Virtual Construction: The BIM Revolution – Imagine Computation

The minds behind Imagine Computation, Martin Manegold and Dominik Zausinger, are fascinated by the possibilities opened up by modern manufacturing technologies. Founding Imagine Computation was an opportunity for these business partners to establish an environment in which the creative potential of complex designs become reality by means of modern technology. Today, their 3D planning and optimised CNC-manufacturing processes stand to take full advantage of the new BIM practices sweeping the industry.

Having entered the market into the industry before the BIM trend got underway afforded Imagine Computation a number of advantages when it came to developing their early business. The level of involvement that their computerised solutions delve into touch every facet of their clients’ construction requirements, as Dominik elaborates.


‘For every project we develop individual software, which generates a complete 3D-model. From that we derive all production data for CNC-manufacturing. This direct data link between 3d model and machine ensures a maximum of planning reliability and creates logical assembly systems. On-site readjustments become unnecessary.


‘The production process is virtually simulated and optimized before the actual manufacturing begins. Only then, the generation of the individual production data for the machines follows. The programming enables us to automate planning to a large extent. That guarantees precision and flexibility, allowing the planning of larger quantities of individual components at low additional expenses.’


‘We develop solution concepts true to details for all phases of the project – made to measure and with modern technical approaches. Each work process creates standardized procedures for routine tasks. Major parts can be controlled by computers and therefore can be optimized and automated. We analyse work processes and develop bespoke software for neuralgic aspects to optimize the processes. Mostly as individual extensions of existing software on the basis of .Net API.’


In particular, the Imagine Group pride themselves on their malleable strategies; this is something that Dominik believes makes them a distinguishing force in the market, and makes them better suited to cope with changing circumstances as the market continues to shift under the growing influence of BIM strategies. This process is particularly aided by their forward-thinking attitude towards automotive technology.


‘In computational design we develop algorithms which lead to a design result. That facilitates an indirect influence on the result, the control over complex dependencies and the comparative implementation of numerous design variations in short time spans.

‘By programming spatial structures and writing our own 3D-software plugins, we are very flexible in planning routines for very special building components. Therefore, we can automate parts of the planning processes which could not be done with traditional building software and go beyond their limitations. Whenever you have a complex facade which hundreds or thousands individually unique components combined with a high demand for precision you should opt on our solutions.’


These flexible strategies make Imagine Computation better able to adjust to varying levels of complexity in their projects. ‘For the implementation of complex designs with CNC-machines we identify technological obstacles before the production and find individual, working solutions. Due to our experience in CAD-planning, automation and CNC-manufacturing we can assess which implementation is suitable for a project and assist in the implementing of complex designs true to the original shape.’


To further their impact within the market, Dominik and the members of his group also disseminate their knowledge and experience through lectures at conferences and multiple German universities. By spreading their knowledge within a large network of cooperating companies, befriending teachers of universities and other industry professionals along the way, Dominik has arrived at a set of overall aims, reflecting Imagine’s past successes as well as its aspirations for the future.


‘We believe that only a team of specialists can master great challenges perfectly. We have embedded Imagine Computation in a professional network of experts whose works complement each other and together make the project a success. We love good design, and believe that every creative idea deserves an accomplishing realization true to every detail.’


‘What we have learned, from working on larger architectural projects, is that planning automation regardless of the geometric complexity of the project is beneficial to all parties -it is good to know what to automate and what not to automate.


‘The most important thing we can do is to talk with people. When working together with experts on other fields it is very important that all are willing to cooperate to get the best possible outcome. We are experts in 3D-modelling and spatial programming but we need cooperation with other experts on their fields like façade planning, structural engineers, carpenters etc.’


Dominik remarks upon the way that the BIM trend has spurred on his company’s business. Having come to the market pre-prepared with a robust, holistic strategy in mind, Imagine Computation is reaping the benefits of a wider market that is increasingly welcoming towards their approach.


‘BIM is changing the whole world of building industry right now,’ Dominic explains. ‘We are used to working with lots of information within the building, the only difference being that it wasn’t called BIM at the time. This development is very good for us, as other offices and planners are more open to 3D-planning and informed models. We get better information of a project in the beginning, discussions are getting easier, and people are getting a far more comprehensive understanding of our approach.’


Having realized many complex projects worldwide and gained experience in BIM planning, Dominik wants to progress to become one of the leading planning partners for the realisation of freeform Architecture with BIM requirements.


Company: Imagine Computation

Email: [email protected]

Phone: 49 69 663 75 – 600

Address: Imagine Computation GmbH, Gutzkowstrasse 7 HH, 60594 Frankfurt am Main, Germany