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Experts Say Open Data Needed for Emergency Response and ManagementOpen in a New Window


From the Esri User Conference in San Diego, CA last week, Joe Francica of Directions Magazine reported hearing the same theme repeated by three experts in the know. In a nutshell, the United States needs an open geospatial data policy in support of theEmergency Services Sector.  The article and two of the presentations can be found below:

(Directions Magazine, July 14, 2014)
(Dr. Kathryn D. Sullivan, NOAA Administrator) 

(Dr. Robert Griffin, Director, DHS First Responders Division)
Comment: Great to see folks at the top of the food chain are finally tuning into this issue.We've been camped out on it since at least 2008 when the Republican National Convention came to town. Followed up by the Twin Cities GECCo in late 2011 and associated the After Action Report/Improvement Plan in 2012. In fall 2013, the MetroGIS Policy Board sent letters to all county Administrators and Board Chairs in the seven core counties of the Twin Cities metro encouraging them to eliminate geospatial data fees and licenses. One of the beneficiaries is certain to be the Emergency Services Sector. For more see:

(EPC Updates, December 23, 2013)

 

OnTheMap for Emergency Management Version 4 ReleasedOpen in a New Window


The U.S. Census Bureau's (USCB) OnTheMap for Emergency Management product continues to improve since we last reported on it in July 2012. Recently, the Council for Community and Economic Research hosted a webinar to report on the latest developments. Find below links to play back the webinar, view presentation slides, or use the application:
Comment: Again, kudos to the U.S. Census Bureau for their effort in this area - some of the very first questions asked after any disaster: "How many people are in the disaster area and what's the economic impact?". Accurate answers to both of these questions can now be provided much quicker thanks to this effort by the USCB.

 

Summer Break - Back in Two WeeksOpen in a New Window


I'm off to wander the countryside on a summer break.  
Back in two weeks.

All the Best,
Steve 

 

Test Your Patriotism - A 4th of July QuizOpen in a New Window


It's easy enough to say your patriotic, but do you have sufficient command of the facts to back up the boast? Find out below with 50 questions about the 4th of July and related events that have made this country great:    
(20 questions)
(The Virginian-Pilot, July 3, 2014)

(30 questions)
(Toast.net, July 3, 2014)


Wishing You and Yours the Very Best on this Independence Day Weekend!

 

HAZUS Annual User Conference is Only One Month AwayOpen in a New Window

It's coming on like gangbusters and before you know it the 7th annual HAZUS Users Conference in Indianapolis, Indiana will be here. Deadline to register is July 26! Details below:


 

Sector Risk Snapshots Released by DHSOpen in a New Window


The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) recently released a document meant to serve as an executive level briefing on the 16 sectors of infrastructure that have been designated as critical by the Department. The 52-page guide provides a brief overview of each sector, and then offers "Threats and Hazards of Concern" for that sector. Find it at the link below:

(DHS, May 2014)


Comment: Kudos to DHS - this is a well done document with one exception. Missing from consideration is the infrastructure that brings meaning to ALL other infrastructure. That would be the nation's geospatial infrastructure. Please see the National Spatial Data Infrastructure and GITA's GECCo program to understand the point.

     

    The Guardian on Predictive PolicingOpen in a New Window


    It's the newspaper that has been the most vocal proponent of Edward Snowden. Now, as part of its Resilient Cities series, The Guardian has started to examine some of the issues associated with the emerging technology of "predicative policing". More below: 

    (The Guardian, June 25, 2014)



    Comment: In defense of this approach to law enforcement, I believe story quote byUCLA professor P Jeffrey Brantingham is key: 
    “Minority Report is about predicting who will commit a crime before they commit it. This is about predicting where and when crime is most likely to occur, not who will commit it.”

