Geocortex at the 2017 Esri Petroleum GIS Conference
It’s the beginning of April, which means we’re gearing up for another Esri Petroleum GIS Conference. While the preparation is intense and the week is going to be busy, it’s the conference I look forward to most each year! From reconnecting with colleagues and meeting new people, to seeing how the industry responds and adapts to ongoing change – to hearing what Esri will showcase at this year’s conference – I get more and more excited each year. As we gear up for the event I thought I’d offer a couple of predictions, opportunities to connect with us at the conference, and a request.
Prediction #1: The plenary session will provide thought-provoking and compelling stories that will further drive many operators to consider how they can advance their investments in GIS.
The plenary session always impresses me: from the speakers to the demonstrations, it is consistently a well-executed presentation of knowledge and insight into the industry and how spatial technology augments petroleum operations.
In 2016, for example, Scott Sitzman presented on how PUG is driving a methodology of industry standardized processes to get jobs done, while Howard Energy provided visibility into how their organization is shifting by embracing GIS. Esri presents thought-provoking content, geared to the petroleum industry, that isn’t available at the other GIS and technology conferences throughout the year.
Prediction #2: The value of identities has been realized, and the speed of adoption will continue to grow.
The plenary is a method of recapping what the industry has accomplished, as well as laying the foundation for where the industry is going. The last few years have seen the rise of ArcGIS Online and the modern ArcGIS platform, showing how GIS has grown from “make me a map” to an ecosystem of self-discovery. Incorporating the power of where has significantly improved the decisions that are made. The industry is realizing benefits of shifting from a system of record to a system of insight, enabling users to have access to effective decision making tools anywhere, anytime, and on any device.
Where to connect with the Geocortex Energy team in Houston
Our team will be at booth #812 throughout the week and we encourage you to come say hi! You’re the reason the team attends the conference, and we are excited to see what you have been doing and hear about your successes.
This is a great chance to get a look at how we’re embracing the identity model, how we can help your organization easily adopt it, and how we’re working to help energy organizations transform how people engage with spatial data throughout their organizations.
We’ll also be highlighting the solutions we’re building for the petroleum industry, how Geocortex Essentials is evolving to next-generation tools, and how we can assist your organization in rapidly deploying useful applications with little or no code.
Presentations you won’t want to miss
In looking through the conference agenda, many interesting topics piqued my interest. Seeing how companies are solving problems through points, lines, and polygons continues to amaze me!
These presentations reinforce my theory that organizations are not only embracing the web GIS pattern; they are enhancing decision making throughout their organizations.
On Thursday, April 13 there are two presentations showcasing Geocortex that we think you should add to your list.
- 9:30 AM in Ballroom C: Anthony Herman will be presenting how Geocortex Mobile App Framework has facilitated inspections – the solution leverages APR, UPDM and the Esri identity model. I also heard a rumor that Anthony has a cool co-presenter.
- 1:30 PM in Room 310: David LaGorce from ConocoPhillips will be presenting on an integration between ArcGIS, Geocortex, and the Quorum suite. I’ve seen a similar presentation before, and it’s a good one!
A simple request
We are eager to hear your thoughts and opinions from the conference. After all, you are the ones that implement ideas and use them to solve business challenges. A good idea is only a good idea until it helps someone improve an internal process, or make operations safer.
Things we’d like to hear from you:
- What was your favorite solution presented at the conference? Why?
- How do you think this will improve your business?
- What is the current challenge this will help you overcome? And how?
Following the conference, I’ll summarize the event from my perspective, and (with proper permission) highlight some of the compelling insight we’ve gained from listening to you.
We are looking forward to seeing all of you at the conference - thanks in advance for coming by!
Introducing the Geocortex Energy team
For over half a decade, more than 120 oil & gas companies and pipeline operators have implemented Geocortex Essentials; our intuitive web mapping solution helps them automate and streamline business processes, and they leverage its framework to integrate spatial data with other critical business systems. Our team has supported the unique demands of energy organizations by tailoring their implementations through professional services and product development, extending the core Geocortex Essentials suite.
