Friday, August 24, 2012

Digital Detail - London

Some time ago we came across a firm in London that has, and is continuing to update, an extremely high level of detailed in a digital model of London, accurate to within few centimetres.  The company is called Vertex Modelling, and we first learnt about them when reading a interview through CGarchitect with one of their team members, and it is only now that we have our blog up and running again, that we have been able to make this post. (Others we have are also on the way)

The model(s) they have are extensive and are in a constant state of updating with increasingly more detail. Why? We hear you ask, when there are things like googles 3D city? This is perhaps best answered  in a extract of the interview with Vertex themselves when ask the question by CGarchitects.

"We always set out to create a highly detailed and accurate model as we knew that there are companies out there with far greater resources creating city models, however we believe that there is demand for both types of model. For planning purposes accuracy is key and the city models produced by Google and others aren’t of sufficient quality to fit this demand. The technology used by Google is certainly impressive and we are always keen to follow the developments made in this area, however I still feel that the process we use produces superior results."

Another impressive part of the way that the Vertex pipeline works is the way they are already able to envisage the London Sky Line has changed, and are already able to predict the way it will transform into the future.
Their client base also sounds like it has exploded over the last few years, with disciplines like the obvious ones such as planning, right through to VFX companies and film studios. 
Even though they discuss a little bit of their pipeline in the interview, and how they go about collecting the data to make much of the initial model, our guess is that they are also using microcopters to scan a lot of the detail. It does begin to pose very interesting questions surrounding the future of urban form studies and a digital data archive of an entire city mass. 

These are two images that demonstrate the LOD that they have started to integrate into the model(s).

Interested in seeing more of their animations? Visit here