The Plastic Bag

Posted : February 2, 2009 by Pete

This time, instead of talking about the VE or SketchUp, I would like to provide some insight into my world outside of work and the passion I have for the environment. This is a project I am currently working on; Ok, the problem is one you all contribute to on a daily basis, perhaps unknowing […]

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