Jack talked about the four core ESRI software strategies; Desktop, Mobile, Geodatabase and Server. ArcGIS 9.2 was mentioned for a early 2006 release. Clint Brown was then featured in a small video explaining that the 9.2 release would be consumer driven, more usable, higher quality with more documentation. I can’t argue with that! At 9.2 we’ll see some COGO construction tools as well as better attribute editing. It looks like we’ll get some of those old Workstation tools that we all used to love. Continued support for OGC (we’ll have to see to what extent that will happen). Jack thinks that tools such as Data Interopability will allow better sharing of data on the GeoWeb. Being able to translate datasets back and forth will be key.

New advanced catrtographic toolsets will be announced. Storing cartographic representations in the Geodatabase will simplify displaying these datasets over and over again. ESRI seems to really be trying to get beyond having to export to products such as Adobe Illustrator. There will be some cartographic generalization features in 9.2 as well as “geographic sketching”. If you think about those typical “planning bubble maps” you’ll better understand how this will work.

The ESRI Image Server application was VERY impressive. I’m really interested to hear more about how it works. We have ton and tons of digital imagery from our work around the world, I’d love to load that all into one location and not have to find the imagery on our server or archived off on tape. Going to just one source for aerials would be superb and I think Image Server can do that. I wonder if this will be released before 9.2 or will we have to wait until next year.