June 02, 2003
Embracing Geospatial Intelligence -- GIS Emphasizes How the World Works
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Susan Smith - Managing Editor


by Susan Smith - Managing Editor
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Given that, if you want to do flythroughs, you take a matrix of elevation information, and that matrix has elevation points that are evenly distributed. “So I put out a grid with various heights. I have this model of what the earth's surface looks like at that density with that distribution and if I can take that model and align my image on my mapsheet, because I have some common reference points, I know what this grid represents and what its position is, I can lay this image over it - I can drape it - I can create heights, peaks and valleys. Once I have created that, I then have an apparent 3D model and can use tools to allow me to do flythroughs, and negotiate around a building.
But that's
not good enough for the sophisticated analytical thinking of the future. I may want to understand the relationship between what I'm doing above the ground and what is happening below the ground. Unless you have a way of being able to distinguish those things that sit on top of each other in the flat world, by being able to have two features that set at the same latitude and longitude but they're different because they have different heights, you'll never be able to capture that information {without making that distinction.}.”


Recently, some of the sophisticated applications for homeland security and first responders incorporate CAD/CAM drawings of buildings so that you know where staircases and elevators are for evacuation. Incorporating this information from a geospatial standpoint is a challenge. “Past approaches have assigned things as different layers in relational databases yet they don't worry about how the layers in the database interact.” Lenczowski explained, “Overlaying doesn't embed the topological - it inhibits dependencies and relationships.”


Where geospatial intelligence has been very successful was during Operation Iraqi Freedom, when professionals fused data into an overwhelming coalition advantage. A Baghdad gridded panoramic view enabled coalition users to provide common reference points about certain events and provide a way to unambiguously identify location.


The Bolivian crater expedition used Landsat and SPOT imagery to analyze the possibility that this impact was the result of cosmic collision. They discovered there might be a way to provide better information by sharing the third dimension essential for analyzing an impact related feature. Multispectral imagery does not allow you do this.


Lenczowski spoke out about the new


NIMA Technical Executive, Roberta (Bobbie) Lenczowski and David H. Burpee, Director, Public Affairs, NIMA
“I think first of all it is a very strong statement from this Administration that they believe a strong commercial imagery industry is vital to national security. I think it's a stronger statement than the previous directive {Presidential Decision Directive 23 signed by President Clinton in March 1994} in that it makes some very aggressive statements with respect to understanding that the industry is to be encouraged to improve the technology and that licensing and approval. But the process by which that approval is granted to the government is a collaborative process and we put in place procedures that move through the approvals or disapprovals very very rapidly. Let's talk then
about the
encouragement for more funding; when we're asked how much difference will a policy make in terms of how we do business. What we point out is that we helped with the development of the policy and the policy reflects what we have been able to accomplish this last year with respect to our ClearView Contract with the private sector. We were able to put that contract in place and it is as effective as it is because, in fact, we had the budget to allow us to make long term agreements so it's a five year contract with a certain guarantee of funding to the industry. It's easy to implement policies that require commercial involvement in the event that we have the budget. So from our perspective,
policy
is endorsement of what we have been doing and what we will continue to do with the private sector.”




Additional Information:




Geospatial intelligence in action enables:

Wisdom

Knowledge

Info

Data and sources of data


Transforming NIMA,

NOW

Increasing softcopy exploitation

More information tailoring

Discipline specific databases


NEXT

Multiple sources at the desktop

Well tooled desktop softcopy exploitation

Near real time exploitation

Information management across disciplines


AFTER NEXT

Innovision office

Global real time connectivity

Enterprise wise, community extensive interoperability of tools and information


GeoScout is a contract that was awarded about a month ago to a team led by Lockheed Martin, who has the responsibility of helping NIMA design and deliver the entire enterprise architecture of the future. What GeoScout will offer:


* Strategic transformation

* All digital, data-centric, e business environment

* A one-stop shop of geospatial intelligence for all users


Features of data- centric architecture

* Data integrity

* Design reuse

* View-generation

* Process flexibility

* Data interaction

* Scalability

* Options management

* Service centric


Data-centric e-business environment

*NIMA gateway is a portable suite of different networks, geospatial data navigator will make access to our data somewhat more intuitive for some of our users.

*Improved first look at this site.

*Geomedia Web Map has been successfully incorporated. The ease of data access made this a useful website for the joint warfighter interoperability demonstration 2002 (JWID).

NIMA will also use this for an exercise called Horizontal Fusion 2003.


Moving up the data pyramid - full comprehension

*More web applications take novice and professional users across a connected network.

*Collaboration of applications across connected network

*Seamless fusion of multiple and distributed sources of data information and knowledge

*High performance with minimal reformatting intervention


Japanese proverb -“If you have vision without action you have illusion; if you have action without vision you have chaos.”


Alliances/Acquisitions


BAE SYSTEMS C4ISR and eSpatial announced a strategic partnership to develop and supply four-dimensional secure imagery solutions based on eSpatial's proven commercial off-the-shelf (COTS) technologies.


eSpatial's iSMART product suite provides an open standards infrastructure for spatial applications delivered on COTS database technologies. It features highly scalable and efficient server-based processing of geographic, spatial and image data for fast delivery to a distributed user community. This meets the Network Enabled Capability (NEC) needs of the defense community and removes the limitations imposed by traditional desktop approaches. BAE SYSTEMS C4ISR will develop and deliver next-generation solutions to support NEC based on eSpatial's iSMART technologies.


GE Network Solutions signed an agreement with Energie Baden-Würtemberg AG (EnBW) of Germany, to standardize its disparate geo-spatial information systems. With more than 4.2 million customers, EnBW is Germany's third largest energy business.


Definiens Imaging GmbH, Munich, Germany and DigitalGlobe signed an agreement, under which Definiens' and DigitalGlobe act as Software Partner. Under this agreement Definiens has access to the latest Quickbird geometric sensor models and technical product information to optimize the performance of its premier product eCognition. “The object oriented approach in eCognition is perfectly suited to analyze the new quality of space based resolution, Quickbird is giving to our users”, says Matt Wood, Manager Product Marketing at DigitalGlobe


E-City Software Inc. (OTCBB:ECTY) and On Alert Systems, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Proxity Digital Networks, Inc. (Pink Sheets:PDNW), announced that E-City has entered into a strategic alliance agreement with On Alert Systems, Inc. to cooperate in the area of On Alert's gunshot detection technology and computer mapping effective May 23, 2003. E-City also announced that CEO and director Anis Jessa was stepping down to make way for William C. Robinson , who was appointed by Mr. Jessa to be the new director and CEO of E-City. E-City was a developer of interactive maps for cities around the world. Its customers included governments, telecommunications
companies and the
travel and tourism industry. E-City substantially ceased its operations in August 2002 due to lack of capital.


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-- Susan Smith, GISCafe.com Managing Editor.


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