GISCafe Weekly Review October 10th, 2013

Pole Star indoor location solution wins award
October 10, 2013  by Susan Smith

Pole Star, a leader in indoor location technology, has been selected by AlwaysOn as one of the OnMobile Top 50 Companies to Watch in 2013. The company was selected based on the following criteria: innovation, market potential, commercialization, stakeholder value and media buzz.

CEO of Pole Star, Christian Carle, said that “We made indoor location as simple as GPS…for our partners to create added value and generate new revenues.”

Pole Star launched NAO BlueSpot in 2012, the so-called “first” low-cost BLE 4.0 (Bluetooth Low Energy) beacons for the indoor location market. This type of technology has been slower to mature than some others, but the launch paved the way for functions such as proximity detection to identify that someone is inside a structure and send different notifications while entering or exiting the area. NAO Campus, another Pole Star product, provides accurate and metric indoor location for in-store navigation to physical products and advanced analytics to develop new insights around agreeable consumer behavior. This technology is particularly in shopping malls and other large retail venues. To date, more than 2,000 NAO BlueSpots which are compatible with iOS 6 and iOS 7 as well as Android have been deployed in various locations in Europe and the U.S.

3 Powerful New Ways to Apply GIS
October 10, 2013  by Matt Sheehan

Geographic Information Systems or GIS has entered a new and exciting phase in its evolution. In this blog post we discuss 3 powerful new ways to apply GIS technology.

Consumer Discovery GIS Apps

Gone are the days when GIS only served power geo-users. Today consumer apps are being built which use GIS. Maps are a perfect and intuitive way to discover information. An example might be providing moms a simple way to discover local parks for their kids. A GIS powered Parks Finder mapping app is the perfect answer.

The US Federal Government spends an estimated 4 billion dollars a year on commercial geospatial data. The very existence of companies like DigitalGlobe is based on government contracts. But as Washington continues to bicker over political posturing that puts party before country, the effects are starting to hit the geospatial community. Not only are the horrible and non-targeted spending reductions like the sequester indiscriminately cutting into geospatial budgets, forced furloughs due to a self-inflicted government shutdown have halted data appropriations. They have also caused the cancellation of the world’s largest symposium on government geospatial data use and purchasing, the GEOINT Symposium.

Spike (Smart Phone ike!) from IkeGPS is a laser based device that attaches to your phone to ensure that you can rapidly & accurately measure & model an object up to 200 yards (600 feet) away just by taking a snapshot of it.  For ten years, Ike has been designing measurement and modeling systems for industrial customers.Using the IkeGPS technology, Spike makes use of the smartphone’s technology and adds its own features. It incorporates a digital camera, 3D compass, a laser range finder and GPS that snaps onto the back of your phone and fits into your pocket.

Spike integrates your smartphone’s current technology with some specialized features of its own. It amalgamates a digital camera, a 3d compass, a laser range finder and GPS. It fits neatly into your pocket yet is robust enough to use every day.

According to Darrell Etherington of Techcrunch, “The benefits of the Spike and its powers are evident…telecom and utility companies, architects, city planners, builders and more would be better served with a simple portable accessory and the phone they already have in their pocket than by specialized equipment that’s heavy, bulky, requires instruction on proper use and lacks any kind of easy instant data portability like you’ll get from a smartphone app’s “Share” functions.”

5 Point Checklist for any GIS Web or Mobile Project
October 7, 2013  by Matt Sheehan

Its daunting starting any GIS Web or Mobile project. Where does one begin? In this post we provide a 5 point checklist for any GIS Web or mobile project.

1. Project Requirements

Do you have a clear idea of what the app should do? A detailed list of requirements is essential. If you are still in the ideas phase, flesh it out before you reach out to any external GIS development company. Be prepared to discuss in detail your requirements, and answer any questions posed by prospective development companies. Be clear to describe the purpose of the application.

Sustainable Oil Palm Cultivation – A true possibility?
October 4, 2013  by M. Lorraine Tighe, PhD

Palm oil is a vegetable oil used globally in processed foods like cooking oil, chocolate bars, ice cream, instant noodles, and margarine. Palm oil derivatives are common ingredients in many personal care products such as cosmetics, soaps, shampoos, and detergents. Finally, palm oil can also be used as a biofuel (http://www.greenpeace.org.uk/blog/climate/biofuels-green-dream-or-climate-change-nightmare-20070509) because they are an attractive quick fix to reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

Terrain Data in Developing Cloud Belt Countries
October 4, 2013  by Ryan Hamilton

The demand for terrain data in developing countries within the equatorial cloud belt has really exploded in the last few years. Intermap® has always had an advantage in collecting 5-meter radar data in countries along the cloud belt due to the active sensor nature of radar and its ability to see through clouds.

The effects of the partial government shutdown already can be felt in the geospatial community. With no agreement from Congress on a government funding bill, the shutdown not only affected federal employees but also contractors that work for government agencies. The shutdown impacts almost all federal agencies, including those with strong ties to the geospatial community such as the Bureau of Land Management, the U.S. Geological Survey and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

– GITA Hub

In addition, USGIF, sponsors of GEOINT 2013, will continue with the program as planned. They will continue to plan for alternative programming for the event should the shutdown extend through the Symposium, limiting the ability of some of the government speakers to attend.

GeoDigital: PCM
Trimble – Terraflex
Optech - Intergeo


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