To Charge or Not to Charge - A Framework for Proper Funding

A Framework for Proper Funding
Should users pay for geo-data produced by government and institutions? This question has fostered a long and heated debate, often spiced by contributions fully in favour or fully opposed to free access. Based on an extensive review of the literature, and acknowledging that there is no one-size-fits-all solution, the authors developed a framework for selecting proper funding models. Free access is the predominant model, but in some cases charging is both viable and justifiable.   Figure 1 left, Google Earth aerial image of part of the campus of Wageningen University in The Netherlands The rationale behind reigniting the key question... (read more)
2010-07-29 04:04:44

Geoinformation Software as a Service

From Licensing to Subscription
Accurate geoinformation about urban areas, public buildings or historical sites is in great demand. It has become astonishingly easy to capture these scenes through cameras or laser scanning or to acquire open data from a diversity of sources. Professionals without a surveying background can do the job, but such professionals require reliable, robust, easy-to-use and affordable processing tools. Today, cloud computing can meet that need, enabling users to work with software packages running on remote servers on either a pay-per-use or a subscription basis. This article presents a cloud computing service dedicated to geoinformation software. Storing data in the cloud... (read more)
2019-06-13 01:10:12

Pioneering Location with an Out-of-the-box Approach

Interview with Kurt Daradics, Manager of the Startup Programme, Esri
Esri recently exhibited at The Next Web Europe, a conference focused on entrepreneurship, technology and startups in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. But why was Esri involved? Is it looking for new frontiers for spatial analysis? Is the developer market the group that will bring a fresh contribution to Esri’s startup and developer programme? GIM International spoke to Kurt Daradics, global leader of Esri’s Emerging Business Group, to find out. Kurt, we last met in April at The Next Web conference in Amsterdam. What were you doing there? Esri has been sponsoring The Next Web for a few years now. Boris Veldhuijzen... (read more)
2015-07-14 04:49:38

The USA’s National Spatial Data Infrastructure Needs Improvement

GIM International interviews COGO Chair Mike Vanhook
Data themes with the most diffused authority and largest number of responsible stakeholders generally have lower grades. Overall, the backbone of the U.S. National Spatial Data Infrastructure (NSDI) was assigned a C- grade following an assessment by a panel of experts initiated by the Coalition of Geospatial Organizations (COGO). The chair of COGO, Michael Vanhook, explains the context. How important is COGO in the United States? In our field it cannot be overlooked. COGO comprises 13 national professional societies, trade associations and membership organisations in the geospatial field, representing more than 170,000 individual producers and users of geospatial data and... (read more)
2017-03-01 11:27:04

Sensor Fusion for Precision Agriculture

Low-cost Lidar Camera System without GNSS
Precision agriculture has considerably benefited from the use of unmanned aerial vehicles, often combined with active ranging sensors like Lidar to gather information from underneath the crops, but existing systems are relatively expensive for the farming sector. In this project, researchers in Canada have used an integrated sensor orientation method for the local referencing of Lidar measurements. Their approach is based on loosely coupled, image-aided inertial navigation in which the pose of the camera replaces the GNSS measurements. The result is a low-cost solution that is useful for capturing topographic data of inaccessible areas as well as in GNSS-denied environments.... (read more)
2019-06-20 01:50:38

UAVs Revolutionise Land Administration

Fit-for-purpose Mapping
In 2014, a joint publication by the World Bank and the International Federation of Surveyors (FIG) entitled 'Fit-for-Purpose Land Administration' noted that 75 percent of the world’s population do not have access to formal systems to register and safeguard their land rights and, therefore, there is an urgent need to build affordable and sustainable systems to identify the way land is occupied and used. The emergence of small, affordable unmanned aerial system (UAS) technology and recent advances in highly automated mapping techniques offer a new tool and methodology for producing faster and cheaper spatial data that can benefit land administration... (read more)
2014-11-03 10:50:18

Lidar Flight Planning

A System with Minimal User Intervention
Airborne Lidar has become a regular technology for acquiring accurate, consistent and dense point clouds. However, the constraints on specifications, available sensors and aerial platforms are still a challenge for Lidar data acquisition. Optimal flight planning is essential. Current practices rely on rules of thumb and trial and error, meaning that optimal solutions are rare. The authors have developed a Lidar flight planning system which does provide an optimal solution at a high level of automation and requiring minimal user intervention. Once acquired, Lidar data should satisfy the specifications on density, overlap, spatial distribution and accuracy. Data clusters and voids... (read more)
2014-02-17 10:39:05

The Expanding Use of UAVs in Construction

Flying to Build a Better Product
It is an exciting time for geospatial professionals. The data that can now be obtained using unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs, or drones) opens up previously impossible opportunities in many different industries. At the forefront of these is the construction industry. As a geospatial engineer working for a general contractor, Michael Schwind is always looking for new ways to utilize UAVs and the resulting data to improve efficiency and communication, and to detect and prevent costly – or even deadly – mistakes before they occur. In this article, he discusses some of the obvious and not-so-obvious ways that Fulton Construction, a... (read more)
2020-03-10 08:36:22

UAV-based Mobile Mapping: Potential, Challenges and Outlook

A Cost-effective Alternative to Airborne and Terrestrial Modalities
Accurate representation and 3D reconstruction of the environment using both active and passive remote sensing systems has become essential for non-traditional mapping applications. Due to the excessive cost as well as the required level of technical expertise, the needs of these applications cannot be satisfied by traditional mapping, which is based on dedicated data acquisition systems designed for mapping purposes (e.g. manned airborne and terrestrial mobile mapping systems). Recent advances in hardware and software development have made it possible to conduct accurate 3D mapping without using costly and high-end data acquisition systems. Low-cost digital cameras, laser scanners and navigation systems... (read more)
2017-08-31 09:28:05

Autonomous 3D Modelling of Indoor Spaces

A Comparison of Mobile Indoor Scanning Methods
Mobile scanning can be an equally accurate yet more cost-effective solution than traditional terrestrial laser scanning done with tripods. To succeed, however, mobile scanners not only require a suitable combination of sensors, but also reliable and continuous knowledge about where the scanners are located and the direction in which they are pointing during scanning. There are multiple ways to achieve this, which has led to the development of various scientific and commercial solutions. This article compares several mobile scanning solutions for 3D modelling of indoor spaces and highlights their strengths and weaknesses. In modern society, people tend to spend more... (read more)
2017-10-24 04:26:03
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