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Friday, May 30, 2014

Crowdsourcing Animal Disease Map
The interactive, online “Worms and Germs” map created by University of Guelph professor Scott Weese, Pathobiology, and former grad student Maureen Anderson, now at the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture and Food, is designed to track the spread of infectious diseases in dogs, cats and horses.
The data will be crowdsourced, but only veterinary technicians and veterinarians who register for the site will be able to enter clinical and test data. The Google Maps based effort has one of the more complex legends I've seen.
"A lot of the data is now in computerized form rather than being in those old paper files that sat in doctors' offices and could not be used," says McLafferty. "The EHR revolution is also creating a revolution in GIS applications."
That's the word from Sara L. McLafferty is the department head and a professor of geography and geographic information science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign who is quoted at length by Healthcare IT News.
Value of GPS for Dementia Patients and Caregivers?
Do GPS tracking devices increase quality of life for dementia patients and caregivers? A study in BMC Psychiatry suggests that even creating a meaningful randomized controlled study will be difficult. The good news, I guess, is that the perception of value is pretty high.
by Adena Schutzberg on 05/30 at 05:43 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

Thursday, May 29, 2014

The Islamic Republic News Agency of Iran has reported that three earth obseravation satellites will be launched in the coming year. According to the report:

Three Iranian remote-sensing satellites of Zafar, Tolou and AutSat are slated for launch using Simorgh Launcher in the coming year (to start March 21, 2015), deputy head of Iran Space Agency said on Wednesday. The satellites are designed to gather data from the environment and forecast natural disasters ... The satellites can provide more accurate images from the earth in times of natural disasters such as flooding, tsunami and arson, he said, while comment of the applications of images of the satellites.

by Joe Francica on 05/29 at 06:19 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

Registration Open for Goodall Roots and Shoots MOOC

It's been talked about for some time, but now registration is open for the course which runs July 7 - Aug 3. You'll need a Google account to register and everyone is welcome (including non-educators).

Here are the learning objectives:

Through participation in this course students will:

  • Be able to identify how mapping plays a role in JGI's conservation initiatives;
  • Be able to define community mapping and explain the concept of place-based education;
  • Be able to explain how community mapping fits in to the seven elements and five phases of service learning;
  • Feel comfortable making a community map using Google Maps Engine Lite;
  • Be confident teaching their learners about community mapping, defining a community need and planning a service project to address this need; and
  • Feel comfortable integrating the Roots & Shoots formula into their lessons.

Esri Commits to President's ConnectED

In continuing its support of education, and in line with the President’s ConnectED vision of opening new opportunity through technology in the classroom, Esri will provide to every U.S. K-12 school in America free access to ArcGIS Online Organization accounts — the same GIS technology as used by government and business. These allow users to map and analyze data, create and share content, and collaborate in the cloud -- via computers, tablets, or smartphones, anytime, anywhere connected.  This commitment expands on Esri’s successful program in pilot schools at all levels across the country, and will allow students to do projects of unlimited content, from global to local, building community, as well as knowledge and skills for college and career.

The commitment was announced in conjunction with the White House Science Fair. I hope Esri has some way to manage credits and accounts for all those students. I know university educators have had a very hard time with that. See more at this blog post. And, there's a video of a Bloomberg News person asking Jack Dangermond some really good questions.

Map: Compare State Medals in the Best High School Rankings

The map below, [based on U.S. News and World data] which can be sorted by year, provides a national view of Best High Schools rankings distribution as well as a peek into state data across two years of rankings. The data reveal a few overarching trends. 

Tops in 2014? California, Maine and Connecticut. But, see the methodology...

Continue reading...

by Adena Schutzberg on 05/29 at 03:32 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Toowoomba Street Cleaners Help Homeless

Ozcare homeless outreach co-ordinator Ricky Fletcher said council workers on late night and early morning rounds had started noting details including the location, time and number of people sleeping rough in the city.

The information is passed to Ozcare, to help it map where the city's homeless people are sleeping in order to get them the help and facilities they need.

No details on the tech used, but a cell phone app sounds like a natural fit.

Google Pitching Maps for Emergency Response and Recovery 

The monthly series of blog posts will appear on SeeFurtherWithGoogle.

Bill Would Restrict Access to Farm Complaints with Imagery, GPS Locations in NC

If a state Senate bill submitted last week passes, the public will no longer have access to aerial photos and GPS coordinates submitted with complaints against North Carolina farms, WRAL reports.

While the bill's sponsor, Sen. Andrew Brock, R-Davie, says its chances of passage are slim, the proposed legislation has spurred conversation about whether farmers' rights to privacy outweigh the public's right to information.

Continue reading...

by Adena Schutzberg on 05/28 at 03:35 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

President Obama announced ConnectED Initiative in 2013 to invite businesses to aid in the technical education of the U.S. students. The White House announced Esri’s contribution to ConnectED to in conjunction with the White House Science Fair. Esri is giving ArcGIS Online for Organizations subscriptions to all K12 school in the US who request one. Amazon is helping out at the back end with its Amazon Web Services. Its home on the Web is here.

Esri has developed an ArcGIS Online group for educators to learn more about ArcGIS Online and how to implement it in their classrooms. K12 GIS Org offers instructional materials, links to maps, links to blogs and more. There are some new looking documents here that existing users might find helpful. I found: AGO Use Strategies: "50,000-foot level" guidance for educators about how to take advantage of ArcGIS Online's various login opportunities. (2-page PDF.) I also found: ArcGIS Online SkillBuilder - A 12 page PDF of skills educators and students can work though to gain competency with the software.

Per the press release the donation is worth $1B.

- press release
- Esri Ed Blog on the topic
- National Geographic's Daniel Edelson comments on the commitment: GIS The Missing Educational Technology

Headlines from other coverage:

ForbesBillionaire Jack Dangermond's Esri Pledges $1 Billion Of Mapping Software To America's K-12 Schools - number of times the term "billionaire" is used: 5

THE Journal (The Higher Ed Journal): K-12 Schools Get Free Cloud-Based GIS Mapping Software - "Individual ArcGIS licenses run $10,000 per school. Through the program, the licences and hosting will be provided for free."

Ed Week Blog: Big Player in Geographic Systems Donates Software to Every School in Country - "The goal is to grant every school in the country access to ArcGIS Online, geovisual software that allows users to reference, store, manage and visualize information based on location—essentially merging maps and databases in order to see and analyze information in new ways."

Redlands Daily FactsRedlands' Esri pledges $1B donation to schools - "Each ArcGIS online account is worth $10,000, according to the company." "Google Earth has long been a staple in classrooms, but the ArcGIS software allows students and teachers to map data they generate themselves."

by Adena Schutzberg on 05/27 at 08:32 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share
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