We’ve now had a few weeks to get through some of the basic issues involved in laser scanning and 3D imaging. I hope you have enjoyed visiting some of these topics as much as I have. But, with the holiday party and cocktail season fast approaching, it’s time we get down to a most timely issue. When people ask what you do for work, what do you say?
Personally, I never know what to say. I try to skew my answer toward the audience at hand but I usually end up stammering around until I start listing example projects as if they asked for a statement of qualifications.
Technically (according to my license) I am a Land Surveyor. However, I haven’t done anything that required my stamp in a long time. Besides, it gives a very different idea to people compared to what my day-to-day activities are. Something along the lines of Metrologist seems more accurate, but most people think that is a weatherman so it doesn’t help much either (if you don’t believe me, try Googling metrologist). In search of the grand unifying theory of what I do I tried to reduce everything to its most basic component. I came up with the idea that we trade in any data that can be reduced to coordinate information. Upon saying this to people they immediately want to offer examples for you to pronounce correct or incorrect. Here’s is the thing. I’ve never heard one that is incorrect! “Maps?” Yes. “Like web apps?” Sure. “Do you use smartphones?” Every day. I’ve come to realize that we live in a 4D world and as such, no data that we have can not be associated with a positional attribute of some sort. So, I’ve dropped that line as too general to be any good.
I had a conversation about this with some colleagues in Houston a few weeks back and one said, “I just tell people I’m a photographer, the girls seem to like that!” I tried to explain to this younger man that as the “girls” turned into “ladies,” many would find billable hours more attractive than artistic pursuits. As a result I have not yet had my business cards reprinted. Besides, Professional Photographer is on the same boat as Land Surveyor when it comes to future job security.