[OSGeo-Standards] REPORT: my OGC membership slot

Carl Reed carl.n.reed at gmail.com
Thu Nov 26 12:12:47 PST 2015

All -

FYI, a speaker does not need to pay for registration on the day they are
speaking. Using this process would allow someone else to physically attend
without paying the registration fee. I have included Scott Simmons (TC
Chair) in the email distribution list.

There is a bit of bureaucracy:

Any invited speaker may attend the TC meetings for the day on which they
are speaking without having to pay the TC meeting fee. The process is:


   The DWG/SWG Chair provides a formal invitation to the individual with a
   cc to the TCC and the TC meeting support staff. The formal invitation may
   be via email.

   The TCC approves the invitation.

   The OGC provides the invited speaker with a speaker registration code.

   The invited speaker must register with the provided speaker registration



On Thu, Nov 26, 2015 at 5:23 AM, Martin Isenburg <martin.isenburg at gmail.com>

> Hello,
> I would like to use the "free (waived) meeting registrations for up to 1
> person per Technical Committee Meeting" that OSGeo receives as part of
> their OGC membership package to attend the nect OGC TC in Sydney and
> present at the Point Cloud Domain Working Group meeting on Thursday (03
> December) at 10:45 am (local Sydney time).
> I plan to introduce the current design choices of the existing open source
> LASzip LiDAR compressor for LAS 1.0 to LAS 1.4 (compatibility) and an
> outlook on what is currently planned for LAS 1.4 (native)
> The deadline for registration is tomorrow (27th) and it seems that free
> (waived) meeting registrations to the TC that OSGeo receives is still up
> for grabs. May I use it? If I do not hear anyone protesting within the next
> 24 hours I will conclude that this slot is available for me.
> Regards,
> Martin
> On Fri, Sep 18, 2015 at 6:31 PM, Martin Isenburg <
> martin.isenburg at gmail.com> wrote:
>> Hello,
>> I have used my OGC membership slot to remote-attend the ad-hoc meeting on
>> Point Clouds at the OGC TC meeting in Boulder and give a presentation on
>> the 5 steps I consider necessary to avoid the LiDAR point cloud
>> fragmentation that the OSGeo had warned about in their Open Letter [1].
>> Because the quality of my Internet connection was so poor I re-recorded a
>> version of my talk [2] and submitted it as additional content for this
>> weeks OGC TC meeting in Nottingham where I became a charter member of the
>> newly formed Point Cloud Domain Working Group [3]. Due to INTERGEO I was
>> not able to (remote-)attend this in person but I have taken the time to
>> listen through the entire 2:40 hour long video recording and gave comments
>> to the presentations that I send to the OGC PC-DWG today. These are
>> included at the end. I do plan to attend the TC in Sydney in person.
>> Another curious thing is that I (and the open source license LGPL) was
>> attacked vehemently in a recent column called "Open Source Mania" by Lewis
>> Graham that was published in the LiDAR News magazine. Viewer discretion
>> advised and parental guidance suggested ... you will not like this FUD
>> attack:
>> http://www.lidarmag.com/PDF/LiDARNewsMagazine_Graham-OpenSourceMania_Vol5No4.pdf
>> Regards,
>> Martin
>> [1] http://wiki.osgeo.org/wiki/LIDAR_Format_Letter
>> [2] http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n52E6OM68UE
>> [3] http://www.opengeospatial.org/point-cloud-dwg (older version)
>> -----
>> to:         pointcloud.DWG at lists.opengeospatial.org
>> date:     Fri, Sep 18, 2015 at 6:01 PM
>> subject: comments on Point Cloud DWG meeting at TC in Nottingham
>> Hello,
>> Sorry that I was not able to make it. The networks at INTERGEO were
>> overloaded and the show busy and loud. Remember, the main objective of the
>> OSGeo is to prevent the "spread" of large quantities of "pseudo open" point
>> clouds in closed proprietary formats such as RAR, MrSID, or zLAS using the
>> 5 step plan outlined here to prevent format fragmentation by LAZ and zLAS:
>> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=n52E6OM68UE
>> We have already "failed" the government of Slovenia that was either
>> tricked or misinformed about how to implement "open data" and is currently
>> distributing their entire national LiDAR data set in a closed point cloud
>> format.
>> I have just listened to the 2:40 hour long video of the Point Cloud DWG
>> meeting from the OGC TC in Nottingham. Than you for providing it. Below my
>> comments on some presentations.
>> 1) "Serving_LiDAR_thru_existing_OGC_Services", Scott Pakula, Pixia
>> I agree that there are better ways to serve up LiDAR than ftp links and
>> if existing OGC protocols can enhance the user exprience that is great. But
>> too much of this talk seemed to advocate that we *need* a better user
>> experience and that sounds more like a business opportunity based upon the
>> distributed point data. I do not require my government to provide me
>> anything more than a functional area-of-interest query to access my
>> tax-payer collected point data - even if it as simple as some open layers
>> shapefiles pointing to a ftp site.
>> The download capability of the OpenTopography portal alone, for example,
