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December 19, 2005
MrSID Imagery Conversion in ArcPad 7 Just Got Easier
Please note that contributed articles, blog entries, and comments posted on GIScafe.com are the views and opinion of the author and do not necessarily represent the views and opinions of the management and staff of Internet Business Systems and its subsidiary web-sites.
Susan Smith - Managing Editor


by Susan Smith - Managing Editor
Each GIS Weekly Review delivers to its readers news concerning the latest developments in the GIS industry, GIS product and company news, featured downloads, customer wins, and coming events, along with a selection of other articles that we feel you might find interesting. Brought to you by GISCafe.com. If we miss a story or subject that you feel deserves to be included, or you just want to suggest a future topic, please contact us! Questions? Feedback? Click here. Thank you!

Message from the Editor -


Welcome to GISWeekly! LizardTech
announced this week the company's MrSID Generation 3 image compression format (MG3) is now supported in ESRI's ArcPad 7, making it even easier to view high-quality geospatial raster imagery on handheld devices. Read about it in this week's Industry News.


This marks the last issue of 2005 as GISWeekly will be taking a vacation. It will return to your desktop on January 9, 2006. On behalf of the staff of GISCafe and GISWeekly, I wish you all a happy holiday season and prosperous New Year.


GISWeekly welcomes letters and feedback from readers, so let us know what you think. Send your comments to me
Here.


Best wishes,

Susan Smith, Managing Editor




Industry News


MrSID Imagery Conversion in ArcPad 7 Just Got Easier

By Susan Smith


LizardTech
announced this week the company's MrSID Generation 3 image compression format (MG3) is now supported in ESRI's ArcPad 7, making it even easier to view high-quality geospatial raster imagery on handheld devices.
The release is aimed at customers who store their imagery on their local network and use it in the field. With this new MrSID support they will no longer have to take the additional time to convert to former MrSID format Generation 2(MG2). This will be especially useful to those who are working in mission critical situations such as emergency response and homeland security, Jon Skiffington, product manager of Geo Express at LizardTech, said in an interview with GISWeekly this week.


1) What kind of time savings will ArcPad 7 users experience with the new Mr.SID support of ArcPad 7?


We've had MrSID Generation 3 format available for quite some time and the adoption rate for support in third party applications has been pretty strong. Because of that, a lot of our customers had been converting their imagery to MrSID Generation 3(MG3) for quite some time, given the inherent advantages of the file format. However, when it came to using that imagery with ArcPad, ArcPad only supported the older, MG2 format which has been around for approximately ten years or so. So they would have to use our Geo Express products and bring their existing Generation 3 images into Geo Express and then convert them to Generation 2. It's not a difficult process, just a matter of choosing what file
format you want to out put to, but it is time consuming. Especially when you look at some of the file sizes that some of our customers are dealing with that are multiple gigabytes in size. It takes time to convert to Generation 2 which is especially difficult for first responders, users in critical situations, etc.


Typically if you have a 10 GB dataset it can take anywhere from 45 minutes to a few hours to convert that imagery into another format. For time sensitive information, that is critical.


With the MG3 implementation, ArcPad users can also crop and do multi-resolution mosaicking that allows them to easily combine aerial photos from different resolutions into one file. They can use GeoExpress' image compression functionality to quickly reproject and compress the images at differing compression ratios within the same mosaic.


2) Is LizardTech planning on extending this type of support to other software such as MapInfo, Intergraph, etc?


A lot of that has already taken place we have a software development kit (SDK) that we've had available for years but as far as third parties - Leica, Intergraph, etc. can take our SDK and use it to build support for our file formats into their products. ERDAS Imagine has had it for quite some time, ArcMap and ArcView have had it for a long time as well as MapInfo Professional has it integrated as well.


3) What is LizardTech's current development with the JPEG 2000 format?


The MrSID format itself can't be embedded in JPEG 2000 but we include the ability in our current version of Geo Express to encode your imagery to JPEG 2000, so if you have existing raw imagery, or legacy SID files or newer SID files coming in, you can easily convert those to JPEG 2000. It's just an output option in the application.


Our two main geospatial product lines are Geo Express, formerly known as the MrSID Encoder, but there are a lot more tools with it now that allow it to work with your imagery. And the Express Server product, which is used for serving imagery over the web. Both of those products, at least for the past year, and in some cases longer, support JPEG 2000 natively, both on the input and output. We've been on board with this for some time.


4) Can you describe a scenario where a user would use Express Server and the new MrSID support or ArcPad?


