Viewing entries posted in October 2015

Strictly Spatial #2

Posted by on 27 October 2015


Let’s take a look at some GIS stories from the past few weeks: Esri have added an exciting new feature to Story Maps, India are looking to make GPS mandatory in all mobile phones, and the 3D Mapping and Modelling could be worth 17 Billion USD by 2020, along with all sorts more.

If you would like to get your GIS or geospatial related news or story published on the Interpret ‘Strictly Spatial’ blog please send an email to:, or find and message us on Twitter @InterpretGS.

Using Create Story to choose a Story Map

If you’ve begun to use Esri Story Maps, or are thinking about using them, it’s been made even easier to get started. Create Story is a new feature which lets you make your choice of story based on an expert opinion. You get just the right Story Map for the story you want to tell. Story Maps are a great way to harness the power of maps and geography to tell a story, as they combine web maps with text, images and other content to generate an interactive narrative.

India to make GPS mandatory in all mobile phones - VIDEO

This short video details how the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India wants to make GPS technology mandatory in all mobile phones, as an aid for emergency services to find the exact location of those calling for assistance.

3D Mapping and 3D Modelling Market Worth 16.99 Billion USD by 2020

New market research indicates huge growth in the 3D mapping and modelling market, which is currently worth approximately 1.90 Billion USD. Google, Apple, SAAB and Autodesk are mentioned as companies which are key market players in 3D Mapping and Modelling, and are likely to drive the huge growth. Read more about this here.

Esri's ArcGIS Full Motion Video Add-In Demonstrated at GEOINT 2015 - VIDEO

Esri solution engineer Craig Cleveland takes geo-intelligence insider Art Kalinski through the ability to geo-register full motion video inside a map using ArcGIS.

Esri Adds new LiDAR Resource to Learning Library

If you are working with, or interested in, LIDAR data then you need to check out the new Esri Workbook, which presents problems that need to be solved using both LIDAR data and the tools in ArcGIS. There are 10 modules in the book that focus on how to use LIDAR data along with GIS to make decisions on real-world situations.

Are you a Street View James Bond?

This cool game from Maps Mania uses Google Street View and puts the user in the driver’s seat. Your mission is to save Miss Moneypenny who has been captured by the enemy. You must use Street View radar and a series of intercepted photographs to track Miss Moneypenny’s assailants hiding her somewhere in London. Its fun and interesting use of Google Street View which will have you calling on your spatial skills to help save poor Miss Moneypenny!

Leica and Bentley team up for 3D Photogrammetry

It has been announced that Bentley Systems’ Acute3D software will be incorporated with Lecia Geosystems to generate full 3D from photogrammetric surveys. This is to be used for both UAV and piloted aircraft, and users will now be able use digital photography to produce full 3D models that replicate the real-world context in mapping infrastructure applications.

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Ecan Depot Routing App

Ecan Widget image

Posted by on 27 October 2015


Environment Canterbury (ECAN) regularly visits consent locations throughout the Canterbury Region. Often multiple consents are visited in one trip. ECAN would like to accurately and fairly split the costs of visiting these consents to each consent holder. Interpret has developed a custom widget, the Trip Distance Calculator, using ESRI’s WebApp Builder. This allows consent officers at ECAN to input consent locations and their start/end locations before or after a trip to visits consent holders. The widget will then return a number of values which can be used to accurately and fairly calculate what to charge each consent holder. By building the Trip Distance Calculator Interpret was able to ensure cross-platform and cross-browser reliability and scalability. The WebApp Builder allows developers to use either preconfigured widgets in their web applications or to build their own. Due to the uniqueness of ECAN’s problem, Interpret decided to build a custom widget. ECAN is then able to incorporate the widget into their existing web applications.

Due to the complexity of some scenarios, three separate routing functions are required to ensure the correct results are returned. The first routing function calculates the shortest route from the start location, to the selected consents or addresses, and on to the selected destination. The second routing function determines which depot each consent (or address) is closest to and calculates that distance. The third routing function sorts each consent into their respective zones. It then calculates the shortest route, starting and ending at the respective depot, between all consents in that zone. The distances are summed and returned.

All these distances help ECAN to effectively and fairly manage their costs associated with consent visits. From the values returned by the web application built by Interpret, ECAN is able to divide the costs between each consent holder and easily identify mileage costs that ECAN will write off.