The last five years have been an exciting and transformative time for Latitude Geographics, for our clients, and for the industry. Through this time, a few notable things have happened:
- Geocortex implementations have been proven, and these implementations are providing substantial value and benefits to the organization. Whether it be processes that have been streamlined and simplified through Geocortex Workflow technology, the ease of administration of the ecosystem of sites organizations apply, or the intuitive interface of Geocortex, operators have been able grow the number of users through the organization. Because of this, our solutions have become more deeply embedded, and are becoming crucial decision making tools, saving some customers hundreds of thousands of dollars per year.
- The global oil & gas economy has forced energy organizations to be more efficient and uncover new ways to use the systems and tools they already have in place. Due to the rapid development nature, ease of implementation, and scalability of Geocortex technology, many organizations are finding they can operate more efficiently through their investment in Geocortex.
- Client implementations have matured, the user-base has grown, and advanced users are looking to extend Geocortex with distinct and powerful functionality. Whether it’s integration with asset management, work order management, or other key business systems, Geocortex is being pushed further to do more.
- As we have worked through these advancements with our clients, our subject matter expertise has expanded significantly. Whether the expertise has grown from the work we have done alongside our clients, or through hiring individuals with industry experience, we have developed a deep understanding of the complexities of industry data standards and regulatory requirements. This positions us to provide far better advice and guidance to our customers.
Introducing the Geocortex Energy team
In response to the rapid adoption of Geocortex, the ever-changing industry landscape, and a desire to better serve our customers, we are excited to introduce you to our dedicated Geocortex Energy team! We are focused on leveraging industry and client experience, coupled with the Geocortex framework, to build solutions and services that will continue to redefine how energy users engage with spatial data.
The Geocortex Energy team is comprised of two groups: Business Development and Solutions. Our Business Development team, Rob Lenarcic and Quinn Abbey (familiar names for many of our clients) continue to drive new business, support our energy customers, ensure continuity in the services we provide, and showcase our newest offerings.
The Solutions team consists of several individuals that continue the tradition of crafting best-in-breed solutions and services - with a dedicated focus on workflows that address the specific challenges of oil & gas organizations. Led by me, Sam Acheson (Energy Solutions Manager), the team also includes Tom Kasmer (Project Manager and Business Analyst), and Software Engineers Yongzhi Zhu, Colin Aspinall, and Christian Morin (our resident Software Architect).
The team has already started collaborating with clients to develop new and exciting technology solutions built with Geocortex, and we can’t wait to show you what we’ve come up with!
In the coming months, we will be sharing more information with you via this blog; if you’d like to hear more about our latest solutions – and learn how the Geocortex Energy team is continuing to help oil & gas organizations – be sure to connect with us at these upcoming 2017 events:
- Esri Petroleum GIS Conference, April 12-13: Houston, TX
- Esri International User Conference, July 10-14: San Diego, CA
- Pipeline Week, October 3-5: Houston, TX
(You can also catch a webinar I recently hosted here.)
Esri's 2017 Partner Conference and DevSummit
Earlier this month I had the pleasure of checking out Esri’s Partner Conference (EPC) and DevSummit in Palm Springs, where Esri shares their plans and technology direction for the year ahead. Latitude Geographics has attended the EPC and DevSummit for the past 13 years; although I have been with Latitude for 16 years, this was the first time I took part. As the lead Business Analyst on our ArcGIS Implementation Services team, it was a particularly great year for me to be there and take in all of the information Esri had to offer.
I took some time to go through my notes from this year’s event, and wanted to share with the Geocortex community what I saw as 2017’s main themes.
Unification of the ArcGIS message
One thing that stood out immediately to me was that the ArcGIS message has consolidated under the umbrella of the new ArcGIS Enterprise terminology (introduced at ArcGIS 10.5). In recent years, I’d heard about individual components of the ArcGIS platform – Portal for ArcGIS, ArcGIS for Server, and the rest of the individual stack components; while all the individual components are still there and still very powerful, the updated messaging around ArcGIS Enterprise has simplified things and brought everything together. Each “piece” feels much more like contributing technologies to a cohesive whole, rather than individual software components.
