Batch Geonews: GeoServer WMS Animator, Trimble Custom Topo Maps, Esri at 41% Marketshare, and much more
Here's the recent geonews that we haven't mentioned yet, in batch mode.
On the open source front:
- You can now animate your maps with the GeoServer WMS Animator Tool
- Here I found out about oculu-Z, an open source, open data platform for collaborative Computer Vision technology
- Want to know where OpenStreetMap is heading? Read this entry on the 2012 OpenStreetMap Foundation Board. Related to OSM, TripAdvisor now uses OpenStreetMap
- DM shared the first of a series of articles on open source geospatial software in the classroom, called Open Source Desktop GIS: Let’s Get Started
- APB mentions the Ushahidi2ArcGIS prototype, which imports Ushahidi data into ArcGIS
- I could only smile when I learned about the PostGIS Day, a day after 'GIS Day'
- gvSIG shares 60 new case studies
In the everything-else category:
- APB reports about an estimation of Esri's worldwide market share at 40.7% in 2010
- MapQuest wants to make certain we know that they don't have preset limits on their free Map API transactions
- DM shares an article named Effective Offshore GIS Data Management Services
- SS informs us that Trimble launched custom printed maps with MyTopo.com, for the U.S. and Canada
- The Map Room shares lists of Map Books of 2011 to help us with our Christmas gifts, TMR also reviews Maphead by Ken Jennings
- V1 discuss a EU Geographical Indications (GI) Scheme report, what ? "The aim of this program is to geographically assign product names, for example, champagne can only come from the Champagne region of France."
In the maps category:
- O'Reilly shares what they call A better U.S. migration [interactive] map
- The popular xkcd cartoon share a funny and geeky cartoon on what your favorite map projection says about you
From the USGS: "The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has stopped acquiring images from the 27-year-old Landsat 5 Earth observation satellite due to a rapidly degrading electronic component. Landsat 5 was launched in 1984 and designed to last 3 years. The USGS assumed operation of Landsat 5 in 2001 and managed to bring the aging satellite back from the brink of total failure on several occasions following the malfunction of key subsystems. There is now an increasing likelihood that the Landsat 5 mission is nearing its end. [...] For several months, the Landsat flight operations team has been closely tracking the fluctuating performance of an amplifier essential for transmitting land-surface images from the Landsat 5 satellite to ground receiving stations in the U.S. and around the world. Over the past 10 days, problems with the amplifier have led to drastically reduced image download capabilities, a sign of impending failure. [...] Landsat 8, currently called the Landsat Data Continuity Mission, is now scheduled to be launched in January 2013."
We obviously mentioned Landsat 5 often in the past, including in 2005, 2007 and 2009 when it suffered technical problems, but each time, was able to resume satellite imagery acquisition. This time, it's probable it's really the end of Landsat 5. Here's the Landsat 5 Wikipedia article.Google Plus One
Google Geonews: Maps API Drawing Library, Opting out of Google Location Server, Fluid Nebula, and much more
Here's the recent Google-related geonews.
From official sources:
- Discussed over Slashdot as a story named Google To Allow Location Service Opt-out, Google effectively now allows you to opt out your wireless access point (such as your wireless router) out of their Google Location Server database
- The developer blog introduces the new Maps API Drawing Library: "The Drawing Library provides a toolbox which enables users to draw markers, lines, and shapes on the map, much as they would in any drawing application. The tools can be used for collecting annotations from users, or for selecting regions to search or highlight. Applications can listen for events when overlays are added and respond accordingly, such as issuing the search query or saving the annotations to a database."
- Less clicks: you can now see your rated places and discover new ones directly on Google Maps on your desktop or on Android
- You can apparently follow robotic wave gliders crossing the Pacific in Google Earth, here's what it looks like
From other sources:
- A story ran over Slashdot Monday about China Building Gigantic Structures In the Desert and seen in Google Earth, I waited to publish about it since I was expecting a followup, I was right (I'm not always right ;-), here's the entry named Giant Chinese Desert Mystery Structure Solved - and to spare you clicking, it's apparently spy satellite calibration targets, the GEB shows a screenshot of the very strange and large structures
- The GEB informs us how to Build your own Liquid Galaxy with the Fluid Nebula, what? In short, it allows you to get Google Earth running on multiple screens at the right angles and control movement via your smartphone or tablet
- APB reports that Adwords location targeting interface got updated
- SS mentions "the possibility that Google might deploy robots to photograph streets for Google Maps"
- Ogle Earth blames Google for photography regulatory scrutiny in Slovenia
- Kurt Schwehr announced he's joining Google to work as a GIS Data Engineer on oceans
- The GEB also posted entries on Exploring Mauna Loa in Google Earth and the Duke University unveiling an excellent 3D Campus Map
O'Reilly describes it as a tool that "enables users to archive, search and export their Twitter, Facebook and Google+ history — both posts and post replies. It also allows users to see their network activity, including new followers, and to map that information. Originally created by Gina Trapani, ThinkUp is free and open source, and will run on a user's own web server."