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Journey Optimisation by Safest Route

ARCS image

Posted by on 27 October 2015


Interpret recently presented their recent work on ‘Journey Optimisation by Safest Route’ at the 2015 ACRS Conference in the Gold Coast. The research was undertaken as part of a Callaghan Innovation Student Experience Grant and explored the feasibility of incorporating safety data into a vehicle routing network. Dale Harris, Paul Durdin and student intern Hamish Kingsbury developed the website to help users identify the safest, shortest and fastest route to get to their destination. To date there has been little research into the integration of routing and safety – allowing road users to choose the safest, as well as the shortest and quickest routes.

Industries and businesses reliant on driving (such as logistics and distribution, tradespeople and taxi drivers) would benefit from a routing system designed to inform the relative risk of different route options while maintaining efficiency. With increasing dependence of fast, reliable and safe transport, the idea of taking safety into account is of interest to companies looking to reduce risk while minimizing distance and time costs. It also helps employers meet their workplace health and safety obligations.

The project used ARcGIS Network Analyst to develop the output. The Auckland region was the study area for the project as the region has sufficient data and urban and rural roads to feed into the project guidelines.  The project outcome was the development of an interactive website that allows users to choose and weight three routing variables that best meets their needs (travel time; distance and safety). The route that best meets their chosen priorities is then displayed on the screen. The sample output from the routing website displays the shortest (dashed red), the quickest (dotted blue) against the preferred route (solid green). Based on safety, distance and time priorities, the safest route (in green) is:

  • 69% safer than the shortest route (in red);
  • 88% safer then the quickest route (in blue);
  • 6% longer then the shortest route;
  • 15% slower than the quickest route.

The project demonstrates that there is potential for safety based vehicle routing systems. It supports a safe system approach to managing road safety risk associated with work related driving. The next step is to explore commercial opportunities including partnerships with interested public bodies and commercial vehicle routing services. 

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New Staff: Santosh Seshadri

Santosh picture

Posted by on 27 October 2015


Interpret has a new staff member - Santosh Seshadri. Santosh hails from Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas where he has had eight years of professional and academic experience as a GIS Research Associate.  Santosh has expertise in GIS work-flow analyses, cartography and web application development.  Santosh is a welcome addition to the Interpret team.

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Staff Profile: Jana Pfefferova

Jana picture

Posted by on 27 October 2015


Jana started with Interpret as a student intern in early 2014, before becoming a permanent staff member in April of that year.  Jana is a graduate of the University of Ostrava in the Czech Republic, where she graduated with a Masters of Science in Physical Geography. This adds to the multi-cultural mix we have in the Interpret team. Jana’s experience includes georeferencing and managing historical aerial imagery for ECAN, generating high resolution contours, carrying out accessibility modelling, publishing and editing web based maps and developing an automatic mapping solution using python. Jana is responsible for looking after all things Esri GIS at Solid Energy. In addition she has recently developed an app for Fulton Hogan, allowing their staff to access mapping and GIS functions offsite and offline.  This innovative work was recently acknowledged with the ‘Excellence in GIS’ award at the 2015 NZ Esri User Group Conference. Jana loves travel and has backpacked extensively throughout New Zealand and the world. 

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Wins for Interpret at the Esri User Conference 2015

Jana FH Poster

Posted by on 27 October 2015


Interpret achieved considerable success at this year’s Esri User Conference held in Auckland. Jana won the ‘Excellence in GIS’ poster competition with a prize to the International Esri User Conference 2016 in San Diego. The poster describes the customised mapping application she designed for Fulton Hogan which allows staff to use mapping functions, view their GPS location and use basemaps on their touch screen devices in an offline environment. This new application is particularly useful to Fulton Hogan as much of their work is conducted in remote locations. It is also much faster, has a user-friendly interface and provides a simpler workflow for the end user. Implementing this new approach has also made the processing of field data more efficient as data collected by the app is easily integrated into systems back at the office. 

