ESRI has released the full coverage of its International User Conference, held in San Diego - August 2006. The coverage is available on one 15-DVD Set.
This marks a new era in geospatial conference coverage. While many others in the geospatial space have held online webcasts, web seminar's and the like, few have recorded their entire conference from opening to closing over a week.This ESRI International User Conference DVD Set includes 175 technical sessions, ArcGIS 9.2 demonstrations, Jack Dangermond's opening address and more. Presentations include:--Spatial Analysis and Modeling with ArcGIS - David Maguire--How to Build a Geographic Information System - Scott Morehouse--ArcGIS What's New in 9.2: ArcGIS Server - Sud Menon, Anne Reuland, David Wrazien--ArcGIS ArcMap: Using Cartographic Representations ion ArcGIS 9.2 - Paul Handy, Edie Punt--ArcGIS What's New in 9.2: GIS Developers and EDN - Euan Cameron, Brian GoldinThe DisksThe DVD ROM Set comes with a 'Bonus Disc' which includes instructions for loading the proper QuickTime and Adobe Reader software to view the disks. Also included are MP3 audio files and the program listing which guides users through the set. Video operates using MPEG-4.I installed the software and was up and running quickly. Running in Quicktime, the Plenary Session began with Dangermond on the right and the slides displayed on the left. Other disks include the slide presentations for the various sessions along with the presenter speaking. The disks are labelled clearly by topic, for example, ArcGIS Server and ArcGIS System dministration - Disc 9, ArcGIS Data Models and ArcGIS Editing - Disc 3 and ArcGIS Geodata Management - Disc 7.UsefulnessFirstly, this DVD ROM Set is the most complete introduction to the ArcGIS software, in a multimedia format, that I know of. A bonus to this method of delivery is that the people who actually created the software are member's of the development teams and are presenting. You are getting the goods straight from the source here, along with script samples and personal observations.In practice, these disks could be presented "in-house" to groups of people for education purposes. The DVD ROM Set addresses several points that journalists, attendee's and other interested parties have experienced at the conference over the years, namely, one cannot be in two sessions at the same time and the conference is so big, that it is difficult to cover everything. Consequently, access to the disks provides a means to see and learn about everything presented. For ArcGIS software users, the DVD ROM Set is a valuable information source that provides a complete summary of the ArcGIS system and its various components and modules. If you have wanted to understand geo-processing or modeling better, then these disks will prove worthwhile. Although I have not gone through every disk completely, I did make my way through quite a few and found them interesting and packed with useful examples and graphics. Why is this a New Era?In my opinion, geospatial conference numbers are growing. In central Europe, as example, one could attend a GIS or geospatial related conference almost every day. As many companies and organisations present new conferences, media sources (ie. this magazine and others) cannot cover them all - for both time and financial reasons. Consequently, new approaches are needed to share and communicate conference information. The ESRI International User Conference DVD ROM Set attempts to bridge the gap, providing useful information to a wider audience and even those who cannot attend the San Diego show. For ArcGIS software users and organisations considering ArcGIS as their choice, then these disks will prove valuable during the decision making process. I think ESRI has opened (exposed) many new doors with this DVD ROM Set. This coverage format provides the ultimate complete coverage of the presentations for any given conference. I see these DVD ROM's as reference information, including material I would not or could not have obtained for various reasons - they support journalistic endeavour.At the same time, I think these disks provide a means for organisations to educate many of their employee's, to build capacity internally.SummaryThe DVD ROM Set is a 'must consider' for organisations moving into the ArcGIS 9.2 release and users should investigate these disks. They are well organised, logically ordered and cover the complete ArcGIS 9.2 system. I would bet most people will find several dozen (at least) useful pieces of information within the DVD's.I think we will see more conferences begin to use this format.At the same time, it will be interesting to see how conference attendance prevails in the face of this new approach.Note: The 15-DVD ROM collection Set is for purchase. ESRI continues to provide the Proceedings CD of the conference which is distributed free of charge to conference attendees. --------Product: Twenty-Sixth Annual 2006 ESRI International User Conference, August 7-11, 2006 - San Diego, California. Media: 15 DVD ROM SETPrice: 699 USD (Euro 547)Info: www.esri.com/uc or www.twosense.com/esrireg/index
Author: Jeff Thurston
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