Measurements, especially accurate ones, are more difficult the larger the space involved. Anyone who has tried to calculate the square footage of a home is aware their are complications involved, moving around foliage, furniture and water features. If they had the use of a laser rangefinder, the task would have been much easier and faster.
The idea that one can essentially point a light at an object and determine the exact gap between you and the object is pretty amazing. It is accomplished of course by using the speed of light as a constant and by measuring the time of flight of the light beam, we can get the measurement. This implies that one must have an open space without obstructions, but there is technology to help even with that problem.
Boating and water skiing get us out on the water, but finding where we are in relation to other vessels, objects and the land is difficult to assess without a global positioning system and chart or a radar. For bridge construction, accurately determining the size of a gorge or river is done in one of several ways, but on scene it is very difficult to calculate; this technology makes it simple point and shoot. For those inspired to engage in hunting, knowing how far away the target is translates to greater accuracy.
Sport shooting with the bow and arrow is challenging for many reasons, and one is estimating the arrow flight and how it is affected in the air. If one is using the arrows to take live game, there are devices that can determine the measurements even when the target is moving. This can be achieved using the refractive index of the air, or multiple passes compared almost instantaneously.
The simpler it is to get the lay of the land, the spacing of natural features which must be built around, is very important when laying our housing developments. Surveying has been revolutionized by this technology. Using these accurate instruments makes increases the ability to measure rapidly. Even complex measurements at distances over two miles in ideal conditions can be easily accomplished.
As the housing market begins to recover, people begin the weekend house-hunting tradition to find the types, sizes and prices of homes available in the area. For the most part, it is difficult to assess sizes in an empty house. A smart Realtor will keep one so potential home buyers can determine if that oversized sofa will fit.
Of all the endeavors that require we estimate the physical expanse between oneself and a goal, golfing is perhaps the most intensive. Every shot is dependant on gauging the travel of the ball, both in azimuth and distance. Having these portable devices in the golf cart can increase ones accuracy and decrease the score dramatically.
The technology that allows a single individual the capability to acquire measurements without support simply by pointing and shooting a distant object with a light is ground-breaking. A laser rangefinder is also very important in a military setting. The range of enemy fire can be quickly assessed, passed to aircraft and lives saved.