ICC Programming

Immersive realities

3611.2 - Visualizing changes in land use over time in a virtual reality system

Monday, July 3
3:10 PM - 3:30 PM
Location: Hoover

The first aim of the following research paper is to present a visualization of the real world in a virtual reality system; the visualization spanned several time intervals, with the user observing/analyzing their surroundings as a First Person Controller. The second aim is to demonstrate the behaviour of users of this kind of visualizations. On the basis of planning materials, LiDAR data, and images obtained using an unmanned aerial vehicle, an application was developed that used a virtual reality system to present the changes in how the existing land had been (and still was) used. The changes could be presented across four time periods: 2003, 2014, 2016, and 2025.
The subject of the research was a 70-hectare area, having undergone intensive anthropic pressure, where the land use pattern and land relief had dramatically changed over the recent dozen of years. The studied area underwent a major shift from serving an agricultural function to being intensively exploited by industry.
The research method, on the one hand, involved analyzing and integrating in one consistent reference system both analogue source materials (a local spatial management plan together with its graphical attachment) and digital ones (the LiDAR and UAV-obtained data). On the other hand, the integrated set of spatial data enabled a development of interactive 3D visualizations presenting changes in land use (land relief) in four periods: 2003, 2014, 2016, and a 2025 estimate. The 3D visualizations were subsequently uploaded into an application working within a virtual reality system. By using a pair of special goggles, a VR observer can enter the studied area and move around in it in the First Person Controller mode, thus being able to visually analyze any land changes taking place.
Sources which aided the researcher in creating the land use visualizations for certain time intervals were, among others:
- the local spatial management plan, which served as the basis for presenting land relief in 2003 and creating the visualization of land use following the end of its exploitation;
- a point cloud obtained by airborne laser scanning, with its accompanying numerical terrain model, as well as the numerical land cover model, which served to present land relief in 2014;
- photographic materials obtained with the aid of an unmanned aerial vehicle during a course of drone flights carried out in 2016, which were used to generate a point cloud reflecting the most up-to-date state of the terrain.
The product of the described research are heat maps, presenting spots most intensively analyzed by the visualization users - they make it possible to determine a spatial pattern of the users’ behaviour.

Lukasz Halik

Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan, Poland

Lukasz Halik is a postdoctoral researcher and lecturer the Department of Cartography and Geomatics at Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan, Poland. He received his PhD in 2014. His main research interest is on web mapping and augmented/virtual reality where he focuses on visualization, presentation and usability of point symbols and 3D objects.


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Beata Medynska-Gulij

Profesor of Cartography and Geomatics; Head of Department of Cartography and Geomatics
Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan, Poland

Beata Medyńska-Gulij studied Geography, specialising in Cartography; she defended her doctoral dissertation in 1998, and was awarded the habilitation degree in 2007. Since 2001, she has been working at the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan. Since 2010, she has been Head of the Department of Cartography and Geomatics at the Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan, which was created according to her scientific and didactic vision. Her scientific publications usually revolve around the subject of principles of cartographic design on old maps and in geographical
visualisations created with the help of state-of-the-art technologies.


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Alexander Savelyev

Assistant Professor
Texas State University

Alexander (Sasha) Savelyev is a cartography and geovisualization scholar who focuses on issues of text (geo)visualization, Big Data visualization, user study design and human cognition in visual environments.


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3611.2 - Visualizing changes in land use over time in a virtual reality system

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