Site Investigation News June 2010

Please note that the following news item is an archived article. Therefore any links and information may now be out of date.


Welcome to the June edition of Site Investigation News – Keynetix’s Monthly Newsletter.

The last month has simply flown by as we’ve worked hard on KeyCSM and KeyLogbook. We’ve also met many of you online at our webinars, which have been really well attended. There is only one webinar of the current series remaining which will take place on the 25th of June, when Gary Morin and I discuss using KeySpatial to improve storage, sharing and publishing of your information and data resources. If you are interested you can find out more and register here: KeySpatial Webinar

The annual AGS conference at the end of May was a very well attended event (I estimated 80-90 delegates) and saw a great deal of discussion around the launch of AGS4. Our Technical Director, Roger Chandler, was at the heart of many of the day’s discussions and will be delighted to talk to you if you are looking to introduce AGS4 data transfer into your own organisation:  01527 68888

Away from the 9 to 5 there has also been a triumph for our long maligned football team, who finally achieved promotion from the bottom tier of the Redditch Pitch Invasion league after several years of trying! The Keynetix Utd captain, Graham Ward (who compares himself to Liverpool legend Jan Molby), singled out the team’s answer to Peter Crouch, Steve Evason, as the Keynetix man of the season. Graham says “at the end of the day the lads are looking ahead at a year of consolidation now they are mixing with the bigger boys”, proving that he should let his feet do the talking on the pitch. (Sorry for the ‘football speak’ – World Cup fever has set in)

I very much hope you enjoy this edition of Site Investigation News and welcome your feedback and comments.

Fionn Wardrop
Editor – Site Investigation News
01527 68888


Keynetix to Exhibit at Geotechnica 2010

Keynetix will be exhibiting at the Geotechnica trade show again this year following the success of last year’s event.

Geotechnica is a relatively new event that is aimed solely at the geotechnical and drilling industries and is housed in a series of marquees on the Upton Estate near Banbury on the 7th and 8th July.

Last year’s show had a very relaxed atmosphere and was a great environment for us to catch up with existing users and meet new engineers and companies and see some of the latest drilling kit in action and catch up with a number of the exhibitors.

This year looks set to be even better, with more exhibitors, outdoor drilling equipment displays, discussion forums and even an evening social networking event.

The Keynetix stand is A2 and the KeyLogbook product will be on the A11 stand. For more information on the show and to register free of charge visit:

EQuIS to support Environmental Standards in the Gulf of Mexico oil clean-up

Our partners at Earthsoft have drawn our attention to a fascinating and illuminating public video, published by BP in the wake of the Gulf of Mexico oil disaster.

As the situation progresses from emergency response mode into project management mode, much thought has been given to the fundamental importance of building data quality and exemplary data management into the project from the outset. With data likely to be gathered, stored and scrutinised for many years to come, the establishment of strict S.O.P’s (Standard Operating Procedures) is of fundamental importance.

EQuIS is to be employed as the project’s central database and the new EQuIS SPM (Sample Planning Module), currently undergoing beta testing, will be employed within the project management which must rank as one of the most demanding beta tests ever undertaken.

The video is about twenty-five minutes long and can be found here: BP Public Training Video

64 Bit Update

With the increasing use of 64 bit Windows 7 operating system we are working hard to ensure that all our products will operate correctly in this new environment.

A 64 bit operating system allows applications to access and use more memory and therefore run faster and work with larger amounts of data. The downside is that not all of your existing applications will run on the 64 bit environment so it is always worth checking with all your software suppliers before you take the plunge to 64 bit.

Some of our applications use 3rd party controls that are not 64 bit compatible and this has given us some work to do over the last few months. We are making good progress with this work and the next build of KeyCSM and the next build of KeyAGS that are both in the testing phase are already 64 bit compatible. HoleBASE, Reporter and AutoZoom Pro will follow on shortly and we will then focus our attention on KeyHOLE.

We will keep you updated in future editions of this newsletter.


This month sees the return of ‘BackPhil’, a regular column by our support and training manager, Phil Child. Phil has a wealth of experience and tips to share and I’m sure you will find his advice very helpful. In this article Phil shares some thoughts on making the best use of Keynetix’s support.

