If crowd-sourcing is something that interests you then you’ll really dig this presentation from the recent WhereCampDC describing in detail the amazing OldWeather project – and yes, you can become a captain! A tip abotu this awesome project came from Kate and her MapLoser blog where she shares her passion for OSM, the crowd, and humanitarian mapping efforts. More presentations from WhereCampDC can be found on the WhereCampDC website
Archives for June 2011
A fine news update from the USGS provides a good before and after look at imagery showing the recent flooding near Minot ND. A cool, interactive slider app (embedded in the html) gives an excellent look at the flood stage. The Landsat satellite image reveals the extent of the flood. The Souris River, which flows through the middle of Minot, finally crested on June 26 (Source: USGS) See HERE at USGS
Here’s a unique opportunity to learn some GIS methods and become a certified diver at the same time! The 6th edition of the course will be held from the 31st of July to the 10th of August 2011 in Crotone at the Capo Rizzuto Marine Protected Area. About the program:
Dive into the “Introduction to ArcGIS 10” and the PADI Open Water or Advanced Diver courses, the most popular programs in the world in their respective fields! The course will additionally provide the overlap modules to introduce participants to GIS-based tools and techniques of marine scientists with underwater and computer sessions. Learn how to map marine habitats from satellite images and verify them on the field, perform marine fauna and flora surveys and find associations among all the biotic and abiotic components using GIS. See more details HERE
It constantly amazes me how many businesses are not listed in Google maps! For any business owner with a brick and mortar establishment, getting listed in Google Places DB is crucial, particularly if you want people to be able to locate your business using Google maps. Business owners would also be wise to upload photos of their establishment (do this using Picassa and Flickr) , monitor customer ratings and reviews, and look at listing their business and taking ownership of their listings in other popular place databases from Mapquest, Bing, Foursquare, and others. Note, business owners can also upload and include 360 panoramic photos and link to their business using the Microsoft Photosynth mobile app. Photos and data uploaded through the service will be available to users of Microsoft Bing search. – See www.google.com/placesforbusiness
You may recall hearing me mention the new Nokia N9 earlier this week. this is Nokia’s latest addition to the N series family of smartphone – Nokia’s high-end devices optimized with touch UI and perfect for the social media savvy and the power user! Check out the N9 in action in this video from Nokia. The N9 is all screen and boast swipe, additionally, with the swipe UI integration there’s now no need for a home button providing the user with more screen. Announced at Nokia Connection, the N9 will roll out to consumers later in 2011. See more HERE – The Nokia N9 Launched and Connecting the Next Billion
Today foursquare announced via their blog that the company is well on their way to realizing their vision, this thanks to $50 million in VC funding. This from the company… “The additional capital will allow us to move more quickly; we can hire more engineers (we’re hiring in New York and San Francisco!), evolve our merchant offerings, expand internationally, and try a ton of new things. In the last year, we’ve grown from 15 employees to over 70, and our community has grown from under 1 million to over 10 million. The opportunity to build something meaningful in the location space is HUGE, and we feel well-positioned to capitalize on it. We’re encouraged by how far we’ve come, and we’re so excited to have such great support, from both our community and our investors, as we work to build what’s next.”
No doubt the future will see more corporate partnerships like the recent news about American Express offering customers some really nice rewards simply by checking in and making a purchase with your AmEx card. In doing so the end user will see the savings deducted from their monthly statement… impressive really! An example of a merchant that’s taking this offering to the next level is Sports Authority. The popular Sports store is offering customers who pay via AmEx a $20 rebate on a $50 purchase… that’s a whopping 40% off… nice – see image below (Source: foursquare) Check out details of the AmEx / Foursquare partnership HERE
You would hardly know it but Nokia owns Navteq and has for some time now. The Finnish device maker, seen by many as fledgling and gasping for air, is apparently now looking at rolling Navteq into the fold and hoping that LBS may result in LB$. FYI, let it be known that I am hardly one of those who believes that Nokia is failing or going under. Rather, I feel that the company is struggling to catch up in the lucrative smartphone market, this the result of being pretty much blown out of the water in North America by the likes of RIM, the Android and iOS markets. This has resulted in a widespread attitude in America that Nokia is going down. Keep in mind though that the World is a very big place and there is much more to the mobile ecosystem than the smartphone user (think India, Indonesia, China, Vietnam etc…).
