September 12, 2005
Small Company Tackles Big GIS Problems
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Susan Smith - Managing Editor

by Susan Smith - Managing Editor
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Message from the Editor -

Welcome to GISWeekly! Last October, Ottawa-based AmberCore Software spun off from AFORE Solutions as a separate GIS company, bringing with it employees with 15-20 years experience in the GIS business, specifically with resource industries such as mining and exploration, petroleum, and environmental. Just this week, AmberCore Software was in the news with the announcement of support for Google Earth with Amber iQ(TM) release 2.5.1. Read about this small company in this week's Industry News.

GISWeekly examines select top news each week, picks out worthwhile reading from around the web, and special interest items you might not find elsewhere. This issue will feature Industry News, Acquisitions/Alliances/Agreements, Announcements, Appointments, New Products, Around the Web and Upcoming Events.

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Susan Smith, Managing Editor

Industry News

Small Company Tackles Big GIS Problems

By Susan Smith

It would seem this little company came out of nowhere to offer GIS, spatial modeling and information software to help companies solve complex location based problems. Just this week, AmberCore Software was in the news with the announcement of support for Google Earth with Amber iQ(TM) release 2.5.1. Amber iQ is a modestly priced full GIS with powerful visualization capabilities that can now be shared in a Google Earth environment.

Exploration Mapping

Last October, Ottawa-based AmberCore Software spun off from AFORE Solutions as a separate GIS company, bringing with it employees with 15-20 years experience in the GIS business, specifically with resource industries such as mining and exploration, petroleum, and environmental.

Impressed with AmberCore's track record of providing spatial modeling, customers in these resource industries requested customized systems because they could find nothing “off-the-shelf.” Now AmberCore's business is mostly concentrated in North America, although many of their customers are international as well.

Geological Modeling

According to Director, GIS Projects, Ted Reeler, AmberCore's scientific team has a lot of experience solving difficult problems in exploration, petroleum and mining, which they accomplish by modeling and simulating the real world.

Secondly, the company has their own internally developed core of next generation GIS technology. “We built a very advanced platform on a .NET-based architecture - with capabilities to handle extremely large datasets, such as LiDAR data, as well as next generation spatial analysis and 3D visualization tools,” Reeler explained. “It has wizard interfaces with embedded intelligence to guide you through the more complex problem solving algorithms. So we have this core of next generation technology on which the scientific team then builds their simulation algorithms to provide customized solutions to mining and petroleum companies.”

Environmental Waste Analysis

AmberCore has two lines of business: 1) it is the customized smart solution for the resource industry built on top of the AmberCore technology core, and 2) it is a simplified generic analysis version of their GIS technology in the form of an off-the-shelf desktop product called Amber iQ 2.5. Amber iQ is
downloadable off the
website and can be purchased at a very competitive price.

The newest version, Amber iQ 2.5.1, now offers a front end interface with Google Earth “so map images created in the Amber iQ environment can automatically be exported and displayed in the Google Earth environment,” Reeler said. Amber iQ now uses Keyhole Markup Language (KML) to export analytically generated results into the interactive Google Earth application. This creates a unique visualization environment for users who wish to show and share their analytical results in a collaborative setting.

Although most of AmberCore customers are currently desktop users, the company also wants to accommodate enterprise solutions. To do this, AmberCore is partnering with another company which specializes in back end support for large databases. “Combining our technologies will enable us to interface with large databases like Oracle and provide the large scale solutions as well as desktop,” Reeler said.

“The mining and exploration and petroleum companies that use AmberCore are large organizations with large problems requiring a customized spatial solution,” said Reeler. In contrast, “Our generic GIS, Amber iQ is designed for a wider audience who might use it for business intelligence or other types of spatial analysis. The product can be applied to any field in GIS that uses spatial information. As long as the data can be georeferenced, they can use the system.”

The basic price for Amber iQ 2.5.1 is US $2500 for full GIS capability; multiple seat prices are negotiable.


3n (National Notification Network) announced that it has joined the ESRI Business Partner Program. 3n is a provider of mass notification solutions. ESRI is the developer of GIS (geographic information system) software with more than 300,000 clients worldwide. The ESRI Business Partner Program is a network of more than 1,700 domestic and international developers, consultants, data providers, and value-added resellers who, utilizing ESRI technology, provide solutions to meet the GIS needs of every industry.

Eurekster announced that Maporama International, the European leader in geocentric services for businesses and individuals, has joined the rapidly growing list of web publishers who have selected Eurekster's community-powered SearchPublisher(TM) as the search solution for its visitors. Eurekster's SearchPublisher harnesses the power of the communities that form around every website by providing publishers with behavior-driven search systems that improve their visitors' experience, increase site loyalty and maximize revenue.

Intrado Inc., a global provider of integrated data and telecommunications solutions, and PDAger (XieJin) Technology Development Co., Ltd., a provider of mobility services and wireless emergency call solutions, announced that Intrado (XieAn) Technology (China) Co. Ltd, a joint venture between the two companies, has been granted a business license allowing it to operate in China. Headquartered in Beijing, the company will develop enhanced emergency communications solutions for public safety and disaster management agencies in China.

Autodesk, Inc. announced it will provide integrated geospatial solutions with Oracle to enable customers to maximize operational efficiencies, based on a wealth of location and structural data. Autodesk will work with Oracle to market solutions in strategic markets such as government, utilities, telecommunications and transportation. The combined solutions, which include Autodesk geospatial software and Oracle database and spatial technology, offer customers the ability to create, manage, and share geographic information system (GIS) and computer automated design (CAD) data throughout the organization in a single, open, standards-based environment without costly additional investment
or expertise in proprietary software and systems.

Laser-Scan and STAR INFORMATIC (incorporating STAR-APIC) signed an agreement in March 2004 that meant that any and all companies from the STAR INFORMATIC Group could resell Radius Topology™. This relationship has been very successful with sales into multiple vertical markets in Belgium, France and the Middle East. With STAR-APIC now offering solutions based around Oracle spatial technologies, Laser-Scan's data quality solutions complement the STAR-APIC offerings.


Hurricane Katrina Related Announcements

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-- Susan Smith, Managing Editor.


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