TILOS Version 8 contains Google Earth Integration

Linear project GmbH releases the ‘beta’ version of its linear scheduling software TILOS 8. It is a major step in the development of the software providing the foundation for a wider usage of TILOS in the future: It can handle much bigger projects and works faster. It allows merging of data from different planning phases or partners using the simple drag & drop function to consolidate sub-projects into one central file. The improved planning features of TILOS enable its usage as an analysis and visualization tool for those who still plan with Primavera or Microsoft Project Gantt Charts.

One of the most interesting aspects of TILOS 8 is the new Google Earth add-on component. Just some clicks are required to visualize your project on the globe.

The steps are:

  1. Import the paths and placemarks from Google Earth or a spreadsheet
  2. Load the schedule from TILOS
  3. Set the filters and the display criteria of what you would like to view.

The image above is showing the situation on Feb 09, 2013. The autoplay function simulates the ongoing construction process in user defined steps. The Screen is updatedevery ten seconds to show the new status on the next step. Linear tasks are displayed as lines in different colors while those being executed in one place (buildings) are displayed as symbols. The animated map provides a rough roadmap of the execution of the project for all parties.

To get more information, watch the video on how to make a Google earth visualisation:
This video ist hosted by youtube. please change to the best resolution availlable in the bottom settings bar.

If you would like to test the new TILOS Version 8 with Google Earth Integration, you may sign-up and register for our global test program. Be one of the first to try the new functions with TILOS8. Send an email to BetaTest@TILOS.org.

We intend to release the international version of TILOS 8 (English) at the end of January 2013.

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First words about TILOS Version 8

Introducing TILOS 8: Rebuild Core Engine

Having created many new linear scheduling features in TILOS 7, we have concentrated on the core engine for TILOS 8 to make the system faster on the one side and prepared for future development on the other side.
Version 8 development is going into its final chapter and we will have reached Beta state by the end of July. Most changes have been done in the core system to make TILOS fit for next generation:

  • New software architecture with multi thread / multi core technology improved speed on loading and rescheduling up to factor 20.
  • New data collector can group and summarize performance figures for the project at any level.
  • New TILOS Explorer concept improves the usability of the software by structuring the views in folders:

         

More NEWS: Having listened carefully to the demands of our clients, we adapted a big set of client wishes to improve the daily work with TILOS. We will introduce some of them here, when we get closer to the Release. And, of course, there is something more we will not disclose until TILOS 8 is released.

Beyond TILOS 8: Ready for the future.

Our base technology team has already moved to new tasks preparing the next steps beyond TILOS 8:

The GUI (Graphical User Interface) will be completely exchanged to run on multi platforms supporting tablets and smart phones as alternative devices. Sample applications: We think about apps for project viewing or progress recording.

Although the TILOS 8 multi thread machine still runs on windows desktop in single user mode, it is already prepared to become also a Server application for storing multiple projects and servicing multiple clients. The remaining work is to optimize data transport between client and server over the networks and also the web. The first implementation will work in offline mode using check-in and check-out technology. So a user can save a project or part of a project to his local environment, edit and sent back the changes to the server for cross project reports and analyzes.

The long development cycle of TILOS 8 will payback in short future: Having an optimized environment for planning and execution of linear projects on one side – but also managing multiple projects in construction companies or public and private authorities managing their infrastructure assets.

TILOS is ready for a new future …

 

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Data Exchange from CPM (Gantt-Chart) to Linear Schedule (TILOS)

TILOS is being used on many huge projects in combination with CPM based project management systems, in most cases Microsoft Project and Oracle Primavera. The initial demand from new users having planned without linear scheduling concepts in the past is: To convert the project into a linear schedule, display a time-distance-diagram (also named time location diagram).

As the projects data are rich, calendars, tasks, relationships, costs data and actuals, we recommend to use the xml based data exchange. It can exchange in both directions and opens the gate for parallel planning in different systems.

Supposing you are familiar with the program workflow how to data exchange, we concentrate here on specific options to optimize the exchange and the results:

For each of the discussed special cases, there is a sample template profile available along with the standard setup of TILOS. You can open the profiles with the profile editor.

How to set up the basic profile settings?

All profiles require:

This sample: Application 1 and Application 2 defines the programs that shout exchange data. The Checks on Calendars, tasks and Links define that these objects are transported from MS Project to TILOS.

How to get distance data into CPM schedule?

