Africa Rising - Geospatial Must Underpin Economic Development

In November last year, Andrew Coote of ConsultingWhere visited Addis Ababa for the joint Global Spatial Data Infrastructure (GSDI) and AfricaGIS conferences. GiSPro originally commissioned him to write a GSDI-focused report. But with colleague Phil Knight they realised that a wider focus on the rising use and importance of geospatial technology on the world’s most misunderstood continent would perhaps be a more valuable contribution. The quality and diversity of the projects described by African geospatial scientists in Addis Ababa was humbling. For too long, western eyes have often viewed Africa with a mixture of pity and despair, perhaps conditioned by... (read more)
2017-05-31 03:28:35

GeoGraphical Passwords

A study on cybersecurity suggests that visual map-based passwords would make life harder for thieves but easier for the rest of us who struggle to remember jumbles of letters and numbers. But will users just get frustrated? Adena Schutzberg considers the challenges and potential benefits for our industry. I read about research recently that suggests using map locations as part of a computer security protocol in place of traditional passwords. The idea is that memorable places or patterns on maps could stand in for the strings of numbers and letters that we currently use. Cybersecurity researcher Ziyad S. Al-Salloum hopes... (read more)
2017-04-07 05:04:32

Today, Southampton; Tomorrow, the World

As I finished my editorial this news arrived and deserves, I think, pride of place. We all know how Vanessa Lawrence has driven Ordnance Survey through some turbulent times as the longest-serving head of OS for over 100 years and her gradual departure is certainly newsworthy: Dr Vanessa Lawrence CB, Director General and Chief Executive of Ordnance Survey, will step down on 14 April to focus, for the rest of this year, on a new role as Secretary General of Ordnance Survey International. Her current deputy, Neil Ackroyd, will act as head of the national mapping agency until a successor... (read more)
2017-04-07 11:02:50

A New Perspective on Mapping with Night Lights

The sprawling glow of urban lights are often seen as a sign of progress. But concerns are being raised over the impact of light pollution plus street lighting at night has become a topic for public discussion. Faith Clark, geospatial technology consultant, explains how Bluesky’s integrated Night Mapper system can provide focused intelligence for this debate. The world at night is becoming a brighter place as artificial lights spread like a web across sprawling cities. The onslaught of bright lights has usually proceeded unchallenged and has been seen as a sign of progress and prosperity. However, concerns are now being... (read more)
2017-05-31 03:15:24

Agile and Open when Visualising Assets

Tom Stork explains how an interactive web viewer has allowed Scottish Water to unlock the potential of its data and share geospatial information throughout the organisation. Large, data-rich organisations face inevitable problems when accessing their information (1). Ever increasing emphasis is being placed on data-driven decision-making and a closed proprietary desktop GIS can struggle to provide the speed of access and clarity of visualisation required by decision makers. Creating a data-driven organisation and altering business processes begins with progressive small steps leading, eventually, to a paradigm shift. Solutions need to develop from early ideas before becoming the foundations of better... (read more)
2017-05-31 03:22:32

Visibility Maps of Turin

Including Atmospheric Conditions in Viewshed Analysis of DSMs
High-rise buildings affect the skyline of a city and thus the human perception of urban spaces. From which points can a building, or parts of the building, be seen? The answer requires viewshed analysis of raster or vector 3D city models. Visibility is not just a geometric exercise in which lines of sight are calculated using standard GIS tools. Visibility and perception of space are also determined by atmospheric conditions, contrast between foregrounds and backgrounds including the sky, visual acuity and psychological aspects. Here, the authors present a simple but accurate method for generating visibility maps based on the above... (read more)
2014-04-30 11:50:47

Wake Up and Read the Small Print!

Businesses and government understand the value of Big Geospatial Data, while citizens are only learning their role in contributing to Big Data, argues Adena Schutzberg. In May, Strava, a company that offers tracking and competitive tools to cyclists and other athletes, announced a new data product that prompted some distress. The product, Strava Metro, includes detailed but anonymized geospatial data about cyclists’ routes in an area of interest. One of the first customers, the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT), began talking to Strava last year and received data in December. ODOT paid $20,000 for data about just under 18,000 cyclists’... (read more)
2016-12-22 02:27:09

Esri UK Awarded Place on the G-Cloud 5 Framework

Esri UK, the leading B2B mapping and analytics company, has been appointed by the Crown Commercial Service to supply cloud-based GIS (Geographic Information Systems) and services to the UK public sector.  Under G-Cloud 5, Esri UK is able to offer an extended range of services that harness location-based data, driving new innovations and efficiencies in the delivery of public services. “Location-based data underpins a large number of services delivered by the public sector,” commented Stuart Bonthrone, sales and marketing director, Esri UK. “Many local authorities and public bodies are now realising that understanding and utilising the concept of ‘location’ allows... (read more)
2017-01-06 03:07:34

Big Data, Polygons, Land Registration and Geohazards

In articles and in the news columns we have an eclectic mix of topics and geography this month – from land reform to lidar, from pricing and licensing to centralised address maintenance and from Wales to the south Pacific via eastern Europe. Throw in crowdsourcing and Big Data and I think we have something for everyone. Last month we commented on the Land Registry being rushed towards the private sector and its simultaneous attempts to offer wider services to local authorities. This month it seems that Ordnance Survey is following suit and, although there are no (public) consultations on privatisation,... (read more)
2016-12-22 02:32:36

Topcon MAGNET Field GIS Software Offers Cloud-based Data Sharing Capability

Topcon Positioning Group announces the release of the MAGNET Field GIS software kit designed for efficient data collection, navigation and maintenance tasks. “MAGNET Field GIS is field data collection software with extremely useful data sharing capabilities,” said Jason Hooten, national sales manager, GIS products. “Utilizing the cloud, MAGNET Field GIS can send and receive data via a company’s MAGNET Enterprise account, allowing professionals in the field greater productivity and less time wasted driving to and from an office to deliver collected data. “MAGNET Field GIS is powerful and intuitive – built to easily recognize and adapt to a user’s surroundings,”... (read more)
2017-01-06 03:11:37
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