Geo Week News

June 5, 2012

Postcard from Kawasaki: SPAR Japan 2012

In case you were wondering: Yes, the entire SPAR Japan event is in Japanese. But that didn’t stop me from picking up quite a bit of interesting information about how 3D data is being acquired and used here in the Japanese market. 

There is a general consensus here that Japan is about two years behind the US, and maybe a little farther behind Europe, when it comes to adoption of laser scanning, but there are obviously early adopters everywhere, and Japan is no different. The technology seems most prevalent in the plant and piping marketplace, but there’s definitely a robust mobile scanning market here and the close-range scanning market seems to be really coming on. 

It’s hard to be sure because of the language barrier, but my impression is that the Japanese want lots of details – they’re not about to dive in on a new technology and concept without being very confident of its efficacy. However, once they’ve bought in, they’re keen to make use of every feature in the software and to attempt to create the best possible workflow. 

There’s a lot of talk about the Japanese being a conservative marketplace, but I think I would describe it more as deliberate. Or measured. It’s not that they’re resistant to change, it’s that they’re methodical in how they adopt that change. 

I had a lot of great conversations, especially, about the scan-to-model workflow. One of the trends I identified in my talk is one that I’ve talked about a lot here on the blog: The desire for the point cloud to be the model, rather than have to spend laborious hours modeling an entire facility. Modeling only what’s necessary, using the point cloud for visualization and measurements in most cases, and bringing in CAD elements for clash detection was very attractive to much of the audience here. 

Anyway, I expand on some of these themes and give you some views from the show floor and presentations in this week’s SPARVlog. Enjoy:


Supporting materials:

Click here for a sample of the kind of work being done by the SPARJ keynote speaker, Masahiko Onosato.

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