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Taking the Next Step in Learning

Amanda O'Connor

Finding time to take formal training is like trying to milk a parakeet, no one wins. Even with training budgets, goals on performance reviews, and a genuine desire to improve one’s skillset, oftentimes meetings, deadlines, and other job commitments keep people from fulfilling this growth need. I wanted to use this blog as an opportunity to talk about the resources at your disposal to learn more about ENVI and IDL. We have standard training events and onsites, but there are other ways when training has to be more catch-as-catch-can where you can still meet at least some of your objectives.

VIS Training Resources:

1)Formal training courses. This is the gold standard of what Exelis VIS can provide training wise, these are 1-4day courses offered at our regional offices taught by Exelis VIS personnel. 

These courses are available as a part of the software maintenance you pay for ENVI and IDL, so there is NO ADDITIONALCOST for these classes aside from time away and travel if needed.  These courses include:

·        Exploring ENVI

·        Spectral Analysis

·        Spectral Processing Exploitation and Dissemination (PED)

·        ENVI LiDAR

·        ENVI Boot Camp (Geared toward Defense and Intelligence users)

·        Extending ENVI with IDL

·        Introto IDL

·        Scientific Programming with IDL

The course calendar can be found here. These are our public courses, meaning anyone can register.  If you see a course and it doesn’t fit your schedule, let us know, the calendar isn’t written on stone tablets per se and we may be able to add a course to fit your needs.

2) Onsite training. These are courses delivered for a fee at your location. The content can be any of the above courses, a combination of the above, or something that meets your specific needs. We have a lot of material to choose from or can develop custom content. As these courses are delivered for a fee, we typically find the breakeven point, if you were to have people who would otherwise be traveling to us for a no cost class, to be around 4students, depending on your location. So it can be a cost effective solution if you are not near our regional offices (Boulder, CO and Herndon, VA for the US).

3) Webinars. We do webinars roughly once a month covering a specific topic. Most recently we did one with Airbus Defense and Space on Agricultural use of Imagery. The main level webinar directory will easily help you find topics that can help you get up to speed with ENVI or IDL in about an hour. There are “What’s New Webinars” that can help you learn new tools that have recently been released in ENVI 5.2/IDL 8.4, webinars on specific domains, and technical webinars on understanding the quality of the products that you are creating.

4) Short Videos. This includes our White Board Blogger series, short product how-to demonstrations, recorded Google Hangouts and more! I expect this area of the website to grow with more and more how-to materials. Today’s consumer wants to be able to sit down and in 10 minutes know how to do something tangible, at least that’s what I want when I Google “fixing toilet”. We’ll be investing more time to add this type of content, so don’t be shy about letting us know what’s important to you.

 5) The Docs Center. The doc center not only contains all of the ENVI and IDL documentation in a web browser, but helpfully points you to many online tutorials and sample code so you can learn in a self paced manner. These tutorials come with data, so it’s easy to get started and have a self paced learning experience. 

6) Over the Shoulder Training.This is where an Exelis VIS trainer or consultant comes to your site and helps you work through your data or a specific problems. We charge this as a time and materials services, but it can be a tremendous bang for your buck to have someone be able to troubleshoot in your specific environment and your concept of operations.

Well that’s all I have for the moment. I certainly welcome your feedback on other ways for us to communicate how to grow your knowledge and skills with ENVI and IDL. Feel free to email me at Amanda.Oconnor@exelisinc.com.

Follow me on twitter @asoconnor.

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