GSS Monthly

FAA just gave US commercial drone industry major shot in the arm

June 30, 2016By
3DR demonstrates its drone in the Esri UC drone cage.

Mark June 21, 2016, on your calendar. This will be known as the day in geospatial history that the floodgates were opened for small drones to be used for business. On that day, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) officially introduced new rules (so-called Part 107) that allow businesses to fly small (under 55 pounds) unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) in the... read more

This article is tagged with , , , , and posted in Featured Stories, GSS Monthly, Opinions, UAS/UAV

Esri introduces high-precision GNSS mobile GIS software

May 19, 2016By
MOBILE-GIS-1

The title of this column may surprise you. Esri has never built a high-precision GNSS mobile GIS software in its 47-year history. Its ArcGIS Collector did not differentiate between low-precision GNSS data and RTK GNSS receivers — until now. read more

FAA makes progress accommodating commercial UAS operations

April 22, 2016By
The sensefly eXom UAV in flight.

The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) took a major step forward in expanding commercial UAS/UAV operations in the U.S. airspace. It’s chief said April 19 that the FAA is preparing to take another major step forward in further opening up commercial UAS/UAV operations by eliminating the need for a 333 Exemption for operating small UAS/UAV. On March 29, the FAA announced it was doubling... read more

What really matters to GIS professionals

March 17, 2016By
MLD1

Surveyors are short-term, project-based data generators. On the other hand, GIS professionals are long-term data managers. Therefore, for surveyors, their data doesn’t require accuracy, it requires precision. On the other hand, GIS professionals value accuracy much more, or at least they should. read more

This article is tagged with , , , , , and posted in GSS Monthly, Opinions

ArcGIS Earth: Google Earth, GIS style

January 28, 2016By
GSS-Jan-3

For most GIS professionals, Esri’s new ArcGIS Earth will replace the soon-to-be-discontinued Google Earth Enterprise. I take a tour through the new software, which is much like Google Earth with a few added features. Plus: Q&A from our December UAV webinar. In early 2015, Google announced that Google Earth Enterprise is being deprecated. In the software world, deprecated means the... read more

This article is tagged with , , , and posted in GSS Monthly, Lidar, Mapping, Opinions, UAS/UAV

Boxes and Boxes of Professional-Grade Tools

December 17, 2015By
UAV-GE-Contours1-W

Geospatial data is everywhere. Many times I’ve shown the following photo I shot at the Esri User Conference several years ago. At the Field Technology Conference in November, I talked about this. Actually, I believe I’ve talked about the topic at nearly every Field Technology Conference since the inaugural event in 2010. Geospatial data long ago left the user domain of... read more

Field Technology Conference: The forest and the fish

November 30, 2015By
Field-Tech-Conference-W

PORTLAND, Ore. — Two weeks ago, I attended (and hosted) the Field Technology Conference here in Portland, Oregon. This is the fifth year of the conference. In years past, it’s had a forestry emphasis primary because the Western Forestry and Conservation Association has been a major partner in organizing it. This year, the Pacific States Marine Fisheries Commission and Pacific... read more

Commercial UAV Expo: Seeking monetizable opportunity

October 15, 2015By
Commercial_UAV_Expo_2-O

It was a very good conference because there were legitimate users and potential users of drone technology. During sessions, the audience was focused, more so than at most conferences I’ve attended. I think the reason is clear. The audience, consisting of drone users, potential users and manufacturers. wants to know where in the rapidly developing drone market is there a chance to make money? read more

Drone Industry Experiences Giddy Enthusiasm

September 24, 2015By
20150915_111146A

Last week, I attended the INTERGEO exhibition in Stuttgart, Germany. It’s the largest geospatial conference in the world with more than 17,000 attendees from 92 countries flooding the exhibition halls. It’s quite different from other conferences I attend in that there are very few technical presentations to distract the attendees, so they swarm the exhibition halls like bees to a... read more

This article is tagged with and posted in GSS Monthly, Opinions

Unpacking My New Mapping Drone

August 20, 2015By
Phantom-3

I’ve written quite a bit about drones and U.S. drone regulations this past year. Aviation has always interested me. I spent some time in the U.S. Air Force as a jet fighter mechanic (F-4E) in my teens and early twenties, and then started civilian pilot training after I graduated from college. Over the years, I’ve maintained a keen interest in... read more

This article is tagged with , , , , , and posted in GSS Monthly, Mapping, Mobile Devices, UAS/UAV