Monday, April 11, 2011

News Release: ERDAS Releases New Product, ECW for ArcGIS Server

The following news has just been distributed to the press....

ERDAS Releases New Product, ECW for ArcGIS Server Norcross, GA — ERDAS proudly announces the introduction of the all-new ECW for ArcGIS Server, which provides a means for ArcGIS Server 10 to deliver Enhanced Compression Wavelet (ECW) data to clients via OGC-compliant Web Coverage Service (WCS) and Web Map Service (WMS).

Using components of the ERDAS ECW/JP2 SDK version 4.2, ECW for ArcGIS Server enables ArcGIS Server to support ECW imagery, providing the fastest decompression available. Using minimal memory, ECW can quickly decompress and open massive files, in many cases faster than uncompressed imagery can be opened. Additionally, multi-resolution level of detail is built into the file, eliminating the need to generate or distribute pyramids or overviews. The ECW technique does not require that immediate tiles (RRDs) be calculated and stored on disk; they are an inherent part of ECW’s Discrete Wavelet Transformations (DWT). ECW also supports opacity channels, allowing images to overlay other imagery cleanly without showing compression artifacts around the edges.

The ERDAS ECW/JP2 SDK technology was developed by ER Mapper Ltd beginning in 1998 and is governed by three patents (US6201897, US6442298, and US6633688).

ECW for ArcGIS Server may be installed on a single ArcGIS Server, with or without other ERDAS software installed. However, ECW for ArcGIS Server does require a FlexNet license file from ERDAS.

This new product expands the industry-wide level of support for the ECW format. ECW is already supported in traditional desktop GIS, CAD and remote sensing packages such as ArcGIS®, AutoCAD®, ERDAS IMAGINE®, ERDAS ER Mapper, FalconView™, Bentley Microstation®, ENVI® and PCI Geomatica®.

"ERDAS created ECW for ArcGIS Server in response to overwhelming user demand. For any geospatial organization requiring an accelerated workflow and reduction of hardware costs, ECW is the compression format of choice," said Paul Beaty, Technical Product Manager, ERDAS. "Its popularity stems from the fact that it doesn’t merely compress files; it simplifies their handling by making them faster to decompress and transfer. ERDAS is committed to providing rapid geospatial data delivery for organizations using any software platform."

To learn more about ECW for ArcGIS Server, please visit the official
product page or attend a free webinar on Wednesday, April 13, 2011 at 11 am or 7 pm (GMT -4).

For more information about ERDAS or its products and services, please call +1 770 776 3400, toll free +1 877 GO ERDAS, or visit

This means the two articles 32824 and 36261 posted on ESRI's Support website concerning ECW in ArcGIS Server 10 are now out-of-date. Just get ECW for ArcGIS Server from ERDAS, and you are off to the races.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Potential GPS signal reception problems

Some believe a serious threat to the reliability and viability of the Global Positioning System (GPS) has risen.

LightSquared, has been granted a conditional waiver by the Federal Communication Commission (FCC) to build 40,000 ground stations in the US that may cause widespread interference to GPS signals; endangering a national utility which millions of Americans rely on every day.

LightSquared plans to transmit ground-based radio signals that are said to be one billion or more times more powerful as received on earth than GPS's low-powered satellite-based signals. This potentially may cause significant interference impacting millions of GPS receivers.

I have not determined if there is a competitive company trying to block/slow-down LightSquared, or if this is a real threat. Notwithstanding, I thought you may wish to visit and start your own research into the matter.

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