Blue Marble Monthly: Discovering Uncharted Mayan Ruins

Product News, User Stories, Events, and a Chance to Win a Copy of Global Mapper Every Month

September was a busy month at Blue Marble. We released version 20 of Global Mapper and the LiDAR Module, we conducted a live webinar about the new version, we hosted our 20th anniversary Blue Marble User Conference, and we updated the online GeoCalc Geodetic Registry. In this newsletter, we share some exciting news about a valued Global Mapper user, we review what we have been working on and our training plans for the rest of the year and, as always, we offer you a chance to win a copy of Global Mapper in the Where in the World Geo-Challenge.

NEWS  |  Global Mapper on TV with LiDARUSA

Global Mapper and a longtime Blue Marble customer had a moment in the limelight this past summer. LiDAR USA used the software to reveal an uncharted Mayan causeway on the Travel Channel show “Expeditions Unknown”. See the suspenseful clip on our blog.


BMUC  |  Five Reasons Why You Should Have Attended

On September 21, the 25th Anniversary Blue Marble User Conference was held in our home state of Maine! Those who joined us were treated to fascinating presentations, useful tips and tricks, delicious food, and wonderful Maine hospitality. For those who weren’t able to go, learn more about what you missed at the event and why you should consider attending in the future.


PRODUCT NEWS | Global Mapper 20 Now Available

Global Mapper version 20 was released just a few weeks ago and it’s been literally flying off the shelves ever since. Early adopters are raving about the new Map Layout tools, gushing over the 3D mesh creation capability, and marveling at the performance and data processing improvements. Download a copy today and find out what all of the fuss is about.


DID YOU KNOW?  |  About GeoCalc Online

Have you heard about Blue Marble’s GeoCalc Geodetic Registry? It’s an online coordinate geodetic repository for all of Blue Marble’s software. The online registry is a hosted version of the complete GeoCalc library; accessible here as a resource and tool for surveyors, geodesists, and GIS analysts concerned with accurate and reliable coordinate reference system definitions as well as the most accurate coordinate transformations. GeoCalc was recently updated and is current with the latest International Association of Oil and Gas Providers’ EPSG Geomatic Registry.


VIDEOS | What’s New in Global Mapper 20

The most recent live Blue Marble webinar entitled, “What’s New in Global Mapper v20”, has been recorded, reviewed, lightly edited, and uploaded to YouTube! Watch and learn about all of our new features ranging from generating 3D meshes to streamlined Map Layout tools, and everything in between.

This and previous Blue Marble Webinars and Webcasts can be viewed at the Blue Marble YouTube Channel and on the Webinars page on the Blue Marble web site.


Where in the World Geo-Challenge

Rome? Really? It was actually Port Moresby. A surprising number of participants were apparently fooled by the capital city question in September’s Where in the World Geo-Challenge. But not Ryszard Szwajda from the Ontario Ministry of Transportation. Ryszard will shortly be receiving a copy of Global Mapper 20 for correctly guessing all five locations.

To find out how you did on last month’s challenge, check out the answers here.

If you’re up for another try, click the link below to test your geographic knowledge in the October edition of the Where in the World Geo-Challenge. Thanks for playing! And good luck!


See complete terms and conditions here.

EVENTS  |  Training in Houston and Orlando

Unfortunately, all of the seats for the two day Global Mapper class in Houston have been filled (don’t say you weren’t warned) however there are still a handful of spaces in the one-day LiDAR Module class on October 25. Click here to reserve your spot.

The Orlando Global Mapper class from December 4-6 is also filling up fast (who doesn’t want to go to Florida in December?) so don’t be disappointed, register today.

For more information on the training agenda, pricing, etc., visit:

Where Blue Marble Will Be Next

Visit with Blue Marble at the following events:

Palm Springs, CA | October 9 – 12

Beverly, MA | October 15

Frankfurt, Germany | October 16 – 18

Global Mapper and LiDAR Module Training
Houston, TX | October 23 – 25

Edmonton, Alberta, Canada | October 29 – 31

Trimble Dimensions
Las Vegas, NV | November 5 – 7

Geomatics Atlantic
Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada | November 14 – 16

The Commercial UAV Show
London, UK | November 14 – 15

Orlando, FL | November 26 – 30

Global Mapper and LiDAR Module Training
Orlando, FL | December 4 – 6

Where in the World September 2018 Answers

How Well Did You Do?

