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Wednesday, March 30, 2011

An MIT project uses a vehicle with  an inexpensive low-resolution IR camera (< $1000) has been used to show heat leaks in Cambridge, MA homes and an army installation (Fort Drum in New York). Researcher Long Phan and Research Scientist Jonathan Jesneck, working with Professor Sanjay Sarma, developed the system; they hail from MIT’s Department of Mechanical Engineering Field Intelligence Laboratory and hope to use the scanner to track exactly where energy savings can be greatest.

- MIT News (via reader Larry)

The Mosquito Abatement Decision Information System - MADIS - for St. Tammany Parish in Louisiana will use satellites owned by imaging company DigitalGlobe to locate mosquito larval breeding habitats and activity at a 0.6-meter level of accuracy. The parish is partnering with aWhere, Inc. of Colorado to test a new imagery based system to locate and analyze potential mosquito breeding sites.

- Nola

"Landsat time analysis with ArcGIS Online coming in May!"

- @josephkerski, details

by Adena Schutzberg on 03/30 at 06:17 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

I was reading the latest ArcNews and took some time to carefully read the Open Source Technology and Esri article. I'm very pleased Esri is beginning to address open source formally. The article highlights some of the misconceptions about open source, which is always welcome. I learned that Esri uses two different open source licenses in its current list of two open source products. The OSM Editor is under a Microsoft Public License and the GeoPortal Extension is under Apache 2.0.  Interesting.

More interesting? This comment about the open API for the file geodatabase:

Esri's most recent API, the File Geodatabase API, while not yet open source, opens up the file geodatabase for developers to create applications that access file geodatabases from a variety of outside environments without using ArcObjects. 

It's that "yet" that struck me. I was not aware Esri planned to open the API up under and open source license. I thought the end goal was "just" an API. Did I read that right? What benefit would the API itself being open source mean to Esri? To the developer community? 

by Adena Schutzberg on 03/30 at 05:32 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

Finally announced on the Simple Geo blog late afternoon yesterday. It's now in public beta. I wonder if most of us should not pay attention until anything gets to this point. It's sure been a long slog with SimpleGeo.

- Simple Geo Blog

--- original post 3/29/11 ----

Mashable and other say the launch is today. Nothing on the website yet; Storage is still listed in "private beta."

SimpleGeo is introducing a cloud-based geospatial database Tuesday, called SimpleGeo Storage. It’s an extension of the company’s à la carte location services platform.

The new database offering is fine tuned to fit the real-time needs of developers who use location in their applications. The on-demand database, with pricing determined by usage, will be available for web, Android, iOS and Windows Mobile 7 platforms.

It's fast, uses an HTTP API and can store many different kinds of geodata (lat/lon, IP, etc.). So far an unnamed record label is using it and so is Posterous, for its events listing. Pricing: "SimpleGeo is introducing a new pricing structure around the database release. It will cost 25 cents per 1,000 API calls and 10 cents per 1,000 database records."

- Mashable

by Adena Schutzberg on 03/30 at 04:32 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share


Egyptair, Egypt's largest airline, reportedly has erased Israel from the map on its Web site, showing instead Jordan stretching to the Mediterranean Sea.



The World Bank has approved an International Development Association credit of $30 million to support the development of a national statistical system for Tanzania. It appears some of the money will be used to build a GIS. The bank is responding to increased demand "for higher quality official statistics in Tanzania by users in recent years... The new data users from civil societies, the business community, media and academia have also appeared to be demanding new and more advanced statistical products."

Business Daily


Quartet envoy Tony Blair’s offices quickly removed from their websites Monday a Mideast map that did not label Israel, shortly after The Jerusalem Post brought the matter to their attention.

The map on the websites was an illustration for an article written by Blair on the so called “Arab spring” – headlined “We can’t just be spectators in this revolution” – that appeared in The Times and the Wall Street Journal earlier this month. The map and the article appeared on the Office of Tony Blair website, as well as on the website of the Office of the Quartet Representative.

- The Jerusalem Post

by Adena Schutzberg on 03/30 at 03:47 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share
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