What the Latest from Safe Software Means...

We will continue to support spatial databases of all types. We have plans to support new and improved database technologies: some are from vendors we already support, others are from vendors we have never dealt with before, and still others are open source databases such as PostGIS and MySQL. With large data volumes, people often need to put the data into databases. We want to make sure our users are able to do that. We're also spending time building plug-ins for third-party products so that end users can pick their database, their web server and their GIS of choice. This means that third-party GIS products will be able to read and work with any of the formats that FME supports. You're also going to see our products plug in to many of the leading GIS and web mapping solutions.

Check out the full press releases here:
Safe Software Releases Enhanced FME GDF Reader...
Safe Software's FME Technology to be Embedded in SuperpOSe, part of OS MasterMap



Alliances/Acquisitions

Geographic Data Technology, Inc. (Lebanon, NH), a developer of map databases, and TrafficCast (Madison, WI), a traffic information company and digital traffic data provider, announced a partnership to provide traffic information for LBS, fleet management, and telematics applications in North America.

Openwave Systems Inc. (Nasdaq: OPWV), an independent provider of open software products and services for the mobile communications industry, announced that four industry leaders have independently aligned with Openwave to drive the deployment of commercial location-based services for operators worldwide. Openwave® Location Studio and Openwave® Location Manager are the key infrastructure technologies to be marketed with location platforms, applications and software suites from Microsoft® (Nasdaq: MSFT), Motorola® (NYSE: MOT), Autodesk® (Nasdaq: ADSK) and Webraska®. Operators will be able to offer differentiated services and applications that can drive mobile usage and revenue.

An alliance between Trimble (NASDAQ: TRMB) and the ESRI Conservation Program will put global positioning systems (GPS) into the hands of those who work to conserve the Earth's natural resources. New devices that combine geographic information system (GIS) and GPS technology on a handheld tool aid conservationists in the monitoring, analysis, mapping, and understanding of natural resources and wildlife. As ESRI's non profit arm, the ESRI Conservation Program provides grants to thousands of public interest organizations. Trimble's new GeoExplorer CE series will provide greater GIS and GPS integration to conservationists.

Ingegneria Dei Sistemi S.p.a. (IDS) and Intergraph Mapping and Geospatial Solutions announced an acquisition agreement between the two companies. IDS will purchase from Intergraph Mapping and Geospatial Solutions a select portfolio of aeronautical products, intellectual property, and ongoing maintenance contracts, thereby strengthening the focus of the IDS Aeronautical Division. Key personnel of IDS responsible for developing the acquired products to provide ongoing customer support, maintenance, and development services to global customers are part of a consulting agreement between the two companies.



Announcements

Just before the war was declared on Iraq by the U.S., an esteemed association declared its opposition to the conflict en masse at a trade conference.

Attendees of the 99th Annual Meeting of the Association of American Geographers, held 5 - 8 March 2003 in New Orleans, Louisiana, presented the Association with a petition signed by 373 attendees, encouraging the Association to adopt a resolution regarding the possible pre-emptive strike on Iraq by the United States. The matter was discussed at the Association's annual business meeting, and the issue was put before the AAG Council. The Council adopted a resolution on the issue with a vote of 11 in favor (approving the resolution), 3 against, 2 abstentions, and 2 who did not vote. As adopted, the Resolution reads as follows:

“Whereas a principal objective of the AAG is "to encourage the application of geographic findings in education, government, and business," and

Whereas a substantial body of geographic research indicates that a pre-emptive attack by the United States on Iraq without the backing of the international community could undermine global stability, heighten tensions in Southwest Asia and the Middle East, precipitate a humanitarian and environmental crisis in Iraq, and undermine U.S. efforts to combat international terrorism;

Be it resolved that the Association of American Geographers opposes a pre-emptive war on Iraq without the backing of the United Nations Security Council and broad support from the international community.”

More on war -Jumping the gun on the AAG petition, the U.S. State Department selected Space Imaging's Geobook geographic information systems (GIS) product for use by the Department's Future of Iraq project. With the interests of the Iraqi people in mind, the working groups will use Geobook for planning for a better future for the people in fields such as local government, repair of infrastructure, economic development, and environmental studies. If you haven't heard of Geobook before it's because it is an unclassified Space Imaging geospatial product that provides a simple-to-use software program with a map-like interface that makes it easy for users to browse and store information on features such as facilities, pipelines, bridges, roads and other key civilian infrastructures. The infrastructure information is overlaid on Space Imaging's commercial one-meter color map-accurate IKONOS satellite imagery.

The products will consist of CDs in stand-alone Windows-based software for ease of use. A Federal Assistant Grant Award from the State Department sponsored the purchase of the Geobooks.

Arc Second, Inc., the provider of mobile engineering solutions and Indoor GPS technology, today the launch of its new Team 3Di Software developer program. Designed for developers to take advantage of the emerging Position Based Services (PBS) field. This field combines real-time position information with graphical data and enterprise systems. PBS focuses on indoor applications in robotics and manufacturing where highly accurate coordinate information is required. This indoor GPS capability coupled with CAD capability promises to change the way products are manufactured and assembled across many industries. Included in the Team 3Di Software developer program is the Microsoft.NET Compact Framework based SDK, which gives customers the ability to customize their Position based applications.

From France comes the announcement from ISTAR, a digital cartographic company, that on December 23, 2002, it won a bid launched by the European Commission Joint Research Center (JRC) to benchmark the impact of new digital aerial acquisition technology for managing Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) remote sensing campaigns. Currently ISTAR is the only European company selected for this project that aims to analyze photo quality, acquisition conditions and data production, and to determine if digital acquisition techniques are financially and technologically suited for CAP and other European State Member remote sensing programs. The European Commission hopes the evaluations will prove the technology will yield greater savings both in time and money than conventional methods in updating each State's orthoimage database.

DigitalGlobe(tm)'s QuickBird(tm) satellite imagery is being used by Canada's CLC-Camint Inc. to identify individual tree crowns in forest areas. CLC-Camint is bringing to the market the Individual Tree Crown (ITC) methodology using high-resolution space photos. This unique methodology was developed by Dr. François A. Gougeon, from the Canadian Forest Service (CFS), a well-known researcher in the international scientific community. Forestry professionals will be able to generate forest inventories and manage forestry practices more easily with this tool for classifying tree crowns.

The whole of Britain is now mapped “top to toe” in the Explorer series produced by Ordnance Survey, according to a recent announcement. This is the first time that all 403 maps have been brought together completing the mapping of the entire country. Rural Affairs Minister Alun Michael MP congratulated Ordnance Survey at the opening of the Ordnance Survey Outdoors Show at the Birmingham NEC. Mr Michael said Explorer maps would play a fundamental role in years to come under countryside access legislation, which opens up new access rights.

The OpenGIS Consortium (OGC) has been at the vanguard of research on creating open GIS systems that can achieve interoperability. Each phase of development has taken that goal a little bit further-the OGC Web Mapping Testbed Phase 1 (WMT1) aimed to increase the users ability to access and overlay maps and earth images from other vendors' web map servers. This began a successful growth in the ability of many data providers and vendors to combine disparate data and others systems over the internet.

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