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Tuesday, May 31, 2011

NEARC 2011 Educator's Day is Sunday November 13 in Saratoga Springs, NY. Last year's event, held in Newport, RI was just great. I wrote about it here. I'm thinking about teaching and engagement a lot these days. I wrote about engagement ideas for GIS presentations in an article last week.

Thesis: This year I want to follow up on something I suggsted in that write up. One thing I want to see is geography/GIS/other teachers teaching GIS/with GIS. I don't get to see any teaching now that I'm no longer a student. During my in-residence teaching I didn't see any teaching. During my online teaching I got to review another online course, but other than that, didn't get to see any teaching. I'm thinking other GIS educators would love to see even a small sampling of how other instuctors teach. 

Action: I'm putting together a panel to do just that. I'm looking for GIS educators (K-12, higher ed, distance, informal) willing to share 10 or 15 minutes minutes of teaching. I'd love for instructors to select a small topic (or a subtopic of a complete lesson) and teach those who attend the session just as they would their students. (Those involved in distance learning might need to tweek things a bit for a face to face exchange, but I know they have much to bring to the table.) I'm confident we'll then wrap up with a lively Q&A and those in the session will take away some new ideas.

Want to share your great teaching? Let me know soon as the submission deadline in June 15. Contact me at: adena(at)

by Adena Schutzberg on 05/31 at 10:40 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

As one of the final steps in the RFI process, the Core team is conducting a workshop for interested participants to expand our knowledge of the administrative, contractual, technical and financial characteristics of the cloud environment, and to discuss alternative consortium governance structures.  Five cloud providers plus the government’s defacto GIS software provider will also deliver structured cloud presentations, and discuss the current and future implications of GIS software licensing within the cloud environment.  (APB Coverage)

When & Where:

The workshop will be held from 8:00 am to 5:00 pm on June 14 & 15, 2011, in Helena, MT;

Best Western Great Northern Hotel.

835 Great Northern Boulevard

Helena, Montana 59601-3315

(406) 457-5500

Issues to be discussed:

Understanding the critical success factors of cloud implementations.

Organizational implications for customers within the cloud. For example, in areas like contract administration, customer technical expertise, staff re-purposing, etc.

Impact on customer infrastructure. Specifically, what should we expect in bandwidth impact?

Differentiators between vendor business and technical models.

What are vendor thoughts on the aggregated demand pricing model? That approach combines all community usage during a billing period so that all participants benefit from the aggregate volume pricing structure.

What has been the vendors’ experience with hybrid cloud instances? In particular, with customer private cloud environments.

What is your understanding of an aggregate pricing model? Are you willing to contract using such a model?

How could you help government organizations “control” access to cloud resources by their respective agencies or departments?

What impact will the cloud environment have on GIS software licensing both now and in the future?


There is no charge to attend the workshop. Travel and hotel charges will be at the attendee’s expense. Breakfasts and lunches during the workshop will be courtesy of the Western States Contracting Alliance. In the interest of space we ask you to limit your organization to two attendees.

Information on registration procedures will be sent to you early the week of May 30.

Because of limited flights into and out of Helena, attendees are encouraged to arrive on Monday, June 13 and depart on Thursday, June 16. Please do not make hotel reservations at the conference hotel prior to June 3rd.

If you wish to attend the workshop, or if you have questions, please contact:

Robin Trenbeath

Montana Geographic Information Officer


by Adena Schutzberg on 05/31 at 03:27 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

"Google: Mobile map search surging past desktop use" It's heading that way and will likely occur this summer per Marissa Meyer at Google speaking at TechCrunch's event last week. Surprising? Significant? Hard to say.

- Computerworld

Maps+ adds tracking and location-based alarms to Google Maps


I'm not sure which I like less the name of the new local sharing startup OhSoWe, or the name it gives to your neighborhood, “Neighborstead.” The solution, from the founder of OpenTable, the restaurant reservation tool, aims to help locals share tools, services, etc. But, forget all that fakery on Google Maps, your address must be verified to play - via a credit card or a postcard. 

- Mashable

by Adena Schutzberg on 05/31 at 03:16 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

Haywood Community College in NC is rearraging its GIS certificate.

The Geographic Information System (GIS) specialist certificate has been moved to the Low Impact Development Program as a greater benefit to students.

- Ashville Citizen Times

Very excited to see that three of my favorite GIS educators are part of the Ed UC Plenary: David DiBiase, Allen Carroll and Don Cooke. 

- Esri Ed UC

I just recently learned there was something called mobile learning (mlearning) and a related idea, location-based learning. The former is mostly about using mobile devices as tools for learning - aka "learning anywhere," while the latter is about providing appropriate or just-in-time learning based on location. A paper in IEEE Explore (abstract only is free) just this month describes a learning management system (LMS, aka a CMS for education) that includes the location of the instructor as one of the parameters of the content. So, as I read it, the instructor builds the content while out in the field. I wonder if that's realistic?

- IEEE Explore

TargetMap is another quick way to get your Excel spreadsheet data onto a Google Map. It's free if you share the map with everyone and there's a fee to keep in private. I first noticed it last November.

- via GIS Lounge

by Adena Schutzberg on 05/31 at 03:00 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

“GIS, of course, that’s the future. We have no one here trained to manage any of that stuff."

- Scott Lacks, the police department’s communications division supervisor, addressed the Albertville City Council (AL) regarding funding beyond that of a grant for the software. Converting the data will required more funds.

- Sand Mountain Reporter

“I think that's a bargain for what we get."

Rick Thompson of the Polk County GIS Department (MN) speaking about the new GIS system with an initial cost around $26,000,and the license agreements of approximately $10,000 a year.

- Crookston Times

by Adena Schutzberg on 05/31 at 03:00 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share
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