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Susan Smith, Managing Editor
From the Exhibit Floor
By Susan Smith
In May I had the opportunity to visit two conferences back to back and see some interesting technologies. Just to catch up with those offerings a few of them are noted here:
Over the past six to seven years, Bentley has turned its attention to acquisitions rather than attracting third party developers. With over 40 acquisitions over the last five years, CTO Keith Bentley said they are making third party software solutions a priority. Although the exhibit floor at BE didn’t yet reflect that change, there were some hardware vendors and a few third parties as follows:
HP has been in the news a lot lately with its KungFu Panda promotions, yet the DreamWorks technology was not what was being presented at BE.
HP announcements made while at the show included:
HP announced what they are touting as “the world’s first two-in-one server blade, which offers customers with scale-out environments improved data center performance, reduced floor space and lower power usage.”
The HP ProLiant BL2x220c G5 addresses the needs of cloud computing, Web 2.0 and high-performance computing (HPC) deployments that have data centers with hundreds to thousands of servers, multi-petabyte(1) levels of storage capacity and massive performance needs. These types of environments must address energy consumption, along with improved cooling techniques and maximizing existing data center floor space, plus the ever increasing demand for increased performance.
HP ProLiant BL2x220c G5 combines two independent servers in a single blade, which gives customers the advantage of double compute power and significantly reduces data center space requirements. Environmentally, it addresses the energy consumption and cooling techniques issues by delivering 60 percent better performance per watt than similar configurations on the market(2) and minimizes cooling and power costs.
HP’s “Scalable Computing and Infrastructure” business unit has created a dedicated set of resources, expertise and development efforts to build solutions designed for scale-out environment customers. The BL2x220c joins the recently announced HP StorageWorks 9100 Extreme Data Storage System (ExDS9100), a highly scalable storage system designed to simplify the management of multiple petabytes of data at an affordable cost. The system is derived from HP’s domain expertise of designing and retrofitting more than 30 million square feet of data center floor space and powering 166 of the top 500 supercomputer installations.
A big plus in today’s environmentally conscious world is the fact the HP xw6600 has an 80 PLUS efficient 650 watt power supply, ENERGY STAR qualified configurations, and EPEAT Gold listing, designed for cooler and more energy efficient operation.
A top provider of software for distributing and managing geospatial content, LizardTech announced the release of its free GeoExpress 7 SDK, a toolkit for decoding and viewing MrSID and JPEG 2000 images in third-party applications.
What is available in this latest release: support for 64-bit platforms, which provides better compatibility with GDAL and other third party libraries for developers plus access to more memory than was available before when working with MrSID and JPEG 2000 imagery.
The GeoExpress 7 SDK also includes support for modern compilers including Visual Studio 2008 and gcc 4.1 and the latest operating systems such as Windows Vista, Red Hat Enterprise Linux 5, and Mac OS X 10.5.
Developers will enjoy improved documentation and sample applications that will make it easier to integrate with third-party applications. The GeoExpress SDK offers the benefits of both MrSID technology and ISO standard JPEG 2000 without any compromise in the quality of imagery, according to the press release.
Exhibiting at the BE Conference was Burlington, Mass.-based Z Corp. Also featured in Bentley’s Applied Research booth, a demonstration featured a Z Corp 3D printer that can print labels, logos and text around and on top of a physical 3D model. You can create an “interactive” 2D barcode and with software added to a camera phone, it can read the barcode code.
In April, Redmond, Wash.-based LandPrint.com, employed 3D printing from Z Corporation to create 3D physical models of any landscape on the planet. The models are a unique application for geospatial information that could be both a consumer and professional tool. Consumers can visit the website select their favorite place, and submit their order.
Although currently LandPrint.com is geared toward the consumer and the “fun user” such as marathoners and adventure racers, Landprint CEO Tom Gaskins sees a bigger marketplace out there. Virtually any kind of data can be added to the model to make a 3D print, creating a print for anything from real estate to schools to city planning to land development. See GISWeekly, April 14, 2008
Many of Intergraph’s third party offerings revolved around utilities, security, and services and solutions for geospatial implementation. The following is a sampling of the offerings:
Leica MobileMatriX 3.0
Newly released around the time of Intergraph 2008, was version 3.0 of the Leica MobileMatriX, a mobile GIS application that offers the ability to synchronize survey data with an enterprise geodatabase, transfer digital images taken from a mobile phone via Bluetooth and link it with a feature, plus much more. With Leica MobileMatriX 3.0, the subcontractor can now provide a finished geodatabase to his client, without the conversion process that normally takes place after submittal.
Leica MobileMatriX v3.0 utilizes a survey enhancement of distributed databases concept from ESRI to provide a flexible and powerful mobile GIS application for use in large and complex mobile GIS projects, as well as small projects involving only a few field crews.
Rolta is known for providing services and solutions for geospatial implementation, which includes a wide variety such as GIS database design and development, data migration/conversion, format translation, systems integration, software development and customization and map creation/update and finishing and much more.