    Graphic Credit: PredPol

     

    Yarnell Hill Fire - One Year Later, Changes Still NeededOpen in a New Window


    It's been one year since 19 wildland firefighters lost their lives fighting the Yarnell Hill Fireon June 30, 2013. Have we done everything we can as a nation to keep an incident like this from happening again? Pause for a moment and consider:

    (Al Studt, June 27, 2014)


    Photo Credit: USA Today

     

    The Challenges of Drones in U.S. AirspaceOpen in a New Window


    Ah, the weekend. It's summer and that means it's time to be outside enjoying the weather. But if you should find yourself trapped inside this weekend, offered below for your consideration are three articles from a series by the Washington Post which examine some of the issues that must be addressed as drones (UAVs/UASs) are brought into the most heavily used airspace in the world:  
    (The Washington Post, June 20, 2014)

    (The Washington Post, June 22, 2014)

    (The Washington Post, June 23, 2014)

    Wishing You a Fabulous Weekend Full of Sun and Fun!
    Graphic credit: Washington Post

     

    Warrantless Cellphone Data Searches Ruled Illegal by Supreme CourtOpen in a New Window

    A unanimous decision from the U.S. Supreme Court leaves little doubt someone has been doing something wrong. And that's exactly what happened on Wednesday, June 25, 2014 when the justices ruled 9-0 on the issue of police searching a suspect's cellphone data without a warrant. More below:
    (The Wall Street Journal, June 25, 2014)

    (Supreme Court of the United States, June 25, 2014)


    Comment: Although this case settles the issue of cellphone data searches without a warrant (to include location data), and a previous case found a warrant must be issued before GPS tracking can be used (United States v. Jones), apparently left unanswered is the issue of police using alternate means to track a cellphone's location (tower records,StingRay). Given findings in the two benchmark data cases settled to date, the handwriting is on the wall concerning this third issue and the law enforcement community would be wise to take notice before facing another ruling which overturns convictions.

     

    Report Chides Wildland Firefighter Leadership on DeathsOpen in a New Window

    Out of concern not enough was being done to ensure the safety of wildland firefighters, on Monday, June 23, 2014, a group of retired experts from that community ("Safety Matters") made known their viewpoint by issuing a 17-page report detailing needed changes.  Passages below from the Executive Summary tell the story of what you'll find in the report: 
    “A year has passed since the deaths of 19 firefighters on the Yarnell Hill Fire in Arizona. Another fire season is now underway. The agencies managing wildland fire have not made any significant changes to existing procedures, nor have they announced any plans for procedural or policy updates for the future. This reflects the apparent perception that the existing system is working as well as can be expected. Safety Matters disagrees.”
    “Safety Matters has identified the following areas in need of immediate change, in order to provide for maximum firefighter safety. They include:
    • A benefit analysis of values at risk (homes, private property, public lands) vs. the risk to firefighter’s lives. 
    • Development of an independent investigative body for serious accidents and fatalities. 
    • Direct involvement of agency administrators and program managers, especially when fires escape initial attack and incident management teams are mobilizing or in transition. 
    • Establishing standardized emergency communications protocol. 
    • Establishing uniformity in mapping systems.“
    Read the full report at the link below:

    (Safety Matters, June 23, 2014)


    Comment: Wow! This is a well documented, thought provoking report written by individuals who obviously care about the safety of wildland firefighters. Community leadership must now make a choice when responding to this report: Defend the institutional status quo by doing nothing, or fix issues brought to light and thereby enhance wildland firefighter safety. Of particular note from the perspective of EPC Updates is the discussion on pages 16-17 about the need for a standard "language of location" in the wildland firefighting community - U.S. National Grid

     

    Open GIS Data and Information Sharing Being Considered in NebraskaOpen in a New Window


    Another voice is being heard on the issue of GIS open data and information sharing. This time it's a Nebraska State Senator, and he's leading the charge in the Cornhusker State Legislature. More below:

    (Government Technology, June 5, 2014)


    Comment: We love it! More men and women like Senator Dan Watermeir are needed in legislatures across the nation!

     

    App Teaches Children About Severe WeatherOpen in a New Window


    As a way to help children in the Tornado Alley section of the United States better understand severe weather, undergraduate students at The University of Oklahomarecently completed an iPad app called Storm Tracker. Based on the premise that one of the easiest ways to teach a topic is through game play, the app challenges players to route airplanes around storms to avoid trouble:

    (Emergency Management, June 11, 2014)



    Comment: Rain rain go away, come again another day - this app couldn't have shown up at a better time!

