When Keyhole Inc first launched its Earth Viewer app in 2001, few would have imagined the impact it would have on the world. When Google acquired the company in 2004 and relaunched the app as Google Earth in 2005, the popularity of the app exploded, and so did its number of uses. Whether it’s students wanting to understand the geography of far-flung locations, or businesses using data layers to locate target demographics, the potential uses for the app have expanded significantly in the last decade.
Now, there’s an Australian-based company that wants to take the Google Earth concept one step further – further underground, that is. Utillix is a company with a simple vision – to show utilities, businesses and residential users what lies beneath their feet.
Utilities and contractors who deal with subsurface infrastructure are familiar with the age old problem of trying to identify what assets are underneath the surface before any surface excavation can begin. For commercial contractors, traditionally, the process involves acquiring paper plans, and attempting to interpret as-built drawings – sometimes handwritten – to ascertain where particular assets are. For the average householder, it usually means trying to make sense of Dial Before You Dig plans, which can be unfamiliar and confusing to those that don’t deal with such plans on a regular basis.
Utillix is aiming to make this guessing game a thing of the past, by providing users with an online view of the subsurface landscape. Existing assets are displayed on the map using spatially coordinated data, which ensures users have centimetre accuracy on where assets are located.
Users can also add their own asset data to Utillix, by adding photos and GPS coordinates, helping to enhance the understanding we have of the subsurface assets in place around Australia – and if the Utillix founders have their way, around the world.
The Utillix app is currently in development, and its founders expect the app to be available in the next few months.
For more information about the app, and how it can help you, head to utillix.com.