Reflecting on UC 2018


Esri's annual International User Conference descended on San Diego a couple of weeks ago. In this slightly different post, some Esri UK colleagues share their personal reflections - highlighting some key themes and technologies.


Daniel Cronin - Technical Research Lead

This was my first User Conference. It would take a much longer post to summarise it all, but I've seen a couple of things which particularly excite me. 

The first is ArcGIS for IoT.  This will take the real-time and big data capabilities of ArcGIS Enterprise, and make them available through ArcGIS Online. Big news! Provisioning products like GeoEvent and GeoAnalytics Server and the infrastructure to support them is prohibitive for most customers. Providing these capabilities as a service will collapse the barriers to entry. I look forward to seeing how more organisations will make use of up-to-the-minute data from social media, environmental sensors and other devices in ArcGIS. 

The second has been created by an international team of talented people. GeoAI combines the power of modern artificial intelligence with the ArcGIS stack. This work is coming to fruition, with closer integration between ArcGIS Pro and deep learning toolkits like TensorFlow and CNTK in the latest release. Proofs-of-concept projects are emerging across our user base. I can see more and more applications for our customers in the UK and I hope we will begin to realise these soon. 


Paul Clarke - Head of Government

The UC seems to get bigger and better each year. In years gone by, the UC focussed on the big releases to ArcGIS. Now that capability is being released throughout the year, the UC plenary focusses more on customer stories and influential speakers. This has turned the Plenary into a more thought provoking and inspiring session.

 As well as the continued development of ArcGIS technology, Esri are also building solutions to deliver location intelligence to particular markets. Another example was launched at the UC - ArcGIS Urban is aimed at city planners.

 All in all, a great UC and a reminder that we are all part of this global movement – “The Science of Where” which is making a positive difference to people’s lives across the world.



Katy Haddock - GIS Consultant

As a first timer to the UC in San Diego the most overwhelming and exciting part of the experience was the sense of community I felt from being surrounded by like-minded passionate GIS professionals.

Before travelling out to the UC, I was most looking forward to seeing what’s new and coming soon in the platform. Due to the wide range of talks and demos on at one time, I decided to immerse myself in all the new technology and focused my time on new tech such as ArcGIS Indoors, ArcGIS Urban, ArcGIS Monitor, Insights for ArcGIS and ArcGIS Hub.

The vast expo area of the conference was a great place to meet with Esri Professionals and Partners - keen to demonstrate the latest updates in geospatial technology. The best place to be in any breaks.

I learnt much more at the UC than I ever could have done sat in the office and the whole experience has made me excited and proud to be in the GIS profession.








If you haven't already, it's well worth watching the plenary videos.

There are always some UK customers making the trip west each year and maybe it's something you could target?