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Archive for the ‘USGS’ Category

GISCafe Attends Esri Federal User Conference in Washington, D.C.

Friday, February 19th, 2016

This coming week, February 24-25, join more than 3,500 federal professionals to explore ground-breaking ways government uses geospatial technology to solve the world’s greatest challenges. GIS provides a platform like no other to integrate data, perform dynamic analysis, and then take action.

JackDangermond (more…)

Avenza’s PDF Maps and Affiliate Program for Digital Natives

Friday, January 15th, 2016

In a world that is rapidly becoming less paper based and more dependent upon digital products, the introduction of a map app that copies the model of iTunes and Kindle is an appealing commodity. Avenza’s PDF Maps does just this: makes PDF maps downloadable on mobile devices to be available anywhere – while abroad, in remote areas and in the back country.

Grand Canyon

Grand Canyon


GISCafe Editorial Calendar 2016*

Thursday, December 10th, 2015


Editorial Calendar 2016*

 Europe_regions (more…)

Update on Ebola, Epidemiology, and Geo-intelligence

Monday, August 24th, 2015

RADM Scott Giberson, Assistant US Surgeon General Commander, Commisioned Corp Ebola Response, moderated the panel discussion entitled “GEOINT and Epidemiology : The Role of Geospatial Intelligence in Health Crisis Analysis and Mission” at GEOINT 2015.

IMG_3350 (more…)

Northrup Grumman Hosts Panel Discussion on New Technologies

Tuesday, July 7th, 2015

Partnerships, unmanned spacecraft, technologies and sensors were some of the topics covered in a panel discussion and press luncheon held at GEOINT Symposium 2015 in Washington D.C. recently, by Northrup Grumman.

An E-2C test aircraft assigned to Air Test and Evaluation Squadron (VX) 20 conducts an aerial refueling dry-plug engagement with an F/A-18.

An E-2C test aircraft assigned to Air Test and Evaluation Squadron (VX) 20 conducts an aerial refueling dry-plug engagement with an F/A-18.


GISCafe at GEOINT 2015

Monday, June 15th, 2015

Next week GISCafe will be flying to GEOINT 2015 Symposium held June 22-25 at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington, D.C.

Tradecraft (more…)

Data Links for Nepal Earthquake

Tuesday, April 28th, 2015

Over the weekend, a devastating 7.8 magnitude earthquake struck Nepal near the city of Kathmandu, followed by aftershocks that also resulted in many deaths and structural damage. Simultaneously, climbers on Mount Everest’s base camp were buried in an avalanche, precipitated by the quake.

The following are some sites that provide some geospatial insight into the events. I’m leaving the links whole in most cases so that they are easy for people to access and will add others as I learn about them. If anyone has any other links that should be added to this list, please contact me at

Dharahara Tower, Kathmandu April 2014 before the earthquake, courtesy DigitalGlobe

Dharahara Tower, Kathmandu April 2014 before the earthquake, courtesy DigitalGlobe


Esri’s new ArcGIS Open Data Site Available for Open Data Sharing

Wednesday, February 11th, 2015

Esri announced the launch of a new site aimed to help citizens locate organizations sharing open data around the world and provide direct access to thousands of open government datasets. Citizens can search, download, filter, and visualize this data through their web browser or mobile device.

Screen Shot 2015-02-11 at 10.30.20 AM (more…)

NASA needs help from citizen science

Tuesday, August 26th, 2014

A recent CNN report announced thatNASA is asking for the help of citizens in viewing hundreds of thousands of images taken from space over the years, from the 1960s Mercury missions to the present images snapped from the International Space Station.

North Korea is barely lit when juxtaposed with neighboring South Korea and China.
North Korea is barely lit when juxtaposed with neighboring South Korea and China.

Via The Gateway to Astronaut Photography of Earth, NASA is making these images available for citizens to examine.

NASA says the hope is that the images “could help save energy, contribute to better human health and safety and improve our understanding of atmospheric chemistry. But scientists need your help to make that happen.”

The catalog contains more than 1.8 million photos, about 1.3 million of them from the space station and roughly 30% of them taken at night.

 Photos: International Space Station
NASA gets rare view of black hole
NASA tests supersonic parachute for Mars

Tyson on deep space exploration

The CNN report said that before 2003, night images from the space station could be blurry, even with high-speed film and manual tracking, because the station moves at about 17,500 mph. In that same year, astronaut Don Pettit used a drill and assorted parts he found on the station to cobble together a “barn-door tracker,” a lower-tech predecessor to the European Space Agency’s NightPod, which was installed at the space station nine years later.

According to the report, NightPod’s motorized tripod compensates for the space station’s speed, providing what NASA scientist William Stefanov says are the highest-resolution night images from orbit. Satellites collect data more regularly, but the photos tend to be lower resolution. “Now the pictures are clear, but their location may not be, which limits their usefulness,” the NASA news release says.

Citizen science has a better handle on location than the night images from the space station and satellite imagery. The Complutense University of Madrid is spearheading efforts to get citizen input and organize the photos.  They have broken down the  the images into three components requiring different levels of participation:

1. Dark skies. This is the easiest project, as it requires no scientific expertise. “Anyone can help” by sorting the images into the categories: cities, stars or other objects, said Alejandro Sanchez, doctoral student at Complutense.

“Without the help of citizens, it is almost impossible to use these images scientifically. Algorithms cannot distinguish between stars, cities and other objects, such as the moon. Humans are much more efficient for complex image analysis,” he said.


USGS commemorates its involvement with GIS on GIS Day

Friday, November 15th, 2013

On November 20th, GIS Day, the USGS will commemorate their commitment to GIS. In spite of all the new technologies for mapping currently, the USGS would like to remind people that for the past 130 years, it has been the primary producer of topographic data for the U.S. and is producing its own new and emerging geospatial technologies and products.

Geologic map of the Holy Cross quadrangle, Colorado

Geologic map of the Holy Cross quadrangle, Colorado.


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