Dendromorphometry and beyond   Robert Leverett
  Apr 09, 2007 09:52 PDT 


I keep polishing the slide presentation that I'll be giving on
dendromorphometry on April 21st at Cook Forest on behalf of myself, Gary
Beluzo, and Will Blozan. It isn't too late to recommend specific topics
for inclusion. Dale has promised lots of coffee (and donuts I presume)
to keep everybody alert. We'll periodically cycle around and check
peoples' pulses. Don't want to lose anyone either from my presentation
or the coffee.

As I wade through the applications of simple geometry and trigonometry
to tree measuring that we use as we pursue our passion in the field, it
occurs to me that other interests, be they stamp collecting or mountain
climbing, have exhibited courses of development toward increased
sophistication. Why should our craft be any different? However, tree
measuring as pursued in the East, outside of commercial applications,
was stuck in the same place for years until ENTS came along. ENTS has
since pushed the envelope. However, I expect other groups will
eventually spring up, adopt our methods, pioneer some of their own, and
further the trade, for the potential benefit of all. That's the way it
is supposed to happen. I hope ENTS, as an organization, will be
supportive of advancements made by non-ENTS groups that might see
themselves in competition with us. But until that happens, and we are
tested, onward we will go pretty much alone.

   Although we intend to eventually produce a coauthored book on
dendromorphometry that will develop our trade and put in on a solid
theoretical foundation, in the interim, we will continue presenting our
tree measurement techniques as straightforward applications of plane
geometry, plane trignometry, and algebra along with some handy computer
programs to compute statistics and hopefully reveal information from out
datasets that is not otherwise obvious. The small group of us who
engineer the methods will try to select only the most efficacious
techniques for mass consumption and present them as straightforwardly as
possible. It will be the rest of you who decide if I have succeeded in
distilling the best of what we do in the upcoming presentation. However,
I may never fully know if I succeeded as opposed to it being the
strength of Dale's coffee.


Robert T. Leverett
Cofounder, Eastern Native Tree Society