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I hope you are all set for Christmas. As always, we have so much to be thankful for in our great country. We can only hope that the construction economy will improve next year. I recently created a poll in our LinkedIn Surveyors group, asking for the members outlook on the economy next year, and the response from Colorado surveyor Lee Lovell was so spot-on, I'm reprinting it below in the Spotlight.
Our next magazine will reach you soon, and as always, it's full of more great content, which you can peruse by scrolling down. In my editorial I discuss the economy. Who would have thought we'd still be in a recession after four years? But as this ASPRS press release reveals, hiring in the geospatial arena is very good, which fits neatly with Lee's comments.
Also in this issue is a cool story about monitoring for a giant subway project in the D.C. area. We spent time on and under the job-site, alongside the tunnel-boring machine. We've known one of the authors, Joe Betit, for many years, and Joe has a real grasp of how to apply technology, and where we surveyors need to get to with technology.
The story about ancient structures in Hawai'i is another in our continuing series from the folks at CyArk. CyArk is to be commended for its efforts to create digital models of the top 500 heritage sites around the world. The next issue of LiDAR Magazine will also contain a story from CyArk about their efforts in India.
Also of note is an article written by Dr. Javad Ashjaee about his role in bringing GLONASS to the precise community. Early on, mostly because of few satellites, GLONASS was pooh-poohed by some, but we can see today that RTK works better because of it. Russia just launched one of its next-gen M satellites, will launch two more satellites by the end of this year, and has finally achieved full-constellation capability.
LightSquared continues to occupy much of the GNSS news in our industry. The best way to stay up to date is to visit the LightSquared Watch area of our website.
As always, please don't hesitate to contact me if you've got a project or story you'd like to share. Thanks for your support.
Until next time,
Marc Cheves, PS
The American Surveyor

[Send your comments, announcements, tips, gripes, or kudos to Marc]
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Editorial: What A(nother) Year!
Who would have thought that, four years in, we'd still be in a recession? Any of you who have been around as long as I have have seen many down cycles in the construction economy. But always before, after six months, or a year at most, things would naturally pick back up. With the ....
Read the Article
Elevated Monitoring: Metrorail Team
The 23.1-mile Dulles Corridor Metrorail Project will expand the reach of the existing regional rail system, connect the existing system to Washington Dulles International Airport and points west, and reduce travel time into and out of downtown ....
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Intersecting Paths of Success
Surveyors understand entrepreneurialism. It's one of the things that made our country great, and how most of the survey companies in existence today got their start. We recently visited Atlanta to learn about a group of companies that exhibit ....
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Indelible Imprints—A GNSS Memoir
October 18, 1989, the Queen Elizabeth Auditorium in London, around 8:30 am. Unknown to me, two 60-minute periods were about to imprint themselves indelibly on my memory. I walked up the stairs to the exhibition booth of my company, Ashtech ....
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CyArk: Digitally Preserving a Wahi Pana
During the first week of December 2010 I was lucky to escape the drizzly rain and fog of San Francisco winter (not that it's much different from our summer) and fly to the sun-kissed beaches of the Big Island of Hawai'i. It was going to be a ...
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Footsteps: Vision Church v. Village of Long Grove
Zoning and land use regulations have a great impact on the property rights of land owners in the United States. A recent case from the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, Vision Church v. Village of Long Grove, deals with a dispute over zoning regulations that impacted development ...
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Vantage Point: About Face
The way we choose where to live is complicated. The meaning of the traditional "location, location, location," is more nuanced than it may first appear. While the phrase would appear to strictly physical in nature, there are a variety of factors (and more than three) that loosely translate as ...
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Reconnaissance: Trials and Tribulations
Recently I developed and presented several continuing education programs in which I explored the complaint process against surveyors in Indiana. We took the audience through the progression all the way from the initial filing of the complaint to the end of the process­whether that was by ....
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feature Our LinkedIn Surveyors group recently passed the 3,000 member mark. Unlike some online groups, I try to manage the postings very tightly, preferring to have the group be only about surveying and not politics or frivolous stuff. I also find it interesting that the group has a huge following from surveyors outside the U.S. This tells me, once again, that surveyors around the world are interested in the technology and work processes coming out of our country. You can join the group and ongoing discussion here.

As mentioned above, I recently polled the group to get their economic outlook for next year. Here's Lee Lovell's excellent response:

"Although I marked 'about the same as 2011', I think the volatility of political and economic discourse has the potential to cause people to delay making decisions that will move projects forward. However, much depends on geographic location and the type of industry. Some areas of the country are doing well, while others continue to contract.

"The surveying market continues to be very competitive. Firms tend to have fewer opportunities to pursue. This puts downward pressure on prices, which tends to yield the winner's curse...winning a project, but completing it without making a profit. This is the antithesis of value pricing...delivering more value for less money.

"Vendors, in their attempt to keep surveyors buying equipment, are offering some very powerful upgrades that appear to have the potential to increase worker productivity. Surveyors have been integrating and automating work processes for the past 30 years. Contractors have also been at this for a while. Now engineering is in the process. BIM has the potential to do what GIS has done: integrate data and disciplines. This will alter the way in which projects are delivered and probably make some projects more affordable in a tepid economy."

Note: the image above was produced by my older brother Joel for our annual Christmas e-card. Joel lives in Oklahoma City and has been helping us build websites since 1996, and his contributions show! If you have a moment, check out Joel's Omegagrafix site.

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LightSquared Files Petition for Declaratory Ruling, Asks FCC to Confirm Its Rights as Spectrum Licensee
PRIA Releases Recording Jurisdiction Identification Numbering System
SarPoint Engineering to Take Delivery of the First RIEGL VMX-450 Mobile Scanning System
Blue Marble to Develop Coastal Adaptation to Sea Level Rise Modeling Tool for the University of Southern Maine
Avenza Announces 2012 MAPublisher Training Schedule
ASPRS Survey Finds Hiring in the Geospatial Industry Continues Despite High U.S. Unemployment Rates
The Keystone Pipeline's GIS Connection
Javad Ashjaee Issues Statement Regarding Recent LightSquared Test Results
Coalition Responds to PNT Statement on LightSquared Test Results
The Erosion of Ethics Has Caused Massive Damage to Construction Industry
Call For Presenters: Conference on 3D Imaging & Positioning for Engineering/Construction/Manufacturing/Security
EXCOM Press Statement on LightSquared Test Results
Construction Materials Prices Slip 0.1 Percent in November
Gatewing Introduces Stretchout UAV Desktop Processing
Altus Introduces Versatile Multi-Sensor GPS Evidence Mapping Package for Law Enforcement Market
Southern Resources Mapping Makes Leap to Digital Aerial Technology with Leica RCD30 Camera
NOAA's Sea Floor Surveys Support Texas Maritime Trade
Letter From Javad Ashjaee to FCC Regarding LightSquared Interference and Receiver Standards
New Report Finds Aging Water Infrastructure Burdens U.S. Economy
Teen's Antarctic Trek Goes Live with Esri App
Avenza Releases MAPublisher 8.6 for Adobe Illustrator
JAVAD GNSS Tracks New Galileo Satellite
RETTEW Honored as A Best Place to Work in Pennsylvania
Effective Vegetation Management for the UK Power Industry with Blom LiDAR
Successful European LiDAR Mapping Forum Reflects Vibrant Industry
FARO Technologies Announces First U.S. 3D Documentation Conference
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