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Archive for the ‘Esri’ Category

URISA’s GISCorps’ Behind the Scenes Support for Hurricanes and Other Disasters

Thursday, September 7th, 2017

URISA’s GISCorps has a volunteer presence all over the world who contribute their GIS expertise through data, creating easy to consume visuals for those decision makers and public safety officials to be able to respond to various threats and allocate resources where needed. Using ArcGIS Online, volunteers in one part of the world can provide help remotely without needing to be onsite or using limited onsite resources.


In an interview with GISCorps founder Shoreh Elhami and URISA executive director Wendy Nelson, they offer a broader understanding of what GISCorps is about and how it can help.

Is ArcGIS Online able to generate a setting for help, i.e., website, app, or whatever resource might be needed, during a natural disaster event? And how soon might that be available to the public? 

ArcGIS Online (AGO) can be used to create a variety of story maps. Those story maps as well as any AGO based web apps can be embedded in any website and very quickly. A good example of that is the web app that our volunteers embedded in Fort Bend County’s website on road closures. Another example is a story map that was built by NAPSG shortly after the disaster, our volunteers also assisted with that project.

How has the GIS relief effort for Hurricane Harvey been handled by GISCorps so far and what are the plans going forward?

26 of our volunteers have been working on mapping road closures in Fort Bend County. The information originates from County’s website, emails, and also tweets. The Web app has been helpful to residents, first responders, and the county staff. The project was lead by two of our volunteers who worked with GISCorps Core Committee members on managing the project. The Center for Disease Control (CDC) also requested the assistance of a GIS programmer to pull data from the FEMA site on an ongoing basis. The GISCorps Recruitment team selected a volunteer within 30 hours and put the volunteer  in contact with CDC. We also asked our volunteers to contribute to NAPSG story map. We are currently on stand-by and ready to assist with other projects at this time, be it for Harvey or Irma.

Hurricane Harvey weather map

How do the projects for Hurricane Harvey and Katrina differ or are they the same? What are the priorities?

Quite different. For Katrina, we deployed 30 volunteers onsite, the option to assist remotely didn’t even exist. Volunteers packed up their bags, laptops, and other essentials and head over to the affected areas within a couple of days. For Harvey (and many other disasters of the past few years), we haven’t had to send anyone anywhere. Volunteers work from their home or offices and have been effective in different ways. For Katrina, the priority was to help with the rescue efforts at first (locate people under stress and report to the coast guard) and then, the recovery phase began where volunteers made 100’s of maps and conducted lots of analysis). For Harvey, crowd sourcing and information from social media have become major sources of information for developing interactive maps to first responders and other affected population.]
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HP Unveils HP Mars Home Planet and New Wearable HP Z VR Backpack

Wednesday, August 23rd, 2017

In a webinar this month, HP executives talked about the exciting new approach and commercial solutions for virtual reality (VR). Together with NVIDIA, they have teamed up with Autodesk Fusion, LaunchForth, Technicolor, Unreal Engine and HTC VIVE  to launch HP Mars Home Planet, a global project using virtual reality to simulate what a human population of one million could look like on Mars. HP has also unveiled what appears to be the first professional wearable VR PC – the new HP Z VR Backpack. Crafted to bring the full potential of VR to-life, it is designed to be a secure and manageable wearable VR PC.

HP Z VR Backpack used for training purposes.

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SwiftStack Hybrid Cloud Storage for the Enterprise Recognized by the Geospatial Intelligence Industry

Tuesday, August 15th, 2017

SwiftStack’s VP of Marketing, Mario Blandini, elaborated on his video interview with GISCafe CEO and president Sanjay Gangal this week for GISCafe Voice , about the company’s entry into the geospatial market with their hybrid cloud storage technology.

SwiftStack offers enterprise hybrid cloud storage in your own environment that existing applications can access and consume using file services, with cloud native applications using object APIs. The SwiftStack can manage all storage resources as a SaaS application or run privately behind your firewall.

