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Friday, December 12, 2014

Measles Map in Vaccine Preventable Disease VideoCommunity Health Workers Map

Here's the conclusion of a study in that tapped local community health workers (CHW) in northern Rwanda to map mountainous villages with GPS and ArcMap.

Existing national CHW system can be leveraged to inexpensively and rapidly map villages even in mountainous rural areas. These data are important to provide managers and decision makers with local-level GIS data to rapidly identify variability in health and other related services to better target and evaluate interventions.

Over 12 months, the teams mapped the district's 573 villages costing about half that of using trained GIS professionals.

Vaccine Preventable Disease Video

Vaccine-Preventable Disease Outbreaks Around the World is a video from Good (right).

Data visualization showing the spread of diseases that could have been easily prevented by vaccines. 7 years of outbreaks in 70 seconds (2008-2014). We have effective and inexpensive ways to prevent these diseases, but they continue to spread. Why? 

NJ Nurse of the Year using GIS

Patricia Suplee, an assistant professor at the Rutgers School of Nursing–Camden, is the New Jersey March of Dimes as a 2014 Nurse of the Year. And she doing mapping to increase health for mothers and babies.

Suplee’s research focuses on improving overall health care for minority women living in underserved communities. She currently is analyzing birth data to describe maternal health and birth outcomes using GIS mapping technology. Data will be geocoded by neighborhood areas to create maps. Ultimately, this unique database will be used to guide future tailored interventions to specific vulnerable populations of women.

Continue reading...

by Adena Schutzberg on 12/12 at 03:22 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

Thursday, December 11, 2014

Holiday Name PlacesGIS Service Learning at Wesleyan

As part of the GIS Service Learning Laboratory course, Katy Hardt ’15 researched the wetlands, waterways and critical habitats of the northwest section of Middletown. Hardt and fellow group members John Murchison ’16 and Catherine Reilly ’15 presented their findings to the Middlesex Land Trust.

Kim Diver, visiting assistant professor of earth and environmental sciences, taught the class

Other Learning at GeoTech Center

@GeoTechCenter tweet: Check out our Holiday Name places in US. [right] Project was completed by interns at working

Berkeley Received $2M Digital Humanities Grant

With a $2 million grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, UC Berkeley will be making major advances in the integration of digital tools and technologies in humanities scholarship and teaching.

“Digital tools and methods such as data visualization, GIS, statistics, and text mining can have a transformative effect on research and teaching in the humanities, particularly with the mass digitization of texts and artwork. But they are unfamiliar to many humanities scholars and learning to use them effectively requires an investment of time and resources,” said Anthony J. Cascardi, UC Berkeley’s Irving and Jean Stone Dean of Arts and Humanities and principal investigator on the grant.

Continue reading...

by Adena Schutzberg on 12/11 at 04:48 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

PetaJakartaCrowdsourcing Flooding in Jakarta

Jakarta has a new tool [right] to monitor and respond to flooding in the low-lying capital. Developed by researchers from the SMART Infrastructure Facility at Australia’s Wollongong University in collaboration with Twitter and Jakarta’s Disaster Management Agency, the tool – known as PetaJakarta, or Jakarta Map – will draw on data used in tweets to pinpoint areas on a map impacted by flooding.

I was hoping to see Ushahidi, but the open source crowdsourcing tool is built on MapServer and Leaflet with OSM and pretty data from Stamen.

Davidson County Goes Mobile

The Davidson County, NC GIS website is now mobile friendly. It works on all browsers on tablets and phones. How to find it?

To see the new site, visit Once there click on the ArcGIS Server link.

This text of the link is actually "ArcGIS Server GIS."

Pictometry in Saline County, KS

The availability of three-dimensional aerial photos of Saline County has opened up a wide range of possibilities for Salina and Saline County officials.

The local paper details all the ways they are being used and the cost.

The cost of the new Pictometry photos, $88,164.87, was paid for by the county and city. The cost was reduced by 10 percent because Saline County worked with Geary County and Dickinson County.

