TopoDOT User Conference 2017

Please join the Certainty 3D team at the TopoDOT® User’s Conference (TUC), May 8 – 12, 2017 at the beautiful UCF Rosen College campus in Orlando, Florida. This global gathering of the TopoDOT® Users community will feature an extensive learning program for every level of TopoDOT® experience.

Technical attendees will gain a deeper understanding of point cloud data and greatly improve TopoDOT® skills for extracting topographies, models and spatial information meeting the requirements of downstream design, engineering and construction operations.

In addition, a separate Management track will focus on the requirements of management and business development professionals.These courses will provide a broader overview of the technology, requirements, application and administration issues required for the successful integration of LiDAR technology and data across operations.

But that’s not all! Conference sponsors will be on hand to share the latest in hardware technology and their expertise in its real-world applications. Simply schedule a demonstration and/or meeting with these industry leaders at your convenience throughout the week. TUC will provide the training and information you need to maximize the value of your investment in this exciting and rapidly growing technology.

Posted in 3D Modeling, Conferences, training | Leave a comment

Intel Buys Mobileye for $14 Billion

Intel will buy Israel’s Mobileye in a deal valued at just over $14 billion, the latest push by a major tech company to advance autonomous vehicles that could change the way traffic moves globally.

Mobileye develops technology that essentially gives computers a sense of their physical surroundings and it has also been busy creating ties to get that technology onto the road. Last year, it teamed up with Delphi Automotive to develop the building blocks for a fully autonomous car.

The combined global autonomous driving company, which includes Mobileye and Intel’s autonomous driving group, will be based in Israel and led by Mobileye Chairman and co-founder Amnon Shashua. The organization will support both companies’ existing production programs and build on relationships with automotive original equipment manufacturers, Tier-1 suppliers and semiconductor partners to develop advanced driving assist, highly autonomous and fully autonomous driving programs.

Looks like the automobile is going to be an important consumer computing platform.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Lidar Not Needed for Autonomous Vehicle

Aimotive is a Hungarian startup that claims they can support driverless vehicles using only four regular cameras and artificial intelligence. They have four major software engines – recognition, control, location and motion.

“aiDrive enables truly global L5 self-driving functionality in all weather and driving conditions. Using neural networks, the aiDrive makes decisions that provide unparalleled safety and comfort through a deep visual understanding of its environment,” says the company web-site.

“Using camera images as a primary input the Recognition Engine combines and processes sensor data using our pixel-precise, convolutional neural network (CNN) based segmentation and distance estimation models. The engine is able to recognise more than 100 different object classes including passenger cars, pedestrians, bicycles, motorcycles, animals and drivable road surface and estimate their distances even from a single camera’s view. Our expertise in neural network design, parallel GPU programming, and deep learning enables the Recognition Engine to run complex classification algorithms in real-time.”

Hmm, interesting.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Research Scientist Position

The NHERI RAPID Facility is hiring a Research Scientist to fill our Site Operations Specialist position.

This position supports the newly awarded National Science Foundation (NSF) NHERI (Natural Hazards Engineering Research Infrastructure) Rapid Facility that is under development at the University of Washington. The five-year award supports the development and operation of a facility to support state-of-the-art field collection of perishable scientific, engineering, and social data following natural disasters. The facility will include: (i) surveying equipment such as Lidar and gps, seismological and wind measurement equipment, ground investigation equipment, unmanned aerial vehicles equipped with various image data collection capabilities, building vibration monitoring equipment, portable data loggers; (ii) software tools to support data collection; (iii) staff; and (iv) a headquarters for supporting field missions, data transfer and preliminary data analysis. This is a shared use facility, and its mission is to serve the needs of reconnaissance researchers supported by NSF or other agencies.

The full position description and application information is here:

Posted in Education, Research, training | Leave a comment

USIBD Surveys Industry on Standards

On March 7, 2017 the U.S. Institute of Building Documentation (USIBD) will publish a Cornerstone™ Report Survey to our membership and industry partners on the State of the Industry, regarding Standards.

Here is the link for the survey:

Stakeholders in all areas of Building Documentation are encouraged to take the survey.  The results will help the Building Documentation community to better understand the needs and concerns of those responsible for the actual construction aspect of the building process, who typically have a strong influence in deciding whether or not a project will set aside a budget for building documentation to occur in the first place.

