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Trimble Business Center Group

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Ever look at your Station View after importing your scan data and see that two images aren't lined up? You think to yourself, “Oh, I probably forgot to check the ‘Remove Parallax’ box at the bottom of station view panel”


BUT the checkbox is checked and you think to yourself, “What should I do remove this pesky parallax?”


Well, I'm glad you asked because I have the answer!


We must first define what causes parallax, parallax is caused by the displacement of the position of the camera fixed to a specific subject. The graphic below shows a representation how the subject (the man) appears in different positions for the two cameras. Scanning takes multiple pictures of the same subjects in different positions as the scanner is rotating around. When merging these images together, the subject will appear unaligned to each other.










Looking at the Image above, we can see that in the blue box, I have checked the ‘Remove Parallax’ box but there is still parallax visible in the image seen in the red box. To fix this issue, we must divert our attention to the orange box where we can manually change the viewing distance. Depending on the subject you wish to see without any parallax, you must estimate the viewing distance to the subject and enter that value in the orange box. For this Image, I estimate that the road is approximately 20 meters away and I will change the viewing distance to 20 meters.





Viewing this image we can see that I changed the viewing distance to 20 m as stated above and my parallax between the subject (road) has been removed.


So, if you are experiencing parallax at a specific subject you may want to view in the station view, try changing the viewing distance ! Hope this helped !

Site Modeling in TBC


June 26th 8am MDT


Join this month’s power hour as we introduce new tools to complete site design models in TBC v5.10. Draft and prepare field models for retaining walls, curb and gutter, corridor geometries, detention ponds, structural footings, and more with greater ease and efficiency with the new Create Side Slope command. This session is essential for surveyors and contractors alike - anyone working on a construction site for that matter - as site modeling workflows can be made easy with TBC v5.10. See you then!

TBC v5.10 is here, released today!


v5.10 strengthen TBC's position as the single office software of choice for surveyors and construction professionals.

- Save time + clicks by creating + editing feature libraries + attributes directly in TBC

- Bring BIM data into geospatial workflows by exporting georeferenced IFC models for stakeout in Trimble Access field software

- Inspect your CAD linework with the new Detect Crossing Geometry command to deliver the highest quality results to clients

And much more!


Check out to learn more and the v5.10 Release Notes and ReadMe for all the new features.


TBC - Field to Finish with Confidence

May 29, 2019 - 8am Mountain Daylight Time


While direct measurements between positions in a network or boundary contribute to establish redundancy, it is not always possible.  Enter relative positional precision, set forth by the National Society of Professional Surveyors (NSPS) and adopted by the American Land Title Association (ALTA) for land boundary surveys.  Join this month’s TBC Power Hour to learn how to use the network adjustment routine in TBC alongside the NSPS/ALTA Relative Precision Report to compute relative precisions between measurements.  The primary application is for official ALTA boundary surveys in the United States and many State Standards for using GNSS in the course of boundary surveys, but this routine also provides a quality check between any set of measurements across GNSS, total station, and level sensors for TBC’s global users.  

Cartesian, grid-based coordinates are widely used as the reference vocabulary for surveyors on many projects, but for road and corridor jobs, (x,y,z) are replaced by (s,o,e) or Station, Offset, Elevation, referencing an existing or proposed alignment to determine project coordinates.  Roadway elements such as stormwater inlets, lighting handholes, and signs are often positioned by station and offset relative to the primary roadway alignment.


TBC makes field data prep and position calculation simple by offering the ability to define 2D or 3D linestrings by station and offset relative to an existing alignment (or any other line element, it doesn't have to be an alignment object) in the Create Linestring command.   


Take the storm water plans and schedule for a new sub-division as shown below:



The manholes and curb and gutter inlets are referenced to the Twelve Oaks Court alignment.  Let's use the Create Linestring command to key in a linestring representing the manhole structures at Station 2+21.15 at 30' left and right offset for staking in the field.


In TBC, you can georeference the PDF site plan or key-in the alignment from the plan sets:

The Twelve Oaks Court alignment is highlighted.  Now open the Create Linestring command, assign a name and properties to the proposed line as you wish, then change the Start Point > Type to Station/Offset from the drop-down menu.