Here's how it's introduced on the official ThinkUp site: "ThinkUp is a free, open source web application that captures all your activity on social networks like Twitter, Facebook and Google+. With ThinkUp, you can store your social activity in a database that you control, making it easy to search, sort, analyze, publish and display activity from your network. All you need is a web server that can run a PHP application."
Installation and configuration will probably require at least 30 minutes and you need minimal knowledge to configure the web server. In other words, it's not a tool that anyone can set up. But it's certainly valuable to anyone interested in understanding, mining the data, and mapping your social network activities. In bonus, you get an archive of your data. For a version 1.0, ThinkUp already does a lot. Here's the 5-minutes video that explains what is ThinkUp.Google Plus One
The APoD summary: "This colorful topographical map of the Moon is centered on the lunar farside, the side not seen from planet Earth. That view is available to the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter though, as the spacecraft's wide angle camera images almost the entire lunar surface every month. Stereo overlap of the imaging has allowed the computation of topographical maps with coverage between 80 degrees north and south latitude. The results have about a 300 meter resolution on the lunar surface and 10 to 20 meter elevation accuracy. Data closer to the north and south poles is filled in using the orbiter's laser altimeter. In this map, white, red, green, and purple represent progressively lower elevations. In fact, the large circular splotch tending to purple hues at the bottom is the farside's South Pole-Aitken Basin. About 2500 kilometers in diameter and over 12 kilometers deep, it is one of the largest impact basins in the Solar System."
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That's the story discussed over Slashdot this morning, Apple's New Patent Weapon — Location Services.
Their summary: "Once again, it seems Apple is about to take intellectual property claims to a new level. Apple has been reissued a patent they acquired from Xerox that pretty much wraps up what we know as 'location services' as their own. In the overview, the patent says the system involved will display information specific to the location the device is in. The language used in the patent is broad and powerful. I guess now we wait and see whom Apple will use this against?"Google Plus One
From the GIS Day website: "From Aruba to Thailand, from Hong Kong to Pakistan, GIS Day 2011 events are scheduled to be held in 48 U.S. states and 66 countries around the world. Find an event near you."
From the GAW website: "This year’s Geography Awareness Week theme promotes the idea that the geographic perspective is an important way to understand every community—no matter what size, or how long or briefly one has been a part of it."
To my surprise, I haven't found much this year on the geoblogs about GIS Day. Maybe it's because they are mostly targeting kids? I'd say geography and geospatial concerns us all as citizens and human beings.Google Plus One
It's that time of the year again. We just got past November 13th, which three years ago I audaciously declared the "MSKC Day", 'Make Slashgeo Known to the Community' Day. Your mission is still the same:
If you like the site and find it useful, you must tell one of your colleagues about Slashgeo.org. With enough missions accomplished, you'll gain experience, level up and be able to develop new geospatial skills ;-)
Things you most probably already know: we're managed by a registered non-profit organization and powered by passion for the geospatial community. Your contributions are more than welcomed.
What's new recently? Like Google Maps, Slashgeo has its own Google Plus Page now. While you can add us to your "circles" if you have a Google Plus account, Slashgeo's posts are not published on Google+ yet. But they are on our Twitter and Facebook accounts.Google Plus One
Over the past week, I read all the content of National Geographic's '7 Billion' iPad app. I found it of excellent quality and pretty interesting. Interesting enough for me to spend some time sharing my thoughts about it with you. 'Geography' is at the core of the topic and content of the app. The iPad app is free "for a limited time", so I encourage you to download it right away (provided you have an iPad of course).
But first, here's the official description: "National Geographic magazine presents 7 Billion: How your world will change - to coincide with the arrival of the 7 billionth human being to our world. This app explores the challenges of a growing human population in a world of limited resources with informative videos, interactive maps, in-depth articles, and stunning photography.
