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Thursday, September 22, 2011

The Alaska Volcano Observatory is keeping tabs on the Aleutian Island-based Cleveland Volcano, a 5,676-foot peak. It continues to expel lava out its crater, something it's been doing since mid-July.

Satellite imagery shows a lava dome growing inside the volcano's crater. Satellite data also shows continued heat generated from the volcano, according to the observatory, a joint federal-state organization.


Both BBC S.A and River Plare S.A [beef companies] have been caught twice by satellite imagery of illegally clearing protected forestryin Chaco [Paraguary].

Satellite imagery is one of the tools used to try to protect the land inhabited by the Ayoreo people hoping to save their ancestral home in the Chaco.

- Truth Out

ESA has been working with Ecocert, an organic certification organization, to use satellite images to spot the differences between the fingerprints of organic and non-organic winter wheat and corn to support the certification process.
Five different satellites were used during the trials to develop the new approach: SPOT-4, Kompsat-2, Landsat-5, Proba and WorldView-2.
by Adena Schutzberg on 09/22 at 03:00 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

HipGeo lets users record their world with the app then share their trips and stories with its "HipGeo Player" that provides a dynamic recap of places, routes and photos in animated displays.

That's from the press release. The big differentiator? Collects data passively and can sent it to various social networks to specifically selected groups using minimal batter power. I'm not digging the name...

- press release

Foursquare is rolling out a new privacy setting this week that enables the user to designate a Foursquare locale as a private residence by selecting “Home” as the venue’s primary category. That way it's only visible to friends, not everyone. And, you can edit or delete the "home" entry. As Mashable notes, and this was my first thought: a bit late, eh?

- Mashable

OnStar’s latest T&C has some very unsettling updates to it, which include selling your personal GPS location information, speed, safety belt usage, and other information to third parties, including law enforcement. To add insult to a slap in the face, the company insists they will continue collecting and selling this personal information even after you cancel your service, unless you specifically shut down the data connection to the vehicle after canceling.

- John Zdziarski's Domain via @timoreilly

by Adena Schutzberg on 09/22 at 03:00 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

I've noted the federally funded study to determine the best way to find volunteer firefighters before (APB coverage). Here's how one county involved in the GIS study is doing.

The study is designed to help departments reach that goal [having enough paid and volunteer firefighters]. Of the 20 departments taking part, 10 participated in a Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Segmentation study, and the other 10 are in a control group engaging in a traditional recruitment campaign, according to a news release.
The Martinsville [VA] department was part of the GIS study, which was based on the premise that studying demographic data about current firefighters will help the department target its recruitment efforts, Shrader said.
“They looked at all demographic data for current employees and volunteers to see what we were made of ... that way they provide us with a plan of targeted areas to explore for volunteers,” he said.
The VFCA enlisted two firms, Esri and Intterra, to perform the detailed analysis, the release said. Shrader said the analysis looked at everything from where firefighters like eat to what they enjoy doing in their free time.
The idea was to identify the types of people who would be the best candidates for volunteer fire service, where they can be found and how best to communicate with them, the release said.
With the GIS study complete, Shrader is planning several recruitment events at local venues that potential volunteers likely visit. An example might be a restaurant the firefighters consider a favorite or a store where many of them shop, he said.
The state of Texas is getting a fire risk GIS app ready for November or December.The Texas Wildfire Risk Assessment Portal will provide the Texas Forest Service "to send risk information and create awareness about wildfires in the state." What's to be in it?

Public Viewer

Users can zoom to any place in Texas to ask “What's Your Risk?” They will be able to find their risk level within a two-mile radius, plus information on how to reduce their risk.

Professional Viewer

Local governments will be able to better plan their wildfire protection with this tool. The highlights include the capability to define a project area, generate a detailed risk summary report, and export and download wildfire risk GIS data.

Fire Occurrence Explorer

Users will be able to analyze historic fire occurrences. This will help them sort out previous causes of fire in their area.


Ventura California now has its GIS data online in several public interactive maps (Esri Flex) and downloadable static maps (pdf). Why now?

The analysts said they are able to offer GIS to the public because of advances in computer browsers, so individual users don't have to invest in expensive mapping software to use the maps.


Greater Greater Washington analyzes the cost of geodata in the counties near DC - and the cost get pretty huge. Great comments to the piece, too.


by Adena Schutzberg on 09/22 at 02:59 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share
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