ACSM Conference Coverage

Virtual show information

The Las Vegas strip wasn’t the only area hopping in this big city this weekend; the ACSM show had its share of bustling, too. With more than 70 exhibitors, a plethora of seminars, meetings and workshops, contests and awards (I said it was bustling), attendees had plenty to occupy their time. New products were announced, lessons were taught, awards were won. POB tried to be as many places as we could to bring you folks some highlights. If you couldn’t make it, you’re not left out. We’ve got some highlights, so read on. And come back later for more updates.

Carlson/ViA Partnership Introduces Wearable Laptop

ViA, Inc. and Carlson have teamed up to develop a new solution to the problem of making a field computing platform powerful enough to satisfy surveyors’ extensive computational needs without sacrificing compact size and light weight. Called the “Wearable PC,” the system consists of a CPU package, a battery pack; a holstered screen module, and the full version of Carlson’s Tsunami software. Highlights include:

CPU module – This unit houses a Cyrix 166 MHZ chip, 64 megs of RAM, a 3.2 gig (larger available) hard disk, and the standard Windows operation system (not CE or another variant). The CPU normally would be worn on a belt, positioned at the wearer’s back.

Display – ViA’s approach to the perennial problem of producing a display, which is readable in sunlight takes advantage of a new highly reflective technology. The screen module is carried in a belt holster at the wearer’s side. The screen also acts as an input device, using a stylus or the user’s finger in a touch-screen mode. In-hand weight of the screen, which is normally the only component the user would actually hold, is less than one pound.

Additional features – a USB port, a miniature RS232 (serial) port, a full docking station to use the system as a desktop, and a wearable vest configuration.

This system enables the user to access full AutoCAD graphics in a field surveying environment. In addition to the obvious surveying applications, GIS professionals and other mappers are expected to apply the computer to their needs. The full Windows operating system, of course, will allow virtually any PC software to run on the Wearable PC.

SOKKIA Releases New Options for Field Data Collection

Sokkia Corporation announced a new series of data collection systems at the ACSM conference in Las Vegas. This new data collection system is designed to bring to the field surveyor what they have not had in the past – options. Sokkia’s new data collection system includes new hardware and new software, designed to run in the Windows CE environment.

Sokkia’s newest offering consists of two new hardware platforms: the SDR8100 and the DAP Microflex CE 5320, and two software products: SDR Level 5, and g2 Graphic Field Assistant. The New SDR8100 is designed to bring Sokkia data collection into the Windows CE operating system. The SDR8100 includes touch-screen capability, a 133 MHz processor, and a lithium Ion battery, and promises to meet or exceed all of the environmental specifications of its predecessor. The DAP Microflex offers users a more ruggedized platform, boasting of a durability to withstand operating temperatures of –4 degrees F to +122 degrees F, meeting IP54 and MIL-STD-810E standards for environment resistance. Sokkia representatives say it will withstand a 3 ft drop, and mud, water and freezing conditions.

SDR Level 5 software and g2. Sokkia has built two new field software packages, one designed around the knowledge of previous Sokkia field data collection, and a second, g2, built for the heavily graphics oriented user.

Sokkia g2 Graphic Field Assistant is based loosely on the original SDR33 Electronic Field Book menu structure and built into the heavily graphics-oriented user interface. Highlights include: GPSlive!, GPS mode that allows users to see their position in a graphic map view all the time in all modes; CMD, a command line for entry of hotkeys, stakeout, inverse points, areas, intersections, drawing of polylines, traverse, and more; FlexView, which allows users to choose how to graphically display the data; Intelligent Backsight for calculating elevations, coordinates, azimuths, of either the backsight or occupied station; and LandXML files.

Built upon the legacy of the SDR2, 22, 24, and 33 series Electronic Field Books, the new Level 5 software provides users SDR functionality on modern, CE-based hardware platforms. The software includes graphical display of Satellite Status in GPS mode; a graphical set-out screen to make layout easier and faster; and a Map View of recorded points to allow easy orientation in the field.

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