USER REQUIREMENTS GATHERING FOR 3D GEOGRAPHIC INFORMATION IN THE UNITED KINGDOM
Despite significant developments, 3D technologies are still not fully exploited in practice due to the lack of awareness as well as the lack of understanding of who the users of 3D will be and what the user requirements are. From a National Mapping & Cadastral Agency and data acquisition perspective, each new 3D feature type and element within a feature added (such as doors, windows, chimneys, street lights) requires additional processing and cost to create. There is therefore a need to understand the importance of different 3D features and components for different applications. This will allow the direction of capture effort towards items that will be relevant to a wide range of users, as well as to understand the current status of, and interest in, 3D at a national level. This paper reports the results of an initial requirements gathering exercise for 3D geographic information in the United Kingdom (UK). It describes a user-centred design approach where usability and user needs are given extensive attention at each stage of the design process. Web-based questionnaires and semi-structured face-to-face interviews were used as complementary data collection methods to understand the user needs. The results from this initial study showed that while some applications lead the field with a high adoption of 3D, others are laggards, predominantly from organisational inertia. While individuals may be positive about the use of 3D, many struggle to justify the value and business case for 3D GI. Further work is required to identify the specific geometric and semantic requirements for different applications and to repeat the study with a larger sample.