BIM is many things. Depending on who you ask, you will likely get a different answer.
Simply put, BIM (Building Information Modeling) is 3D modeling with information tied to it. BIM is not just for buildings; the Landscape Institute explains it quite nicely, stating:
“BIM is actually a poor acronym, […] the first word ‘Building’ is in reality a verb; ‘to build’. To build a model of information. The ‘I’ is the important part – information. It is not information about a building, not entirely anyway.“
Graphisoft, the producer of ArchiCAD, provides another explanation, which also acknowledges the many aspects of BIM:
“Some say BIM is a type of software. Some say BIM is the 3D virtual model of buildings. Others say BIM is a process or BIM is nothing more than the collection of all building data organized into a structure database easy to query both in a “visual” and a “numerical” way. It is safe to say that BIM is all the above and some more…”
For more information, check out BIM Resources.
Additional Posts on BIM
Demand BIM! (why Landscape Architects still use AutoCAD)