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May 01, 2006
GITA Conference 29 Notes
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! For several years, GITA has had a “motivational” speaker for the keynote, often someone who has no link to the industry. This year, there was no keynote speaker. Instead, Bob Samborski, GITA executive director, introduced the Interoperability Demonstration. The demonstration featured live data, and was standards based, shown on multiple platforms. Read about the conference in this week's Industry News.

This week I'll be attending MapInfo's MapWorld in Phoenix. Hope to see you there.

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

Best wishes,

Susan Smith, Managing Editor


Industry News

GITA Conference 29 Notes

by Susan Smith

Interoperability Demonstration Participants
These days, trade conference administration is hard at work trying to find new ways of enticing attendees, and one of those draws is the keynote address. For several years, GITA has had a “motivational” speaker for the keynote, often someone who has no link to the industry. This year, there was no keynote speaker. Instead, Bob Samborski, GITA executive director, introduced the Interoperability Demonstration. The demonstration featured live data, and was standards based, shown on multiple platforms.

Starring the City of Tampa, the fictional situation for the demo was as follows: the International Olympic Committee (IOC) has just announced that due to unforeseen circumstances, the IOC has decided to move the 2012 Olympics from London to another city. What is needed for any participating city is a full proposal, including an environmental impact study, a sports venue study, critical infrastructure analysis, transportation study, and a security assessment due within one month to the IOC evaluation committee.

This poses an interesting question to any community - how would your community handle this?

The City of Tampa definitely wanted to try its hand at winning this lucrative opportunity to host the Olympics. After all, billions of dollars in revenue and goodwill are a given for any Olympic host city.

Executive Director GITA Bob Samborski
Of course, such a task would draw geospatial information from many different datasets in different formats. The data already resided on different servers where people know how to operate it. Web Map Services (WMS) developed by the OGC provided a standard way to display any of this data on a web browser. Web Feature Services (WFS) is able to create maps or support transactions. It can also to do dynamic distributed updates, allowing agencies to search metadata, post changes and more.

SpatialDirect was employed to download formats such as GML and XML. That solution was also used to take base data and overlay it on ArcExplorer. Using Bentley's ProjectWise to store project documents, the would-be Olympic team could view the water system of the city. The map itself was in Bentley MicroStation.

The fire department was asked to increase their water flow from 200 gallons to 300 gallons per minute. The data for this transaction was served up in ESRI, and was consumed in MicroStation.

The fire department didn't pass requirements for the proposed Olympic Village, so they created another thematic map. This map was published out using Bentley's GeoWeb Publisher which is also available as a Web Map Service.

The fire department used eSpatial's iSmart to query the WMS to get a layer turned on, which gave them a view of the selected water pipes that they could then make changes to if need be.

The transportation department announced a proposed road closure, and wanted to turn on the layer of local roads, then write this back to a layer in their own database. Someone who works for the state DOT used Intergraph's GeoMedia Professional to see the intersection of highways for which he was responsible.

Adding a bit of drama to the scenario, an oil spill off the coast of Tampa prompted a need to locate predefined evacuation routes from the city. The polygon layer that was created was made available to other analysts and written back to the database as an Oracle Spatial feature. A report could be generated from polygons available as a WMS layer. Using Autodesk Map 3D 2007, a WMS layer was added to Map in order to identify what hospitals are in the area that might need to be evacuated.

As if this was not enough, a request came in to ArcGIS Server to see the oil spill plume at hourly increments. The Port Authority also needed to see this, so another WMS was published by Air Map.

The Interoperability Demonstration was done completely with services provided on multiple continents to multiple servers from multiple vendors. It is probably no accident that OGC director of field operations Greg Buehler was this year's GITA chairman, and saw the Demonstration as a great opportunity to showcase what they have accomplished in the OGC.

The demonstration is a view of the future; the rest is a view of what I've written about here is a view of how the industry is today. Rather than give a rundown of every session I attended, I decided to focus more on the overall climate of the conference, making use of the experiences of users who will be threaded throughout this commentary.

