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About the Author: Sasha Reed has 10 years of experience working directly in the Architecture, Engineering and Construction (AEC) market, with over 15 years of experience in Customer Relations. As the Director of Strategic Alliances at Bluebeam Software, Sasha interacts with AEC industry leaders to better understand the long range goals of the industry and to help guide Bluebeam’s technology development. Drawing on this real world experience, Sasha has spoken at numerous industry events including the American Institute of Architects’ DesignDC Conference, American Institute of Architects California Council’s Monterey Design Conference, Construct Canada, NTI Danish BIM Conference and the Associated Builders & Contractors EdCon & Expo, the International Highway Engineering Exchange Program and the International Facilities Maintenance Association Conference.  Before Bluebeam, Sasha was a Project Manager for M3, a Herman Miller dealer, where she learned firsthand the everyday challenges that the AEC industry faces, from project conception to completion.

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Dear cloud: What would you like to tell cloud-based technical providers about your needs for a solid solution?

June 11, 2013

Editor's note: This is a sponsored article. All text and images were provided by the sponsor company.

It seems like every technical provider is offering a cloud-based module of their solution to store, share and access information. Sounds good, right? Why wouldn’t you want to jump in? There are many uses for the cloud applicable to those in the building industry—mainly storage of up-to-the-minute project drawings and data, giving accessibility to all project team members regardless of their location. But is that enough?
According to a past BD+C article entitled, "BIM's Future up in the Cloud," the future of building collaboration will primarily live online. In fact the article states that by 2020 Cloud computing will have reached a global audience with $241 billion in potential revenue. If we’re going to get from here to there with your needs in mind, I thought I’d ask you what you’d like to see in your cloud solution of tomorrow. And I wonder are you beginning to see value in the cloud today?  What do you still need?
As I techie myself, I have to admit that stories of the future where project teams collaborate seamlessly in the cloud really excite me. However, my excitement is tempered by the reality I face each time I am without an internet connection and am completely cut off from my virtual world. Being that I fly multiple times a month, I experience this disconnectedness often. And when I am disconnected, I’m grateful for my locally installed programs which allow me to continue working while 35K feet in the air (and for those few cloud solutions that let me work even when I’m offline). 
One challenge I see for this utopic forecast is to continue to build a bridge between the connected and the disconnected world, while simultaneously working to make connectivity more accessible and reliable than ever before.  Do you agree? What would you say are the “must haves” for the cloud of your future?

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