Name the lake – Great Bear Lake

Great Bear Lake












Name the capital city – Port Moresby

Port Moresby












Name the country – Suriname













Name the UNESCO World Heritage Site – Uluru













Name the island – Key Largo

Key Largo


Five Reasons Why You Should Attend a Blue Marble User Conference

Patrick Cunningham at BMUC 2018Chelsea E | Projections
Blue Marble President Patrick Cunningham welcomes attendees at the Blue Marble User Conference 2018 in Portland. He talked about the use of Global Mapper by organizations such as NASA, GolfLogix, BGC Engineering, and more.


On September 21, one of the most prestigious geospatial events took place!




You guessed it! It was the 25th Anniversary Blue Marble User Conference.

So, there might be a chance that you haven’t actually heard of this event. That’s ok! I’m writing this to convince you that, whether you are a Blue Marble software user or not, you should know about this conference.

Here are the five reasons why you should join us at the Blue Marble User Conference next year:

Mike Childs at BMUC 2018Chelsea E | Projections
Mike Childs, the Global Mapper Guru, responds to a question from a conference attendee.

1. I’m there! … and Global Mapper architects, developers, and experts are too

Chelsea E | Projections
Channel Account Manager Myles LaBonte (left) and Blue Marble reseller Laurent Martin (right) after the Blue Marble User Conference. Laurent, who traveled almost 5,000 miles to attend the conference, says that he’s always felt like he is a part of the Blue Marble team.

Yes, I’m there running around taking pictures and recording video (and eating the food), but what’s more valuable to you are the software developers and resellers who are there to hear your questions and requests.

This particular Blue Marble User Conference was especially valuable because the Global Mapper guru Mike Childs and our international resellers were there. After the day’s presentations and software demonstrations were over, Mike answered questions and heard software  suggestions from attendees while our product manager jotted down the ideas.

It’s a part of Blue Marble’s core values to welcome and encourage users to be part of the development process. That user-to-developer communication is usually in the form of emails, but at a Blue Marble conference, users can communicate directly with the experts and know their ideas will make it to a discussion in our development meetings.

Larry Mayer at BMUC 2018Chelsea E | Projections
Larry Mayer presents on advancements in sonar and visualization technology for exploring the sea floor at the Blue Marble User Conference 2018 in Portland, Maine.

2. You will be inspired by presentations from distinguished GIS professionals

Did you know that scientists know more about the surfaces of Mars and the moon than they do of the Earth’s ocean floor – aka 75% of the world’s surface? I didn’t.

At this Blue Marble User Conference, Larry Mayer, Director of the School of Marine Science and Ocean Engineering and Director of the Center for Coastal and Ocean Mapping at the University of New Hampshire (phew! Long title!), delivered a presentation on the advancements in sonar and visualization technology for exploring the sea floor. He explained how the technology has helped in the discovery of 3,000-meter high mountains in the Arctic, D-day wrecks, the behavior of whales, and the history of climate through the impact of ice on the sea floor. He touted that investing in more ocean research would help us, people of the world, gain a better understanding of our planet.

Chelsea E | Projections
Ron Chapple, CEO of Aerial Filmworks, discusses his role in the making of the Pulitzer Prize-winning documentary “The Wall”.

Our second keynote speaker and CEO of Aerial Filmworks, Ron Chapple took attendees from exploring the deep with Larry to examining the Earth from above. Ron talked about the challenges that came with producing the Pulitzer Prize-winning documentary “The Wall”, which analyzes the impact of the proposed wall along the border between the U.S. and Mexico. His role in the project was to shoot aerial footage, over which he highlighted the location of the 2,000-mile long border using Global Mapper.

I was surprised to learn how difficult it was for the team of “The Wall” to accurately represent the curvy U.S.-Mexico border in the video.

My point is that BMUC includes amazing presentations by distinguished GIS professionals that give insight into projects that are relevant to the industry today.

David McKittrick at BMUC 2018Chelsea E | Projections
David McKittrick, Senior Applications Specialist, offers “Tips and Tricks” on how to use Global Mapper at the Blue Marble User Conference 2018 in Portland, Maine.