Maturity of the ArcGIS platform
Related to the unification theme above, there is a noticeable increase in maturity of the complete ArcGIS platform. Some exciting capabilities have started to come into their own over the past year (e.g. ArcGIS Insights and ArcGIS GeoAnalytics Server), and this maturity makes the ArcGIS platform an even more compelling, comprehensive GIS solution. Single-user, high-power desktop GIS isn’t exactly what I’d call a dinosaur just yet, but it’s sure looking grey compared to the new distributed and connected GIS computing paradigm Esri has introduced.
On-premises options for ArcGIS Enterprise
During the DevSummit this year, it seemed to me that there was a heavy focus on on-premises options for ArcGIS Enterprise. ArcGIS Online was still a focus, but I expect that the attention towards on-premises installation, configuration, tuning and management is reflective of the number of organizations that simply need to host their GIS infrastructure themselves. I probably shouldn’t use the term ‘on-premises’ -- quite often ArcGIS Enterprise is best implemented inside Amazon Web Services (AWS) or Azure – ‘self-hosted’ is perhaps better terminology.
Discovering useful tools and tactics
Finally, I must say that so much of the value for me at this year’s Partner Conference and DevSummit was all the bits of information I picked up related to many different areas of the Esri ecosystem. From learning about tools that I wasn’t aware of (like Koop), to valuable brainstorming and UX wireframing techniques, to tips and tricks for working with Geodatabases (hello extracting coded value domains!), this year’s event was a treasure chest of useful nuggets of information.
I can’t wait to see what else Esri has in store for us, and I look forward to working with our customers on more successful ArcGIS and Geocortex implementations as the year continues to unfold!
Geocortex Essentials 4.6, Geocortex Viewer for HTML5 2.7 & Geocortex Mobile App Framework 2.1
Latitude Geographics has released Geocortex Essentials 4.6, alongside Geocortex Viewer for HTML5 2.7 and Geocortex Mobile App Framework 2.1.
While we’ve made some major upgrades to Geocortex Essentials to help you manage and configure your applications, many of the exciting features in this release can be found in our viewer and its offline capabilities.
- Geocortex Viewer for HTML5 2.7 has a new Time Slider control to filter data on your maps to only show features in a chosen time extent. This version also offers users the ability to change the rendering of layers on-the-fly with new Dynamic Symbolization controls. They can also add layers from a predefined list of catalog layers – controlled by administrators – and can search for services and layers by URL or keyword. On the management side, this release empowers administrators to edit all context menus in the viewer, configure feature highlight colors, control measurement symbology, and more.
- Geocortex Mobile App Framework 2.1 versions for iOS, Windows, and Android have been improved, and continue to use Esri’s geodatabase replica format to store feature data on a device; this enables search with more advanced spatial intersections offline, and a smarter sync mechanism. This version introduces support for taking layers from dynamic map services offline. We’ve also made a handful of improvements for users with Windows devices, such as a configurable storage location for data. (As a reminder, we shared information with Geocortex customers at our last release regarding licensing considerations for Geocortex Mobile App Framework. If you are a Geocortex customer and haven’t had a chance to review it, yet, check out our post in the Geocortex Support Center).
As always, there are also numerous minor features, various bug fixes and user experience enhancements included as part of this release. We recommend you consult the release notes for more detailed information.
Note: There is interdependence between Geocortex Essentials, Geocortex Mobile App Framework, and our HTML5 viewer; implementing some newly-introduced features will require the latest versions.
Current Geocortex customers: Installers, release notes and supporting documentation can be downloaded by licensees with an active maintenance agreement from the Geocortex Support Center. If your account is handled by an authorized Geocortex Reseller, please contact your local representative for access to installers and documentation.
Customers interested in learning more about some of the new features being introduced can watch a set of new feature videos that will be available for viewing in the coming weeks in the Geocortex Support Center.