May 05, 2003
Autodesk Envision 8
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Susan Smith - Managing Editor


by Susan Smith - Managing Editor
Each GIS Weekly Review delivers to its readers news concerning the latest developments in the GIS industry, GIS product and company news, featured downloads, customer wins, and coming events, along with a selection of other articles that we feel you might find interesting. Brought to you by GISCafe.com. If we miss a story or subject that you feel deserves to be included, or you just want to suggest a future topic, please contact us! Questions? Feedback? Click here. Thank you!

Message from the Editor


Welcome to GISWeekly! Autodesk Envision 8 was just released last week as part of the Autodesk Map Series 2004. This week in Industry News we highlight that product's features.


GISWeekly examines select top news each week, picks out worthwhile reading from around the web, and special interest items you might not find elsewhere. This issue will feature Industry News, Alliances/Acquisitions, Announcements, Awards, Appointments, New Products, Featured Downloads, Around the Web, and Calendar.


GISWeekly welcomes letters and feedback from readers, so let us know what you think. Send your comments to me at


Best wishes,

Susan Smith, Managing Editor




Industry News


Last week GISWeekly made mention of the shipment of Autodesk Envision 8 software, formerly known as Autodesk Onsite Desktop. This week, Ron Bisio, senior product manager, Autodesk Infrastructure Solutions Division, filled us in on some of the high points of this product.


The product, an easy-to-use GIS and design tool for mapping, engineering and land use professionals, gives users the ability to publish, analyze, edit and visualize 2D and 3D spatial data in complex scenarios. A compelling part of this package is the additional support provided for the Tablet PC, and AutoCAD 2004's Design Web Format (DWF) files and DWG format, plus Microsoft .NET support.


With Microsoft .NET, many different types of users will be able to use the information generated by Envision. Pen and ink support for the Tablet PC makes the product appealing to mobile professionals who need to be able to work with dynamic data.


The software is completely integrated with and is part of the Autodesk Map Series 2004. The other products in the series are Autodesk Map(TM) 2004 and Autodesk(R) Raster Design 2004, which were shipped this week.


1) Why did Autodesk change the name of the product?


Autodesk took considerable time listening to customers and partners around the globe for technical and messaging feedback on Autodesk OnSite Desktop (now Autodesk Envision). Customers, partners and the media confused our new product with our mobile product offering: Autodesk OnSite View and Autodesk OnSite Enterprise. These products are for those that need to work with digital design data while on the move, including a stand-alone mobile design review tool and a customizable business solution that delivers live data from enterprise servers to handheld devices in the field. Because we intended to add Microsoft Tablet PC and mobile functionality to Autodesk OnSite Desktop, we believed
that
the combination of the words "OnSite" and "Desktop" described the product well. However, the name "OnSite" had much more branding as a mobile tool in the market than was anticipated and this created confusion.


2) "Autodesk Envision 8 gives professionals the power to visualize, analyze, edit and publish 2D and 3D spatial data in complex scenarios." Can you expand on what kinds of complex scenarios the products is capable of manipulating?


A typical scenario is when a site design needs to be taken before a review board. Envision can be used to drape 2D spatial data and imagery over 3D LandXML or DEM data to visualize the proposed design in 3D in the context of the surrounding area. Envision can then be used during the review board meeting to determine the view from a given point in a given direction, animate driving through the design and to model potential floods.


Another scenario is integrating spatial data related to wetlands with a proposed design and examining multiple environmental impact scenarios using Envision's buffer and visualization capabilities. Potential flooding from the wetland can then be assessed.


3) How would you describe "special tools and interface options to support Microsoft Tablet PC applications"?


Mostly these options are focused around interfacing with Envision on the Tablet PC platform. The options includes things such as


- larger buttons for use with the stylus in the field


- support for left and right handedness


- support for the use of gestures for operations such as pan and zoom


- support for menu access via voice commands








Alliances/Acquisitions


LAND INFO International, LLC launched its new Interactive GeoStore with technology partner MapSpring, an online mapping service provider based in Denver, Colorado. The new GeoStore will allow customers to search Land Info's digital map archive of 350,000 map products, including the USGS product line, Russian Military Maps, and many rare maps, via MapSpring's online interface that allows client's to securely purchase maps and map data at the click of a button.




Announcements


Positive revenue reports from three companies were part of this week's industry news.


Garmin Ltd. announced record revenue and earnings for its first fiscal quarter ended March 29, 2003. Revenue for the quarter increased 23 percent to $123.8 million from $100.9 million in the year-ago quarter. Net income increased to $41.5 million, or $0.38 diluted earnings per share, compared to $26.8 million or $0.25 diluted earnings per share in the year-ago quarter. First quarter net income included a $0.8 million foreign currency loss as a result of a weaker U.S. dollar compared to the Taiwan dollar. The diluted EPS of $0.38 recorded for the first quarter of 2003 exceeded company guidance of $0.29 to $0.32. Excluding the effects of foreign currency, diluted EPS for the quarter
was $0.39 compared to $0.25 in the year-ago quarter.


Intergraph Corporation (Nasdaq:
INGR) reported operating results for its first quarter ended March 31, 2003. Intergraph reported operating income of $4.2 million and net income of $8.1 million on revenue of $120.6 million for the quarter. Net income was $.17 per share (diluted).


In comparison to Q4 2002, revenue decreased slightly and income from operations after restructuring charges increased by approximately $1 million. The increase in operating income was primarily due to lower operating expenses, offset by slightly lower gross margins.


In comparison to Q1 2002, revenue decreased 2%, and income from operations decreased approximately $0.9 million. The decrease in operating income was due to higher sales and marketing expenses, offset by slightly higher gross margins.


Gross margins were 47% for the quarter and are expected to remain in the 45% - 49% range for Q2 2003.


Trimble announced results for its first fiscal quarter ended April 4, 2003. The Company reported first quarter revenues of $127.3 million, versus $104.0 million in the first quarter of 2002. Earnings per share (EPS) for the first quarter on a Generally Accepted Accounting Principles (GAAP) basis were $0.18, which included an expense for approximately $1.8 million in amortization of intangibles under FAS 142 and an approximate $390,000 restructuring charge related to Trimble's continued cost reduction activities. This compares to a loss per share of ($0.03), which included an expense for approximately $2.0 million in amortization of intangibles and a $304,000 restructuring charge in
the first
quarter of 2002. First quarter 2003 GAAP EPS were calculated on a diluted basis using approximately 30.1 million shares.


AirIQ Inc. (TSX: IQ) telematics company reports revenue growth of 121% for the twelve months that ended December 31, 2002, over the comparative unaudited twelve-month period. Operating expenses reduced by over 46% year over year for the three months ended December 31, 2002. Quarterly gross profit as a percentage of revenue grew from 19.4% in the fourth quarter of 2001 to 44.2% in the fourth quarter of 2002.


The Company's cash position as at December 31, 2002, was $8,963,130, and working capital totalled $9,322,600.


Haestad Methods announced a successful WaterGEMS for ArcGIS road show in Florida. This tour was conducted in response to numerous requests for localized training, workshops, and on-site visits from leading water utilities and consulting firms throughout the Sunshine State.


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-- Susan Smith, GISCafe.com Managing Editor.




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