Graphically pick the Twelve Oaks Court alignment that you've keyed-in, enter the Distance along (Station) value per the plan set - 221.15 and the Offset 30 (positive is right, negative is left relative to the alignment's direction).  If you've got elevation information, add it optionally as well.  You can always edit the linestring and add elevation information afterwards.


Click the Save button and enter the manhole on the other side of the street, at -30 offset value.  Hit the Close button to end the linestring and you've got a simple line, quickly created, for staking out two manhole locations in the field.



TBC - From Field to Finish (or in this case, from Finish to Field) with Confidence

Hello fellow TBC'ers, welcome back to another TBC Tip of the Week! In this weeks nugget of usefulness, I'll go over making layers unselectable. 


Do you have data you would like to see but not interact with? I can think of a few recent instances where I have! TBC has an excellent system in place for managing this. Read on for more!


Data visibility in TBC is controlled by layer in the View Filter Manager. It then would only make sense that controlling which data can be selected is also controlled by layer via the View Filter Manager, correct? Correct! The View Filter Manager can be launched from two places in TBC, on the Home Ribbon, at Home > View > View Filter Manager, and on the Quick Access Toolbar as shown below.


Once the View Filter Manager is launched, I have shown here a subdivision plan which I have brought into TBC as a PDF and georeferenced as a background image in the appropriate coordinate system. I have created points and linework for the parcels contained on the plan using the CreateCOGO workflow (see the July 2018 Power Hour titled "The Latest TBC Cadastral Workflows, Re-establishing Corners, Ground Labeling, Survey Plats, + More"  to learn how I did it!).


In the View Filter Manager, along the top we have shortcuts to aid in isolating and narrowing down data. The right-most shortcut is for the Advanced View Filter Settings.


The Advanced View Filter Settings allow you to toggle visibility and selectability of layers in your project. Notice my georeferenced image is toggled to not be selectable.


Un-checking the Selectable box only limits selecting data in the Plan, 3D, and other views. Data can always be selected from the Project Explorer.


This has been the seventy third TBC Tip of the Week!


TBC - From Field to Finish (and back!) with Confidence

TBC Power Hour: Scanning Workflows in TBC for Street Topo and Structural Facades


Wed, Apr 24, 2019 8:00 AM - 9:00 AM MDT

Trimble Business Center (TBC) introduced support for terrestrial laser scan data in the v5.00 release in November 2018. This allows you to integrate TX6, TX8, and FARO laser scan data into GNSS, digital level, total station, UAV, SX10, and the other third-party file formats TBC already supports, all in a single project. More importantly, the terrestrial laser scan data scales properly into your known projection or local coordinate system. Join this month’s TBC Power Hour to see how GEOVAL in France has leveraged the new support for terrestrial data and new point cloud and image deliverables to combine TX8 and SX10 data for geospatial topo and structural elevation models.
Attendees will learn how to:
- Import, georeference, and register scan data alongside SX10 and other survey data
- Use cutting planes for feature extraction and building elevation creation
- Apply feature coding for automated drafting, attribute assignment, and floor plan generation
- Create Orthophoto and Rectified Image deliverables


Register today!

Good day and welcome back to another TBC Tip of the Week! Spring is in the air! Or perhaps will be in the air soon for my northern friends, or perhaps fall is in the air for my southern friends!


In large datasets or cluttered projects, (OK, I’m not saying you have cluttered projects, but I occasionally do!) we might want to run a command on all data to which that command can apply. How do we do that with as little input to TBC as possible? Let’s discuss!


TLDR for those in a hurry: Ctrl + A in any selection box in TBC will select all currently displayed data within TBC that is eligible for that command.


Here I have a project I have prepared to send to the field using Trimble Sync Manager, it contains control points, linework, a georeferenced background PDF of the plan, and a design surface. I have already logged into my free Trimble Connect account from File > Options in TBC to use Sync Manager.


I will now open the Send to Sync command found at Home > Data Exchange > Send to Sync.