There is no direct integration between ArcPad and the Express Server with the exception of the fact that you can browse for imagery on the Express Server. But a really common workflow for a lot of customers is to use ArcPad along with ESRI's ArcIMS product web server and we have an integration with our Express Server and ArcIMS that allows you to speed up the serving of raster imagery over the web. It's just a complementary product to ArcIMS; basically we handle the heavy lifting and the working with the raster imagery, and it really speeds up the performance for users who need imagery out in the field.




Acquisitions/Agreements/Alliances


Autodesk, Inc. and Microsoft Corp. announced an expansion of their existing strategic alliance to enable customers to more easily create, manage, and share critical design data at every stage of the project and product life-cycle processes. The companies announced the completion of the first phase of the expanded alliance, which includes the availability of new Autodesk DWF (Design Web Format) functionality to allow customers to easily integrate design information from Autodesk applications with Microsoft(R) Office applications and Microsoft Business Solutions-Great Plains and Microsoft Business Solutions-Axapta, now part of Microsoft Dynamics.


NVision Solutions, Inc. announced the acquisition of PixSell, Inc. for an undisclosed sum of money. NVision plans to operate the company as a wholly-owned subsidiary, specializing in tracking and real-time data management. In the transaction, NVision received stock, assets, and existing contracts from PixSell, formerly PixSell Data Brokers.


EarthData CEO Anne Hale Miglarese announced plans to work with Microsoft Corp. to bolster Windows Live Local powered by Virtual Earth, Microsoft's online mapping tool. Under the 5-year agreement, EarthData will supply Microsoft with new imagery, lidar, and radar data acquisition and map production support to keep Windows Live Local populated with current, accurate, high-resolution geospatial information. Microsoft will also have access to EarthData's own data archives. The agreement also includes research, development, and investment to improve production efficiency and develop new product offerings.


Orion Technology, a provider of web-GIS software and integration services and Digital Highway an established provider of custom software solutions to public and private enterprises and government agencies throughout Italy, announced that the two companies have signed a business partnership agreement. Under terms of the partnership, Digital Highway will offer Orion's OnPoint Suite of web-GIS software products to the Italian market.




Announcements


Sleepycat Software, maker of the widely deployed open source developer databases, announced that Berkeley DB XML is used by MapServer Enterprise, a new software platform that lets developers build and manage web-based geospatial applications. Berkeley DB XML serves as the common repository for storing connections to geospatial data and the rules for presenting the data, allowing MapServer Enterprise users to easily create interactive maps and define the appearance of map features such as roads, freeways and city borders.


Autodesk recently announced that it is releasing the MapServer Enterprise code as open source to the new
MapServer Foundation, an independent non-profit organization with the mission of supporting and promoting open source web-based mapping tools.


Intergraph Corporation announced
Intergraph 2006, the company's new flagship international users conference, to be held June 12-15, 2006 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida, at Disney's Coronado Springs Resort. In its inaugural year the conference will bring together Intergraph's Apex, Geospatial World and Public Safety Users Conferences into a single international conference showcasing Intergraph's full range of spatial information management technologies.


Miomir Ivanovic has co-authored a guide to the implementation of Transit Signal Priority (TSP) titled “TSP: A Planning and Implementation Handbook.” Based in Philadelphia, Pa., Ivanovic is the intelligent transportation system (ITS) regional manager for GeoDecisions, a leading information technology company specializing in geospatial solutions.


Prepared for the United States Department of Transportation, the handbook outlines a comprehensive process for public and private traffic engineers and transit planners to implement TSP. It also provides case studies and resources detailing TSP projects.


ESRI's
2006 ESRI Developer Summit, will be held on March 17-18, 2006, at the Palm Springs Convention Center in Palm Springs, California. This two-day event is for developers, software architects, and decision makers interested in building GIS applications.


Pictometry International Corp., provider of digital, aerial oblique imagery and measuring software announced that it will be hosting its first Annual User Conference at the Orlando Hilton in Orlando, FL from October 29 to November 1, 2006.


The Homeland Security Department is preparing to distribute geospatial information-sharing software and other commercial IT to local jurisdictions through its Commercial Equipment Direct Assistance Program (CEDAP).


CEDAP is operated by DHS' Office of State and Local Government Coordination and Preparedness to help smaller communities that have not received direct federal homeland security grants. Earlier this year, the department awarded technology valued at $8 million to 697 jurisdictions under the program.