>> is a great example for a simple, useful, and widely popular LiDAR portal.
>> Everything beyond that can be done by those that care about providing
>> better user experiences and those can be great business models. But I do
>> not see why the OGC needs to have any say in one particular user experience
>> over another other than advocating all of them to be based on open
>> standards. Also ... for future slides: It's capitalized LAStools and LASzip
>> ... (-:
>> 2) "The ASTM E57 File Format for 3D Imaging Data Exchange", Gene Roe,
>> Lidarnews
>> E57 is a great standard and heavily used in terrestrial LiDAR projects by
>> many in this industry. Adding compression to E57 is certainly useful. But
>> there are some inaccurate statements on slide 4. PTS and PTX are ASCII
>> formats and thus - by definition - *not* proprietary. Better examples would
>> have been MrSID and zLAS. Here a definition of what a proprietary format is:
>> http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Proprietary_format
>> That LAZ is not listed on the "How Do People Store 3D Data Today?" slide
>> despite the fact that pretty much all large LAS collection being hosted as
>> LAZ will not surprise anyone who followed the "LAZ clone" controversy. Over
>> the past two years I have regularly lamented that part of why ESRI seemed
>> to get away with forcing yet another proprietary format upon us was the
>> bias in the reporting of (sponsor-financed) geospatial media outlets that
>> was improperly informing their readership. Gene had the most notorius
>> record of all in reporting every incremental advance of the "LAZ clone" on
>> Lidarnews while ignoring the screaming controversy. The inaccuracies on
>> slide 4 suggest that this bias continues, so I have little choice but to
>> advise taking his statements on other formats with a grain of salt.
>> Another inaccuracy is the claim that LAS does not allow extensions. I
>> have been part of the process of adding the "extra bytes" concept into the
>> LAS 1.4 specification that allows a user-defined and documented addition of
>> new per-point attributes.
>> That said, I really must complement Gene and his colleagues on their
>> amazing achievement with E57. It is of great use to the industry as I have
>> just witnessed first hand at INTERGEO. But I wish Gene could see the E57
>> format as a complement (not a competition) to the LAS/LAZ format for the
>> (many) situations where the much simpler LAS format is not sufficient -
>> such as storing multiple scans positions in a terrestrial project or
>> co-registered imagery.
>> 3) "OGC WCS: Format-independent Point Cloud Services", Peter Baumann,
>> Jacobs University
>> Great presentation. Not much to add. Except that the coordinate
>> resolution in the GML encoding on slide 4 makes me really worry. Given
>> their values those seem to be projected xyz coordinates and writing them
>> down with 15 digits after the decimal points (=> that is the unit of
>> femtometers [fm], a typical length-scale of nuclear physics as the radius
>> of the gold nucleus is approximately 8.45 fm) reminds me of this story:
>> http://rapidlasso.com/2015/09/02/england-releases-national-lidar-dem-with-insane-vertical-resolution/
>> 4) IQumulus, Jan Boehm, UCL
>> Great presentation. Only comment. LASzip will also compress any
>> additional per-point attributes stored to a LAS file. How well depends on
>> the resolution and how coherent the attribute is stored. But compression
>> will not suffer as much as suggested.
>> 5) "Point Cloud Photogrammetry", Jean-Baptiste Henry, Thales Group
>> Two small comments: (1) We can add "confidence values" to ech point to
>> LAS/LAZ via the "Extra Bytes" functionality. (2) Do not overestimate the
>> "suitfulness" of the ASPRS LAS Working Group (LWG) as a standardization
>> body to co-operate with. The current LWG is a notoriously untransparent
>> groups with an unratified working protocol written overnight that has no
>> established procedures such as record keeping / votings process  / regular
>> meetings / or anything else that are core to a normal standardization body.
>> 6) "Management and direct use of massive point clouds". Edward Verbree,
>> TU Delft
>> I agree that we need a point cloud *Web service* that could potentially
>> offer multi-resolution access. This is a completely orthogonal to the OSGeo
>> request for distributing point clouds only in *open* formats. Such a
>> service could either operate from a data base but also a folder of point
>> clouds stored in either LAS / LAZ / E57 /PTS / XYZ files (optionally at
>> multiple resolutions) or some other open point cloud format current or
>> future.
>> There was a *wrong* statement at 2:20:25, some mumbling about a"full
>> commercial package"? That was quite missleading. LASzip is 100% and open
>> source but TU Delft has in addition decided to license rapidlasso's
>> LAStools software academically for some of the more complex operations but
>> the LAZ format has absolutely no dependence on that.
>> Regards,
>> Martin (to the best of my knowledge and on behalf of OSGeo)
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Carl Reed, PhD
Carl Reed and Associates

Mobile: 970-402-0284
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