Throughout my time with Keynetix our support activities have been recorded on a quality control system. This has provided us with an essential way of tracking support calls (or ‘tickets’) as well as providing a historical record of those rare-but-hard issues which seem to take a great deal of time and effort when they first come about. The benefits for the support team are clear.

The system itself has been in a process of evolution, culminating in our use of the Support Suite system as showcased at the User Group Meetings towards the end of last year. The influence of the HAGDMS project has been particularly influential in this area, leading to a system which not only services the needs of the Support Team but provides benefits to our users too, providing a dedicated browser-based interface.

This means that you can go to our website and login to the system yourself. From here it is possible to review existing tickets, be they open or closed.

In order to access the system go to our support pages – note that this is the general support page, as opposed to a product specific page. Click the link for Online Support System. From this page it is possible to ‘Register’, ‘Submit a Ticket’ or ‘Log in’. Users who have followed the link at the bottom of one of the response emails from the support team may have performed some of these tasks already.

Clicking on the ‘Submit a Ticket’ button will raise a call on the support system and notify members of the team. The systems allows you to record the details of your query (much as you would with an email) and upload external files which may be appropriate (e.g., problematic AGS files or an Excel spreadsheet). Note that the system has a file size limit, so we request that only files which are less than 2Mb are sent in this manner. Obviously, it also makes sense to .zip files before sending too.

Note that emails which are sent to the standard support address – – are automatically uploaded to the system. Attachments are included in this process, subject to the file size restriction. Phone calls are recorded manually, as are issues which come to us via less conventional means.

Raising a ticket for the first time can also initiate a registration process, for users who are using the system for the first time. The ‘Register’ button clearly provides an alternative method of achieving this.

Registered users can login to the system and review both current and historical support tickets they have raised. This provides a useful way of checking on the progress of a call but also of providing a reminder of solutions issued on a previous occasion. Recently I was speaking with a user in this context who had deleted an email with the all important attachment – by logging into the system they were able to download the file they needed without further delay.

Note that as we have been using the system for a while you may well find that logging into the system reveals a record of a number of tickets already. Of course, this is particularly likely if you have raised support issues with us over the past six months or so.

Phil Child
Training and Support Manager
01527 68888



Keynetix Training Course Schedule

Training highlights in the coming weeks include Roger Chandler’s Excel masterclass for geotechnical and geoenvironmental engineers.

Should your Excel skills need brushing up the links below will take you directly to our training registration pages. You will need to hurry to get on the Excel course as it is coming up next week! Here is what a previous attendee thought of the course:

 “The course was a real eye-opener and I am sure that even the simplest techniques that were covered will result in significant time savings in future. The material was presented in a clear and understandable way with plenty of relevant examples and the presenter made the day enjoyable and fun. Probably the most useful training I have attended for a long time!”

Tim Clifford – Geotechnical Engineer – Capita

Course Dates:

22nd June
Microsoft Excel Masterclass for Geotechnical and Geoenvironmental Engineers

1st July
AutoCAD Map Overview – Digital Mapping for CAD Users

6th July
GO-CAD1: CAD presentation of Geotechnical and Chemical Data

7th July
GO-CAD2: 3-Dimensional Modelling of geotechnical & chemical data

13th July
AutoCAD Map: Essentials (2 days)

19th July
Adobe Photoshop: Essentials (2 days)

27th July
AutoCAD Map: Geospatial (2 days)

EQuIS Growth Continues

With the global and domestic economic climates still in a state of uncertainty the importance of managing costs carefully, removing duplication and avoiding unnecessary waste remains to the forefront of most business manager’s minds.

This situation has led businesses to look more closely at their own internal processes and procedures which, in turn, have provided a powerful driver for growth in worldwide sales of EQuIS as users look to employ better central databases and project management software, greatly reducing the risk and cost of human error from their own data journeys.

This growth has been seen most recently with expansion within the Australian, New Zealand, Brazilian and Italian market-places.

Should you wish to, you can find out more about EQuIS here: EQuIS

Keynetix Free Online Workshops
25th June
Using Team GIS to search, analyse and share your environmental information
Coming in the July Edition…

Details and dates for our forthcoming Geotechnical Office Webinar series.

News of AGS4 and thoughts from the Geotechnica 2010 conference







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