3D Laser Scanning Innovation

  1. Comments on yesterday’s post show that people are thinking about a much larger market for 3D LS.
  2. Two that stood out were 3D sports coverage and as an aid to the visually impaired.
  3. The GSA – Geological Society of America is sponsoring a short course on LiDAR in October.

The comments on yesterday’s post were very encouraging and thought provoking – an open mind is a powerful thing. Innovation is often not driven by the established players in an industry. That is the main theme of Dr. Christensen’s “The Innovator’s Dilemma”, which I have blogged about in the past.

The establishment is often not interested or unable to take the risks to innovate. The start-ups have a lot less to lose. I may have mentioned this before. I was in the room in the early 90’s when the founder and CEO of one of the leading surveying equipment companies stated that his company would never get involved with the consumer GPS market. I guess he thought it would never develop into a profitable business.

The 2 new ideas that I found really interesting from the comments yesterday were the idea of 3D sports coverage and the use of laser scanning as an aid to the visually impaired. Both might be candidates for a flash lidar/ladar approach. Another is the idea of a small handheld laser scanner as a replacement for the digital camera. Keep that mind open and working…

For those in the Pacific NW, a quick note on a LiDAR training session being sponsored by the GSA – the Geological Society of America. The course will be held October 17 and 18 in Portland OR as part of the annual GSA meeting. Sounds like a very experienced group will be presenting.

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2 Responses to 3D Laser Scanning Innovation

  1. The time it takes to go from acquisition to product will have to be improved, but if this can be done I would think that any type of post-damage assessment would benefit tremendously. Particularly when smaller flash systems can be mounted on UAVs. LiDAR is much better suited for automated change detection than imagery.

  2. Gene – For this type of long term conjecture on the future of our industry, don’t worry about the core physics of the imaging devices – laser, lidar, or other. We are working now with systems that are passive and simply read the light off the objects to compute accurate spatial geometry (with HD color & textures as well, by the way). Think of it as a ‘black box’ in that its a device that obtains 3D geometry of what it sees. Now think about what are the applications for such a solution. And then if, or when, these market demands become large enough, they will be commercialized into solutions available for purchase. Necessity is the mother of innovation (or something like that…).

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