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Monday, August 27, 2012

I've pointed out before how Esri has been chanelling Microsoft in its naming conventions, product numbering and certification program in recent years. Esri marketing has even become more more mainstream and Microsoft-like.

In recent days, it feels like Microsoft is looking over Esri's shoulders (though I'm sure it is not) in selecting its first new logo in 25 years (PC Mag). Here's the new Microsoft Logo:

And, here's the old ESRI (how we spelled it back then) logo that was similar to the one on my first ESRI business cards circa 1992 (via GIS and Science):

by Adena Schutzberg on 08/27 at 03:12 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

I think Jan Sears of the Press Enterprise has it exactly right regarding one of the challenges of Esri's social media maps for natural disasters and other events. She's speaking about the latest iteration for Isaac.

If you go to the map, the introduction will tell you that you can see real-time effects of the storm through social media posts. But if you click on those posts today, Friday, Aug. 24 — not so much. I clicked through quite a few this morning and found advertisements, photos of people drinking Hurricanes (the alcoholic kind), photos of waves and a couple of links to hurricane-relevant info.

Maybe when the storm gets closer to the U.S., the tweets will get more interesting.

I'll suggest "relevant" may be a better term than "interesting," but her point, regarding better sematic search tools is spot on.

I wonder if map viewers go looking for a Help menu or icon. I did. There is no Help menu or icon. The plain text above the map describes one action users can take:

See the real-time effects of the storm via social media posts. To change the search terms, go to the Social menu, click the settings icon, and update the keyword.

I wonder how the UI/UX savvy would rate that in terms of consistency in offering "help"?

- Press Enterprise Blog

by Adena Schutzberg on 08/27 at 03:03 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

But because it was only used by specific industries and tech-heads until recently, GIS is often confused with the little device that says “Turn left here” in a soothing British accent from its perch on your dashboard.


Your Global Positioning System (or GPS, as you may know it) knows to take that left by consulting a map of distances, twists, turns and landmarks, accurate down to the meter and spanning the Earth, according to Kurowski. This collection of information, accessible in seconds to drivers as well as Google Maps users, state departments, the U.S. Census Bureau and many others, is what’s called GIS.

- Arlington Advocate (who's GIS was recently updated; its built on MapServer by PeopleGIS, press release)

by Adena Schutzberg on 08/27 at 03:03 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

Sinclair Community College [Ohio] has selected UTC Aerospace Systems to provide it with Small Unmanned Aerial Systems, or SUAS, to use in its first responders training program, according to

- Dayton Biz News

NUI [National University of Ireland] Galway has officially launched the Geographical Information System and Science (GIS) centre in the University's Ryan Institute. The GIS centre covers both technology and science and is used for analysing spatial data across society, including economics, government, business and environmental management. The most popular applications of GIS include Google Earth and GPS navigation systems. 

- TechCentral

News from Junior Achievement, Waterbury Connecticut:

Geographic Information Systems
The GIS program, which is based on global navigation and geography, assists the participants in locating and mapping landmarks in the city of Waterbury. They are uploading and creating maps in order to learn more about our city. They have identified the major roads, parks, recreation centers and more. They are learning to use keys and legends. The use of the GIS to create maps and learning to use them will allow our youth to navigate anywhere without the use of technology, a skill we should all have!

No, I'm not aware that using GIS to make maps allows you to navigate without technology. Is that a goal of this JA project? 

- Waterbury Observer

by Adena Schutzberg on 08/27 at 03:00 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share
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