Saturday, September 27, 2008

LPS 9.3 Preview: Control Point Review Tool

Last month I highlighted the ability to export LPS Block Files to KML. I'll do a full round-up of the new functionality as soon as we release, but for today I will focus on another new feature: Ground Control Point Review in the LPS Terrain Editor module.

The background for this feature came from many requests we received for the ability to review points either by themselves in stereo or as a means of checking terrain accuracy. Thus, we added a new panel in the Terrain Editor "View" drop-down menu: View > Panels > Ground Control Points.

In the screen capture below, I have launched the Terrain Editor and have opened the GCP Review Tool. I haven't loaded any imagery. The GCP Review Tool automatically loads in all points (ground control points and tie points) from the Block File that the Terrain Editor was launched from. You can see from the column settings that it provides some basic information such as ID, point type, coordinates, the number of images the point intersects, and the description.

In the Terrain Editor, the usual method for loading stereo pairs is to drag and drop them from the image pair list (on the left above) into the stereo viewport. One of the nice features of the GCP Review Tool is that you can automatically load images by double clicking on a particular point (double-click anywhere on the row). This is beneficial because it removes the need to know exactly which stereo pair to pick when you would like to review a particular point. In the screen capture below, I loaded a stereo pair associated with Point ID 30 by double-clicking on it. You can see that this is a full GCP, and it is even possible to see the target in the imagery.

Point symbol and label graphics can be turned on or off by using the icons on the bottom left of the panel. Additionally, the "Settings" button can be used to modify the behaviour of the tool. For example, it is possible to filter the points (e.g. only display full ground control points). It is also possible to customize the graphics (size, color, and label font).

Thursday, September 18, 2008

ERDAS UK GeoImaging User Group Conference 2008

If you're in the UK you may be interested in checking out the GeoImaging User Group Conference 2008 hosted by InfoTerra. The event is in Oxford on September 29th and 30th and will cover the entire range of ERDAS desktop and enterprise products.

I will be there on the 29th to deliver a presentation on our photogrammetry product line. The main focus will be on the upcoming LPS 9.3 release, but I'll also cover productivity tips, photogrammetric workflows, and highlight the directions we're going in. Please feel free to sign up and attend if you are in the region!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Mapping Standards Directory Update

I've added a few new sites to the mapping standards directory. The new additions include a mapping manual from Minnesota DOT, a presentation on accuracy standards for mapping projects in North Carolina (from the NC ASPRS chapter), and various mapping specs from the Nova Scotia Geomatics Centre. All three are in the "Provincial/State Level Standards" section.

In particular the Surveying and Mapping Manual from Minnesota DOT provides a wealth of information, and it is relatively recent (updated in 2007).

Friday, September 5, 2008

Anaglyph Generation in ERDAS IMAGINE

Last week Adam Estrada over at the GeoPDF blog wrote a great post regarding anaglyph GeoPDFs. He also posted a link on how to create anaglyphs manually and mentioned that they could also be created in ERDAS IMAGINE. I will walk through the steps on how to perform this operation in IMAGINE.

First of all, you need to open up Image Interpreter, choose Topographic Analysis, and then select "Anaglyph". Here is what the Topographic Analysis toolset looks like.
After selecting the "Anaglyph" tool, it is necessary to specify a few parameters. Since the anaglyph effect is created by producing an offset based on relief, a terrain file needs to be specified. There are various options, including the ability to exaggerate the relief. Next the input image needs to be defined, along with the output image and format. One flexible aspect of the tool is the ability to define the color for the left and right "lens" of the anaglyph glasses. Most anaglyph glasses are red and cyan, so the default option is a Red / Green and Blue (Cyan) combination for the left eye and right eye. It is also possible to define the output bands along with defining a subset definition (e.g. if you only want to produce a small anaglyph area from a large image mosiac).

Here's what the dialogue looks like with the settings I used:

And here is what the final anaglyph image looked like:

Note that you may need to click the link to truly see the effect. Also note that the effect that be modified with the "exaggerate" option - this can be used to increase the effect (which may be necessary depending on the scale of imagery being processed). While it is certainly possible to "manually" create anaglyphs in a number of packages, the Anaglyph tool in IMAGINE adds a degree of automation that isn't available in other solutions. For example, if you want to serve up anaglyphs for an entire city on a web application, you can use the IMAGINE batch tool to process several hundred (or thousands) of images - which beats processing them one-by-one.

Monday, September 1, 2008

Upcoming GeoEye-1 Satellite Launch

The GeoEye-1 satellite launch on September 4th has been getting a lot of media attention lately. Instead of regurgitating the specs, I'll focus on a few other details.

First of all, check out the Launch Site here. It has a count-down and informs us that there will be a live video stream of the launch - should be interesting to watch.

There were several reports today about a deal between GeoEye and Google, whereby Google will be the exclusive online mapping site with access to the imagery.

Note that LPS will support both the rigorous and RPC models for GeoEye-1 in both LPS 9.2 (the current version) as well as LPS 9.3 (coming soon, stay tuned).