     

    Flying Friday: New Radar, Turbulent Airwaves, Cheap Flight, Pizza Air, and Flying HighOpen in a New Window


    Time has been flying by since the last time I departed on one of my dysfunctional postings brought on by the lack of oxygen. Hard to believe because there are so many recent developments that are hard to believe. Let's check out the latest departures:

    New Radar. In days gone by, law enforcement needed a collection of bulky equipment to clock low flying, high speed travelers. Not anymore:  

    (Business Insider India, May 21, 2014)



    Turbulent Airwaves. Equipment to jam radar systems has been around for years. Little surprise the New Radar will soon experience same:  

    (Wired, June 3, 2014)


    Cheap Flight. Can't find a cheap ticket to a fun place? Not to fear. Click the link below and 2 minutes later you'll know how to bring the fun back to flying, at a VERY affordable price:

    (The Wall Street Journal Videos, June 8, 2014)


    Pizza Air. By now I'm sure you've heard of the beer company that was planning to deliver its beverages by drone only to be shutdown by the FAA. Heartbreaking development given the ever resourceful folks in India have been working on airborne delivery of the other half of the tasty duo adored around the world:

    The Times of India, May 22, 2014)


    Flying High. Which country has the highest flyers? Graphic above and link below tell the story: 

    (Gizmodo, May 14, 2014)



    Here's Hoping Your Weekend is a Smooth Ride Without Any Bumps!


    Graphic credits:
    Turbulent Airwaves - Huffington Post 
    Flying High - WHO

     

    MDA to Acquire DigitalGlobe, Creating Industry Leader in End-to-End Space Systems, Earth Imagery and Geospatial SolutionsOpen in a New Window

    Combination to Offer Enhanced, Value-Added Services to Commercial and Government Customers Worldwide Creates Leading Provider of Satellites, Earth Imagery, Geospatial Data Solutions and Analytics Expands Market Access, Increases Scale, and Diversifies Revenue and Customer Base Transaction Expected to be Accretive to Operating Earnings per Share in...

    Read More

     

    2017 calendar listing Drone World ExpoOpen in a New Window

    SAN JOSE, CA, February 22, 2017 – The 3rd Annual Drone World Expo, the premier event held in the Capital of Silicon Valley, will feature a robust exhibit floor, visionary keynote speakers, timely and industry-leading educational program, networking events, and more. Drone World Expo is a business-to-business event, attracting over 3,000 professional attendees...

    Read More

     

    Luminent Provides Cost Effective Solutions for PHMSA Pipeline Safety and Regulatory ComplianceOpen in a New Window

    Fort Collins, Colorado -Luminent LLC announces the release of the Regulatory Accelerator, an innovative new geospatial software application that uses intelligent automation to acquire data from a company's existing databases in order to automate required regulatory compliance while using that same data to provide the ‎company's leadership...

    Read More

     

    OGC invites you to the Arctic Spatial Data Pilot demonstrationOpen in a New Window

    - The Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC®) invites members and the public to attend the OGC Arctic Spatial Data Pilot demonstration online or in-person on the 15th March 2017 at the USGS in Reston, Virginia. The OGC Arctic Spatial Data Pilot (Arctic SDP) was initiated to demonstrate the diversity, richness, and value of providing geospatial data using...

    Read More

     

    CartoConsult Pioneers GIS Innovation as part of £4 million UK Government Programme to Tackle Traffic CongestionOpen in a New Window

    Swindon, UK, 22 February 2017 - CartoConsult is to develop technology to reduce traffic congestion and improve transport services as part of a £4 million Department for Transport (DfT) initiative.  The mapping software technology company has been selected by Swindon Borough Council, together with IT and networking company Cisco, to deliver an alert system for...

    Read More

     

    New Enterprise Tracks Headline InterDrone 2017 Call For SpeakersOpen in a New Window

    NY - InterDrone 2016 brought together over 180 industry-leading speakers, including FAA Administrator Michael Huerta — BZ Media LLCannounced today an open call for speakersfor InterDrone™The International Drone Conference & Exposition being held at the Rio Hotel in Las Vegas Sept 6-8. Last year’s program had over 180 top speakers in the commercial drone...

