I’m trying to work in more interviews with our field team and conference recaps. This report comes from Lynda Sharkey, who you may recall as the voice behind the dinosaur in her AU class promotional video last year, or more formally, the voice behind the Autodesk Infrastructure Modeler videos playlist.
Lynda recorded a version of her presentation from TRB and posted it on youtube. I’ve also made it available to download directly here: Download Conceptual_Design_in_Transportation.mp4 (41802.5K)
As you read below, note that Lynda is from one of those places that uses “s” instead of “z” a lot. Since it is part of her charm, I’m going to let them stay despite what spellcheck wants to enforce upon her native language.
6th International TRB “Visualization in Transportation” Symposium
Chicago (Aug 20th -23rd)
A few weeks ago, I attended the TRB ‘Visualization in Transportation’ symposium ( http://trbvis.ning.com/ ) , along with a few transportation experts from work. This being my first conference exclusively dealing with Transportation, and me being a GIS gal at heart, I was a little nervous at having to present a paper about Conceptual Design in Transportation to people who’ve been doing this type of thing for most of their careers…
Well, I shouldn’t have been. It seemed that most of us could relate to the ‘fun’ of trying to effectively communicate ideas for transportation projects to people -whether those people are in our own teams, clients, or people at a Public Participation meeting.
It was interesting for me to watch the presentations – which dealt with topics ranging from knowledge management, to public involvement, to security and emergency response – and find that the common thread throughout them all was that the visualisation of ideas and information led to better decision making. I think that until now, visualisations were always thought of as a ‘nice to have’ as opposed to something that could add real value to the decision making process.
Autodesk, along with Bentley and ESRI, were patrons of the conference and we had the opportunity to schmooze with delegates at the Exhibit Hall Reception on the Sunday night. It was great fun watching people using the Autodesk Simulator to drive through the new Presidio Parkway and Bay Bridge conceptual designs. It’s a lot more difficult than it looks – but strangely enough, it may be the one time when having a few beers actually improves your driving skills.
During my presentation, I’d shown a few (highly improbable) conceptual designs using Autodesk Infrastructure Modeler 2012, without telling people what the software was, since I didn’t want to annoy people by being ‘salesy’. It obviously resonated quite a bit though, because the whole evening, we had a steady stream of people coming past the booth to talk to us about it and find out what it was.
As Dana mentions in this blog post, people don’t always know or care about the standards and design codes and methods employed by engineers. Being at this conference and talking to the people at the coal face, (or the cutting face) has doubly convinced me that being able to visualise
Don’t forget to sign up for all of the Autodesk Infrastructure Modeler Classes at Autodesk University this year. Lynda’s class is Be a Hit: Work on your A.I.M. with Autodesk® Infrastructure Modeler 2012.