Five-year-old Uber, a company whose expertise is in getting you from one location to another, wants to add the service of how to deliver goods to people’s homes also.
Recently Uber announced Uber Corner Store, a pilot program which is a service that would enable Uber users in the Washington D.C. region to order grocery or pharmacy items such as toothpaste delivered from local stores, much like some mom-and-pop stores used to make home deliveries. The pilot is expected to only last for a few weeks, but signals what the long term vision of the company is. This would put Uber at more than a location company to a bonafide logistics company.
Uber CEO Travis Kalanick’s idea of the Corner Store could position the company in direct competition with the two superpowers Google and Amazon, who have been going after that same-day delivery market for a number of years. The on-demand economy is growing and both companies have their version of instant gratification for that economy. The other part of that is to keep shoppers engaged in their one service so they don’t shop elsewhere. Google has added new retailers to its Shopping Express offering. Amazon expanded it’s Get It Today service to six new locations.
Uber has not figured out a way to make this service earn money, and currently the service is free for customers. Uber has an advantage in that it has been in the forefront of educating users to treat their smartphones like “remote controls” so that they can get anything by using an app or just touching a button on their mobile device.
The face of GIS and Geospatial education has changed dramatically over the past few years, with online courses being offered in numerous subjects, ranging from GIS fundamentals to Spatial Analytics and Geodesign. 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.
Today DigitalGlobe of Longmont, Colorado, announced the successful launch of WorldView-3, the company’s sixth and highly advanced high-resolution, super-spectral commercial satellite. From Vandenberg Air Force Base in California, the satellite launched on a Lockheed Martin Atlas V rocket at 11:10 PDT.
In a technical session entitled “ArcGIS Online and Social Media,” two interesting speakers spoke about the use of ArcGIS Online and the use of social media to facilitate operations during an international golf tournament in a community and create an interactive map of a popular recreational region. Brandon Brown, GIS administrator, from City of Dublin, Ohio, spoke at the Esri User Conference 2014 on the topic, “Presidential GIS – ArcGIS Online’s Role in the 2013 President’s Cup.”
Tierney O’Dea Booker, spatial journalist in Support of Citizen Science, with USC Spatial Sciences Institute, gave a fascinating presentation at Esri UC 2014 in San Diego on how citizens can become involved in science, and contribute to data on sensitive projects. Her talk was entitled “Drones, Pigs, Maps and Oil.” Before coming to USC Spatial Sciences Institute, Booker was with NBC working with anchorman Tom Brokaw, and worked with Medic Mobile developing health technology for mobile phones.
“The most effective way to get involved in science is to do science,” said Booker. She got interested in data journalism while with Medic Mobile, and in spatial data through Ushahidi.
The Exhibit Floor reveals industry trends, as vendors respond to requests of their customers with timely products and services. The emphasis at Esri UC 2014 was on data and apps, reflecting the trends discussed in Monday’s Plenary session. Global data, the mining of crowdsourcing data, spatial analytics to business users, the launch of WorldView-3 that will open up worlds of data previously unable to be explored – are just a few of the exciting areas covered in the exhibits and special vendor presentations.
This year marked the 22nd Esri conference for veteran company TomTom, which derived originally from the company GDT and later TeleAtlas. According to John Cassidy, vice president of sales and James Pardue, licensing, TomTom’s focus has evolved from the original interest in making Census data better back in the GDT days, to spatial navigation in the present day. Hardware, analytical, navigation and spatial are the primary areas of their business.
“Everyone wants global data,” said Cassidy. “TomTom is heavily invested in the crowdsourcing model.”
Cassidy said that in 2013, 6 billion pieces of information per day were processed by TomTom. In 2014, already 9 billion pieces of information per day have been processed. Their focus has become quality accuracy and quality control.
“Real world users are more valuable,” said Cassidy. “A lot information is gathered using smartphones.”
Space-Time Insight, provider of next‐generation situational intelligence solutions, today introduced SI Suite 5.0, a major new version of its real-time visual analytics software.
For those who need help decifering large volumes of data, SI Suite 5.0 helps by combining a highly configurable and intuitive end-user interface with advanced analytics based on open standards. Esri is partnered with Space-Time Insight and thus ArcGIS is integrated into SI Suite 5.0, which makes it easier for Esri customers to analyze and comprehend big data. The software correlates and analyzes data from any number of enterprise (IT), operational (OT) and external (XT) sources across space, time and nodes in a network.
With SI Suite 5.0, Space-Time Insight can help organizations with decision making by intuitively correlating, analyzing and presenting data from disparate systems in compelling visual formats that are actionable. The software allows users to interactively analyze data in real-time, reducing the dependence on data scientists which is time consuming.
According to the press release, SI Suite 5.0 includes new features that make data from disparate systems easily understandable, give business users personalized access to advanced analytics, and run on a range of platforms from tablets to operations center video walls. Highlighted new capabilities include:
A personalized HTML 5-based user interface that uses rich visualizations, advanced filters and alerts to drive attention to assets and events, providing 360-degree operational insight into data from any number of systems in a single pane-of-glass. Users control specifically what data they want to see and how they want to see it, boosting productivity and speeding decision-making.
Interactive analytics that uses the open standard R language, bringing analytics out of the “lab” and making it easily accessible to business users. Users are empowered to interactively execute real-time statistical, predictive and what-if analysis of data, reducing the dependence on data scientists to perform analyses on their behalf.
Delivery through web browsers on desktop, tablets and video walls of data in a wide range of visualization formats including configurable charts and tables, and geospatial presentations enabled by Esri’s ArcGIS location platform. The software easily integrates third-party applications such as SAP, OSIsoft PI and many others, eliminating the need for users to access multiple systems and manually correlate data themselves.
The GNSS IC market continues to go from strength to strength with Cellular GNSS IC revenue alone forecast to break $2 billon by 2016, with a host of secondary markets starting to emerge, according to a report by ABI Research. This may help to explain why both Intel and Samsung have recently acquired GNSS IC design capabilities, creating competition for incumbents like Broadcom, Qualcomm and Mediatek.
Wearables, in-store advertising, ambient intelligence, IoE/IoT and connected homes have created a buzz around indoor location. Before indoor location can really happen, however, GNSS is critical to tying together the disparate networks.
This year, there was more interest among the presenters at the GEOINT 2013* conference in open cloud-based geospatial solutions and collaboration. The reason for this is that these solutions save money and are technologically advanced, allowing more information to be gathered in a timely and critical fashion. Also, collaborative technologies allow the collection of data during crises to occur quickly and can make it possible for more lives to be saved. This is certainly a change from the attitude of federal government and intel professionals who have been highly concerned about security and distrustful of sharing data and any solutions that allowed the sharing of data.