The comments, and a few conversations I have had over the past week with some of you about the need for LiDAR and laser scanning training are helping to bring into clearer focus something that I have been struggling with for years. I think I want to call it the disconnect between laser scanning and surveying – not the profession of surveying, the science of surveying or what is more appropriately referred to as geomatics.
This is complicated. Laser scanning, especially tripod-based, is disruptive technology. By purchasing this black box you can find yourself in the surveying business where, if you don’t have a foundation in the science of surveying measurement, you are going to be at a disadvantage.
This is not the traditional surveying business and it is certainly not the land surveying business, it is the 3D measurement business, which perhaps should be thought of as a new professional category. It really should not come as a surprise to anyone that there is a lack of training in this field. It’s basically a new field.
It does not help that their are few standards to rely on and that in general the scanners themselves do not lend themselves to a common calibration protocol.
I think this has to change. There has to be a much tighter linkage between the application of laser scanning technology and the scientific foundation of 3D measurement. We have to get to the point where we all get the same answer.