3. You will leave smarter and gain Global Mapper “Tips and Tricks”

In between presentations at this year’s BMUC, Senior Applications Specialist David McKittrick took a few minutes to share some “tips and tricks” on how to use Global Mapper. The tips ranged from how to use the multiview display, smooth contours, view data in Google Earth, and create a terrain cutaway.

David also presented on the recent release of Global Mapper 20 and the LiDAR Module, which offers streamlined map layout tools, the ability to create a point cloud from a 3D mesh, a new eyedropper tool for selecting features, dramatically faster loading speeds for working with vector files, and a lot more.

All of these demonstrations were followed by an opportunity for attendees to ask questions that would help them apply these techniques to their own projects.

Larry Mayer talking with BMUC 2018 attendeesChelsea E | Projections
Larry Mayer answers questions after his presentation at the Blue Marble User Conference 2018 in Portland, Maine.

4. You will eat with other GIS professionals and have a chance to win a prize

Geo-Challenge Tie Breaker
The Tie Breaker slide. Can you name all the countries that were once collectively Yugoslavia?

Throughout the day, drinks and snacks were available, and at noon we provided lunch. During lunch, we challenged our attendees to participate in a Where in the World Geo-Challenge, in which they were asked to guess the names of geographic features in a slideshow.

At this year’s BMUC, we came prepared with a tiebreaker question, since we expected that a room full of GIS professionals would easily be able to guess all of the features correctly. The winner of the challenge went home with a gift card to the Blue Marble Emporium.

Sam Knight, David McKittrick, and Mike Childs at BMUCChelsea E | Projections
Sam Knight, David McKittrick, and Mike Childs answer questions at the end of the Blue Marble User Conference in Portland, Maine.

5. You will spend only $25 to attend

So why wouldn’t you attend BMUC if it’s only $25 for a day full of GIS presentations, networking, and lunch?!

They had me at “lunch”, so … I’m not sure why you wouldn’t register.

Stay tuned for future Blue Marble User Conferences

All jokes aside, BMUC truly has a lot to offer GIS professionals, even if you aren’t a user of Blue Marble software. From the insights of our keynote speakers, to the latest software developments and one-on-one interactions with our experts, BMUC is a great opportunity to connect with Blue Marble staff, have a direct impact on the software you use, and to network with members of the GIS community.

So stay tuned for Blue Marble User Conferences near you by following us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Instagram, or by checking out Blue Marble User Conference page.

Chelsea Ellis

Chelsea Ellis is Graphics and Content Coordinator at Blue Marble Geographics. Her responsibilities range from creating the new button graphics for the redesigned interface of Global Mapper 18 to editing promotional videos; from designing print marketing material to scheduling social media posts. Prior to joining the Blue Marble team, Ellis worked in graphic design at Maine newspapers, and as a freelance photographer.

Webinar: What’s New in Global Mapper v20

The What’s New list in Global Mapper 20 reflects the increasing importance of 3D data visualization and processing, with numerous new tools for working with point clouds, 3D meshes, 3D vector features, and terrain models. In the latest Global Mapper webinar, we showcase some of the highlights of this release.

Among the specific topics covered in the webinar are:

  • New Map Layout options
  • A new eyedropper tool for color selection
  • Speed and performance improvements
  • New online data options including NextMap One
  • New mesh processing tools
  • New Fly Mode in the 3D View

And in the LiDAR Module:

  • Updates to the Pixels to Points tool
  • 3D model creation from a point cloud
  • LiDAR thinning
  • And much more

LiDARUSA Uses Global Mapper on Travel Channel’s ‘Expedition Unknown’

Did you catch Global Mapper on television over the summer? In an episode of the Travel Channel show, “Expedition Unknown,” the production crew visited Guatemala in search of Mayan Ruins. A team from LiDARUSA, longtime Global Mapper users, were also involved in the project, collecting LiDAR data for the Mirador Basin Project. Using a combination of drones and helicopters, the data was collected and processed, revealing an uncharted Mayan causeway. As you will see in the footage below, Global Mapper was used to classify bare earth and to view the model that was generated.

No need to worry about this brief cameo going to our heads, the “As Seen On TV” people won’t let us use their logo.

Where in the World Geo-Challenge – October 2018

View the form at Google Forms >