Archives for June 2007
Toronto-based NAC Geographic Products Inc. announced the release of the NAC Enhanced Google Driving Directions – an integration of Natural Area Coding System and Google Driving Directions through Google’s powerful AJAX APIs to provide a truely language-independent global service to connect any locations in the world. The NAC Enhanced Google Driving Directions allows users to use a Natural Area Code (NAC) in addition to latitude/longitude coordinates, street addresses, POIs and ZIP/postcodes to specify start, stop and end locations. Recall… A NAC is an efficiently represention of any area and location in the world. A two-character NAC represents an area about 1000km X 700km (like a province), a four-character NAC represents an area about 33km X 23km (like a city), a six-character NAC roughly represents every square kilometer area, an eight-character NAC represents an area about 35m X 25m (like a building), and a ten-character NAC approximately represents every square meter on the earth surface. See here
On the floor there were several touch table solutions being presented, obviously a hot product for the defense users – the DIT-2 from Panoram definitely turned heads! An update to Geographic Imager from Avenza was announced this week… offering users more flexibility and enhancements to help them be more productive working with imagery… the added support for tiling is likely the most noteworthy update users will enjoy. The Definiens extension for ArcGIS is also an amazing app that enables power users of imagery with ArcGIS to conduct feature extraction, change detection, and object recognition… all within a familiar environment.
GeoMarc from GCS Research was demo’d to me and indeed this app is a tremendous offering for those using/publishing imagery… embed sensitive information within your imagery, even store meta-data as well – truly a clever solution! Got loads of output? The Oce TCS500 with map folder setup is one of those “WOW” technologies… imagine letting that plotter crank out plots all night long and your output is automatically folded according your specifications… cool! The gang from Latitude Geographics (Victoria) also filled me in on how their gamble to roll the dice and bet on .Net has paid off – think rapid/real-world ArcGIS Server application development using the .NET version of Web ADF.
I could go on and on but if I had to pick out several hot topics/buzz words I’d definitely have to say Server, Imagery, mobile, ease of use, mashups, and interoperability rank right up there at the top. Ok, I need a nap then I’ll get back to sifty through the notes! See photos from San Diego HERE – I didn’t get to the windup party last night as I was in transit… how was it??
Spent the lunch hour here listening to a gentleman from Trimble discuss GPS, GPS myths etc… Some Common GPS myths:
WAAS will work everywhere
GPS will work everywhere
All GPS receivers are the same
You can use a rec. GPS for GIS data collection
US coast guard beacons are coastal
Selective Availability is still on or will be on again
You can get an accurate position with less than 4 satellites
Other people can track you if your GPS is on
All basedata is accurate
Aerial or satellite imagery will replace the need for GPS
Datums are not important when collecting GPS
WGS84 datum is the same as NAD83
Vert accuracy is the same as horizontal accuracy
See also http://www.trimble.com/gps/index.shtml
Random notes about ArcGIS Image Server – Released with ArcGIS 9.2 late last year. Recall, imagery is a natural background for many GIS apps. Useful for direct interpretation, statistics and analysis, used for vectorization (80% of vector data collected using imagery backdrop), data verification after GIS analysis. Diff. apps have diff demands on their imagery – time, quality, sun angle, etc…
Why Image Server??
Use of imagery growing exponentially
Available from many sources (aerial cameras, scanned maps, satellites)
Depth of imagery increasing, more bands of imagery, higher resolution, overlap in imagery (same image from multiple dates or diff. angles)
Imagery is often available but simply not accessible (obviously Google Earth has addressed this)
Fast access to imagery and metadata
Much more! See ArcGIS Image Server – Author, Serve, Use… Random Notes from the ESRI UC for more on this
Some random notes from the session on AWX 2 — Recall recently ArcWeb explorer 2 beta 1 released last week – See arcwebservices.com labs
ArcWeb Services AWX2 is built on Adobe Flex 2
Simple authoring where anyone with a notepad should be able to author an ArcMap web service (Source: AWX dev team)
New Features in AWX2
– more map types… tiled streets (ArcGIS online), topo, shaded relief. Streets, aerial and hybrid always been there
– support for 13 diff projections (repro on the fly)
– create your own widgets (think Apple)
– using Flex API the map can be completely customized (via style sheets)
See Developing Web2.0 flash mapping apps with ArcWeb Services – Random Notes from the ESRI UC for more on this topic
ArcGIS Server 9.3, the next version of the popular app will be an incremental release… support for integrated security, better cashing, more options in building apps and simple mashup applications, deploy REST services… and more! Some random notes from the session:
Enhancement – map tips
Enhanced printing support – print tool in web app
.Net web ADF
– full integration with ASP .Net AJAX
– enhanced task results, identify and map tips
– IDE integration for Eclipse and NetBeans
– combine your organization’s GIS content hosted in ArcGIS Server with content from Virtual Earth or from Google Maps, or ArcGIS online – powered by backend ArcGIS Server REST services.