Featured content includes….
- How big is 7 Billion? An insightful video of the demographic trends that got us here today and how it will impact us tomorrow.
- Birth of a New Brazil: How big families are out, to the credit of strong-willed women—and the steamy soaps that inspired them.
- The Face of Seven Billion Interactive: Tap on the “typical face” to find out who the most typical human is
- Rift in Paradise: As the global population increases Africa’s Albertine Rift gives us a glimpse of what is at stake in the decades ahead.
- Bangladesh: See how resourceful residents of this country refuse to give in to rising seas
- Food Ark: Explore how preserving heirlooms seeds and breeds are crucial if we hope to feed our hungry world.
- And to be incorporated into the app in December 2011, Cities are the Solution: They may be the best way to lift people from poverty and preserve the environment."
And now my notes:
- The app contains several beautiful photos with captions, quite a few slightly interactive maps, about three short videos, and about a hundred pages of articles to read
- The articles are generally very well written, documented and quite pertinent, well worth the time
- The design is the app is beautiful, and so are the maps, but in both cases, design takes precedence on usability. Ideally, maps must be beautifully designed -and- usable
- The surprise of the first section, is that despite population having increased exponentially in in the past decades, most scenarios indicate we'll stabilize and start to decrease in the middle of this century. In fact, population is even already on a decreasing course in a lot of parts of the world, notable exceptions are India and Africa, so the problem is not population, it's resources, mainly food and energy (both are linked of course (population <=> resources & food <=> energy), everything is related, and as we know in geography, near things are more related than distant things)
- The second section, focusing on Brazil, shows that you don't even need laws to reduce family sizes, you need "modernity"
- The section on Africa is insightful, and shows that we're not safe from additional Rwanda-type wars, since population is not evenly distributed and so are resources. When people starve, they don't care about "national natural reserves" and are willing to pillage anything they can to survive (this reminds me of Collapse, by Jared Diamond)
- The section on Bangladesh is reassuring. When we don't have access to much, we do with what we have and imagination helps, but be ready to move frequently and systematically adapt to new situations. To be bold, I'm not sure we're that flexible in the "modern" world
- There's a section on oceans acidification, dubbed "climate change's lesser-known evil twin". Oceans are degrading at a dramatic rate, mostly because we don't do anything and continue with our unsustainable practices, and we're going to start paying the price real soon
- There's also a section on food production, but I don't remember reading anything surprising in there
- The last part of the app, titled "Cities are the Solution" is not yet available (next month), I will certainly read it once it becomes available
In short, it's a great informative app that I can only recommend. It's well documented, beautiful and pertinent. Anyone else has comments?
On the same topic and in addition to what we already shared, O'Reilly has an entry on visualizations of 7 billion humans.Google Plus One
Batch Geonews: Bing Maps Updates, Nokia's Yahoo Maps, U.S. Geoplatform Launches, GIS and the Cloud, and much more
Here's the latest geonews in batch mode. But first, as a media partner of the Geomatique 2011 event, if you participated to the conference, we invite you to fill this survey and get a chance to win an iPad 2.
On the Google front:
- The GEB introduces the free Maxwell Render Suite to make your SketchUp models more realistic, the screenshots are impressive
- You can now Share biking and walking directions with Custom Maps
- We told you before that Street View is available inside businesses now, and here's a Slashdot discussion about it
- The 2012 Google Model Your Town Competition has begun
- Google requests feedback for their map news channels, if you fill that survey, you can tell them you're reading Slashgeo ;-)
- And there was new imagery released yesterday for Google Maps and Earth
On the Microsoft front:
- Microsoft announced several updates and new features in the Bing Maps REST web services and the Bing Spatial Data Service
- In another entry, Microsoft informs us that the improved map sharing and Bing Maps route modifications
On the Esri front:
- Mandown mentions that the ArcGIS API for iOS 2.1 is now available
On the open source front that wasn't mentioned yesterday:
- Via O'Reilly, I learned about an jQuery open source Country Selector that has autocomplete
- I also forgot to share this DM article named Experiences Teaching Free and Open Source GIS at the Community College Level
In the miscellaneous category:
- APB reports that Yahoo Maps is now powered by Nokia
- The U.S. Geoplatform.gov launched based on Esri's Portal for ArcGIS, here's the direct link
- V1 has an interesting perspective named What Do You Think GIS in the Cloud Will Be Like? and on the same topic, DM shares an informative article named Is Geospatial Cloud Computing a Commodity?