The Open Geospatial Consortium, Inc (OGC) through its work with ISO announces that its OpenGIS(R) Web Map Service (WMS) Implementation Specification is now available as ISO 19128, a standard titled "IS 19128:2005 Geographic information - Web map server interface."
www.iso.org/iso/en/CatalogueDetailPage.CatalogueDetail?CSNUMBER=32546 The OGC version of this standard is being prepared and will be posted to the OGC website soon.


According to a newly published IDC study, the spatial information management (SIM) industry has experienced sweeping changes over the last 18 months, involving fundamental shifts in platforms, vendors, and users. The study, which presents IDC's five-year forecast and 2004 vendor shares for the spatial information management industry, finds that spatial information management has transformed from a specialist application to a technology with broad relevance within many IT ecosystems.




Contracts


Telcordia has announced that Dublin-based Magnet Networks, a full service multiplay digital services operator, has selected Telcordia(R) Network Engineer, the world's leading ESRI(R)-based network planning and engineering solution, to support its current fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) build-out initiative and network expansion plans. Network Engineer will be a critical component as Magnet Networks rolls out advanced triple-play services, including digital telephony, digital TV and high-speed broadband services.




New Products


Maptech's new Chart Navigator Pro is a convenient and cost effective way to have all the charts you will ever need for the entire US coastline plus an easy to use method that keeps your charts up-to-date with free updates. Chart Navigator Pro includes NOAA charts - raster and vector and Contour 3D charts with GPS Planning and Cruising software as well as a built-in guidebook gazetteer and Internet weather overlays on the charts and a lot more. It comes on 13 DVDs with a MSRP of $499.95.


u-blox AG, the leading Swiss provider of innovative GPS receiver technology, announced the release of a new module, the LEA-4H. Powered by u-blox' new ANTARIS 4 positioning engine, and just 17 x 22 mm in size, the LEA-4H offers SuperSense indoor GPS functionality, which enables unprecedented sensitivity, in a compact and efficient package. The module has the same functionality as its SuperSense predecessor, the TIM-LH, with the additional benefit of a USB port. The LEA-4H also consumes 40% less power than its predecessor, features advanced power management options, excellent navigation performance, high sensitivity and an outstanding performance-to-cost ratio.


LizardTech, a division of Celartem, Inc., and a provider of software solutions for managing and distributing digital content, announced the company's MrSID Generation 3 image compression format (MG3) is supported in ESRI's ArcPad 7, making it even easier to view high-quality geospatial raster imagery on handheld devices.


ESRI announced that ArcWeb Services 2006 is now available. ArcWeb Services 2006 further extends on-demand mapping and geographic information system (GIS) capabilities for Web developers. ArcWeb Services are powerful mapping APIs that allow developers to integrate mapping and spatial functionality into any Web-based application.


PCI Geomatics is pleased to announce additional information concerning the features in Geomatica 10, the latest version of the company's industry-leading image-centric geospatial software. Released for sale in November 2005, Geomatica 10 will be shipped early in January, 2006. Among the extensive list of new features, the software boasts enhanced support of the Oracle 10g database technology, ortho-mosaic workflow automation, and improved hyperspectral capabilities.


Thales has introduced GPSDifferential for ArcPad, a software extension that seamlessly adds the power of post processing to ESRI ArcPad software when used on the Thales MobileMapper CE. With the GPSDifferential for ArcPad software extension, sub-meter post-processed mapping is possible, even where real-time corrections are not available, such as in Central and South America and when used in difficult signal environments required by applications such as forestry.


GlobeXplorer announced that their popular ImageConnect web extensions for GIS and CAD are now fully compatible with Autodesk's suite of desktop mapping software. ImageConnect allows GIS and CAD users to bring geo-referenced aerial and satellite images from GlobeXplorer's online archive directly into their projects with a click of the mouse.


RouteWare has just released its popular routing server known as RW NetServer 3.00. This is a major step forward, is much more flexible than previous versions and allows you to perform fast route calculations easily from almost any platform.


RW NetServer 3.00 introduces its own built-in application server technology with native access from a vast array of clients including: ASP, C# (compact framework), C/C++, Delphi, Java, PHP and SOAP. The server runs on both Windows and Linux and includes load balancing, object pooling and much more. Functionality includes routing, dynamic segmentation, traveling salesman optimization, nearest facility, drive time isochrones etc.




Around the Web


Google Unveils Public Transit Mapping Service, Information Week, December 8, 2005 - Google Inc. on Thursday launched in beta a trip-planning service for people who prefer to take pubic transit rather than drive.


