September-October 2019

GIM0519 front cover

In line with tradition, this year’s September/October issue of GIM International is dedicated to Intergeo, the world’s largest and most relevant annual gathering of the geospatial industry. As always, we have strived to put together an edition that is a good reflection of our profession today. Among the wide variety of topics covered, one article focuses on Switzerland, where mapless products are the future and 3D has become ‘the new normal’ for the country’s national object-oriented topographic database. Switzerland is so far unique in switching entirely to 3D and is therefore leading the way in terms of the digitalization of geoinformation. As geoinformation forms a foundation for our digital society, we hope that this bumper-packed issue of our magazine makes some contribution – however small – to further strengthening that foundation. Read the magazine here

Towards the Airborne Hybrid Era

Towards the Airborne Hybrid EraThe airborne market for area-wide 3D data acquisition is experiencing a noticeable trend towards a hybrid mapping concept. In the near future, most airborne data collection will increasingly be performed by a combination of active and passive sensors. There are two main reasons for this. Firstly, collecting all relevant data while flying is an efficient and cost-effective solution, even when the flying restrictions and regulations are factored in. Secondly, exploiting the advantages of both light detection and ranging (Lidar) and dense image matching (DIM) point clouds will improve the quality of the final geospatial products. This article reports on the latest developments in the field of airborne hybrid systems, including both data acquisition and processing. Read the full article here

Big Data, Rising Tides

Big Data, Rising TidesIn view of the increased vulnerability of cities to climate and disaster risks, accurate and up-to-date geospatial data is fundamental for a more resilient urban planning approach. Publicly available geospatial datasets are increasingly becoming the foundation stone for more informed urban planning decision-making and better investment prioritization. Satellite data can help cities to better prepare for natural disasters such as urban flooding and make more informed investment decisions. Read the full article here

The Evolution of BIM

The Role of Surveyors in the Evolution of BIMBIM is becoming more commonplace within construction sectors globally. However, the BIM life cycle and efforts to espouse it are almost futile if surveying is taken out of the equation or, more realistically, brought in too late. It can be good to have a structure that is successfully using BIM to be delivered on time and within budget, but if it or any of its components are in the wrong position the consequences can be catastrophic. Read the full article here

3D Modelling for Property Valuation in China

3D Modelling for Property Valuation in ChinaRapid urban development in China has transformed the cityscapes, with a dramatic increase in high-rise buildings. However, the current 2D property valuation methods neglect the vertical dimension, even though that aspect contains significant indicators that impact property value – such as types of views, scope of vision and daylight. 3D modelling of geographical data can help to change this in high-rise and highly-density areas, going beyond 2D to enable identification of complex property characteristics in the vertical dimension too. This article presents research to explore a 3D modelling approach using remote sensing data for more precise property valuation. Read the full article here

Switzerland in 3D

3D Is the New Normal in SwitzerlandSwitzerland is unique in that it is still the only country to have switched entirely to 3D for its national object-oriented topographic database. As users increasingly discover the advantages in terms of new workflows and services, nobody regrets leaving the 2D era behind. According to Swisstopo, the extra dimension creates no extra costs – only extra benefits. It took them ten years to build an object-oriented topographic database in 3D. Read the full article here

Precision Forestry

HRIS and a Trillion TreesPrecision forestry technology is moving forward at an amazing pace, with advancements in global positioning systems, remote sensing platforms and data sources, cloud geospatial engines, mobile GIS data collectors and advanced selective logging machinery. Without accurate and reliable vegetation inventory information, however, this new arsenal of precision forestry tools falls short for operational forestry. Read the full article here

Your feedback is important to us!

At GIM international we aim to bring you the latest news, trends and developments from the geospatial industry, supplemented by exclusive and relevant background articles, columns and reports. We strive to cover the global mapping & surveying community in its entirety and we are always open to suggestions for further improvements. Please contact Wim van Wegen, our content manager, to provide him with your feedback!

Best Practices in Drone Mapping

Best Practices in Drone MappingImagine flying to the most desolate and inaccessible regions, taking ultra-high-quality images and downloading them in real time, all from the comfort of your office. As GIM International has extensively covered in numerous case studies over the past years, this is no longer a pipe dream; nowadays, lightweight, high-performance unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs or ‘drones’) can collect an extraordinary amount of data, offering greater accuracy and more precision than satellite imagery. UAVs are increasingly becoming the solution of choice and have indeed proven to be a disruptive force across a multitude of industries in the past decade, including the geospatial surveying profession. But will drones really provide all the answers to your mapping challenges? We interviewed five pioneers in the field to take us beyond the hype, explaining the lessons they have learned from the frontline and sharing their insights on the best ways to introduce UAVs into your business model. Read the full article here

Geospatial Data as a Core Instrument to Transform a Country

Geospatial Data as a Core Instrument to Transform a CountryAfter several turbulent decades, the Republic of Serbia is working towards a brighter future, including by radically transforming its geospatial information infrastructure. In fact, the country has received recognition for its reforms in the process of digitalization and economic development of the state. This confirms the role of geospatial data as a fundamental 21st-century resource with considerable potential for economic and social development of state and society. In this interview with Borko Drašković, general director of the Republic Geodetic Authority (RGA), GIM International takes a closer look at the achievements in Serbia, which can serve as an example for other countries in the Balkans and beyond. Read the full interview here

Point Clouds

Point Clouds – the Representation of the Third KindGIM International has published many articles about point clouds: huge collections of (surface) points. They represent the world at its best: up to date, and with every detail there is to be known. Most articles pay particular attention to the data acquisition of such point clouds, as they are obtained from 1) Lidar time-stamped reflections with the advantage of indicating ‘empty’ space between the observation point(s) and surface points, and 2) images by structure from motion (SfM) and dense image matching (DIM) techniques with the benefit of colour-enriched points. Read the full article here

ISPRS Geospatial Week 2019

Review of ISPRS Geospatial Week 2019Every two years, the photogrammetry and remote sensing community gathers at the ISPRS Geospatial Week. The event comprises a combination of workshops organized by various ISPRS Working Groups and other stakeholders involved in the geospatial profession. The 2019 edition, which was held from 10-14 June in Enschede, situated in the eastern part of the Netherlands, proved to be a true geospatial hub bringing together a wide range of geomatics-related activities and applications. Read the full report here

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