If we're going to honest, really honest, the construction industry is not often seen as the poster child of innovation. Asked to describe it in one word, answers may range from "breath-taking" to "claim".

We already live in a world where we design projects in a virtual environment and use that digital world to design out mistakes before the first bracket is fixed in a data centre.

Now we're seeing how construction components can be produced by 3D printing, pushing the art of the possible.

What's the next part of the construction process that can be taken into the cloud?

One area attracting attention is how we go about the contracts that underpin the delivery of the projects. No longer do we need to make them out of paper, nor sign them in ink and increasingly we are generating them automatically and signing them electronically. It's a long way yet to the limits of this frontier and the next staging post is artificial intelligence, which allows busy clients to have their contracts checked automatically with errors being weeded out before the contract is signed.

Who knows, maybe we'll be able to identify and resolve some disputes before the first spade hits the ground?