We did make it to 8 years after all :-) That was Monday last week. Thanks to the positive feedback we got and significant readership, we made it through another year! Launched in September 2005, Slashgeo's news aggregation service now reaches over 10,000 unique geospatial professionals according to Google stats.
Let's be honest, the website needs a major refresh. For instance, it needs to be readable on mobile devices. Three years ago already, we migrated the website's engine from Slashcode to Drupal. While such major changes require efforts, I now want to move the site to WordPress. My personal conclusion is that Drupal's for large projects that benefit from expert maintainers which will be required to do a lot by themselves. Slashgeo is just a small voluntary/community project and we don't have that kind of resources. So if everything goes as planned, we'll get a new website in the coming months!
We're still looking for fellow enthusiasts who'd like to contribute to Slashgeo by sharing content and any other contribution that comes to mind. It's by lots of small contributions that in the end, it makes the all the difference in the world. In any case, thanks for reading Slashgeo and enjoy working on your geospatial projects! Have fun not just with what you do, but with how you do it too :-) -- Alex, aka SatriGoogle Plus One
Batch Geonews: U.S. Marijuana Use Maps, FOSS4G 2013 Summary, NYC and OpenStreetMap, ArcGIS Online Updates, and much more
Ok, I did it again, way too much time since our last batch mode edition, but here it is, thanks for your patience!
On the open source / open data front:
- Amongst the numerous FOSS4G summaries out there, I selected Paul's for you to read... and here's to watch, the FOSS4G 2013 talks on YouTube, that's 86 videos. Amongst what else happened at FOSS4G 2013 this year, Arnulf Christl Received the Sol Katz Award
- Open source GIS software not ready for real maps? Look at this FOSS4G 2013 State of the Art Digital Cartography Collection
- We now know what's new in GeoServer 2.4, thanks! :)
- That's easy, mapping csv files with Leaflet Simple CSV
- This demonstrate how OpenStreetMap data is great, New York City and OpenStreetMap Collaborating Through Open Data
- And yes the recent iD editor helped OSM and here's OpenStreetMap's Contributor Community Visualized - Individual by Individual
- The open source GeoMesa software proposal seems interesting, 'a foundation for storing, querying, and transforming spatio-temporal data in Accumulo [read the cloud]'
- OSGeo officially has the non-profit status to the eyes of the IRS
- On Creating a WebGL Earth with three.js, a topic mentioned before
- I also became aware of the GeoTriple / Geozilla open source software to handle WMS services, Windows-only
- Already, MapStore 1.3.0 released
On the Esri front:
- Here's What’s New in ArcGIS Online (September 2013), including the ArcGIS Marketplace, CityEngine Web Viewer and more
- A new term pushed by Esri, What is CyberGIS?, essentially, it's WebGIS / CloudGIS to me
- A list of ArcGIS Online Learning & Help Resources
- Another major update to Esri's World Topographic Map, specifically for France
On the Google front:
- For developers, Full screen maps and new marker features now available in the Google Maps Mobile APIs, with marker animations!
- A hot topic, Mapping climate change in Google Earth
- Here's how to Embed your Google+ posts into Google Earth
- The GEB shares The best 3D models of all time for Google Earth
- Street View arrives at CERN
- Google share a blog entry on The HALO Trust: Helping communities reclaim the land with Google Maps for Business, but you know me, as much as I like Google, I still can't understand why they don't user OpenStreetMap data
Discussed over Slashdot:
- Metadata On How You Drive Also Reveals Where You Drive
- Ordnance Survey Creates Minecraft Model of Great Britain
- Protesters Are Dodging Sudan's Internet Shutdown With a Phone-Powered Crowdmap
- Wealth In Africa Mapped Using Mobile Phone Data
- Bypassing US GPS Limits For Active Guided Rockets
- Yeah, privacy... NYC Is Tracking RFID Toll Collection Tags All Over the City
- I tell you, we'll see this on the roads sooner than later, How Google, Tesla, and Uber Could Team Up For the Driverless Taxis of the Future
- Regulations need to be updated, FEMA Grounds Private Drones That Were Helping To Map Boulder Floods
- Social and location, Wi-Fi Sniffing Lets Researchers Build Graph of Offline Social Networks
- Researchers Develop the Most Detailed Map of Gravitational Variations Ever
In the miscellaneous category:
- Last time we mentioned GeoGit was a year ago, Geoff shares an entry named Distributed spatial data management with long transactions
- An excellent reminder of the contributions of SAR imagery, SAR – we love it, we hate it. Take a general look!
