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Friday, May 06, 2011

Wyoming is getting its own geospatial extension person! The position is modeled after a federal program.

Scott Lieske has been hired, with support from the Wyoming Excellence in Higher Education Endowment, as the project manager for the first two years of the initiative. Lieske, a UW Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics research scientist, will work with community development and education groups throughout the state and in collaboration with UW Cooperative Extension Service programs in community development education.

The effort is jointly hosted by the Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources and the Wyoming Geographic Information Science Center (WyGISC) at UW.

The goal is to expand opportunities for citizens and organizations across Wyoming to apply geospatial tools for economic and social benefit, says Jeff Hamerlinck, WyGISC director.

- University of Wyoming

Westborough, MA is now on Twitter and Facebook, and the sites are run by the GIS person! Also noteworthy, "a social media policy" is in place guiding how the tools are to be used. 

Dodd said the Westborough sites on both social networks are run by Mark Stockman, Westborough’s MIS/GIS Director, who created both sites shortly after Selectmen approved the social media policy.

- The Daily Westborough

York County, NE is now one of six counties providing access to assessor information online via a Web app from GIS Workshop. The focus in the article in the local paper in on ease of use. I was disappointed the help had no actual help (it was blank in my visit running MacOSX 10 and I was unable to dismiss the dialog box that popped up). I also found the "tool tip" for "measure" interesting:  "get the measure of selected area of length." I tried to select something to get its measurement and could not. That's because in fact you must draw the feature to be measured. It's not the same "selected" as in the next tool over: "clear selected features." (I'd love to see a GIS class offer suggestions to enhance the user i interface.)

- York News Times

by Adena Schutzberg on 05/06 at 01:16 PM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

There is, for example, the young man who mapped all of Sao Paolo and then licensed his GIS to Google for its local Maps. Patrizia, on my right at lunch, tells me that with a better entrepreneurial infrastructure perhaps he could have been Google Maps!

One of many examples of what startups are doing in Brazil.

- Fast Company

I used to complain about how every city paper had to write the obligatory "TomTom or "NAVTEQ is driving its cars around to map our city" piece. The newest geo story to have that sort of frequency? The "I told Google it was wrong on the map and they fixed it" story. Here's one from Canada.

- Niagra This Week

Google Introduces Service That Shows Users the Inside of Local Businesses

Marissa Meyer announced that yesterday. Not surprising to me.

- Bloomberg

Googlers used some of their 20% time to put together maps for the huge Boulder Bolder, a 10k race in that Colorado City.  Most wished for race map in my list: driving directions to drive the course! I make them by hand by following some of the handdrawn USTAF certification maps! Yech!

- Lat Long Blog

Google announced Thursday that it is gearing up to map the world's newest country: The Republic of South Sudan...

Google is teaming with the World Bank, Sudan Institute, Voices for Sudan, The Enough Project and other organizations—as well as 70 members of the Sudanese Diaspora—to map South Sudan. 

- VatorNews

by Adena Schutzberg on 05/06 at 03:47 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

Building on a program out of San Francisco, the Association of Monterey Bay Area Governments (California) is going high-tech, using next week's Bike Week to urge bicyclists to help with regional bike planning by downloading a smart phone application that tracks their routes.

The app available for iPhone and Android and, the article notes, it will not track you if you do not have it on.

- Mercury News

The latest CACM (Communications of the ACM) issue includes three papers that address crowdsourcing and VGI.

Reflecting on the DARPA Red Balloon Challenge

Crowdsourcing Systems on the World-Wide Web

Emergency! Web 2.0 to the Rescue!

- via @mhacklay

The Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CMNI) is still working on its broadband map. Fifteen people showed up to a meeting asking for residents to take the broadband survey.

One Economy Corp., a Washington, D.C.-based nonprofit, hosted a town hall meeting Tuesday night to obtain community input on its broadband mapping program for the CNMI.

I have to admit, broadband mapping is helping us better understand US/territory geography!

- Saipan Today

by Adena Schutzberg on 05/06 at 03:34 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

Kenya

The Kenya Power and Lighting Company is doing a pilot with GIS.

The digital map, which is being deployed at a cost of $3 million, will also facilitate measurements of the length of line required to connect new customers, highlight market centres and settlements for potential electrification, and allow the online analysis of network losses.

- ITWeb

Costa Rica

Costa Rica is taking the first steps to a "311" program, similar to that used in New York, consolidating reports of crimes by citizens onto a digital map that will be part of an information database to allow authorities to make decisions regarding the deployment of officers and increased surveillance.

The hope is it'll be fully up and running by 2014. The government will be incorporating the popularity of social networks like Facebook and Twitter into its plan.

- Inside Costa Rica

Ethiopia

A workshop aimed at demonstrating how global data sets can be used in Africa was held on the margins of the ongoing Second Session of the Committee on Information, Science and Technology (CODIST). It highlighted the value of the tech and why Africa was so poorly mapped.

Participants at the session were informed of the findings by the National Geospatial Information (NGI) of South Africa which concludes that Africa is poorly mapped and most of the data are unreliable. Among the many reasons for the dire state of affairs is “the lack of programmatic approaches to the collection and maintenance of datasets at the national level.” This fact complicates prospects for effective planning and delivery of public services to citizens.

- New Business Ethiopia

by Adena Schutzberg on 05/06 at 03:25 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share
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