- SS mentions a iOnRoad, free Android app that includes colision avoidance
- MapQuest Vibe is now available for the iPhone
- O'Reilly tells us about Dark Sky's app Kickstater project for "hyperlocal hyper-realtime" weather prediction, with similarities to NowCasting
- If you're into podcasts, VerySpatial mentions another geospatial-related podcast now in English, Geografree
- APB informs us of a OGC survey of the business value of geospatial standards
- V1 lists what he thinks are the Hottest Jobs In The Geospatial Sector Today
- APB has excellent coverage of the SimpleGeo acquisition by Urban Airship
- Remember we told you about Atanas Entchev? There's now a petition to help him
In the maps category:
- StrangeMaps shares an informative map of electric sockets of the World
- Here's a Google Maps mashup on disease risk and migration
- O'Reilly shares an animated map of how dance music travels
- APB share their disappointment at the map of the American Jobs Act
Mandown informs us that Esri's CityEngine 2011 was released. This is a new Esri product, coming from their acquisition of Procedural. I invite you to watch the 2-minutes video on the main page and take a look at the features. To my happy surprise, it's available for MacOS and Linux too.
From the website: "Esri CityEngine is a stand-alone software product that provides professional users in architecture, urban planning, entertainment, GIS and general 3D content production with a unique conceptual design and modeling solution for the efficient creation of 3D cities and buildings."
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With 3D GIS in the news, here's an ongoing series working though a public 3D subsurface petrodata set from desktop modelling to web broadcasting. While BIM and geodesign have been grabbing the 3D GIS headlines, subsurface datasets for fluid flow are explore here. They will become increasingly important not only in petroleum but also in, say, water resources and underground contamination monitoring, or underground fault and earthquake tracking.Google Plus One
Open Source Geonews: InSTEDD GeoChat, MXD2Map v1.0, Alberta Oilsands and Montreal Open Data, and more
Here's the recent geospatial open source and open data news.
New and updated software:
- In case you don't follow our press release section, Geopaparazzi 2.4 has been released, a reminder: "Geopaparazzi is a tool developed to do very fast qualitative engineering/geologic surveys."
- And so was MXD2Map version 1.0, "MXD2map is a free converter for the generation of UMN MapServer-compatible Map files from ESRI ArcGIS MXD files."
- degree 3.1 web services have been released
- ImageI/O-Ext 1.1.2 has been released
- Here's about POIProxy, "a service that handles requests to any public POI service providing a well defined REST API"
Other open source software-related news:
- SS shares an entry on InSTEDD GeoChat - not be to confused with Esri's GeoChat or the other open source MapChat - InSTEDD's open source GeoChat "is a collaboration tool that allows anyone to chat, report and get alerts on their phone"
- All the talk videos of FOSS4G 2011 and State of the Map 2011 are now available
- Here's an entry on QGIS's pie charts for symbols
In the open data category:
- Montréal, Canada, joined the increasing number of cities opening their geospatial data to the public [French press release]
- V1 mentions the Alberta Oilsands map-based portal, which he qualifies as open and transparent
- Mapperz discusses Openptmap, an OpenStreetMap-related effort to show public transport lines
From the page: "Behind the [Anthropocene] name lie the challenges of our time. This concept illustrates and groups together the main agents that shape our planet, who literally engrave its surface—it is the anthroposphere, the human layer that grows inside the biosphere. This page is dedicated to the impressionist mapping of the artifacts from this singular moment in Earth's history. Impressionist because these maps are unlabelled and silent, giving free rein to contemplation and imagination; impressionist also because they do not follow the canons of cartography, where scales and legend are mandatory. By locating the structures and hotspots of human activity, by acknowledging the extent of our footprints and our facilities, perhaps we will glimpse the limits of our world and the importance of redefining what it means to live in and on it."Google Plus One
Discussed this afternoon over Slashdot, Two New Fed GPS Trackers Found On SUV.
