In this article:
- Quality and Performance
- Automatic Ground Control Points
- Data Validation
- Dynamic Tiles
- Manual Retouch Improvements
- Photo Viewer Changes
- GUI Changes
- Water Polygons
- AWS Improvements: Fuser Throttling
- Control Point Editor
- Multi-Fuser Support
- New Output Options
- Quality Report
- Photo Wizard
- Build Wizard
Quality and Performance
- Improved performance for projects with unreliable/No GPS
- Improved accuracy for projects with unreliable/No GPS
Improved mesh mode quality
- Close range, sub-centimeter collections
- Multiple collections with large resolution variance
- Clean noise
- Remove gaps in low-resolution pyramid levels
Accelerated production time
- Optimization for close range and vertical collections
- Optimization for wooded area
Automatic Ground Control Points
The latest version of PhotoMesh has been enhanced with an automatic control point marker detection feature, optimized for automated production, that allows for more efficient control point marking. After selecting a template that matches your marker type, such as a checkerboard or cross, PhotoMesh can automatically detect the control point markers in your photos. Any auto-marked control points can also be manually adjusted or entirely overridden, if needed.
The latest version of PhotoMesh includes a comprehensive data validation process for your projects, immediately after loading photos. This process checks for potential issues and displays a detailed dialog with warnings and errors specific to each collection and photo, as well as providing suggestions on how to fix them, ensuring that your project is free of errors and runs smoothly.
New reconstruction tile display style "Dynamically-Sized 3D Boxes" adaptively splits the reconstruction area based on memory requirements, allowing for complex vertical data such as tall buildings or utility poles to be split into multiple tiles. In “3D Dynamic” mode, tiles and their boxes are displayed in absolute heights and tiles can float.
Manual Retouch Improvements
A new "Remove moving cars" texturing option has been added, specifically designed to tackle reconstruction issues caused by moving vehicles in the photographed area, such as cars partially sunk in the road since only some of the photos captured the car in a particular spot. This option textures the polygon area only with photos that do not include moving cars. Users can now also fill retouch polygon areas with a single color or a specific texture or use photos from the area. Feature layers with retouch polylines/polygons can be created in PhotoMesh or imported.
The manual retouch tool has been further enhanced with the ability to perform basic retouch operations on orthophoto format output, in addition to the previously supported mesh layer format, for greater flexibility and precision in your retouch projects.
Photo Viewer Changes
PhotoMesh 8.0 introduces a host of new and exciting improvements to the Photo Viewer, that make it more powerful and user-friendly than ever before. Open the viewer from multiple locations, including the photos list, photo ribbon, control point editor, or when showing photos in point. With the new option to open multiple viewer popups, you can now easily analyze the strength of the features in multiple photos at once.
We've also added new capabilities to the viewer, such as the "Dim" mode which darkens the photo, highlighting feature markers and making them easier to see. The "Show features" command now offers the choice to show matched features identified in the preliminary match phase of the AT step or from the sparse point cloud whose match quality was validated during the AT’s bundle adjustment process. In feature display mode, you can select which features to display in the photo viewing window, whether it's all features, only features found in at least one more photo, or only matched features between the photo selected in the photo panel and the main photo. And you can even select a specific feature and identify all photos that contain that feature.
This release introduces a new layout for the Project Tree, with a one-level index control and the transfer of control points output, object/layer, and water polygon information from the Tree to dedicated item lists. This change streamlines the GUI and makes for a more intuitive workflow experience.
In PhotoMesh 8.0, we've streamlined the water polygon creation and editing process with the introduction of a new Water Polygon list. This list consolidates all water polygon properties and settings, such as visibility, inclusion in the project, and water level constancy, in one convenient location, eliminating the need for a separate property sheet. The Water Polygon list has two tabs: Polygons and Layers, providing an easy way to view and manage all individual polygons in the project and polygon layers respectively.
AWS Improvements: Fuser Throttling
New Launch Rate setting lets you control the maximum number of fuser instances launched per minute, e.g. if Maximum Instances was set to 200, and the Launch Rate to 50, the Build Manager will spread the launch of the fusers over 4 minutes. This prevents a potential bottleneck that could be caused by a large number of fusers attempting to read the build data at the same time.
Control Point Editor
In PhotoMesh 8.0, we've streamlined the control point editing process by introducing a new control point list that consolidates control point properties and their editing in one place, while reserving the control point editor for marking control points in photos. You can seamlessly navigate between the editor and list using either the "Open GCP Editor" button in the list's toolbox or by selecting a control point row in the list, when the GCP editor is open.
PhotoMesh now formally supports the running of multiple fusers on powerful machines for potentially enhanced performance. It is recommended that a minimum of 16 GB RAM and 8 cores be available per fuser. In addition to standard fuser use, PhotoMesh also offers two options for auto-scaling of fusers to enable dynamic allocation of fusers based on project requirements:
Amazon Web Services (AWS) Fusers – AWS fuser instances can be dynamically launched whenever there are unassigned pending fuser tasks, to further accelerate model creation.
Fusers Pool – Fusers can be shared between several PhotoMesh Build Managers in your organization, enabling each machine running PhotoMesh to use the combined resources of all the machines in the pool.
New Output Options
PhotoMesh supports the latest 3D Tiles, SLPK, and o3DML output formats •Point cloud output colorized by the number of correlated photos •Watermark option has been removed. In PhotoMesh evaluation version, output is generated without a watermark, but it is mandatory to include a Skyline copyright notice and logo. •Optimized mesh model to reduce size without compromising on quality •New option to export the selected photos’ aerotriangulation information to a CSV file.
New Quality Report (PDF), containing statistical and graphical information about the build and its aerotriangulation and reconstruction results, highlights key information and alerts you to potential problems such as missing information, triangulation errors, or failed tiles so you can address and resolve the necessary issues. It includes four maps that graphically depict information about photo matches, level of detail, position accuracy and more.
The new PhotoMesh Wizard streamlines the process of adding photos to a project by consolidating all load and import options, including photo files/folders, Excel/XML photo list file, video, and photos with metadata into a single, user-friendly dialog. This eliminates the need to navigate multiple menus and simplifies the process of bringing photos and metadata into your project. In addition to this general revamping, the following specific improvements and capabilities have been introduced:
- CSV Import – PhotoMesh now remembers and retains last mapping of CSV columns to corresponding photo properties. This means that for subsequent imports with the same CSV file, you won’t need to re-map the columns.
The Build dialog now includes a simplified view that makes it easier to use. In this view, all the main settings for a standard build are consolidated in one tab labeled "Build Settings." Along with this change, some styling enhancements have also been made to the dialog.
Several new presets have been added to make it easier that make it easy to automatically set the parameters that will generate the optimum output for your project’s data :
- Close Inspection - For projects with a single object captured from all perspectives. PhotoMesh focuses on the foreground object to achieve best image correlation relative to the close-range object and optimizes 3D reconstruction for modeling of thin features and complex geometry.
- Skeletal Objects – Aggressive cleaning of spaces within skeletal objects, resulting in a cleaner, more visually accurate 3D model. This is particularly effective for objects like telecommunications towers and other mostly hollow objects.
- Nadir Only Dataset – Improves edge sharpness and overall orthophoto quality.
We’ve also incorporated two new sliders:
- Position Accuracy slider - Allows you to determine what weight should be assigned to provided camera positioning when performing aerotriangulation.
- Output Quality slider - Includes a Draft mode option for faster processing.