USIBD urges everyone to please take the survey, and to share it with everyone in your network in order to encourage greater input for the results of the survey.

All who contribute to this survey are eligible to receive a copy of the Cornerstone™ Report, whether you are a member of USIBD or not.  Choose this option at the end of the survey.

We thank you for your participation. Should you have any questions about this survey or any of the Cornerstone™ Reports, please contact us at

Posted in 3D Modeling, Standards, The Industry | Leave a comment

Toyota Unveils Advanced Safety Platform

The Toyota Research Institute has released its Platform 2.0 for advanced vehicle safety which supports fully autonomous driving and intelligent driver assistance.

Chauffeur refers to the always deployed, fully autonomous system classified by SAE as unrestricted Level 5 autonomy and Level 4 restricted and geo-fenced operation.

Guardian is a high-level driver assist system, constantly monitoring the driving environment inside and outside the vehicle, ready to alert the driver of potential dangers and stepping in when needed to assist in crash avoidance.

Looks like lidar is well represented.


Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Google Sues Uber Over Lidar IP

Google parent Alphabet’s Waymo business unit filed a lawsuit claiming that a former employee of Google stole some 14,000 files concerning their lidar-based self-driving navigation system. They claim the former Google employee and founder of Otto, the self driving trucking startup recently acquired by Uber downloaded the information after installing specialized search software on his laptop.

The lawsuit claims that:

“We found that six weeks before his resignation this former employee, Anthony Levandowski, downloaded over 14,000 highly confidential and proprietary design files for Waymo’s various hardware systems, including designs of Waymo’s LiDAR and circuit board. To gain access to Waymo’s design server, Mr. Levandowski searched for and installed specialized software onto his company-issued laptop.

Once inside, he downloaded 9.7 GB of Waymo’s highly confidential files and trade secrets, including blueprints, design files and testing documentation. Then he connected an external drive to the laptop. Mr. Levandowski then wiped and reformatted the laptop in an attempt to erase forensic fingerprints.”

Waymo claims that their lidar system is one of the most powerful parts of its self driving system.

Posted in Autonomous vehicles | Leave a comment

Drone Revolution eBook

Credit Altavian

Note – This information is being provided by Aerial Services, Inc.

Free Drones Revolution eBook!

This eBook is a compilation of articles written by Mike Tully, President & CEO of Aerial Services, Inc., over the last two years about drones and their application in remote sensing and mapping. Each article addresses the rising use of this phenomenal new, transformational technology aka Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS), Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAV), and small UAS (sUAS).

ASI’s desire is that you find this information engaging and instructive. Drones are a powerful, new “enabling” technology … and a remote sensing and mapping game-changer. Many new business opportunities will be discovered and emboldened by their widespread adoption and exploitation. It is our desire this material accelerates your success with these technologies.

Each chapter contains a single article written in the past and includes a graphic indicating when in time the article was published relative to other defining UAS events during this period. The articles are compiled in chronological order.

Click here to download.

Posted in airborne LiDAR, Autonomous vehicles, UAS, UAVs | Leave a comment

Direct Metal Laser Printing

For all of the car nuts out there (of which I am one) this video will be of interest on a couple of levels. First is the fact that it involves Jay Leno and his famous “Garage” and second is the idea of direct metal printing of parts for some of Jay’s incredible car collection which I was lucky enough to visit.

The idea is to create the part using a high quality metal material instead of plastic in what is being called direct manufacturing using laser sintering. The cost is still quite high. It runs $500 per vertical inch, but it all depends on the value of the part you are replacing as to whether it makes sense.



Posted in 3D Modeling, Consumer | Leave a comment

iPhone 8 May Include Scanner

A J P Morgan analyst is reporting that the new iPhone 8 may include a front facing laser scanner which will be used to replace finger print recognition on earlier versions. There were problems with the touch screen when it was wet. The facial recognition will  be more secure.

I have not seen any information on the details of this including the source or type of scanner.

This will certainly be a big boost to the overall 3D industry in much the same way that GPS has become universally accepted. The analyst is predicting that the module will add between $10 and $15 to the bill of materials and in the future could be used for augmented reality applications.

If you have any thoughts on a supplier please let us know.

Posted in Consumer, Sensors | Leave a comment