- Or even more general, an ESA article named Looking to the future of Earth observation
- More easy access to Landsat data from the ESA, currently, it's Landsat 5 data, with Landsat 7 planned for 2014
- Rumors are rumors, Apple's Maps Team Hiring Web UI Designer for 'New Secret Project', maybe they need such a project, Apple's Maps App Directs Alaska Drivers onto Airport Taxiway
- Still Apple related, Tidbits discusses The Promise of iBeacons in iOS 7, to help you locate things around you via Bluetooth
- A real improvement, now wireless, 3DConnexion releases their wireless SpaceMouse
- It's been several years that we mentioned eCognition, well, its version 8.9 has been released
- You can Add MapBox to iOS 7 with One Line of Code
- Here's an excellent question we'll eventually have to answer, Can crowdsourced land cover data be used as an authoritative data source ?
- Yahoo's not dead yet, Updated Yahoo Maps for the U.S. which includes public transit and pedestrian routing
In the maps category:
- APB links to a long series of maps related to drug use in the U.S., from a 2010-2011 survey, impressive stats
- An excellent way to understand geographic projections, This is Your Brain on Maps
- Poison, Mapping Arsenic in the United States Is Not Pretty
- My wife would love this, Mapping emotions across the World
- Some free time? Things that look like other things in Google Earth
And the final bonus, totally unrelated to geospatial though, if you have a smartphone or tablet, try Just a ReflektorGoogle Plus One
Another software that was released at FOSS4G 2013 a week ago was the open source Java library GeoTools 10.0.
From the announcement: "Summary of the new features for the GeoTools 10.x series:
- Structured grid coverage readers allow raster data sources that publish composite data products to expose individual rasters (ie granules) for processing, while still providing a seamless experience for rendering. The mosaic and NetCDF modules are the first ones to implement these new interfaces.
- Efficient support for multiple coverages in GridCoverageReader provides ad-hoc access to raster formats that publish more that one data product. A image mosaic made of NetCDF granules and single file NetCDF sources are the first implementors of these new capabilities
- A new implementation of Shapefile DataStore (based on ContentDataStore superclass). This upgrade should be seamless for all users using DataStoreFactoryFinder. If you explicitly made use of the ShapefileDataStore or IndexedShapefileDataStore class please check the upgrade instructions.
- The transform module graduated to supported status, providing a seamless way to rename, retype and hide SimpleFeatureSource attributes, as well as creating new ones based on OGC Expression
- Additional OGC modules for the WCS 2.0 and WCS 2.0 EO models as well as adding XML parsers and encoders
The 10.x series has a number of research and development activities that may be of interest:
- NetCDF has been updated to take advantage of the new coverage API introduced above
- GeoPackage: a sample implementation of the geopackage spec that is currently being developed by the OGC"
It's been a crazy week for me and I essentially failed to aggregate geonews - expect me to catch up in the coming days.
The open source routing engine pgRouting version 2.0 has been released, and this a major new release. We mentioned it a few times since 2010.
A reminder of what pgRouting is, from the official website:
Advantages of the database routing approach are:
- Data and attributes can be modified by many clients, like Quantum GIS and uDig through JDBC, ODBC, or directly using Pl/pgSQL. The clients can either be PCs or mobile devices.
- Data changes can be reflected instantaneously through the routing engine. There is no need for precalculation.
- The “cost” parameter can be dynamically calculated through SQL and its value can come from multiple fields or tables.
And here's a list of features including what's new for version 2.0:
- All Pairs Shortest Path, Johnson’s Algorithm **NEW**
- All Pairs Shortest Path, Floyd-Warshall Algorithm **NEW**
- Shortest Path A*
- Bi-directional Dijkstra Shortest Path **NEW**
- Bi-directional A* Shortest Path **NEW**
- Shortest Path Dijkstra
- Driving Distance
- K-Shortest Path, Multiple Alternative Paths **NEW**
- K-Dijkstra, One to Many Shortest Path **NEW**
- Traveling Sales Person **NEW Implementation**
- Turn Restriction Shortest Path (TRSP) **NEW**
- New functions for creating routing topology
- New functions for analyzing a graph for problems
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Another significant release done at FOSS4G 2013 is the open source GeoServer 2.4. Along with MapServer, GeoServer is a popular server to disseminate geospatial data in WMS, and other standards of the same family.
Since I failed to find a nice list of what's new specifically for version 2.4, I feed you with a reminder of what GeoServer is according to their front page: "GeoServer is an open source software server written in Java that allows users to share and edit geospatial data. Designed for interoperability, it publishes data from any major spatial data source using open standards. [...] GeoServer is the reference implementation of the Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) Web Feature Service (WFS) and Web Coverage Service (WCS) standards, as well as a high performance certified compliant Web Map Service (WMS). GeoServer forms a core component of the Geospatial Web."