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PufferSphere Makes the World Go Round with Spherical Displays

Thursday, August 10th, 2017

Since 20o4, when Edinburgh-based Pufferfish co-founders Oliver Collier and Will Cavendish had an idea for an innovative digital display that will give a physical presence to digital content, Pufferfish has been gaining in popularity as a digital display medium of extraordinary versatility. PufferSphere is a compact, acrylic globe with on-sphere touch interactivity for the inflatable range. I saw the PufferSphere at the Esri UC in the Start-Up Gallery, and thought then what an innovative and engaging tool it would be for many geospatial uses. While other companies offer spherical display, Pufferfish has continued to increase its expertise in exclusive touch technology with professional signage range, and pushes the envelope for innovation in spherical displays and data visualization.  

Pufferfish PufferSphere

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Nearmap Provides High-Rez Oblique Imagery and 3D Products in Ready-to-Use Service

Thursday, July 27th, 2017

At the Esri User Conference 2017 held in San Diego this July, Australian company Nearmap announced a national survey program providing true, high-resolution oblique imagery and derivative 3-D products.

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Coming up: Special Coverage on Online GIS Courses!

Thursday, July 13th, 2017

The face of GIS and Geospatial education has changed dramatically over the past few years, with new online courses being offered in numerous subjects, ranging from GIS fundamentals to Spatial Analytics and UAVs. What is more phenomenal is that these courses reach out to all corners of the earth, making a GIS/geospatial education a possibility for almost everyone on the planet.

Our coverage will include a listing of all the top online GIS courses offered today, enrollment information and costs, as well as comments from instructors, employers and current or graduated students from some of the programs.
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Boundless Announces Suite 4.10 and Strategic Partnership with Planet

Wednesday, June 14th, 2017

Andy Dearing, CEO of Boundless, discussed the announcement of Boundless Suite 4.10 release that has been their flagship product since the inception of the company. Dearing also talked about the company’s strategic partnership with Planet.

4.9 was released last year. In the new release, Dearing says that they have incorporated MapBox styling within their platforms, leveraging that powerful styling engine and code, and are able to bring those files into their Platform. “Typically, our technical GeoServer had a styling and rendering engine based in XML,” said Dearing. “We’re able to write a more powerful styling capability with this platform.”

For their developer community, Boundless has released the Boundless SDK, a web SDK toolkit that sits on top of their visualization platform, providing open layers for developers to quickly develop web applications from their webmaps or data. In addition, there are new contributions to the community release of GeoServer. The Boundless platform is built upon open source technology and open APIs that generate actionable location intelligence across third party apps, content services and plug-ins for enterprise applications.

GeoServer 2.11 is a community OS project whose latest version includes lower load times, enabling users to load data and bring it forward, which is especially valuable to those with large datasets. Load times are reduced to a fraction of their previous time. In addition, the Geoserver is cross functional with other data formats such as Esri shapefile, etc.
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Harness the Power of Data in Politics, Health, Finance and Navigation

Thursday, May 11th, 2017

Erek Dyskant, co-founder of BlueLabs, an analytics and technology company dedicated to harnessing the power of data to produce meaningful two-way engagement between people and organizations, aims to empower individuals to take steps that “make their political voice heard, improve their health, and strengthen their financial security.”

Sevenhugs Smart Remote

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Leica BLK360 3D Scanner and Software Pack a Big Punch in a Little Body

Thursday, April 27th, 2017

Leica introduced its BLK360 3D scanner at Autodesk University 2016, which was met with great awe when attendees saw how small it is. It is 6.5 inches tall and four inches in diameter, weighing 2.2 lbs., and has one single button on its housing, giving the impression of a Star Trek device.

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ArcticDEM Adds Largest Quantity of New Elevation Models

Thursday, March 2nd, 2017

Peter Becker, ArcGIS product manager, Esri, talked with GISCafe Voice this week about the ArcticDEM project, that recently released the largest addition of new elevation models to the project. An ongoing collaboration effort between the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA), the Polar Geospatial Center (PGC) and Esri, the ArcticDEM project produces high resolution elevation models to support the national security and scientific requirements of the Arctic. It also serves as a public data model that can be used by scientists to assess and augment climate change models. The NGA presented the new ArcticDEM elevation data the twentieth annual Esri Federal GIS (FedGIS) Conference, held February 13 and 14 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, DC.

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