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Tuesday, February 26, 2013

At the National States Geographic Information Consortium, Sean McSpaden, deputy CIO for the State of Oregon and chairman of the National Information Sharing Consortium (NISC) provided an overview of this relatively new initiative. NISC, launched in June 2012, looks to facilitate agreements to share governance documents, information plans and standard operating procedure with a goal to enhance situational awareness and improve community involvement regardless of jurisdiction.

According to NISC's mission statement: 
For years, state and local jurisdictions have been sharing code, data, and other tools on an ad-hoc basis, most recently through the Virtual USA® (vUSA®) pilot projects sponsored by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) First Responders Group (FRG). In reflecting on the value of these experiences, the State of Oregon and the Commonwealth of Virginia recognized many opportunities to leverage one another’s efforts toward “operationalizing” each of their situational awareness and information sharing capabilities. The State of California; the City of Charlottesville, VA; and the City of Charlotte, NC joined the conversation, and the group agreed that a formalized approach to accessing and sharing information was needed.  The decision to form the National Information Sharing Consortium (NISC) was made.
More information about NISC can be seen in this video of McSpaden's presentation at the Esri International User Conference last July.
 
Contact details:

Continue reading...

by Joe Francica on 02/26 at 07:33 PM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

The next iteration of the Department of Interior's (DOI) goal to expose and coordinate geospatial data publishing is underway at Geoplatform.gov. The transition from the Geospatial OneStop (geodata.gov) and leveraging Data.gov is nearly complete according to Jerry Johnston, the DIO's Geographic Information Officer (GIO) who gave a presentation at the Esri Federal User Conference in Washington DC.

According to Johnston, if you go to the website today, you'll be redirected to a beta platform site. In the new Geoplatform.gov, the portal is using drupal for its content management system (CMS)  and shares the data catalog with the Data.gov portal. In fact, nearly all government agencies wishing to expose more data and metadata will be using the Data.gov catalog. Naming conventions may also be established for agencies who had previously hosted geospatial data. Look for website such as FEMA.Geoplatform.gov or NOAA.Geoplatform.gov as both agencies are looking to ustilize the investment in web development that the DOI is undertaking.
 
And while users of Data.gov wanted more maps, users of Geoplatform.gov wanted more background information and metadata. Hence, these web portals will leverage each other's strengths.
 
Johnston explained that the new portal will be much more than a website for downloading data. The intent is to offer additional services such as a "marketplace" to identify other data needs by customers and a "Labs" area where developers can share source code and work on apps. Johnston thinks that this will be a good way to understand how the government can do better at collaboration and making data available to each other in and outside of government.
 
One thing that will be featured is a dashboard that will provide statistics on how much data is used and whether particular data sets are over or under utilized.
 
One question that was asked by an attendee is whether Geoplatform.gov will host state and local geospatial data. Johnston explained that one of the challenges is that until now, the portal has been hosting executive branch records. Data offered through Geoplatform.gov will be vetted by theme managers. If that manager deems the data is significant under the A-16 Circular directive, that data will be hosted in the catalog even if the source is a state or local authority. However,   it may depend on how the authority releases these data and under what agreement. Johnston believes that Geoplatform.gov should be a "national" repository not only a federal data catalog.
by Joe Francica on 02/26 at 06:52 PM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

The bottom line was that 2012 was a big year and 2013 will be big, too:

  • Grew revenue 24% to $421.4 million. 
  • Grew next 12-month backlog 37% to $419 million.
  • Commercial revenue was a record
  • $535-660M for 2013

Leadership reviewed four goals for the year and how they were met:

 

1) Meet Full potential of Enhanced View

  • met and exceeded
  • updated ground stations
  • integrated with NGA
  • enhanced delivery
  • combining with GeoEye delivers more product, faster

Shared that the company is in a good place, should sequestration go forward.

 

2) Diversification of Revenue

  • $195M from non Enhanced View money this year, up 24%
  • Expect that to be higher, about 65% from diversified, with GeoEye, next year
  • Grew in international govs, LBS and other industries

3) Investment Excellence

  • Joining with GeoEye enhances value, content, delivery
  • And supports other goals
  • Financial synergies - raising projections - $100 million growth after six quarters

4) Develop a Culture of Leadership

  • Key hires and promotions
  • Diverse team with record of success
  • Two new folks from GeoEye in senior leadership

In the Q&A I found two questions interesting.

 

One was about expansion of non-US government revenue. There are two areas that look promising, but have longer sales cycles.

  • humanitarian areas
  • local law enforcement

The second was about use of capital. 

  • Expect more acquisitions

- replay of call and slides (pdf)

- press release

by Adena Schutzberg on 02/26 at 02:57 PM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

The ad for help with the Apple Maps app in Australia reads:

The Maps team is looking for people with knowledge of mapping, great testing skills, and local expertise to help us build better and better maps. In this position, you will be responsible for the quality of map data for your region. You will test changes to map data, provide feedback on unique local map requirements, collect ground truth information, and evaluate competing products.

- News.com.au

Intel owned Telmap has switched from licensing Nokia Location Services data (NAVTEQ) to licensing similar data from TomTom (Tele Atlas). But the company will use Nokia data for customers who request it. Why the switch? Per Oren Nissim, CEO of Telmap:

Today the map data quality of TomTom and NAVTEQ is completely equivalent. With our latest LBS developments such as M8 we required more flexibility in the map licensing terms and condition and TomTom offered us the best business model.

 
Josh Williams tells the story of how Foursquare ate his company's (Gowalla's) lunch. The long form original is at Medium; a recap at Biz Insider.
by Adena Schutzberg on 02/26 at 06:47 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

First filed for in 2009, Apple's U.S. Patent No. 8,386,677 for "Communicating location information between a portable device and an accessory" allows for any portable media device, including iPhones and iPads, to exchange GPS data with a separate accessory through wired or wireless protocols. 

The patent covers a location-enabled device sharing data with non-location-enabled one, the reverse and a sitaution where both have location information and the perceived "most accurate" location is used for the task at hand. Apple Insider suggests the patent is intriguing in the context of the recently reported iWatch.

Abstract:

Location data is exchanged between a portable media device and an accessory. If the portable media player is equipped with location determining capability, the portable media device can communicate its location data to the accessory, and the accessory can use this location data to perform various tasks. If the accessory is equipped with location assistance capability, the accessory can communicate location data to the portable media device, and the portable media device can use this location data to perform various tasks.

- Apple Insider

by Adena Schutzberg on 02/26 at 06:28 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share
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