I’ve often wondered though why it has never been very visible that Nokia does in fact own data provider Navteq. Unless you happen to follow the industry or read the news you likely would have no idea. However, it appears that in Nokia’s most recent re-branding efforts that could change. the company is removing the Ovi branding from apps and services with the likes of Ovi store to be replaced by the Nokia Store or Marketplace, Ovi Maps to be Nokia Maps etc… Of particular interest, with Nokia S40 devices maturing rapidly, these traditional “lower end” devices are rapidly catching up to smartphones in features, style, connectivity and usability, however, they remain low in price and very attractive for markets where there’s tremendous potential, including Nokia’s goal to connect the next 1 billion users to the Internet. Of particular interest I think is that new S40 devices from Nokia (like the Nokia C2-03) also boast the ability to take advantage of location provisioning enabling users to take advantage of local content and location aware apps and services – enter Navteq once again! Also of interest, Maps and location are coming to S40 device users with embedded offline Nokia maps that will also include locally relevant content. Something else to consider is that in markets outside of Europe and North America, Nokia has had tremendous success with operators and with carrier billing. Consider also that currently, Ovi store boasts 6 million downloads per day and Operator billing is in place with 121 operators in 42 markets – according to Nokia when operator billing is provided to the user the result is 5X greater revenues and uptake by users… kaching! Perhaps now you see where I’m heading with this… interesting to note, just this week an article appeared on Reuters and looked at Nokia and Navteq and discussed the recent appointment of Michael Halbherr to lead a new location & commerce business.
Kudos to Gene Roe, Allen Cheves, and the team of developers and writers who managed to put together Volume #1 of LiDAR Magazine. This interesting E publication is now online and industry articles are available via a web-friendly (and iPad / tablet friendly) “flip” style magazine format or as high-res PDF as well.
About the publication… Back in 1999, we wrote our first article on the Cyrax laser scanner. At the time, the field to office ratio (from raw scan to deliverable) was 40:1. That’s 40 hours of processing for every hour in the field. This ratio is now approaching one to one. Prices are falling, too; some scanners are less than $50,000 USD. Long story short, there’s more opportunity than ever before. The way we map and visualize our world is changing—the 3D Revolution is upon us. The magazine is iPad, tablet & browser compatible. You can also access individual PDF files.
The first edition covers topics as varied as:
- Laser Scanning, Orthophotos & BIM
- ASTM E57 Data Exchange Standard
- Reflections on Scanning a Coast
- Mobile Mapping in South America
- Automated Feature Extraction
- Introduction from Editor Gene Roe & more…
Oh my, even more on the LightSquared GPS issue… get used to it! This time we have some fresh research findings and numbers to share courtesy of reports via the SaveOurGPS coalition. The latest findings from the anti-LightSquared coalitions reveals that proposed Interference with GPS Poses Major Threat to U.S. Economy and get this, 3.3 Million U.S. Jobs and $96 Billion in Annual Direct Economic Benefits Are at Risk! The $96 billion figure is the total of up to $87.2 billion in costs to commercial GPS users and up to $8.8 billion in costs to commercial GPS manufacturers. The commercial benefits of GPS are largely enabled by high precision GPS technologies.
From the report… “The commercial stakes are high. The downstream industries that rely on professional and high precision GPS technology for their own business operations would face serious disruption to their operations should interference occur”
Note, this topic (billed as DarkSquared) was also featured in the latest Amerisurv newsletter in the intro editorial by Managing Editor Marc Cheves – See HERE
Getting excited about this year’s 2011 International Esri user conference yet? Perhaps you haven’t booked your travel or lodging yet. Maybe you haven’t registered for the event yet and scored that early bird discount. Perhaps you haven’t checked out the pre-conference educational sessions yet. Perhaps you haven’t filled out your online agenda planner yet. Perhaps you haven’t checked out details of the tweet up yet or you haven’t signed up for the esriuc back channel yet. Perhaps you haven’t considered the co-located events like the Survey Summit, Business Summit, etc… Well, perhaps looking at this extensive slideshow from 2010 will get you motivated! Enjoy and remember to get busy and make those plans – there’s only 2 weeks to go!
Register for the esriuc backchannel app HERE