Getting Around, Made Easier The New York Times, by Michel Marriott, December 15, 2005 - In recent years, Global Positioning System navigation, commonly known as G.P.S., has rapidly migrated from oceangoing vessels and adventurers' backpacks to the dashboards of luxury sedans. In yet another leap into the mainstream, G.P.S. technology, cheaper yet more sophisticated than ever, is increasingly finding its way into the palms of everyday users.


Three Technology Companies Join to Finance Research, The New York Times, by John Markoff, December 15, 2005 - University of California computer scientists plan to announce on Thursday that companies -
Google,
Microsoft and
Sun Microsystems - will underwrite a $7.5 million laboratory on the Berkeley campus. The new research center, called the Reliable, Adaptive and Distributed Systems Laboratory, will focus on the design of more dependable computing systems.




Upcoming Events


http://www10.giscafe.com/goto.php?https://www.urban-research.info/ur/workshops/workshops-gis.shtml

Date: January 10, 2006

Place: Sacramento, CA USA

This fast paced, hands-on workshop teaches the fundamentals of how to use a Geographic Information System (GIS) in a way that is particularly relevant to social service providers, planners and researchers. Participants learn to make thematic maps of their community, geocode addresses and perform spatial queries and analysis. Participants also learn to extract and map Census variables such as race, poverty, language, education, health and many other demographic variables. Exercises are designed for beginners. Intermediate Excel skills required. Each students is assigned a computer on which to work for the day.


Mapping California Communities: An Introduction to GIS and Community Analysis Workshop - One Day Workshop

Date: January 11 - 12, 2006

Place: San Francisco, USA

This fast paced, hands-on workshop teaches the fundamentals of how to use a Geographic Information System (GIS) in a way that is particularly relevant to social service providers, planners and researchers. Participants learn to make thematic maps of their community, geocode addresses and perform spatial queries and analysis. Participants also learn to extract and map Census variables such as race, poverty, language, education, health and many other demographic variables. Exercises are designed for beginners. Intermediate Excel skills required. Each students is assigned a computer on which to work for the day.


Mapping California Communities: An Introduction to GIS and Community Analysis Workshop - One Day Workshop

Date: January 11 - 12, 2006

Place: San Jose, CA USA

This fast paced, hands-on workshop teaches the fundamentals of how to use a Geographic Information System (GIS) in a way that is particularly relevant to social service providers, planners and researchers. Participants learn to make thematic maps of their community, geocode addresses and perform spatial queries and analysis. Participants also learn to extract and map Census variables such as race, poverty, language, education, health and many other demographic variables. Exercises are designed for beginners. Intermediate Excel skills required. Each students is assigned a computer on which to work for the day.


GIS Ostrava 2006

Date: January 23 - 25, 2006

Place: VSB-Technical University Ostrava Czech Republic

Let us invite you to participate in International Symposium GIS - Ostrava 2006. This meeting has been organized every year since 1994 and it has been developed to one of the most important GI/GIT conferences in the Czech Republic. Every year about two hundred participants mainly from the Czech Republic and Slovakia attend the conference. Reputable foreign speakers have been invited to present main topics to Czech and Slovak GI community. The aim of this series of conferences is bringing together researchers, developers, users, and practitioners from the field of GI/GIT. We have decided to open GIS??? Ostrava 2006 meeting to keynote speakers from informatics area. We hope that they can bring
new ideas to GI-community how to effectively use IT for GI.


DGI Europe 2006

Date: January 23 - 26, 2006

Place: QE II Conference Centre Westminster, London, United Kingdom

DGI (Defence Geospatial Intelligence) is the annual European event for the Military Geospatial Intelligence community, bringing together government, industry, and military leaders together with leading suppliers and industry experts.


Mapping California Communities: An Introduction to GIS and Community Analysis Workshop - One Day Workshop

Date: January 25 - 27, 2006

Place: City of Orange, USA

This fast paced, hands-on workshop teaches the fundamentals of how to use a Geographic Information System (GIS) in a way that is particularly relevant to social service providers, planners and researchers. Participants learn to make thematic maps of their community, geocode addresses and perform spatial queries and analysis. Participants also learn to extract and map Census variables such as race, poverty, language, education, health and many other demographic variables. Exercises are designed for beginners. Intermediate Excel skills required. Each students is assigned a computer on which to work for the day.


You can find the full GISCafe event calendar here.


To read more news, click here.



-- Susan Smith, GISCafe.com Managing Editor.


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