There’s only a few days left before the 2015 Esri User Conference (UC) in San Diego, and Esri has released the UC Q&A, which aims to answer common questions about Esri’s products and services, and also sets the scene for the UC.
It’s a comprehensive document; the PDF download stretches to 169 pages; so here (in no particular order) are some highlights that I think might be of interest for the petroleum sector.
High precision mobile use
Esri is embracing high-precision GPS in consumer devices and is working on integrating output from consumer-level drone technology. This could bring huge benefits in location accuracy for projects involving mobile data capture, such as onshore oil field operations or vessel/asset tracking.
Esri is continuing to make advances for the academic and scientific communities, including:
- Adding support in its mosaic dataset technology for multidimensional data formats commonly used in the scientific community such as NetCDF (Network Common Data Form), HDF (Hierarchical Data Format) and GRIB (GRIdded Binary. Download the Scientific Data Workflows package from ArcGIS Online to find out more.
- The Dimension Explorer, a free ArcMap Add-in for time-aware and multidimensional data in ArcMap 10.3, providing slider controls for navigation. It works by retrieving dimensional information from a map layer to build an interactive dimensional model that can be edited and saved in the map document.
Smart Charting and infographics
Esri is applying the ideas behind Smart Mapping, gradually being rolled out across the entire platform, to other areas of data visualisation, including charting and infographics.
ArcGIS Earth will be a freely available, lightweight, installable desktop/tablet app for viewing 3D maps and globes. Esri is planning to release the first version by the end of 2015.
I think this can be seen as part of Esri’s drive to migrate Google Earth Enterprise customers and partners to the ArcGIS Platform.
Several years ago Esri added subscription licensing for ArcGIS Online, and it now plans to offer “role-based” term licensing for on-premise deployments in the future.
Details on this are sketchy right now, but it’s likely to be similar in concept to Salesforce-style “per user per year” pricing: i.e. different price plans for different levels/types of users, with unlimited(?) technology/software for that user profile thrown-in: Server, Desktop, Portal, whatever.
It’s going to be interesting watching this concept mature over the next year or so.
ArcGIS Pro vs ArcMap
While Esri’s desktop GIS focus is clearly on developing and enhancing ArcGIS Pro, it is at pains to point out that ArcMap is being actively developed and enhanced. ArcMap 10.3 will be supported “for several years”, and Esri is already working on version 10.4 (expected early 2016) and 10.4.1 (no release date as yet).
Meanwhile ArcGIS Pro 1.1 will be released this month (July 2015), and v1.2 is planned for release in Q4 2015.
Worth noting is that ArcGIS Pro 1.2 will add “optional support” for Concurrent-Use and Single-Use licensing that does not require an ArcGIS Online (or presumably Portal for ArcGIS) account. This seems slightly at odds with Esri’s platform strategy, so it’ll be interesting to see whether there is a functionality difference for those not using ArcGIS Pro with ArcGIS Online/Portal.
For the last few years, Esri has been making Landsat imagery quickly accessible as multispectral, temporal image services. Initially Esri provided access to the Landsat GLS data that included the best scenes from the 1975, 1990, 2000, 2005, and 2010 epochs.
Last year Esri released a service that was updated daily to provide access to the best 5 scenes from Landsat 8 globally.
This year Esri is standing up a new service by which the best scenes from 2013 and 2014, as well as every Landsat 8 scene collected since the start of 2015, are served as freely-accessible multi-spectral, temporal image services on ArcGIS Online.
These services can be used to visualise band combinations, compute different indices, and perform change detection. See the Esri Landsat page for more information.
The theme of this year’s UC is “GIS – Applying Geography Everywhere”. This backs-up Esri’s continuing commitment to the ArcGIS Platform. In support of this Esri has created some new resources to help explain this new platform approach:
- The ArcGIS Book: 10 Big Ideas about Applying Geography to Your World (PDF 70 Mb) – A new book that provides an overview of the ArcGIS platform. The goals of this book are to demonstrate what is now possible with “Web GIS” (the ArcGIS Platform), and to spur you into action in putting to use in your organisation.
- A companion website for The ArcGIS Book (officially launched just before the UC starts), in which the above book becomes interactive, using a series of live, hands-on examples taken from the ArcGIS user community.
- Launching your location platform – A simple guide providing pointers on how to prepare for and roll out the ArcGIS Platform in your organisation.
See you there!
If you’re coming to the UC, do come and visit Exprodat at the Petroleum and Mining User Group social on Tuesday 21st July, starting at 6pm on the Coronado Terrace of the Marriott Hotel, San Diego.
Posted by Chris Jepps, Technical Director, Exprodat.