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Monday, March 13, 2006

I ran into the color blindness issue in my first job. We were preparing maps for my boss to use in our work during the Exxon Valdez spill. One of my colleagues noted my color choice for symbols and said, “Stay away from those, Paul is color-blind.” We carefully redid maps and charts to colors he could see and I didn’t think about it much until I ran into Cynthia Brewer’s ColorBrewer tool. She also wrote a great book for ESRI press on basic cartograph for GIS folks. (Oh, and yes, she’s a professor at Penn State.)

Which brings us to EyePilot, a new app from a defense contractor here in Boston, that adds a sort of “color tuner” to a computer screen. It allows those with colorblindness to, among other things, tune the colors to something they can see. It runs $34. While interesting, some say they’d not use it much. On the other hand, such a device may enable those who are colorblind to head into jobs currently unavailable to them: electricians and pilots.

by Adena Schutzberg on 03/13 at 06:00 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

Peter Batty, Intergraph CTO, said at least the beginning part (I added the “or die” part) in his keynote at GITA New Zealand this week. I for one am jazzed that Stuff even covered the event, though oddly, the article does not even mention the conference name.

He endorsed ideas many in the press have noted:

GIS products from established vendors now offer more than most users need. Many customers will opt for cheaper alternatives such as Google Earth and Microsoft’s MSN Virtual Earth.

“It’s really hard for people to justify buying a major GIS. They want something that solves a business problem that happens to have GIS.”

GIS companies should see these problems as opportunities rather than threats.

Request to Intergraph: encourage Mr. Batty to start a blog. I’d read it and I suspect others would, too.

by Adena Schutzberg on 03/13 at 06:00 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

We asked about which spring conference you’d attend, if you could only go to one. The results from 43 respondents were:

A vendor specific one - 12%
CTIA - 2%
GITA - 12%
Location Intelligence - 9%
Mix06 - 5%
Where 2.0 - 60%

Next up: The rule these days seems to be that once you offer an open API, or an open source product, you hold a contest. (Microsoft, MapQuest, and Autodesk are currently running such promotional events. Will you participate? Vote on our main page, lower right side.

by Adena Schutzberg on 03/13 at 06:00 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

Friday, March 10, 2006

At the AAG meeting in Chicago ESRI’s David Maguire enlightened the world on the definition of Geographic Exploration Systems and explored ArcGIS Explorer as a case study.

For the curious:

GES are a new breed of GIS that focus on the exploitation of geographic information and utilize a services-oriented architecture. They are user-centric, fun and easy to use.

Ok, so that’s quite a bit different from other definitions I dug up a month back.

by Adena Schutzberg on 03/10 at 12:51 PM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

Earlier this week we rolled out a new page here at APB. The short story is: We are adding a page that lists links to just “the best” posts from the many geospatial blogs available today. It’s called “Other Points” and can be accessed by a tab on the main menu on the top of home page or via the “Other Points” link at top right.

The logic behind it is described in this article at Directions Magazine. As always, we want your feedback, positive or negative. Note the new Suggestions button just above the latest blog post.

by Adena Schutzberg on 03/10 at 09:18 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share
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