At what point does a map and 3D scans of an area lose value? How old can a 3D scan be to be used as reference? When should maps and 3D scans be updated to reflect changes in the landscape? 

While doing some field work this week I ran into an issue and thought of a question that I could ask the Ecosynth community. I was using an older aerial image (from 2008 according to Jonathan) in order to find some of the street trees near the dorms. There has been some construction (mainly the addition of a new basketball court) in that area since the aerial photo was collected and it was difficult to find one of the corner points for one of the grids we have set.

I think that in areas with high amounts of human traffic 3D scans should be updated every three years so that changes in that specific human area do not render the already completed maps useless but just in need of an update. As for more stable environments such as a forest, etc. 3D scans should be updated every five years or in the event of a natural disaster drastically altering the terrain. 


Included are two aerial shots of the UMBC campus at different times illustrating how fast and drastically human environments change.                                                                                                                                     

(upper left: UMBC 2009)

(bottom left: UMBC 1978)

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Comment by Erle Ellis on April 11, 2013 at 2:17pm

Nice post Darryl!


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