The county GIS website explains that "GIS is very simply computer aided enhanced mapping." The paper suggests residents have access to the imagery, but I could not find it.

Continue reading...

by Adena Schutzberg on 12/10 at 03:37 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

Tuesday, December 09, 2014

Adena at AvidGeo/LocationTech BostonYesterday I hosted a conversation on that topic as part of the AvidGeo Conference 2014/LocationTech Tour Boston event. I was invited to "give a talk," but if you know me I'm the last person who wants to watch or give a PowerPoint presentation. So I didn't do that. Instead, I pushed the question of "what is the state of geospatial industry" out to the attendees. I had the about 60 people in the room form groups of five or six and talk for ten minutes and come up with one agreed upon answer to the question:

What’s “new” in what you are seeing or doing  in the industry?

When I sad "go!, I added: "It should get very loud in here very fast!" It did. I had each group share its contribution with all the attendees. I also had each group document its idea in a sentence or phrase on index cards (self-documenting!). I've paraphrased one or two of these from the scribbles.

  • Revenge of Geography
  • Data->Visualization->Stories->Oculus->Free the Data
  • Awareness and demand for geospatial products and analysis, but not necessarily with an increase in the available of easy to use technology.
  • End-user demand is pushing simplified access to tool, UX enhancements, access to real time (and other) data/imagery
  • More people want access to our geospatial data in more different formats [dreaded "open data"]
  • Understanding data regarding (1) who customers/user are and (2) where they are active

I thought those were pretty valuable ideas for a ten minute discussions with new acquaintances. Some of the ideas overlapped the few points I shared about what I'm seeing:

1) Lawyers - some are focusing on IP and policy, but a new firm is look at geodata as evidence 

2) FOSS4G is Mature and far less "special" and "competitive" with Proprietary Solutions

3) Mapping is Still Hard

4) Too many “This map shows” and not enough “maps that matter”

A few other observations from the event:

  • Esri's Sam Berg showed off a slew of Esri templates.
  • There were about six women in attendance, so there was no line for the restroom. The men had a line. The women agreed, when I asked, we'd love to see more women and would be happy to wait for the restroom. Andrew Ross of LocationTech shared that about 30% of the presenters at the upcoming FOSS4GNA in San Francisco in March are women.
  • I learned that good tutorial provide warnings to prevent users from going astray when using tutorial ideas beyond their intended use, such as in production solutions.
  • Raj Singh, now at IBM-owned Cloudant, talked about NoSQL. While that was a hot topic in 2011 (I even wrote about it), it's pretty quite now. We agreed that NoSQL was becoming an "Intel inside" type of technology: you use it and it helps do the job, but you don't really need to know it's in there.
  • I learned about WhirlyGlobe from the mousebird guy, Steve Gifford. I didn't know that the open source globe powers Dark Sky, a popular weather app. Why is the company named mousebird? "I paid a guy..."
  • There were three 90 minute hands-on bring your own device tutorials: QGIS, CartoDB and PostGIS. My best guess was about half the attendees were following along on their devices while the rest "just watched." I was a watcher. I'm seeing more of these sorts of sessions at conferences. While not my preferred method of exploring software, I wonder if this teaching format is valuable simply because they can "force" one to actually touch software that they'd otherwise never "get to."
  • Attendees were a mix of government folks (MassGIS and Duchess County, NY), small company folks (Interactive Tactical Group and Mouse Bird), big company folks (Esri, Boundless, Applied Geographics) and academics (Clark, Smith and MIT). 

Image: I'm letting the attendees know the game plan for my session. Photo by Andrew Ross.

by Adena Schutzberg on 12/09 at 07:56 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

Monday, December 08, 2014

I gave a participatory presentation titled "The State of the Geospatial Industry" today at the Boston stop of the Locationtech Tour. Here links to items I mentioned.

by Adena Schutzberg on 12/08 at 05:29 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share
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