Now, in the Send to Sync command, we need to select our data. We can do this in a variety of ways, but typically in a new project like this one I want to select everything in the plan view to send it to the field. To do this, simple click on the All box, and press Ctrl + A on the keyboard, just like in your other favourite desktop applications!

Notice the points, lines, and surface have been selected, but not the georeferenced background image.


TBC - From Field to Finish (and back!) with Confidence

Welcome back to the seventy first TBC Tip of the Week!


Exterior scans are easy to view, simply view as-is in TBC! Though, what about interior scans? These can be a bit more challenging without going through extensive manual segmentation and mastering the limit box. Lucky for you, TBC has a clever rendering option to see into scans!


For a more natural viewing, I first set the Projection Type to Perspective. This command applies a more natural view to the point cloud, sometimes in Orthographic it can be confusing if the cloud is being viewed from above or below, not with perspective!

Point Clouds > View > Projection Type (Down arrow next to Orthographic)


Here I have an SX10 scan of a tunnel. Pretty challenging to see what’s going on inside the tunnel! 


Let’s try a rendering mode called "See Inside". It can be found at Point Clouds > Rendering > See Inside


This view allows us to easily see inside the tunnel, much easier to interpret the scene! Using the limit box to investigate scans is (nearly) a thing of the past with TBC! "See Inside" works with your TZF, FLS, and SX10 scans. It dynamically removes all the points sitting between you and the scanner and showing their back to you. It literally removes all the obstructing points from the scene, leaving a clean view inside the scan. 


This can be useful in many situations, particularly indoor scanning projects!


TBC - From Field to Finish (and back!) With Confidence

Good day, welcome back to another TBC Tip of the Week! In this weeks tip, we will look into how TBC handles the drag and drop importing of files. Do you use it already? Did you know you can often skip the import pane all together? Let’s look into how this works and how to tell that dragging and dropping is the way to go!

When a file is imported using the Drag and Drop method, the default import settings for that file type is always used. If you know which file types you want to use the default settings for, those types can always be dragged and dropped into TBC!

With a TBC project open, I want to import a .JOB file from Trimble Access. I will first check the import for .JOB files to see what settings exist for these files. Select Import from the Quick Access Toolbar.

In the Import command, select the ellipses and browse for the folder containing the files you wish to import.

Below I have examples of a .JOB Trimble Access file, a .T02 GNSS observation file, and a .JXL jobXML file from an SX10. Clicking on each one, I can see the available settings for importing these files, and what the defaults are for those imports.
.JOB file (left), the option to merge the data contained in the file on import with other project data. Ask me on import is the default.
.T02 (middle), what type of data is this? Static or Kinematic? If you always process one type, you can force TBC to read the .T02 as that data type. Both of these can be set later in TBC.
.JXL (right), the option to merge the data contained in the file on import with other project data. Ask me on import is the default.

So! You might say “I want to be asked on import”, or “I occasionally bring in Static and Kinematic GNSS data”. Then do we have a solution for you! Instead of navigating in the pesky import pane, you likely have a File Explorer window open with your data already. Simply Drag and Drop the data into the TBC Plan view window! You can select multiple files and drag them in at once.

The order in which data is selected to import can affect project computation results, typically when points have overlapping point numbers. In the GIF above, I am prompted for a scale factor because the .JOB file I am importing was created with either a Local Site or Scale Only coordinate system.

And there we go! What did you think of this one? Let me know in the comments below.


TBC - From Field to Finish (and back!) with Confidence

Leverage the details and data of dense point clouds like never before with the enhanced Cutting Plane Views in Trimble Business Center (TBC) v5.00. Join us for an in-depth demonstration of how Ben Brookman at BCZ Engineering in Galesburg, Iowa used the Trimble SX10 and TBC to help structural engineers and architects transform an old barn into a reception and banquet hall.


Session is free to all and if you are unable to attend live, register anyways and view the recording on-demand! Wednesday, March 27th at 8am US Mountain Daylight Time

If you’re anything like me, trying out new things is the most time consuming part of the day. TBC has long had guided workflows to ease this process and help accomplish common tasks quickly. In this weeks tip we will find and explore those guided workflows!

They can be found in two places.