Topics addressed at this conference included the aforementioned interoperability, work and asset management, mobile work management, Web GIS, One-Call Connections, aging workforce, and aging assets.

State of the Industry

“Energy companies are a lot more cost conscious at the moment,” Christine Richards, research analyst for Energy Insights, pointed out while addressing a seminar on Work and Asset Management. “Gas and oil prices have changed as much as 60% in one year.” In spite of this, industry financial health is improving, and Richards cited fairly stable profits for energy companies.

“There have been changes in regulatory policy,” Richards explained. “The biggest change was the 2005 US Energy Policy Act, a long term policy for the U.S. It will impact work and asset management, i.e. mandatory electric reliability standards. As regulators demand more reliability, companies will have to manage their assets better.”

Application trends that Richards noted were voiced by the other presenters as well, including: consolidation/rationalization of work and asset management applications with the ultimate goal of a single system for all assets and types of work. Also, enterprise deployment of mobile and wireless technologies. “Over 40% of energy delivery employees work in the field,” she said.

Richards said that the growth in outsourcing will outpace overall IT spending “largely for horizontal services such as finance and human resources, but we'll also see this in customer care and billing.”

“Intelligent grid initiatives will move beyond the initial hype,” Richards predicted. “IT spending patterns, and the regulatory environment will determine utilities IT spending patterns which will affect work and asset management.”

Business Drivers

- improving operational efficiency

- regulatory compliance - a headache and have to find ways to minimize cost of compliance.

- aging workforce - labor replacement and knowledge retention issues. Trends are somewhat alarming - high median age in energy industry. spike in percent of employees 45-54.

- Aging assets -

- lack of investment in T&D assets over past 30 plus years

- significant reliability and capacity problems in certain regions. Costs to US economy from power interruptions is $80 billion annually (Lawrence Berkeley Lab)

- 72% of interruption costs borne by commercial sector

An issue for all utilities and telecoms has been the interface with many other related systems, and also, how is one system differentiated from another? Some of them do overlap in the tasks they do.

How is the work and asset management system distinguished from other related systems, for example? Work and asset management systems typically manage multi-crew, multi-task and multiday work, according to Chuck Drinnan, executive consultant for LogicaCMG.

- WM and AM may be a component of ERP, but ERP's primary purpose is managing work from a financial point of view

- Work Force Management is dispatch and scheduling designed for a single crew

- Work flow manager manages different versions for the GIS

- WM systems don't perform outage, so an outage management systems is necessary.

When asked where GIS comes in, Drinnan explained: “My view of GIS is that it maintains all the assets that are in the system at any time, and out in the field (not inventory). The GIS is a big powerful system. When I look at an asset management/maintenance system, I see a different problem - if I want to figure out my schedules for maintenance, part of it's geographics, some of it is looking at different assets. When I look at the life history of an asset, I want to know what it costs to install. That's not in my GIS typically. I want to know what's happened to the asset.” There are some GIS systems that keep track of moving assets from one location to another.

“In addition, I have all the maintenance work going on and have results of that work. On top of that I want to know how the revenue works in this problem, how much does this regulator station cost? I do need GIS help for analysis, load flow, etc.”

Drinnan said there is no single system that has all the information. The practical information is going to reside in the GIS. SAP and other systems are here to stay. “The question is, can I bring the data that I don't regularly have into a central location, and can I use that data to do maintenance and other processes?”

He suggested a repository in the center that you could plug all the other disparate systems into, like a data warehouse or database store.

Vendors and Users

Intergraph U&C has developed an integrated suite of workflow-based solutions on one platform called the oneMobile Mobile Geospatial Resource Management system, which embodies functionality in just one system that you would generally find in three technologies: GIS, outage management and mobile workforce management.

This mobile centric solution offers maps in the field, red lines and field design, and field inspection data.

In a demonstration of the product, Karen Bochmeyer and Steve McDaniel showed the creation of an original work request in the back office: initiating a new service design into an environment. Bochmeyer located a transformer that might require attention, hit the “initiate field design” command and sent the design job over to the field unit.