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Interpret Finalists at NZ Spatial Awards

Spatial Awards Logo

Posted by on 27 October 2015


Next month is the NZ Spatial Excellence Awards where Interpret is excited to support our finalists. These include Natalie Scott as Young Professional of the Year. Dale Harris for Technical Excellence with a submission titled “Vehicle speed and curve risk modelling for road safety”. Hamish Kingsbury for Student of the year with a submission titled “Incorporating Road Safety into a Vehicle Routing Network”. We are also attending in support of our clients with the following award entries selected as finalists. Andy Cullen from Enable Networks (Network Delivery Alliance) with a submission titled “Enabling an Integrated System”. Interpret have also worked with Scouts New Zealand. Julie Reynolds will be in attendance with a submission titled “Putting Scouts on the Map”. A massive congratulations to all finalists and we look forward to seeing you at the dinner on Thursday 19th November at Te Papa.

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Dale Harris Wins 'Best Paper by a New Researcher'


Posted by on 21 October 2015


With a theme of “Taking Action Together”, this year’s Australasian Road Safety Conference took place on the Gold Coast in October 2015.  This is the largest road safety conference in Australasia with over 650 delegates attending, and more than 160 papers presented. The multi-disciplinary event featured representatives from all facets of road and transport safety including research, policing, teaching, practice and policy. Abley’s Dale Harris won the ‘Best Young Researcher’ award for her work on 'road safety risk prediction methodology for low volume rural roads'. Traditional risk assessment techniques rely on crash history which make it difficult to predict risk in low traffic volume areas. This groundbreaking research uses geospatial data and innovative techniques to identify road curvature risk, independent of road crash history.  The results of this new research have been shared with road controlling authorities and support road safety improvements. Dale's latest award reinforces Abley's position as a leader in road safety innovation.  

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Strictly Spatial #1

Posted by on 9 October 2015


We welcome you to our regular Strictly Spatial blogs

Spatial technology is an ever changing environment, continually growing and evolving. A lot changes happen in a year, heck a lot changes happen every day. All the time new technologies, new processes, new ideas are being developed, making working in the field of spatial technology a fluid and dynamic occupation. Strictly Spatial is a fortnightly roundup of some of the most exciting and important news, blogs, events and applications relating to GIS and spatial technology. Make sure to subscribe to the blog, as well as follow us on Twitter @InterpretGS

 The Interpret office is beehive of activity at the moment, with an array of engaging projects, exciting events and new faces. We would like to introduce Santosh who recently joined the team from Lubbock University in Texas.  Kurt, Amanda and Geoff attended the Canterbury Software Summit on the 1st of October, which was a successful and engaging event, while Senior Consultant Dale Harris is off to the Gold Coast in mid-October for a Road Safety Conference. The team has had six presentations accepted for the NZ Geospatial Research Conference being held this December at Canterbury University in Christchurch. This is extremely exciting for us as it gives us a chance to present a wide variety of the great projects and cutting edge ideas which the team has been working on over the past year. For more information on the conference, make sure to subscribe to the blog, as well as follow us on Twitter @InterpretGS.

 Web AppBuilder for ArcGIS – Live Sites Showcase

If you’re interested in the ArcGIS Web AppBuilder then check out how some other GIS users are making use of it. There are some really cool sites being built, and some significant information being presented.

 Geo Business and Social Media: Blogs, Twitter and Facebook

Like Interpret, you may be interested in how social media influences and effects the GIS and geo business environment. This post, from the webpage Digital Geography, while focusing on the German (geo)economic landscape, does highlight some key points and observations about the youth-driven social media environment and what it means for the geo-industry.

 GIS and Asset Data Collection Made Easy With Mobile Technology

Mobile technology has exploded over the past decade, and GIS and asset data collection has evolved accordingly. Cloverpoint highlights 5 mobile solutions currently available to support data capture while out in the field, using a mobile device.

 Building Better Civil Solutions with Agile Government

Agile Development refers to how drastically modern technology has quickened the pace of software application development. This idea is compared to how Government operates and how it can become more agile with the use of GIS.

 5 New Ways to View Transit

Jennifer Bell of Esri takes a look into urban transit, who is served by your cities transit system, how it changes throughout the day, and what is the best way to analyse service areas.  The article looks into new approaches when working with transit data, and different ways to analyse it. There is even a cool Story Map to go along with it!

 We are proud to be supporting the FIG 2016 International conference which is being held in Christchurch next year from 2-6 May 2016 at Horncastle Arena and Addington Raceway. The theme is “recovery from disaster” which reflects New Zealand’s experience recovering from the 2011 Christchurch earthquake. Our very own Amanda is a member of the Local Organising Committee and is enjoying bringing a spatial perspective to the conference. For more information or to register for the event check out the website:


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