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Welcome to the Pix4Dsurvey beta!

Sorry but now the “save as” feature doesn’t appear, while in the beta.1 (OSX) it was possible. Why?

Thanks Blaz. That was my gut instinct, but the documentation seemed to show processing options.

I was able to pull in a processed project yesterday and digitize a couple polylines. As others have said here…I’m not really seeing any “features” to test out. Digitizing w/ robust snapping options, offsets, buffers, generate perpendicular lines, create coded points, etc are all requests that others have already explained in detail here and the same request that I have in support of surveying & engineering.

I haven’t really seen anything other than the same point/line/area creation options that are available in Pix4d mapper.

Sorry, I’m waiting for an answer. My question is: why I can’t use the “save as” command (giving a different name) in Pix4Dsurvey beta 2 (0.9.0) version, while in the previous one this was possible? Thanks

Another question. In the attached screenshot there is a comparison between my project (on the right) and another project (on the left). Why I can’t see the commands and the menu of the other project?

Last but not least: I’m unable to open a Pix4Dsurvey file processed using OSX version in Pix4Dsurvey for Windows. Why?

At the moment, only the perspective view of the 3D scene is available. The orthographic view would indeed be beneficial in cases that you mention and we will consider adding it in the future.
With the latest version, we already implemented the “View All” and “Top View” standard views.

The Save As feature was removed in the latest Beta version while making changes in the folder structure. We are waiting for the feedback from testers and see if we eventually add it back.

The screenshot on the right is a mock-up done by @rsweeney and not an actual user interface of Pix4Dsurvey.
The Console that is opened on the left screenshot is available for all versions. To open it go to the Menu Tab -> Window -> Console.

Nice catch, there are some issues when opening Pix4Dsurvey projects saved in Windows on mac and vice versa. We are checking it now in order to see how we can optimize this workflow :slightly_smiling_face:

Thanks for your fast answer: I’ll follow next versions, promoting your software and efforts as and anywhere I can. Regards.

Hi guys,

My first try at Pix4Dsurvey brings me a few questions and thoughts

1) Import
I can see in the docs that
" When importing external point clouds, such as laser scanner or LiDAR, the coordinate system needs to be: Written directly in the .las or .laz file. When importing multiple projects or files, all coordinate systems must match."

I understand there are reasons behind this, but it would be very handy to be able to import LAS with no CS assigned. Example… Local survey with NO known CS are still common in some situations. (to vectorize polygons inside a building point clouds would be great and most of the time such point clouds wont be georeferenced), etc…
In case CS has to be (definitly) defined within the LAS, an option to assign on the fly CS to the LAS file would be very helpfull. Lidar from VD state for example are using a swiss CS but it won’t be recognised by Pix4Dsurvey (see point 2), I wish I could overwrite its CS information from from the import menu by choosing it from a list, if needed.

Import of Autodesk RCP/RCS/RCM would be handy too. Folks registering laserscans in Recap would be grateful. Also some compatibility with RCM from Recap photo might be too. (this could help bring people currently Recap Photo to process photogrammetry to use Pix4D Survey to vectorize things, and hopefully will make them bite into Pix4D mapper in the futur.

2) Issue
I am trying to load a Lidar files coming from the state of VD which at first, I thought did not include CS… In fact it does (This is the one LAStools find CH1903 LV03M (referenced to CH1903/GSB)|CH1903|CH1903 LV03M (referenced to CH1903/GSB)|" this is not a lat/long as far as I understand but import fails with the error msg “Pix4Dsurvey only supports projected coordinate systems. Before importing your point cloud file please make sure that it is in a projected (non-latitude/longitude) coordinate system.”

I can send you the file if needed.

My 2 cents for now.
(and thanks for being able to participate in this beta)

Hi Nico,

Good points - we have plans for full coordinate system support, which I think will help with a lot of what you mention. The issue you have with the CS not being read is one we know of and are working on.

As for formats, yes, I absolutely agree about the Autodesk point cloud formats! Thanks for the feedback!

Nate

My modest contribute: it’s only a proof made exporting .dxf file (made using an iMac Pro late 2017) into Autocad 2016 and then creating a .pdf file of the roofs. The subject is the one shown in my previous posts “Bovino castle”

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Overall I would say you are making great progress in the right direction. I believe you are very aware that this is still early Beta and needs a lot of refinement before selling it as a product which is why there will probably be several Beta versions before it goes to market. I am starting a Survey Tracking Software Company to track Survey project and am very aware of early Beta test users and producing an MVP to get the ball started.

