"Quirky but useful" - Prof Chris Merchant, Reading University @ChrisJMerchant
This is a different kind of remote sensing book. Unlike the usual text books you might be used to, this is a concepts book – it is meant to make you think about the "why" more than the "how". You might consider it a companion reader, or perhaps in some cases, an antidote to some of the conceptual errors or simplifications that permeate many of the textbooks. Plenty of other books will explain how to do remote sensing, but they tend to skimp on the fundamental principles, both technical and conceptual, that this author believes to be important elements of what make remote sensing identifiable as a coherent subject.
Mostly, this text is intended to be an interesting and helpful read; a starting point for new questions and conversations with classmates and colleagues. It is very much a personal look at the essence of remote sensing formulated over Dr Woodhouse’s 25 years of experience in remote sensing. The book aims to be an encouragement to see remote sensing as not just pretty pictures, but as a rigorous scientific discipline that is both fascinating and challenging in equal measure.
While it’s not a textbook, it is quite technical in places and so it’s probably not a book for the complete novice, but better suited to those students of remote sensing who find they are learning how to do things, but maybe aren't sure why they are worth learning.
1. Defining remote sensing and Earth observation
2. Some thoughts on grammar
3. Conceptual frameworks: seeing vs hearing
4. Two things that can give remote sensing a bad name
5. The forward problem (modelling)
6. The inverse problem
7. Impulse Response Function
9. Precision vs accuracy
10. Error, noise and uncertainty
11. Occam’s Razor
12. EO and greenhouse effect
13. Who pays for remote sensing?
About the author:
Dr Woodhouse is an international expert in remote sensing and Earth observation and is a Faculty member at The University of Edinburgh. He has more than 25 years of experience in the subject, spanning sounding of the atmosphere, radar measurements of forest biomass and most recently, multispectral lidar. He is widely known as the author of "Introduction to Microwave Remote Sensing", and for his Forest Planet blog, where he regularly provides educational resources for students and teachers of remote sensing.