It is important to have attributes in the CPM System, that contain the placement of the tasks according to distance axis. As there is no dedicated data field for that, it need to be done based on user defined fields in the application.
In order to avoid conflicts with formats, we recommend to use a text field. This allows also to use special format like 400+00 or imperial formats like 4m 50y.
In the profile -> task Object the following settings are required and already set by default. If you use other fields, please change the Fieldname on the CPM Side (in this case: Text13 Text14 from MS Project)

During import TILOS interprets the string based on the current default display sets for the distance unit. If this is not the same as set in the CPM system, you need to change the unit before import to TILOS or set the import unit in the import parameters to a different one. Press the Button Edit right of Application 1 (TILOS) field and set up the Distance unit to apply.

How to convert sector based data into TILOS Station values?

Having no distance values in the CPM system, but sector names assigned to the schedule it is also possible to generate a location in TILOS:
In TILOS a sector table is required to match Sector name (from CPM) with coordinates.

In the CPM system you need a code assignment or text field with sector name as value (Sample: Text15). In the profile match this field with the sector name assigned in TILOS.

During import, TILOS will assign the task to the belonging sector, and displays this in tab coordinates. However, coordinates cannot be changed for that task until the sector assignment is released from the task.

How to get different colors and shapes in TILOS?

Each TILOS task refers to a task template defining color and line style. In General CPM a code library assignment or a text field contains the work type or other categories. This can be matched with TILOS templates and beginning from the first import there is a ready to display result in TILOS.

There are 2 possibilities:

How to map task template name with external data?

Use the task template name, if you have coded in the CPM system a single text field for the work type.

Using Primavera, you might link a code library. The sample matched the description of the code assignment with the TILOS field Task Template.

How to map task template ID with external data?

The TILOS template library is a structure and has UID created based on the structure level. This is the same logic Primavera uses.

In exchange profile, the template can also be transferred using the path of the code assignment to match with TILOS template.

How to transfer sub sets of data?

Considering, that the CPM schedule is huge with multi thousand tasks, it will overflow the time distance chart. We recommend to reduce the exchange data to a reasonable level, that should be displayed in TILOS.

MS-Project and ASTA Powerproject exchange the data based on VBA macros. Here only those tasks get exported, that are visible on screen in the current view applied. This means: Collapsed tasks get not exported. This enables to export only upper level activities and not the details. Similar things can be done with filter views.
Primavera exchanges the data in the Primavera API interface. Here you are able to set filters on those tasks that should be exchanged. We recommend to make a user defined field: ExportToTILOS, populate this in P6 with global change and use this field as export filter.
While MS Project allows on summary tasks, Primavera has more options: You may create task of type Level of effort and control they duration by incoming links from other tasks and export only those to TILOS. A further way is to define WBS summary tasks.

How to export code library assignments?

Additional structures can be transferred by using the TILOS categories.

This 3 types (categories, category entries, category assignments) checked also transfers the complete libraries to TILOS. See sample profile regarding setup.
In the API program filter for categories that should be exported. In that way you avoid to create big, needless data sets in TILOS.

How to export WBS code from Primavera to TILOS?

Version 8 has built in WBS code structure, so the transfer is fairly easy. In Version 7, the WBS structure is matched into a TILOS category. (Edit button right of Application 2 Primavera)

Export WBS as category: Checked option exports only WBS no code, if you want to transfer just the WBS as category library and no codes. Enter in WBS Category name the name of category library you want to assign in TILOS.
To exchange the category assignments itself, you need to exchange the category assignments also.

Primavera adds ProjectID ahead of WBS. There is option to add this during import and to remove during export.

How to exchange cost and resource data?

To exchange also cost and resource data, further options need to be applied.

There are further sample profiles with this options checked. The API program exports only those resourses, that are used on the projects.
The resource and cost assignments get simplified. Only total quantity and total cost get exchanged.

How to exchange progress information ?

To exchange progress further options need to be applied. Select in the profile editor the task attribute: Progress%.

Note, the progress can only bet transferred to tasks, that have progress model: Simple % (As CPM only reports simple %). In any other case this field gets calculated by TILOS and can’t be imported.

How to set the TASKID from CPM system in the TILOS tasks?

Each system has its own model to handle unique task ID’ s. Besides that, TILOS also has a field called GUID, that allows tasks to keep its TILOS ID and maintain the exchange ID in a further field. The GUID was invented to have a global unique ID for tasks that are exchanged between different applications, especially if multiple applications share the data exchange.

Settings for data exchange to use application ID as ID:

Application Parameter Setting
TILOS Taskidentifier TaskID
Primavera Use Global UID
as Task Identifier
No
ASTA Generate task ID by Unique TaskID
MS Project Always a GUID is created.

 

Settings for data exchange to use application GUID as ID

Application Parameter Setting
TILOS Taskidentifier GUID
Primavera Use Global UID
as Task Identifier
Yes
ASTA Generate task ID by Generate on
Export
MS Project Always a GUID is created.

Any other combination we do not recommend.

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