GISCafe Weekly Review November 8th, 2012

Google Maps helpful with Hurricane Sandy relief
November 6, 2012  by Susan Smith

Google released a “Superstorm Sandy” CrisisMap on Oct. 25 some days before Hurricane Sandy made landfall, complete with roadwork advisories, fuel inventory statuses, power outage information and more.

ArcGIS Online: Its Time to get Excited
November 6, 2012  by Matt Sheehan

We’ve spent nearly a year working with ArcGIS Online. Our view is that it is a major step forward. We’ve been asked why we take this view. In short because this is a mapping platform like no other.

Mapping Platforms

Let’s start with what is a mapping platform. Put simply:

“A web mapping platform is a toolkit that helps you build a web mapping application.”

There are many such platforms available in the open source world, more details available at this link:

http://wiki.osgeo.org/wiki/Choosing_a_Web_Mapping_Platform

ArcGIS Online is Exciting

GIS has been a niche. From desktop to Web, it has been a technology and acronym that few understand. We have long hoped the use of the technology would broaden and that the acronym would be less used. Many GIS-focused organisations, including ESRI, have begun to change the language their externally facing folk now speak. This is in part due to ArcGIS Online. Web maps, which are the raw material of ArcGIS Online, have a very broad appeal. We can talk, and will in later posts, about intelligent maps, story maps. Maps and geo-data targeted at non-GIS users.

So yes, we see ArcGIS Online as very exciting.

The Project: 512 Paths to the White House by Mike Bostock, The New York Times

This is a behind-the-scenes look at the creation of a visualization by The New York Times:

“The space of electoral college calculators is fairly well-trodden, so at first it seemed hard to do something new. The big problem here is the combinatorial explosion (2^n): even if you consider only nine states, you have 512 possible outcomes! So, you don’t offer much insight by simply enumerating outcomes or allowing undirected exploration. The challenge is to preserve minute details (micro) while providing an effective visual summary (macro).

We settled on a binary tree early on, but it wasn’t until Shan had the idea of collapsing parts of the tree into “decision” nodes that the design clicked. By pruning subtrees below the 270-vote threshold, you reduce the complexity substantially. More importantly, you get a much faster sense of what matters: who wins! And from there it was “just” a matter of implementation and refinement.

Modern Look and Real Remote Sensing & Photogrammetry Integration
November 5, 2012  by Mladen Stojic, President of Hexagon Geospatial

Finally, users can look to one provider for a truly integrated and connected photogrammetry and remote sensing experience.  With synchronized releases, users access the new products at the same time in a seamless environment, combining all the power of these two geospatial genres.

By offering users this consolidated system, they can discover and exploit the wealth of information contained in data from any source, share it rapidly (and securely), and deliver it on demand as reliable and actionable information to drive smarter decisions.

In Intergraph Geospatial Portfolio 2013, ERDAS IMAGINE  includes all of the LPS tools within the ERDAS IMAGINE ribbon.  Offering more simplified workflows for photogrammetry users who work with smaller quantities of raw data, this tighter integration between LPS and ERDAS IMAGINE will significantly enhance overall change detection and image classification capabilities.

The Superstom Sandy arrived at an inopportune time (not that there is an opportune time) that affected voter turnout in the 2012 US presidential election. Esri has created a map that explores precinct-level data from the 2008 election overlaid on FEMA impact zones for the disaster. Darker shaded counties indicate areas that were most damaged by the storm.

http://www.esri.com/news/maps/2012/superstorm-sandy/election-map.html

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