    Read More

     

    Global Mapper 18.1 Released with Improved 3D Viewing, New Fly-Through Visualization Tools, and Expanded Format SupportOpen in a New Window

    ME - - Blue Marble Geographics is pleased to announce the immediate availability of Global Mapper version 18.1. This upgrade to the version 18 release includes numerous functional enhancements throughout many areas of the software and it introduces an array of new tools, upgrades to existing components, performance improvements to increase efficiency and...

    Read More

     

    TerraGo Partners with Duncan-Parnell for Mobile Data CollectionOpen in a New Window

    Washington, DC - Duncan-Parnell to provide TerraGo mobile geospatial and field surveying solutions to its customers across eight states and the District of Colombia February 21, 2017 – TerraGo is pleased to announce a new partnership with Duncan-Parnell, a leading provider of geospatial solutions to the surveying, construction and other...

    Read More

     

    Drone Services Market Witnessing Lucrative Prospects in North America & Asia PacificOpen in a New Window

    90 State Street, Suite 700 Albany, NY 12207, - Driven by the rising demand for drone services, especially in the commercial sector, the global drone services market will report a strong CAGR. Exhibiting a whopping CAGR, the global drone services market will spawn into a multi-billion dollar industry by the end of...

    Read More

     

    Drone-powered Business Solutions Market Giving Rise to Several new Applications Across the CommerciaOpen in a New Window

    90 State Street, Suite 700 Albany, NY 12207, - Drones are being used increasingly to carry out several jobs in diverse industries. This has resulted in a high demand for drone-powered business solutions across the globe. As per the research report, the global market is anticipated to exhibit a healthy growth rate...

    Read More

     

    AddressBase Toolkit for MapInfo Released by Aligned AssetsOpen in a New Window

    Woking, UK - Aligned Assets are pleased to announce the latest product into their stable of Address Management software solutions: AddressBase Toolkit for MapInfo. The AddressBase Toolkit has been developed to provide a visualisation of AddressBase Premium data for MapInfo users, allowing the use of AddressBase Premium within their GIS without the...

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    ArcGIS Solution Provider and Esri Business Partner, GEO Jobe, Launches GIS Knowledge BaseOpen in a New Window

    Nashville, TN - A community resource for users of Admin Tools for ArcGIS Online, Mapfolio and the GEOPowered Cloud NASHVILLE, Tenn. - Esri silver business partner, GEO Jobe, is pleased to announce a new community resource for users of their popular apps and solutions for the ArcGIS user community. The GEO Jobe Knowledge Base (Kbase) is a public,...

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    Matrox® C900 Nine-Output Card Honored With 2017 InAVation AwardOpen in a New Window

    CA -   Single-slot graphics card capable of driving 3x3 videowalls wins top honors in “Technology for Digital Signage” category at ISE 2017 Montreal, CA — February 21, 2017 — Matrox® Graphics Inc. is proud to announce that the Matrox Matrox C900 nine-output graphics card was chosen as winner in the “Digital Signage” category at the InAVation Awards held on...

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    Ovum MWC 2017Open in a New Window

    UK -   The Ovum analysts’ expectations from the world’s largest mobile conference London, UK – February 21, 2017:As all eyes turn to theMobile World Conference (MWC) in Barcelona this month (27 February – 4 March, 2017), Ovum’s analyst team have gathered their views regarding what they expect to see at the world’s largest and most highly regarded mobile...

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    European Space Imaging underlines its role as main provider of VHR satellite imagery to the European CommissionOpen in a New Window

    munich,germany - The Munich-based company has been awarded another major supply contract for VHR satellite data and services to support checks within the EU Common Agricultural Policy (CAP). European Space Imaging announced today that the company has signed a multi-year framework supply contract with the European Commission for the provision of...

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    3/14/2017 » 3/16/2017
    Common Ground Alliance 811 Excavation Safety Conference & Expo

    4/24/2017 » 4/25/2017
    2017 GITA Pacific Northwest Chapter Conference

    4/27/2017 » 4/28/2017
    GISTAM 2017

    6/5/2017 » 6/6/2017
    EnerGIS 2017

    10/3/2017 » 10/5/2017
    Pipeline Week 2017

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