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Thursday, September 21, 2006

University of Texas researchers, James K. Galbraith and Travis Hale offer a paper described in the New York Times (free registration may be required) that highilghts how sharp growth in the 1990s occurred in just those counties were high tech shot up. Those with the lowest growth had no such businesses.

[The] five biggest winners in this period were New York; King County, Wash. (with both Seattle and Redmond); and Santa Clara, San Mateo and San Francisco, Calif., the counties that make up Silicon Valley. The five biggest losers were Los Angeles; Queens; Honolulu; Broward, Fla.; and Cuyahoga, Ohio.

There’s an animated PowerPoint map that shows the data. (It’s sort of lame; we need TeraSeer to get to these guys!)

by Adena Schutzberg on 09/21 at 08:10 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

There’s coverage everywhere (AP for one) of Boeing’s win in the government contract to provide new high-tech ways to catch illegal immigrants trying to cross U.S. land borders.” It could be worth $2 billion or more in time.

The Boeing proposal, unlike others which included drones, features 1,800 towers, equipped with cameras and motion detectors, that feed information to Border Patrol agents. Of interest to me was coverage from NPR that highlighted that drones were too expensive and that Beoing’s bid was built on proven technology, not the latest and greatest.


by Adena Schutzberg on 09/21 at 07:59 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

Yesterday San Jose’s Tech Museum of Innovation announced its fifth annual Tech Museum Award laureates (SFGate). They are 25 people and organizations from all over the world. Peter Friess, president of the Tech Museum of Innovation describes the award as extending “the idea of Silicon Valley throughout the world.” A few relate to geospatial:

The Internet Archive, a non-profit online library, now in the geo news as it will be the host of the recently acquired DRGs, got an education award.

Ecovec, a for profit company in Brazil, won a health care award for its work combatting misquito -carried Dengue disease. The system combines a series of weekly-checked traps for mosquitos, with data collected by PDA. “This data is transferred by PDA’s and cell phones to Ecovec to be processed. Maps and graphics are generated within 24 hours and published on a website to which local health managers have access. This quick and precise information is used to manage the actions of the health authorities to fight the Dengue vector.” I like this; it reminds me of the work I helped with in South Africa tracking malaria, but that was still with paper; this program has no paper!

Global Connection Project Team (non-profit), based in Mountain View and comprising members from Google Inc., NASA Ames Research Center and Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh took home an economic development award for “developing software tools for use with Google Earth to help disaster responders get accurate and timely information during recovery efforts.”

by Adena Schutzberg on 09/21 at 07:35 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

Low enrollment in the graphics program, Cisco networking and computer-aided drafting is causing the Lebanon County Career and Technology Center (CTC, a tech high school program for where upper classman can train for careers; it also serves adult learners) to get onboard teaching GIS.

Harrisburg Area Community College offered to teach the courses in the high school and provide college credit. That college offers the program now and says George Custer, CTC director, “They have few students completing the program now—they are all being gobbled up by industry before they complete the program.” 

by Adena Schutzberg on 09/21 at 07:24 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

An article about what sounds like a great intership program outside Boston includes this sentence that got me thinking:

Tran participated in the Geographic Information Systems (GIS) portion of the internship, where she worked with engineers to create virtual maps of what is below the surface of the streets for water and piping projects.

What’s a virtual map compared to a well, regular, map? Some definitions of “virtual” suggest that things on computers are “virtual,” (dating back to virtual memory and virtual conversations) though I’m thinking that definition is outdated. Virtual Earth and Virtual Worlds I get - they are not real! But a map is already not really the thing itself! My handy dandy map definition from college (yours may vary):

A map is a representation of a structure and a structure is a set of elements and relationships between them.

I guess I’d leave the virtual off and maybe just use computer maps if that’s what we mean.

by Adena Schutzberg on 09/21 at 07:13 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share
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