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This is major news. The popular open source desktop GIS formerly known as Quantum GIS, now simply QGIS, has released its version 2.0 at FOSS4G 2013. This release reduces the gap with some of the mature commercial desktop GIS available. There's also QGIS 2.0 for Android in the works.
Here's the full list of what's new and changed - it's just too long to copy it all, so here's some of it:
- Feature: Side tabs, collapsable groups
- Feature: Soft notifications
- Feature: Drag and drop form builder
- Feature: Oracle Spatial support
- Feature: Web Coverage Service (WCS) provider added
- Feature: Raster 2% cumulative cut by default
- Feature: WMTS Support
- Feature: Data defined properties
- Feature: Support for transparency in colour definitions
- Feature: Color Control for Raster Layers
- Feature: Multipage support
- Feature: Layer blending
- Feature: Multicolumn composer legend
Feature: Expression based label properties
There's a lot more to it. Head to the full list to learn more and see numerous screenshots.Google Plus One
I thought this RTI-developed web-based synthetic population viewer would be of interest to some of you. It allows users to explore the amazing diversity of human household population distributions in the United States. The viewer enables the user to see synthetic households by income, race, size, and age. These synthetic populations form the agents for many ABMs, but aside from that key purpose, they also provide a rich basis to explore the demographics of the United States as illustrated in the viewer. Over 112,000,000 households are at your fingertips.
Most interesting to look at are large cities—NY, Chicago, LA, DC, etc. Be sure to try it in ‘Quad View’ and with a Black background!
Please view here: http://portaldev.rti.org/10_Midas_Docs/SynthPop/portal.html.
Research GIS Analyst
3040 Cornwallis Rd, PO Box 12194
Research Triangle Park, NC 27709-2194Google Plus One
Do a Map is an easy internet service to create a map and share it with your friends or customers, include it on a website or blog or publish it on the main social networks (Facebook, Twitter, ...).
The main property of this service is how quickly you can create a map: no account, no registration, no verification emails. Just accessing to Do a Map, the user can draw and share maps on most popular social networks in less than a minute.
For example, the restaurant position where you are going to meet your friends, or the place where you are going to meet with a client.
Do a map has a simple editor to draw polygons, routes or add markers to the map. As easy as draw on a blackboard, we can draw elements, remove them and create them again, to make simple maps with some makers or completed ones adding polygons and routes.
Once created, you just have to save the map and you get a map link to share it or use it like you want: add a map to your own web or blog, share it on Facebook or Twitter, send the map link by mail or whatsapp…
In summary, Do a map is an excellent solution to create quickly (and in an anonymous way) maps on internet.
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I'm happy to announce Slashgeo will be a proud media partner of the 'Geomatics 2013' event in Montreal, to take place on October 3 and 4. We've been a media partner of the 'Geomatics 2011' event and I have personally missed it only once since year 2000 (I missed it because I was at the FOSS4G conference!).
The recurring Geomatique 20XY event in Montreal is the conference to attend in the Quebec province. It attracts about 700 participants. While most of the presentations are done in French, mostly everybody attending speaks English (Montreal is in North America after all ;-). From their main page: "Geomatics 2013 is:
- The most important event in Quebec’s geomatics industry, gathering close to 700 participants;
- Dynamic speakers who will present their accomplishments and discoveries in the field of geomatics;
- A vast commercial exhibition featuring over 40 exhibitors including key actors in the fields of equipment,
- software and services;
- A showcase of new technologies;
- Two conference lunches featuring prestigious speakers;
- And a networking event that is always highly awaited!"
I'll be on-site myself, and will give a presentation related to my real day job, the official worldwide weather and radar layers available in WMS and KML for free.Google Plus One
OpenGeo is one of the few major open source geospatial companies out there and we mention them frequently. Today OpenGeo announced that their future is not just open, it's boundless, OpenGeo is rebranding and will now be known as Boundless.
From the announcement: "With the momentum behind our company and shifts happening within the industry, we realized that we needed a new identity to better reflect where we’re headed. We also recognized that there are potential conflicts with other companies using the OpenGeo name, driving a desire for us to build a larger, more encompassing brand for our vision and products. [...] While we’ll be developing new solutions and taking on new challenges, we’re not leaving our current products behind. In fact, we’re expanding them. Our new name marks our push into new technologies, including geospatial web services monitoring with Mapmeter, desktop software with QGIS, our growing capabilities in cloud and mobile platforms, and our expanded work in data editing workflows."Google Plus One