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RE: Project Portals -International Team Collaboration

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Dennis,

I was one of those who responded the last time.  I have used various portals
on projects in the past.  Some of the portals that I am familiar with are:
1.	Buzzsaw http://www.buzzsaw.com/
2.	Blueline Online merged with E-Bricks (using Bechtel bucks) to create
Cephren http://www.cephren.com/html/index.htm
3.	Black & Veatch has their own proprietary portal.  You can learn
about the concepts at http://www.bvsg.com/
4.	I have used Lotus Quick Place http://www.quickplace.com/ as a
virtual office also.

There are as many reasons as there are features that the new generation of
web based portals have over just opening up a server.  You can use the
project as a marketing tool, allowing controlled viewing of the project, web
cam of the project, etc.  You can then access secured rooms to access
drawings, specifications, contracts, etc.  You can conference, link to team
members, red line submittals, route and track specifications, etc.  

There are some interesting papers contained on several of the web sites that
list all of the bells and whistles.  Some of the features may be ho hum, but
others might grab you attention.  It is worth a look.

Regards,
Harold Sprague


> -----Original Message-----
> From:	Dennis S. Wish [SMTP:dennis.wish(--nospam--at)gte.net]
> Sent:	Thursday, April 20, 2000 11:10 AM
> To:	seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org
> Subject:	RE: Project Portals -International  Team Collaboration
> 
> To all:
> Jennifer Chu contacted me a few days ago. She is a student at Boston
> University and is doing research on the economic changes occurring within
> the engineering community by companies who may be taking project
> production
> phases and outsourcing them to areas in the world where labor rates are
> cheaper.
> We had some heated discussions on this topic early in the year, but I was
> only able to find a few posts in the archives.
> I would be interested in hearing more about this topic as I recall one of
> two of you who are using Portals to coordinate efforts between
> international
> team members (not necessarily doing it to reduce labor rates).
> As I told Jennifer, I was contacted by one of our list members about two
> years ago who was wanted to market tract home engineering. His production
> team was in India while engineering was handled in the United States with
> proprietary software. His offices had spread into three states and then he
> seemed to disappear. One of the problems he had was code compliance which,
> I
> think, may have prevented him from completing his proprietary software. He
> faced many of the same problems that the commercial developers are facing
> today.
> 
> In the same vein, I would appreciate it is those who are using Project
> Portals like buzzsaw.com could elaborate a bit more as to why a web based
> server is desirable to companies who may already be setting up or have
> already established an in-house Intranet. It would seem easy enough to
> open
> the server to specific sub-contractors if file storage and retrievals are
> the only real benefit of portals. Are there other tools, such as Internet
> Conferencing etc. that attract so many to Buzzsaw or is it the interface
> that needs to be designed special to be user friendly.
> 
> This is new to me and our first discussion of this new technology did not
> create a clear picture in my mind. I'd appreciate hearing more on this
> topic.
> 
> Regards,
> Dennis S. Wish, PE
> Structural Engineering Consultant
> structures(--nospam--at)engineer.com
> (208) 361-5447 E-Fax
> 
> 
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Jennifer Chu [mailto:chunifer(--nospam--at)yahoo.com]
> Sent: Thursday, April 20, 2000 6:29 AM
> To: seaint(--nospam--at)seaint.org
> Subject: Project Portals
> 
> 
> 
> I've heard that some companies are using Project
> Portal services like Buzzsaw.com to establish
> connections between U.S. projects and production
> overseas in countries of lower cost. Does anyone know
> which companies are doing this?
> 
> Jennifer Chu
> Science Journalism
> Boston University
> chunifer(--nospam--at)yahoo.com
> 
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