In a conversation with George Demmy, CTO of TerraGo, GISCafe Voice learned about the release of OpenGeoPDF technology, now available with TerraGo Publisher for ArcGIS, TerraGo Composer and TerraGo Toolbar.
Posts Tagged ‘TerraGo’
George Demmy, CTO, TerraGo answered some questions for GISCafe Voice about the company’s recently announced TerraGo Workgroups, a subscription bundle that brings GeoPDF collaboration capabilities to smaller groups with flexible, cost-effective plans that meet their special requirements.
George Demming, founding member of TerraGo Technology and CTO of TerraGo, talked in their recent webinar about the release of their Terrago v.6.0.4 geospatial collaboration software, including TerraGo Publisher, TerraGo Composer and TerraGo Toolbar.
Tristan Lyttle, Applications Manager App for Avenza Systems, discussed the launch of PDF Maps app 2.0 for iOS, a popular free app that has incorporated suggestions made by its users to further enhance tracking features such as real-time tracking and notes on elevation. It is the only geospatial PDF and GeoTIFF reader on Apple iOS for travel, outdoor activities or business purposes out in the field.
“You don’t need a cell or wi-fi connection to locate yourself, while you are in a foreign city, out in the bush, or hiking, so the app will allow you to use its features as long as you have the app loaded beforehand,” explained Lyttle. He said Avenza has their own online map store. Since print maps are being made obsolete by digital media, “we are creating a way that maps can be taken advantage of – you can purchase maps in the map store and then use them in the field.”
With the latest updates in PDF Maps 2.0, these features are included:
- Tracking real-time movement with GPS which includes noting speed and elevation statistics
- Saving, exporting and importing tracks in KML format
- Saving measurements to line data as well as importing and exporting lines in KML format
- “Map Features” list for easy organization of placemarks, lines and tracks including folder enhancements
- Improved export accuracy
Many vendors such as the U.S. Forest Service upload maps for seasonal use, for snowmobiling, motor vehicle use maps, cross country skiing maps, and hiking maps. Smaller vendors also have outdoor use maps that change winter to summer.
“We have a simple tool for users to contact us on the app with changes, and we will send their changes right over to the vendor, and the vendor makes the changes themselves,” said Lyttle.
Currently the app is only available on the iOS platform but an Android version is in beta version right now.
“The biggest feature we’ve just released in PDF Maps 2.0 is the GPS tracks which was the most widely requested feature,” said Lyttle. “It is the ability for the app to track you as you move while you’re on your map and drop a path that you could then add attributes to and export out for use in other GIS programs. You can export out as KML files or can share between other apps, that’s the iOS program. Android doesn’t have the degree of attribute customization that the iOS has and the measurement tool is not in the same spot. You can save measurements as features on your map and then export them. The biggest requests for the future are multi-page PDFs. Right now they have to be added as single page maps to the atlas. People want to be able load multi-pages, and have better compass functionality.”
The app can already import GeoPDFs. Since they are proprietary to Terrago, and they do their own annotation, it will depend upon the annotation already done before it can be imported.
PDF Maps app 2.0 is available now on the iTunes App Store free of charge for personal and private use. Commerical, government and academic use licensing is available for a nominal fee. For more information about PDF Maps, visit the Avenza website at http://www.avenza.com or the PDF Maps website at http://www.pdf-maps.com/. Pricing of each map is set by the publisher and free maps remain free to users through the PDF Maps app in-app store.
Big data and services to manage big data were among the hot topics of Esri UC 2013. Companies that provided these opportunities were in large part Esri partners.
As a result of the cloud and mobile/location intelligence, we can now ingest data that previously required an enormous amount of effort to be made usable. The question still remains as to who is qualified to access the data, but data now breaks out of its previous stagnancy with the growth of technology potential.
Who can use GIS now? Just about everyone.
Although the federal government was not well represented at the conference because of steep cutbacks, the products and services showcased catered to the federal, state and local governments, with disaster response, emergency preparedness, intelligence and other related fields. There is not a geospatial company out there that doesn’t tailor their application/server platform to that market.
Some of the companies visited that fall within these categories include:
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.