Their summary: "As the Supreme Court gets ready to hear oral arguments in a case Tuesday that could determine if authorities can track U.S. citizens with GPS vehicle trackers without a warrant, a young man in California has come forward to Wired to reveal that he found not one but two different devices on his vehicle recently. The 25-year-old resident of San Jose, California, says he found the first one about three weeks ago on his Volvo SUV while visiting his mother in Modesto, about 80 miles northeast of San Jose. After contacting Wired and allowing a photographer to snap pictures of the device, it was swapped out and replaced with a second tracking device. A witness also reported seeing a strange man looking beneath the vehicle of the young man’s girlfriend while her car was parked at work, suggesting that a tracking device may have been retrieved from her car. Then things got really weird when police showed up during a Wired interview with the man."Google Plus One
Via email I learned that the open source OSM2NetworkDataset version 1.1 is now available, it readies OpenStreetMap data for ArcGIS's Network Analyst extension.
From the announcement: "Version 1.1 now supports ArcGIS 10.0, as well as ArcGIS 9.3.1. New features include restrictions for tracktype, smoothness, surface, and maxwidth.
The Java application OSM2NetworkDataset converts OpenStreetMap (OSM) data so it can be used for network analyses in the ArcGIS extension Network Analyst. It is designed to generate transportation networks for any mode of transportation and any region. The generated networks are based on OSM attributes, such as restrictions, one-way roads, turn restrictions, point barriers, and maximum speed. The path can be chosen according to the shortest distance or the shortest time with user defined average speed settings."
While we mentioned it once before, it never got its full story, until now.Google Plus One
Discussed a few days ago over Slashdot, Iranian Police Tracking Dissidents Using Tech From Western Companies.
Their summary: "A recent article at Bloomberg discusses Western companies supplying monitoring equipment to Iran. There are few regulations restricting the sale of intelligence monitoring systems to the Iranian government, and large corporations like Ericsson and Nokia have supplied the equipment used to identify dissidents and suppress anti-government protests. '[One such system from Creativity Software] can record a person’s location every 15 seconds — eight times more frequently than a similar system the company sold in Yemen, according to company documents. A tool called "geofences" triggers an alarm when two targets come in close proximity to each other. The system also stores the data and can generate reports of a person's movements. A former Creativity Software manager said the Iran system was far more sophisticated than any other systems the company had sold in the Middle East.'"Google Plus One
Is Apple positioning itself as a Google Street View and Microsoft Bing Maps competitor? Apparently, Apple recently acquired C3 Technologies' also offer Street View and Interior views.
From the entry: "In addition to 3D maps, C3 also makes awesome street level imagery captured using "an advanced multiple camera system with overlapping viewing angles to capture the entire surroundings in stereo. [...] As well as increasing its geographic range, C3 is expanding into interior settings. With a special camera rig, they can also create a 3D model of the interior of a building using the same photo stitching they use with their aerial or street level maps."Google Plus One
I used to share the most interesting - yes that's subjective - Directions Mag articles once every month or two. From now on, I'll try to integrate them in the pseudo-weekly "batch mode" edition instead. You'll then get those articles quicker. Here's the recent DM articles for the past month.
- Here's nine elements of geocoding accuracy and why it pays to be accurate
- Shared a month ago, here's a review of MapInfo Professional Version 11.0, which was released last Summer
- Here's an aggregation of links, serving as a Recap of News from the 2011 GEOINT Symposium, held in Texas in October where 4,400 geospatial intelligence professionals convened, and here's an article on the growth predictions for geospatial intelligence
- Even if the tips aren't surprising, here's Five Ways to Make Your Geospatial Cover Letter and Resume Stand Out
- Here's a short article, but with a screenshot that explains it all, named Visualizing Crime - A “Data Rose” Blooms
- Here's an analysis of how geospatial companies are using Twitter
- Here's an Introduction to the Second International Workshop on 3D Cadastres
- Here's an article named Virtual City: a Cost-effective Approach to Information Sharing for More Secure Borders
Here's the recent Google-related geonews. Nothing major this time to be honest.
From the official sources:
- Here's an entry on the latest additions of parks in Street View using their trike
- We already mentioned the new feature, but here's another entry on Street View available inside businesses, such as restaurants
- For SketchUp users, apparently 2 millions of them, Google started the Make Ideas Real project, showcasing bringing ideas to life with SketchUp
- Here's the short recap of the Google Geo User Summit that took place in Barcelona on October 12-14th
From other sources:
- APB informs us Google is now blocking GPS jammer ads at the request of the FCC
- Today was released new imagery for Google Earth