The Federal Geographic Data Committee has initiated a process to develop a new strategic plan for the National Spatial Data Infrastructure. On March 7, FGDC held an NSDI Leaders Forum at the U.S. Department of the Interior to begin to gather input to help build the foundation for the new strategic plan. More than 20 key geospatial associations, plus other leaders in the geospatial community, were invited to the forum to participate in a dialogue about a strategic plan to guide the future development of the NSDI. GITA was represented by Talbot Brooks, President of the Board of Directors. John Moeller, former Board Member, also participated in the forum. The FGDC plans to work collaboratively with partners and stakeholders in the geospatial community to develop and implement a new strategy for continued and sustainable development of the NSDI.
The forum was a very good start for gaining input and ideas. Over the almost three hours of discussion, all of the participants had the opportunity of voicing the perspectives of different segments of the geospatial community. This input, along with that from a meeting earlier in the week, with federal agencies, will help FGDC build an expanded outline for the strategic plan. The timeline has the plan being completed by the end of 2013. While this could shift a bit during the next few months, FGDC anticipates having a draft plan out for public review in mid-late summer.
As a key stakeholder in the NSDI, GITA sees a spatial data infrastructure as a critical national infrastructure asset similar to physical infrastructure assets. GITA supports the development of an updated NSDI Strategy and encourages members to contribute to the planning activities. For more information go to http://www.fgdc.gov/nsdi-plan . You may also provide Talbot with your ideas and input by contacting him at email@example.com.
Bill Okubo, Exelis enterprise product manager. spoke on the ENVI Services Engine from Exelis. Exelis Visual information Solutions developed an enterprise-enabled processing engine that provides remote users access to the power of ENVI image analysis and IDL applications from a web or mobile client interface. The working name for this capability is the ENVI and IDL Services Engine (ESE). This engine now enables the remote user to gain access to the same compiled ENVI and IDL functions and procedures that remote sensing scientists have utilized for decades at the desktop level.
TomTom spokesperson Lea Armstrong talked about TomTom’s recent announcements, which include the extension of its longstanding partnership with leading PND supplier MiTAC International Corporation. Under the global agreement, TomTom will provide a range of world-class navigational services for use in all of the PND brands owned by MiTAC including Mio, Navman and Magellan.
TomTom also announced an agreement to supply maps and road data to location-based services provider Telmap. With this partnership, Telmap, an Intel company, will utilize TomTom content to enhance its products and services, including mobile navigation apps distributed via application stores and mobile operators worldwide.
GISCafe Voice: How will this relationship with MiTAC be extended?
This is an extended service agreement from 2009 for another 3 years. The agreement covers EMEA, APAC, & Mexico for me, as well as the USA and Canada for Magellan.
GISCafe Voice: Did Telmap have an existing relationship with TomTom and if so, how did that differ from the current partnership?
Bill Emison, senior account manager for Geospatial Solutions at Merrick & Company, talked about their new QC module in Version 7.1 MARS (Advanced Remote Sensing Software).
Airborne LiDAR – urban area
Merrick Advanced Remote Sensing (MARS software suite is a comprehensive, production-grade Windows application designed to visualize, manage, process and analyze LiDAR point cloud data.
The Quality Control module is designed to provide an automated tool for verifying compliance of a LiDAR point cloud dataset to the LiDAR Base Specification Version 1.0 from the USGS (U.S. Geological Survey). The application sits on top of MARS as an extension.
“As a data vendor there have been many contracts where we’ve had to comply to those specs, and in an effort to do that effectively, we started to build tools two-three years ago,” said Emison. “We competely automated the entire specs. Our goal is to deliver data one time and not have to do rework, it was important to identify issues before the dataset went out the door.”
OGC standards provide standard ways of locating and transporting network-resident geospatial data and ways of locating and invoking geospatial services. Without proper descriptions of these resources, however, use of the resources is limited to small user groups. To make a geospatial resource more widely discoverable, assessable and useful, resource providers must annotate the resource with descriptive metadata that can be read and understood by a broad audience. Without such metadata, people will neither be able to find the resource using search engines nor will they be able to evaluate if the discovered resource satisfies their current information need.
A geomark is the recording of a localization on a map. According to Esri ”one Geomark identifies a particular geographical localization, which you wish to save and to reuse later”. A Geomark is equivalent to a GIS feature and can be stored in the .twz file format. That file format store features geometries, attributes, forms, blanks and attachments. Forms are GUI elements used in the PDF world to edit those feature attributes. GeoMark Export lets you export either selected or all visible features from all the feature layers selected and currently, all layers are enabled for editing in the PDF world and any hyperlinks or hot links present in ArcMap become attachments in the .twz file.
The following video talks about a collaboration between Esri ArcGIS and TerraGo using the Geomarks.
The data does not reflect all GHG emissions from all facilities, only those who reported to EPA as of 01/15/2013. EPA continues to quality assure data and plans to release updated data periodically. Interested individuals can view emissions in their states and do a custom search.
On March 4, 2013, there will be a Kenyan election again. Readers might remember that the innovative company Ushahidi influenced the Kenyan election in 2007 and is now asking the question, what would we do differently if we were to do this again?
Ushahidi, in response to that question, announces the official launch of the Uchaguzi Kenya 2013 partnership. Uchaguzi’s goal is to help Kenya hold a fair and credible election. Uchaguzi is a joint initiative between Ushahidi, Constitution and Reform Education Consortium (CRECO) and Hivos Foundation with the additional support of the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA). Citizen participation or crowdsourcing is a big part of Uchaguzi’s strategy, with the Uchaguzi platform built on and by Ushahidi. Citizens will be empowered to report any changes they see in the election.