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Thread: Airphoto and GIS services in CityEngine project

  1. #1
    larry zhang
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    Question Airphoto and GIS services in CityEngine project

    Hi, team

    As an alternative & potential solution to 3D content generation, we are trying to model our own facility with the 30-day trial version 2011 through using the 30-cm resolution airphoto, 1-m resolution DEM and engineering drawing (all having local projection/datum, that is, ESRI:102204).

    Here, we used the data Import in the project (Images & Maps).

    After trying, we failed to get there (the system Not able to recognize, and those data imported neither).

    On the documentation, it gives us the following info:
    images: Additional imagery like Viewport ‘snapshots’ are typically stored here.
    maps: This folder usually contains the image maps used by the Map Layers. For example, a height- or water-map is stored here.
    It looks different from what we want! Are we missing something? Or does the trial version enable some limitations on this kind of functions?

    Ideally, we want to directly use the image/map data in TIFF, IMG, File GDB, in particular, GIS service like map service and image service from ESRI ArcGIS Server 10 (airphoto, satellite, DEM) into the project for modeling.

    If not directly, at least, we can import TIFF, IMG (4-10 GB), and GRID into the project.

    Any advice ?
    Last edited by hlzhang525; 12-19-2011 at 02:12 AM.

  2. #2
    Matthias Buehler

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    Default Re: Airphoto and GIS services in CityEngine project

    hi !

    the TRIAL version is not limited in those functionalities.

    since the CityEngine project is set up in project folder structure, you need to first place your files you want to work with in the CityEngine project. things you want to use must be placed in those folders to work with them, thus we named those folders as a default.

    directly linking files from ArcGIS is not yet possible, thus you need to work with e.g. picture files or 3d assets.

    please note also that it's best to work with picture files smaller around 4096x4096 pixels due to the fact that CityEngine handles textures in memory and not as a 'service' as e.g. ArcMap which enables unlimited data (e.g. tiled 10 GB GeoTifs). Thus, if you want to visualize large datasets, you'll need to use the CityEngine as content creation tool and bring the final buildings to e.g. ArcScene, which were created based on a 'down-resed' terrain model.

    DEMs, TINs and GRID-based terrains are not yet supported, thus you need to work with raster-based terrains such as 32 bit tif files.

    Here's some resources :
    http://resources.arcgis.com/content/cityengine/about

    --> check Gallery !
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  3. #3
    larry zhang
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    Default Re: Airphoto and GIS services in CityEngine project

    Thanks, Matthias,

    Generally, I got some feelings and little hands-on from testing plus your reply. I am going to keep trying in this direction (especially, prepare all kinds of data for the CityEngine project to import).

    Worth to mention, our initial purpose for 3D content generation was to model 3D scenes as realistic as possible with acceptable accuracy from high-resolution images with shadow, DEM, and existing engineering drawings.

    For more thoughts on data inputs, please open the PDF attached.

    Quote Originally Posted by matthiasbuehler View Post
    hi !

    the TRIAL version is not limited in those functionalities.

    since the CityEngine project is set up in project folder structure, you need to first place your files you want to work with in the CityEngine project. things you want to use must be placed in those folders to work with them, thus we named those folders as a default.

    directly linking files from ArcGIS is not yet possible, thus you need to work with e.g. picture files or 3d assets.

    please note also that it's best to work with picture files smaller around 4096x4096 pixels due to the fact that CityEngine handles textures in memory and not as a 'service' as e.g. ArcMap which enables unlimited data (e.g. tiled 10 GB GeoTifs). Thus, if you want to visualize large datasets, you'll need to use the CityEngine as content creation tool and bring the final buildings to e.g. ArcScene, which were created based on a 'down-resed' terrain model.

    DEMs, TINs and GRID-based terrains are not yet supported, thus you need to work with raster-based terrains such as 32 bit tif files.

    Here's some resources :
    http://resources.arcgis.com/content/cityengine/about

    --> check Gallery !
    Attached Files
    Last edited by hlzhang525; 12-21-2011 at 12:48 AM.

  4. #4
    Matthias Buehler

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    Default Re: Airphoto and GIS services in CityEngine project

    hi !

    thanks for the inputs.

    one very important point :

    from what I see in your pdf and the other comments, what you are trying to achieve is to basically reverse-engineer building shells realworld facades from existing oblique imagery and other sources. this is NOT something which you can do with the CityEngine. At least at the current state.

    The CityEngine is a so-called 'procedural modeling application' which creates 3d buildings based on input shapes plus a rule set. The process you describe goes rather in the direction of photogrammetry.

    reverse-engineering building volumes and facade pattern analysis is something we may offer in future, but is not ready currently. if you're interested speficifally in this, I'd recommend data providers as http://www.cybercity3d.com/ , which you then of course can also use in CityEngine as imported 'static models'.

    What I'd recommend is that you look at the 'Philadelphia Example' which shows how you can work with geolocated models derived from photogrammetry (kml files) and the CityEngine's procedural modeling functionalities.

    let me know if this cleared the maze a little ..
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  5. #5
    Kevin DeVito
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    Smile Re: Airphoto and GIS services in CityEngine project

    Larry,

    We have several cities that you can test. You can download them here for free. They are drag n' drop to CityEngine. we are testing all this now and there are no problems.

    http://www.cybercity3d.com/index.php...=106&Itemid=77

    Regards,

    Kevin

  6. #6
    larry zhang
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    Angry Re: Airphoto and GIS services in CityEngine project

    Thanks all,

    your inputs make sense to us and the links are helpful. We are still on learning curve with CityEngine itself.

    Honestly, we have some operational expectations on 3D (with ESRI products), including CityEngine. It would be nice that seamless interoperation/ integration between CityEngine and ArcGIS can be provided. Obviously, it should also include:
    • ‘Drag & Drop’ capability from desktop ArcGIS to CityEngine, including the ‘clipped’ image service & DEM by ArcGIS ‘Image Analysis’;
    • ‘Drag’ & ‘Drop’ the 3D project from CityEngine to ArcGIS (ArcScene, ArcGlobe), without ‘Import’ or ‘Export’ via COLLADA or KML;
    Believe that CityEngine will add good values to the ESRI product line on 3D aspects sooner. It is why we are investing more time to learn this product. Please keep updating to us.
    Last edited by hlzhang525; 02-05-2012 at 07:05 PM.

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