   1. The Support ribbon, Learning section, Help. Support > Learning > Help

   2. Press F1 to open the TBC Help, scroll to the top, and select the top line: Trimble Business Center Help.


This brings us to the TBC Help home page, here we have a link to the TBC Tutorials, and—drum roll please!—the fast-track instructions for major workflows.

Each of these workflows contain instructions and links to the applicable commands to complete the task from start to finish. Let’s open Process Terrestrial Photo Stations under the heading Photogrammetry to take a look!


As you can see, we are provided two columns. Steps: provides instructions, and Commands: provides links the the desired commands. Having this open on the side of your screen or another window provides instructions and links to complete a new task in a reasonable amount of time, and provides instruction to aid in the learning process! Neat hey?


TBC - From Field to Finish (and back!) with Confidence

Good morning, afternoon, evening, and goodnight! Welcome back, here we go again!

For many of us, monitor real estate is a precious resource that we need to make the best use of to optimize productivity, and more importantly, sanity. I find myself keeping the properties pane open all the time when working in v5.0+. The downside, I sacrifice some space for the plan view and running commands. That doesn’t have to be the case! The Properties pane can be docked along with the Project Explorer and View Filter Manager, and cycled through using Ctrl + Tab.

Open the Properties pane by right clicking anywhere (or on something) in Plan View.

Click and drag the title bar of the Properties, and move the cursor to the top of the Project Explorer or Plan View so the box outline is shown as below.

The Project Manager, View Filter Manager, and Properties can be selected using the tabs at the bottom.

The panes can also be cycled using Ctrl + Tab.

TBC - From Field to Finish (and back!) with Confidence

Are you a big fan of the Google Earth export in TBC? I sure am! It's handy for quickly sharing project data with clients in a digestible form. Did you know TBC has it's own background imagery? This is great for screenshots, deliverables, and—most notably—verifying that field data is in the correct coordinate system and things are (at least) close to where they should be!


Background Maps and Imagery are available in TBC Intermediate Edition and higher. If you're not sure what you're licensed for, go to Support > License > License Manager in TBC to find out.


Here I have a parcel which was keyed-in from a survey plan, (check out the CreateCOGO command on the Survey ribbon and this video to see how I did it), and I want to verify it's location to ensure my coordinate system is set up properly.


First thing I need to do, is log in to my free Trimble Connect account. I can do this from Options in the Quick Access toolbar.


Next, External Services - Profiles. If you don't have a Trimble Connect account yet, head over to and create a free account! We at Trimble are moving towards having a single login for all of our services, and Trimble Connect is that single account. If you have a Trimble Connect account already, click Create and choose a name for your profile.


Enter a name for your profile.


Then select Sign-In to open a login screen for Trimble Connect.


Select OK to close out of the options. To toggle the background map, select the Map toggle on the Status bar at the bottom of TBC.


This will open a Trimble Mapview background map by default. This shows roads and building footprints in most areas. 


What about background imagery you might ask? Well, we on the TBC team have the solution for you!


On the Project Explorer, right click on your project, select Properties. In the Properties pane, go to Type: and in the drop-down, select DigitalGlobe Imagery.


To better view your data over the background map, try toggling the background color on the TBC status bar, or adjusting the Transparency of the background map.


And there you go! Background Maps and Imagery built into TBC for quick verification of data.


TBC - From Field to Finish (and back!) with Confidence

Hello and welcome for another—you guessed it!—TBC Tip of the Week! In this weeks segment we delve into the elusive donut surface. This is a surface with areas where a surface isn’t wanted in the final deliverable or volume computation.


Here I have a surface created of a surveyed property containing a house.


In the Surfaces ribbon, navigate to Surfaces > Create > Surface Boundaries.


In the Add/Remove Surface Boundaries command, select the surface you want to apply the outer and inner boundaries to, I have a poorly named New Surface(2).


Hold the Control key, and select each boundary. It is good to note, if there are multiple places within the boundary that you don’t want the surface, you can have multiple interior boundaries. For example dirt piles or a house and shed.


And there you go! Neat hey?


TBC - From Field to Finish (and back!) with Confidence