TerraGo Technologies, maintained by Carahsoft, recently previewed their latest release Mobile for Android and announced the acquisition of Geosemble, which brings into the fold GeoXray.
Parent company Carahsoft is a government IT solutions provider providing software solutiosn for federal, state and local government agencies. Under the company umbrella are solutions from not only TerraGo, but Adobe and other geospatial intelligence solutions.
Jim Sheen, vice president of products and services for TerraGo , Jessica Sunday, technical account manager and Nathan Jones, vice president of engineering spoke about the recent news in a webinar.
TerraGo’s claim to fame is its unique GeoPDF format, which allows for geospatial information to be accessed and displayed in a PDF format. TerraGo covers collaboration and workflows for deploying GeoPDFs for maps and imagery.
For the enterprise, TerraGo provides a suite of applications that help both small and large enterprises and Fortune 100 companies to produce, access and share geospatial information with anyone, anywhere. These applications are for those who are not GIS experts and don’t have access to GIS software, as well as those who do.
Round trip workflows can be designed with TerraGo that travel from the enterprise to the outside edge of the enterprise. The upcoming TerraGo V6 serves as a platform for geospatial applications and for moving spatially aware information among different users and systems throughout the workflow.
“Field users don’t have to be GIS experts, so that users represent a wide range of different skill sets,” said Sheen. “We make solutions as simple to use and economical as possible. They can be used online and in a disconnected offline way.”
This is very important when communications are unavailable and in military communications.
“TerraGo Publisher plugs into your existing GIS to deploy the geospatial assets as GeoPDF maps and imagery,” said Sheen. “So it allows you to take the complexity built into your maps and imagery in the GIS system, simplify it and make it interactive and portable, so it can be used downstream collaboratively.”
PDF maps and imagery can be further extended using TerraGo Composer, to build and configure different types of geospatial apps, for example, GeoPDF mapbooks or digital atlases, that can be deployed to the field with either the TerraGo Toolbar or TerraGo Mobile. Toolbar and Mobile enable end users to interact with the maps and imagery, gather on-the-ground intelligence and collaborate with other users. Once that’s done, in some cases, the end result for the customer is to get data out to the field where the remote workers can collaborate with one another. The field data that has been updated can be entered into the enterprise GIS.
The new version 6 to be available in a couple of months, will contain TerraGo Publisher for ArcGIS, Composer for Acrobat and TerraGo Toolbar.
New enhancements in annotation and geomarking have been added to Toolbar and Composer so end users can use Adobe Reader with Toolbar to add, edit, annotate and add geomarks on any PDF produced directly in the TerraGo system. As you create GeoPDFs they become immediately available.
Geoforms are data entry forms that can be attached and georeferenced to geomarks and annotations. Those forms can be distributed to field workers for field data collection and real time sharing and that data can also be reconsolidated into the enterprise GIS.
Also in the news, TerraGo announced the acquisition of Geosemble Technologies located in Manhattan Beach, Calif., founded in 2004. This company is a spin-off from the University of Southern California, where new technology is being developed. Geosemble’s flagship product is called GeoXray. GeoXray mines and processes content from various sources including new social media and blogs, and can analyze that data by place, time and topic. It is able to find this information and present it in a way that it is easily consumable. It can reduce the amount of time analysts have to spend sifting through data.
Users can discover relevant spatial content through GeoXray and find other content to compose dynamic intelligence apps and reports to collaborate both online and offline.
TerraGo Mobile App for Android, available in coming months, will take the best of Android and the TerraGo Toolbar, with which it shares some functionality. Any user can use geospatial in connected or offline enviornments. TerraGo Mobile for Android can help with situational awareness, simplifies collaboration and data exchange in the field through geoforms, allowing users to take photos and geotag them. Users can share both structured and unstructured data with this app.
In summary, TerraGo has been well positioned to move into the mobile and non-GIS expert market, making GIS and geospatial accessible to a broader number of users by extending the reach of GeoPDF. It will be interesting to see where the company goes with the new offerings. With its simple but elegant link to Adobe PDF, coupled with the recent acquisition of Geosemble for data mining, the possibilities look endless.