Golden Software Blog

Helping you learn more about the latest product information, tips, tricks, techniques, and customer stories so you can visualize data and communicate results with ease.

Customer Spotlight: Dr. Eric Delmelle Uses Voxler 3D Data Visualization For Space-Time

Golden Software customers possess a broad assortment of backgrounds from earth sciences and engineering to education and politics. This vast background results in a variety of uses for Golden Software's products. Each customer uses the software in a unique way, and we are pleased to share these stories. This blog article features Dr. Eric Delmelle, a professor of GIS and Health Geography in the Department of Geography and Earth Sciences at the University of North Carolina, and his use of Voxler, among other applications, to visualize space-time patterns of human behaviors and human health issues.

Dr. Delmelle's research focuses on answering fundamental epidemiological questions where spatial and spatiotemporal methodology is a critical avenue for analysis. He uses robust geocomputational methodologies that "deepen our understanding on the dynamics of infectious and non-infectious diseases". Dr. Delmelle is dedicated to the development of new visualization techniques that detect space-time patterns at different scales and leverage state of the art computational techniques to generate predictive models that could ultimately have influence on health decisions in the public sector.

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Customer Spotlight: Geoff Bogie Uses MapViewer To Look For Missing Flight

Golden Software customers possess a broad assortment of backgrounds from earth science and engineering to education and politics. This vast background results in a variety of uses for Golden Software’s products. Each customer uses the software in a unique way, and we are pleased to share these stories. This newsletter features Geoff Bogie, of Alice Springs Resources, NT, Australia, who used MapViewer to propose a new search site for missing Malaysian Flight MH370 after finding variables within a seabed area that formulate an anomaly zone.

Saturday March 8, 12:41AM, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia - Malaysia Airlines flight MH370 departs on schedule for a flight to Beijing. At 1:19 they make contact with air-traffic control. Everything seems normal. That is the last contact they will make. At 2:15 military radar loses track of them, having made a sharp turn to the west instead of following their designed trajectory north, and at 8:11 a final satellite communication puts the plane somewhere due west of Australia on what is now being called the ‘7th Arc’. Thousands upon thousands of square miles of ocean have been searched, but nothing has been found. Theories abound that someone took control of the plane 1 hour into the flight and that the plane was on autopilot when it crashed, but the only thing that is known for sure is that 239 passengers and crew vanished that day.

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Customer Spotlight: Willem Havermans Uses Voxler & Surfer To Visualize Groundwater Contamination

Golden Software customers possess a broad assortment of backgrounds, from earth science and engineering to education and politics. This vast background results in a variety of uses for Golden Software’s products. Each customer uses our software in their own unique way, and we are pleased to share these stories. This blog features Willem Havermans, a senior engineering consultant for MWH Global, who uses a combination of Voxler and Surfer's mapping software to visualize groundwater contamination levels and generate conceptual remediation models for their areas of interest.

Willem Havermans has been a faithful user of Golden Software applications dating back to early 2000. He has purchased multiple versions of Surfer's mapping software. He also uses Voxler's 3D data visualization capabilities on a daily basis and has held a Strater license for the past few versions. Havermans, working with MWH Global, uses a combination of Voxler and Surfer to perform 3D data processing of surface and subsurface soil contamination and surface creation. He uses Goolden Software's mapping software to create a strong basis for generating conceptual models of groundwater contamination and in planning of remedial designs.

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Surfer Mapping Software Assists the Sporting Community

The dreaded dead spot. Tormenting professional and recreational players alike, the dead spot can quickly wreak havoc on any indoor gymnasium event whether it is basketball, red rover, or a track event. When dribbled on a smooth surface, a ball typically bounces back quite easily; however, when the ball happens upon a dead spot, the bounce back is either greatly reduced or even changes direction. Dead spots are also noticeable when running across the floor, and the supposedly solid surface is not so solid underfoot. Injuries have been caused by these flooring distortions. Thankfully, the individuals at Mathusek Incorporated, a sports and commercial flooring contractor, have found a way to eliminate these dead spots in their floor installations by utilizing Surfer.

A sports floor is only as good as the concrete slab it rests on. One of the leading causes of a dead spot is the flatness, or lack thereof, of the slab. Prior to installing a gym floor, Mathusek offers a concrete slab assessment. Specifications require the slab tolerance to be no more and no less than 1/8 of an inch in a 10-foot radius. To verify the level, Mathusek establishes a benchmark in the middle of the floor. Readings are then taken every five feet and recorded. Each point is compared to the center benchmark to verify it is within the 1/8” requirement.

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Comparing Surfer and QGIS

Comparing Surfer and QGIS

Quite often people will ask, “What are the differences between Surfer and QGIS?” Below is a comparison of the main features and functionality of each program. Surfer, as you may know, provides 2D and 3D contouring complete with surface mapping software. QGIS has an assortment of plugins, and we haven’t been able to review them all. I encourage you review and let me know if there is any missing information. As new information comes in, I’ll be sure to update the matrix below.

 Surfer version 13QGIS version 2.12.3Price1-3 licenses $849/license4-10 licenses $805/license11+ licenses $765/licenseFreeDevelopment ModelCommercialOpen sourcePlug-insFree ResourcesWebsiteLive technical supportPhonesEmailLive chatKnowledge BaseForumsUser GroupsDocumentationIn-program helpTraining manualPaid for ResourcesFull PDF user guideLive trainingProvided by Golden Software & authorized resellersProvided by 3rd party contributorsMap TypesBase mapContour mapImage mapPost mapClassed post mapShaded relief mapVector map (1-grid)Vector map (2-grid)Watershed mapViewshed map3D surface map3D wireframe mapPie chart thematic mapHistogram thematic mapMap FeaturesAxesProfilesScale barColor scaleCoordinate systemsImport/edit/export attributesMeasure distanceMeasure anglesDigitize XYZ pointsOverlay mapsStack mapsLog contoursSave/load contour levelsEdit contoursInline contour labelsMap transparencyGridding/Interpolation/RasterizingInverse distanceKrigingMinimum curvatureModified Shepard's methodNatural neighborNearest neighborPolynomial regressionRadial basis functionTriangulation with linear interpolationMoving averageData metricsLocal polynomialFunction gridVariogram modelingGrid date/time dataGrid reports with statisticsFaultsBreaklinesAnisotropyTIN supportGrid FunctionsMathCalculusFilterSpline smoothBlank/nullConvertExtractTransformMosaicVolumeSliceResidualsGrid infoGrid node editorAssign coordinate systemRegridGrid metadataGrid transpose3D File ViewerWorksheetAutomationImport/ExportImport options3322Export options2728Open grid4764Save grid2464

Beyond the actual functionality, another difference between Surfer and QGIS is the development models. Surfer is a commercially developed program whereas QGIS is open source and is developed by a community of contributors. While it’s difficult to quantify, I believe it’s worth mentioning the pros and cons, according to me, associated with our commercial software model and QGIS’s open source model.

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