Use Microsoft Virtual earth Map control and API – use VE as a base map, overlay GIS
Google Maps JS Map control and API – use google maps as base map overlay your data
Demo: quickly create a mashup using your data (ArcGIS) on a Google maps basemap.
Speaking of ArcPad and mobile GIS, Geoage today has introduced ESRI UC attendees to their Mobile Map Connect application. According to Don fromm Geoage who I just spoke with, Mobile Map Connect enables ESRI users to take their maps and data into the field, with little mobile know-how etc… so newbies can get up and running fast, right out of the box and with little or no training. The solution works on any Windows mobile enabled device. See www.geoage.com for more
Just listening to an intro session focused on ESRI’s extension of GIS beyond the office and into a mobile environment. Why mobile GIS?? Need to take GIS into the field to enable timely, relevant, and accurate decisions. Making real-time decisions in the field enables more collaboration between the field and the office.
ESRI’s key Mobile GIS users:
Asset management – signs, hydrants, poles
Logistics – package delivery
Natural resource management – habitat and forestry
One of the main mobile solutions offered by ESRI is obviously ArcPad. Currently at release 7.1, the solution is currently in Beta and will likely be available in a couple of months. What can you do with ArcPad
– deploy data for field use
– use pre-loaded streetmap data, geocode, and create routes
– query data using query builder and customized query forms
– field data capture and editing
– use data capture deviced (GPS, range finder, camera)
– update enterprise database – including related tables
– navigate with your GPS
– customize ArcPad
– streetmap data is included (Canada and US)
– ArcPad 7.1 currently in Beta
Usability improvements in 7.1 – QuickProject
– focus on those new to GIS. Quickly create a new data capture project/template to get up and running fast.
ArcPad application builder is a provided tool for customizing ArcPad.
Developing for ArcPad – About The ArcGIS Mobile SDK
– ships with ArcGIS server, came with 9.2
– a suite of .Net components useful for building your own mobile solution
– Core capabilities – provide a method for synchronizing data to and fromm ArcGIS Server – optimized for wireless networks
– Enables display of rich maps on mobile devices (Pocket PC, smartphones)
– Provides and easy to use and standardized developer environment
Who’s using the SDK? Logistics (stops, deliveries), Utilities (sketching and markup), public safety, emergency response… What Can you do with the sDK? Design, serve, deploy, and Sync – design focused apps targeted at specific mobile workers, serve mobile web services, deploy large number of clients easily, synch field edits to a from a mobile web service.
Mobile platforms supported (mainly MS) running on desktop, tablet, and mobile. Many field-ready mobile devices are designed for all day use and offer enhanced wireless capabilities. These devices are designed to plug into the enterprise. Supported devices include smart phones, pocket PC phones, tablet PCs and laptops. Pocket PCs are ideally suited for all day long field work. Many offer touch screen UI, they can be rugged, and are affordable. I wish I could tell you more about ArcPAd at 7.1 but i guess that’s in another session.
Finally… ESRI’s mobile team provides users with The StreetMap Mobile SDK – for building mobile navigation solutions. Provides components for mapping, geocoding, and much more.Of interest, clinets include the likes of Searc who have deployed a navigation solution to thousands of their vehicles. Enables them to move their vehicles safely and efficiently around the country.
Demo: we saw how a nav solution provided a voice (male or female) to warn driver if they are speeding etc… Directions can be reported in multiple languages. We entered a start and stop location and then an optimal route was returned to us and voice commands were presented to route our driver… pretty cool.