Thoughts: Outside of the normal bugs and improvements, I would recommend looking into adding symbols within the point feature. This would bring a lot of value. We worked on this idea a few years ago and never had the $ to bring it to market as we are a small surveying firm and dont have a team of developers. We also hoped you all would eventually get there. The idea is add already developed Tensorflow object identifications to the code to the mesh and let is scan to identify object and either apply line work or symbols to the object. This would allow for basic outlines of roads, house, etc. It would also be able to map to table where you would be able to bring in Symbols. I know you have some version of this already in Pix4D but bringing it to the next level would be able to produce the same results as a proper coded field to field location data. This would get most drawings 70-80 complete and bring a huge amount of value to the end consumer.

Look forward to testing out the new Beta with a lot of the comments fixes!!

Keep up the good work I know its not easy!

I have been playing around with this for a bit now and here are a few observations.

  • Line and Point Snaps. Would be really helpful to have a plane intersection snap that will snap to things like curb/asphalt lines, top curb lines, walls, anything there two planes intersect. Also a highest and lowest snap will be useful.
  • Clipping boxes and slices. Slices along a line would be cool.
  • A point code workflow for surveyors would be nice. Click a point and a box pops up allowing you to input a code and/or attribute. Should default to last entered code and be pre-highlighted for easy typing.
  • Ability to export .csv of points (northing-easting-elevation-description) and select which features to export in the .dxf.
  • Line at interval (if I have a long road and I want a centerline with a vertex every 50’ to use as a breakline).
  • Layer templates for easy export to CAD on correct layers in .dxf.
  • Cross section/slice view line drawing (similar to what TopoDOT and Global Mapper have).

Thanks for the quick updates on the beta!

Height:
What is the easiest way to measure the height from the ground or roof surface of a lot of items?

Accuracy:
Does the polyline vector have to start and end on an existing point in the point cloud?

It seems like to get sharp corners on the edge of buildings there is not enough resolution on the standard pix4dmapper output. I had to bump my point cloud density up to Full Image and even then I was not super happy with my corners, although I could tell where they should be.

Exports:
.dxf seems to be fairly primitive. I’d suggest some more export options, even just .csv of the vectorized points, geojson like Pix4D Cloud, or 3d shapefile to go back to the GIS world.
Will is be possible to export to .dwg instead of .dxf? AutoCAD online cannot open a .dxf so you have to convert to import it into AutoCAD desktop and then save to a .dwg. Not a huge problem, but could be a smoother workflow.

Coordinate System:
Also what is the best way to manage your coordinate system? My pix4dmapper project was in a UTM system so the dxf coordinates appear to be far from the origin and I did not find an easy way to navigate to the vectors in AutoCAD. Can there be a way to export to a local coordinate system defined nearby my vectorization work?

Modeling:
Any thoughts on basic rectangular prism, extrude, or other 3D volume solids in the drawing toolbox?

@eddie
Height: To measure the height you can right-click on the Polyline and enter the Properties dialog. The following values are available for Polylines:

Accuracy: When clicking in the 3D view, a point needs to be detected in order for the vectorization tool to work and to create a new vertex. We recommend increasing the Point size when digitizing sparse point clouds.

There is a nice workaround for the edges of buildings that you can give it a try:

  • Draw the outline of the building. Use the most visible points of the corners, even if they are not in the exactly correct location or height.
  • Select the object.
  • Right-click on the vertex.
  • Edit the coordinate values in the Edit Vertex dialog.

Exports: We are already considering adding more export formats so thank you for your input on the files you typically use.

Coordinate System: The coordinate system of the vectors will be the same as the one set up in the Pix4Dmapper project. Since the coordinate system is not directly defined in the .dxf format, an additional file (.prj) containing the coordinate system definition is created.

Modeling: Could you give us some more examples of how and in which scenarios would you use this kind of tool?

I’ve used this a few times and can see the benefit, although right now it’s kinda just a glorified version of the Raycloud in the desktop version of Mapper.

Likes
-it’s nice to be able to create point nodes directly on the point cloud for missed shots, like where the crew misses power poles etc.
-can draw lines under light tree cover and even carports in some cases, whereas the mesh gets in the way in other programs

dislikes
-needs a way to snap to other lines
-need full control over layer names and colors
-the interface is a little wonky to pan around in sometimes, going full black screen if you happen to zoom into one tiny space of no data.
-need to be able to create intermediate vertices and catch break points on long lines (like at a user specified interval along with breaks)
-need other color options like slope color background to see and avoid noise in the roads and in low vegetation easier
-need way to create point grids at user specified intervals
-needs automatic lines for tops and toes, like click on two points for reference, then the program follows out the break line.

I’m a virtual surveyor user and this beta so far in no way can compete, however it does have some good benefits.