Esri 3D Mapping and LiDAR Forum

More than 100 people attended the 2nd annual Esri Mapping and LiDAR Forum today. Lawrie Jordan, Director of Imagery opened by noting that this is the most exciting time that has seen in his 40 year career in remote sensing and GIS – I completely agree. Steve Snow, the conference organizer was recognized by Lawrie as the hardest working person in Esri. I second that as well.

The conference agenda was fast paced, highly informative and had just the right mix of commercial, technical, sales and education. Some of the key topics included the impressive support for 3D cities using CityEngine, the extensive road mapping work that Nokia is doing under the new name of HERE, and a couple of announcements regarding LAS from Esri that they will be supporting spatial indexing and adding compression.

The Esri Survey Summit concluded with a commitment to look at how to significantly expand the audience for next year by reaching out to engineers, facility managers and perhaps the 3D Mapping Forum to see if it makes sense to combine the two conferences.

Kudos to all for the hard work that went into delivering these two valuable events.


  • Jarlath, I think that what Gene mentioned about compression indeed means support for the LASzip-compressed LAS files (aka LAZ). Since ELMF last November I have been in talks with ESRI on that and last thing I hears is that there is just one last hurdle to add LAZ to ArcGIS and that is a cle, complete, and easier-to-use DLL interface for LASzip … (-:

  • Disappointing to hear that Esri is not supporting the numerous users accessing data from organizations who store their data in LAZ and the numerous software vendors who have supported LAZ. As far as I can tell LAZ is the most widely supported and used LiDAR compression format.

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