Survey Scene

ESRI Conference and SVN-49 Troubles

July 29, 2009By

I had a great visit at the ESRI User Conference earlier this month. If you recall last year, I wrote: “As much as surveyors, engineers, and constructors may not appreciate geographic information systems (GIS) technology, at some point everyone should attend at least the ESRI Survey/Engineering Summit and the first couple of days of the ESRI User Conference held every summer in San Diego, California. This is not a GIS sales pitch. It's a networking sales pitch. When other conferences are struggling to maintain attendance levels, the ESRI conferences seemingly never fail to grow in attendance. This year, it attracted some 15,000 people from 120 countries. That means gobs of GIS people, and also gobs of surveyors and engineers.” The statement rang true this year too. Even in today’s economy where conferences are severely impacted or even cancelled due to travel budget cuts, the ESRI User conference still attracted ~11,000 people this month. read more

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GPS Receivers for GIS Data Collection

June 22, 2009By

In my column earlier this month, I discussed the use of consumer GPS receivers for GIS data collection. Remember the analogy I used?a Volkswagen Beetle wasn?t designed to run in a Formula One race? This column is going to focus on the Formula One cars, not the Volkswagen Beetles. In other words, it will focus on the GPS receivers on the market that are designed for GIS data collection. I will refer to them as GPS/GIS receivers. read more

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Consumer-Grade GPS Receivers for GIS Data Collection

June 3, 2009By

Three categories of GPS are used to populate GIS databases: consumer-grade receivers, GPS receivers designed specifically for GIS data collection, and survey receivers. This month, I discuss consumer-grade receivers. In a new issue in two weeks' time, I?ll cover the class of GPS receivers designed specifically for GIS data collection. read more

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Survey Perspectives: RTK Networks Webinar Q&A Follow-Up

May 6, 2009By

Many surveyors I know use RTK for setting boundaries. Some even use single-baseline RTK for this task, which is essentially just a radial survey (no redundancy). I?d say that almost all whom I know that are doing this have used their RTK systems enough to understand the limitations. In fact, I think most have run RTK and total stations side-by-side on jobs to gain confidence and understand RTK in the field. read more

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Survey Perspectives: RTK Networks: The Wild, Wild West

April 1, 2009By

What can you say about RTK Networks, except wow! They have popped up everywhere and continue on a path of rapid growth. In the last five years, I'd say it's clear that two GNSS technologies have changed the survey/construction industry more than any others; machine control and RTK networks. read more

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Survey Perspectives: About Alaska

March 2, 2009By

I wish I could share with you what I'm seeing right now. I'm on a scenic train in Alaska, traveling from Anchorage to Fairbanks. From someone who usually travels by air, scurrying through airport security at the last minute, this is the way to travel...truly relaxing. The special cars of the Alaska Railroad are built with large picture windows for soaking in the scenery. The train will stop for residents who flag it down and need a ride to the next town. The conductor will even stop the train for picture-taking if the view warrants, which it did when we saw a wolf trying to chase down three sheep on a rock slope along a river. read more

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Survey Perspectives: Follow up on the GPS/GNSS Buyer’s Guide Webinar

March 2, 2009By

Thanks to those who attended my webinar last month entitled A Buyer's Guide to GPS/GNSS Survey Equipment. I received many questions during the webinar and answered a few during the event. As with my webinar last October , I'll post the questions and my comments here. read more

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Survey Perspectives: What’s Your Occupation Time?

February 3, 2009By

A reader wrote me about occupation times for RTK work, and it's spurred a conversation I think will be interesting to you and perhaps a little controversial. It seems that most GPS/GNSS users have developed their own opinion based on their own experience. read more

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