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Archive for March, 2012

Global warming increases possibility of heat extremes

Thursday, March 29th, 2012

According to several top scientists, the March heat wave that has shattered records across a wide swath of the U.S. bears some of the hallmarks of global warming.

In email conversations, those same scientific researchers who specialize in studying the role climate change plays in influencing individual extreme events — a burgeoning field known as  “extreme event attribution” — said global warming may have made March’s soaring temperatures more likely to occur, although they add that natural variability has played a key role as well.

Areas with warmer than average temperatures are shown in red; near-normal temperatures are white; and areas that were cooler than the 2000-2011 base period are blue. Photograph: Terra/MODIS/NASA

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AllTrails has mapped over 45,000 trails in the U.S.

Wednesday, March 28th, 2012

AllTrails‘ 200,000 members have mapped over 45,000 trails. These trails include routes and information pertinent to many different activities including hiking, mountain biking, skiing, and snowboarding. They didn’t mention horseback riding, another group that maps a lot of trails.

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Autodesk Media Summit news: launch of Autodesk Infrastructure Design Suite 2013

Wednesday, March 28th, 2012

The big GIS related news from the Autodesk Media Summit this week in San Franciso is the launch of the Autodesk Infrastructure Design Suite 2013 that provides civil engineering, GIS, planning and utility design professionals with building information modeling (BIM) for infrastructure solution for planning, designing, building and managing civil infrastructure and utility infrastructure projects. This is the first time for the integration of Autodesk’s Infrastructure Modeler 2013 into the 2013 Building Design Suite.

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Alabama tornado outbreak second deadliest, according to monitoring team

Thursday, March 22nd, 2012

A monitoring team from the Marshal Space Flight Center is monitoring the disastrous tornado outbreak in Alabama on April 27, 2011, that greatly impacted the economy of the state.

This image is of ASTER NDVI for the NWS Tuscaloosa tornado swath on top of NASS CropScape data layer. The graph shows the difference in NDVI in and outside of the tornado path.

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New 2010 U.S. Census datasheets available from Esri

Thursday, March 22nd, 2012

Check on the ArcGIS Resource Center for the new 2010 U.S. Census datasets with their new geometry and attributes that are now available as layer packages on ArcGIS.com. The following are all represented as polygons:  Block Group, Tract, County, and State with over 40 attribute fields containing population totals by age and race, along with family and household information. Census Blocks are represented as points with total population and household information.

Technologically Enabled Design and Assessment of Urban Form

Tuesday, March 20th, 2012

Keith Besserud, AIA, is the director of BlackBox, a research-oriented computational design resource within the Chicago office of Skidmore Owings & Merrill (SOM). With design partner, Ross Wimer, Keith set up the BlackBox studio in 2007 to lead the development and integration of advanced computational concepts within the multi-disciplinary design processes of the office. This includes reviewing computational tools used in architecture and how they apply in urban design.


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Bentley Systems’ Performance for 2011

Wednesday, March 14th, 2012

Bentley Systems CEO Greg Bentley gave Bentley Systems’ second annual Corporate Update in a conference call last week.

“Bentley Systems’ revenue on an historical gap basis grew 10% to a record $523 million,” said Bentley. Asia was a major driver of this growth, increasing to comprise 19% of total revenue from 16% in 2010.

The software subscription business model accounts for 17% of revenues in 2011. The company’s resilient subscription revenues have enabled them to fully recover from the downturn faster than their competitors and software peers with less volatility and with greater visibility into this coming year.

The subscription business model also benefits the user organization that had invested in their future reuse of infrastructure information modeling through Bentley software. The relative lack of volatility in Bentley Systems’ revenues is good for the company’s stability and reliability and that is, along with subscription elimination of cost barriers for technology adoption and improvement, is good for user organizations.

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“Change matters” viewer from Esri displays Vegas sprawl

Tuesday, March 13th, 2012

The Change Matters viewer from Esri can show how your area has changed over a given time period, say for instance, from 1988 to 1990. Las Vegas is known for its phenomenal sprawl over the past four decades.  Time-lapseimages from the Landsat earth monitoring satellites reveal in false-color, multispectral imagery how urban sprawl has stretched out from Nevada’s “Sin City” over the past four decades.

This latest video was posted by NASA in honor of the 28th anniversary of Landsat 5’s launch on March 1, but the pictures actually go back to 1972, when the Landsat program began.

RapidEye imagery used for MALAREO project in southern Africa

Tuesday, March 13th, 2012

RapidEye announced that its imagery is being used by the MALAREO project help with malaria control programs in countries in southern Africa. Basically, the satellite is mapping the habitats of mosquitoes, which are generally considered malaria risk area. Funded by the European Commission under FP7, the MALAREO project is a mixed European-African consortium that embodies many years of malaria control expertise with the Global Monitoring for Environment and Security (GMES) EO Capacity.

The MALAREO study area in South Africa, Swaziland and Mozambique is approximately 25,000 square kilometers that RapidEye data provided via the EC/ESA GMES Space Component Data Access (GSC-DA). Over five different days between July 18 and November 10, 2011,  the data was gathered with total cloud cover of less than one percent.  RSS – Remote Sensing Solutions GmbH, partner in the project consortium, is responsible for data processing and the development of Earth Observation (EO) products.

Mapping flu virus at the CDC

Tuesday, March 6th, 2012

At the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), epidemiologists study the patterns of flu data from the current season against historic data.

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