I liked the geospatial component of things. I enjoyed solving a problem and then seeing the result. It wasn’t just a Microsoft Excel model or some database table. It was something I could visualize in GIS software. If there had been a path to becoming a more in-depth GIS analyst at this company, I might have stayed on it.
What is a voxel?. It’s a 3D volumetric pixel, a cube. But voxels are nothing new. They’ve been used extensively in two key areas within computing. Computer games render worlds and use voxels instead of polygons. Minecraft is a good example — it’s a voxel rendered world. Gaming companies love voxels for their multi-resolution capability over polygons. Robotics uses voxels for image processing to reduce the size of LIDAR point clouds and to create small dynamic maps — or what we call VOG (Voxel Occupancy Grid) — for robots.
Most of the data seafloor bathymetry data — it’s from inversion from gravity. They measure gravity, rather ingeniously, using satellite altimetry and looking at the slope of the sea water’s surface. Imagine a flat chunk of ocean with a perfectly flat sea bottom. If you stick a sea mountain on the bottom, gravity pulls the water a little closer to it, and there’ll be a little hill of water sitting over that sea mountain.