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Tuesday, February 16, 2010

“Geoscience Australia is responsible for providing geoscientific and geospatial data and services to Government Agencies, industry and the general public,” like the USGS. While GA got some good marks (“Geoscience Australia’s work is valued and often essential to their outcomes”) there were some suggestions for improvement:

Auditor-General, Ian McPhee noted its website, “its key interface with customers, is complex to use and more data and information could be made publicly available.” Further, he explained that “the management of many product and services projects lacked project plans, risk assessments and key performance indicators.”

- PS News

by Adena Schutzberg on 02/16 at 07:45 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

I can’t get too excited about folks who “check in” to games like Foursquare or Gowalla but are not actually in those check in locations. But, apparently it’s getting to be a concern as more “prizes” for being the mayor appear.

What’s perhaps more valuable is the educational value of this cheating. It highlights that GPS doesn’t work well indoors and that using an API, clever folks can pretend to be anywhere, both valuable lessons for those using geospatial technology!

The problem, with regard to false check-ins, is that the only solid way to do this is to a check-in to your actual GPS coordinates. The problem with this, as Gowalla knows all-too-well, is that it can be hard (and in some cases impossible) to get GPS data while users are indoors. This is a major issue if you’re meant to check-in at a venue, obviously.

- TechCrunch

by Adena Schutzberg on 02/16 at 07:37 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

The “sentence” is community service and some counseling. Kendra Drinkwater of the North Island admitted she’d edited listings of six of her florist competitors some 100 times during a month last year. Her goal: to send business to her shop.

- AAP

by Adena Schutzberg on 02/16 at 07:24 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

Back in the day, until last year, Reed Business Geo was the arm of Reed Elsevier that published a number of geo publications, including GIM and Professional Surveyor. Now, GIM and its sister European publications are published by Geomares (announcement 10/09). And, the only American pub in that group, twenty nine year old (!) Professional Surveyor, is now owned and run by Flatdog Media, basically the crew who ran it under Reed.

Best of luck to Neil and the team over there. I worked with them when GIS Monitor and EOM were part of Reed Business Geo.

by Adena Schutzberg on 02/16 at 06:00 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

That may not be a big name in many lists of geographers, but Prof. Simkins was high on my list. I took his population geography course at Penn State when I was graduate student and then asked him to be on my thesis committee. He’s the one I credit with teaching me the “still applicable every day of my life” four questions of geography: “What is Where? Why? So what?” He made a bit deal about “So what” and so do I and his many other students.

He did much of his work before GIS was big and had drawers of handcolored maps. One of his favorites, or at least one of mine, if I recall correctly used a symbol with two concentric circles; the inner color identified inmigration and other outer one outmigration (or something like that). He referred to it as the “invasion of the lifesavers map.” That still makes me laugh!

Prof Simkins, so far as I’m concerned, always wore a plaid shirt and smile. A very nice combination that sat well on a very nice man.

- Obituary from the Centre Daily Times (via @psugeography)

by Adena Schutzberg on 02/16 at 06:00 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share
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