Why U.K. Government Agencies Should Start Leveraging Geospatial Cloud Solutions

The Cloud

There is increasing demand for cloud-based solutions across government agencies, private industries, and consumer IT markets. Many of these organizations are adopting a cloud-first strategy when implementing new systems or replacement old ones. Government agencies are moving to the cloud because they currently face challenges associated with deploying individually-installed desktop-based software across an enterprise. They are also facing serious challenges with the scalability and management of traditional server infrastructures. These issues include complex system management and monitoring, slow upgrade cycles, lack of flexibility in meeting increased demand for supporting mobile users, and high maintenance and support costs. Cloud-based solutions address these challenges through streamlined and reliable software management processes, more frequent technology update cycles, robust support for remote and mobile users, all leading to reduced lifetime ownership costs.

In the U.K., the Government Digital Service announced a cloud-first policy in 2013, stating, "public sector organizations should consider and fully evaluate potential cloud solutions first – before they consider any other option." This is supported by an active G-Cloud service catalogue, where thousands of suppliers offer a wide range of cloud services – from hosting to consultancy. You can even find Hexagon’s geospatial applications on the service catalogue.

Hexagon Geospatial’s M.App Enterprise solution provides easy-to-manage and deploy tools for the exploitation of geospatial sources and the creation of derived information products and reports. It includes a rich web-based client application that can be expanded upon by a system integrator, and that all users can utilize to create and share information across the enterprise. It provides tools to capture geospatial tradecraft and share it as dynamic services across the enterprise using the advanced spatial model authoring tools. Deployed on a public, private, or in-house cloud infrastructure, the Hexagon cloud platform gives the functionality of desktop software with the thin client experience expected of cloud-based software. The figure below demonstrates the browser-based touch points for administration and end users of the M.App Enterprise platform.

M.App Enterprise

While the cloud-based solution has roots in the flagship desktop products, ERDAS IMAGINE and GeoMedia, M.App Enterprise is not an incremental upgrade. It is a revolutionary solution platform that will transform the vision of the geospatial cloud into a reality and significantly increase the number of users that can leverage geospatial analysis without having subject matter expertise or expensive software. This provides the ability to more rapidly innovate and more broadly and effortlessly collaborate, thereby improving the overall effectiveness of the organization.

With the one platform from Hexagon, there are a multitude of applications, some examples are:

  • Real-time Forest Fire Tracking
  • Convoy Route Planning
  • Post-Hurricane Debris Clean-up Tracking
  • Estimate Expected Crop Yield
  • Oil Pollution and Spill Monitoring
  • Analyzing Anomalies In Manufacturing

Today at the 2017 DGI Europe conference, Brad Ward, senior vice president of Hexagon US Federal, presented a session titled, “Using the Cloud to Optimize Visualization, Analysis, and Sharing of your Mission Critical National Geospatial Data to Improve National Security.” If you attended DGI Europe 2017, I hope you had a chance to stop by the Hexagon booth to see the cloud-based solutions we have to offer.


Richard Goodman
About Richard Goodman

Richard Goodman is a technical consultant for Hexagon Safety & Infrastructure in the U.K. Goodman delivers pre- and post-sales technical support, specializing in photogrammetry, GIS, and data management as well as industry solutions for rail and asset management.

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