The field worker received the design job and alerted the dispatcher that he was en route to the job site. A graphical display shows his route. His own location was integrated with GPS, or it could be that the dispatcher knows the field worker's location.

For the field sketch job, the field worker learned that a wire was down and needed attention. He could also get preliminary costs on replacing the wire, if that was necessary. If he didn't know what the problem was when he arrived, he can use the analytical capabilities in Mobile Viewer to query for problems in the area.

Onscreen, the field worker placed a pole, a wire and transformer. “I can tell the dispatcher that I'm done with the sketch and send it to the back office,” said McDaniel.

Utilities and telecoms all use the same process to manage pipes, lines, etc., no matter where in the world they are, according to Geoff Zeiss, director of technology, infrastructure solutions division, Autodesk. That process is as follows:

1) An engineering design group (CAD) has a piece of paper they take to the field

2) They then go to Records (GIS) where the piece of paper is digitized, then it goes to

3) Accounting

This process is open to many errors and miscalculations. “They could reduce their costs by 79% by using IT,” said Zeiss. In his view, utilities haven't even started to reach this goal. By solving the redigitizing problem and the field force problem there is a huge reduction in costs.

Zeiss said that traditionally, many companies don't trust what the field workers have to offer, yet they are the ones who know what's out there and have ownership of the data. In North America, most utilities track returns, which are the number of return trips they must make to a site because of incorrect information.

Typically, Asia Pacific and Eastern Europe are faster adopters of IT technology for utilities and telecoms than the U.S. The U.S. is held back by the number of legacy systems it has and legacy procedures.

J.R. Smith, senior GIS analyst for the Public Works Department of the City of Tacoma, spoke to me about their experience with integration. Like many utilities, in the 1990s, they realized the need to go digital. They bought GE Smallworld, a powerful utility enterprise solution. As they needed to work with many different softwares from different vendors, they bought Oracle and use it as a storage medium. The city uses AutoCAD for building, land use, and permitting, and ESRI in the planning department, and now they use MapGuide for its internet and intranet capabilities. They can achieve GIS interoperability and have made their GIS accessible to numerous agencies and individuals, as all that
disparate data is now transparent. The department is beginning to also work with the fire and police departments, and hopes to have streaming real-time data in the future.

Stephanie Hull, PE, Director, Business Systems at AGL Resources, cited 2005 corporate goals for the company that included integrating acquisitions, accelerating the pace of technology adoption, i.e., automating everything that is still manual and consolidate to achieve one company and one system.

Hull explained that natural gas usage per customer is projected to decline. “We're earning less per customer, but the cost to install the infrastructure is going up.”

“We use phase implementation - we are under a lot of pressure to get things done so we can start achieving benefits, so we're putting one piece in while we're developing the next piece,” Hull added.

“We were very siloed and constrained by our systems,” Hull recalled. “We started by just knowing where our work is. We overlaid a day in the life of our technicians.” The realization that different crews were within a couple of houses of each other helped to move toward fully integrated mobile applications with needed business logic at the point of data entry.”

“Our vision is to have a single application for all our utilities to get us across the entire lifecycle, fully integrated,” concluded Hull.

Rick Riveland, Lead Business Systems Analyst, Dominion Resources Services, Inc. of Richmond, Virg., has been with company for 18 years. Riveland has a strong background in field operations and construction, and now creates future processes for all distribution work.

“We are transforming our scheduling and dispatch processes,” Riveland declared. He cited facts about the utility: 6,000 miles of electric transmission, operating revenues of $14.0 billion in 2004, total assets were $45.4 billion at that time. They serve 2.3 million electric customers in Virginia and northeastern North Carolina, with 64,000 distribution lines.

For the last two years, the company has gone through an analysis of its processes and made the decision that they must allow technology to improve their processes.

With regard to scheduling, every department was scheduling somehow, but none were doing it the same way. “We brought all the work and resources into one schedule for the whole organization,” Riveland said. “One schedule allows for a single material process. You can also consolidate so you can do just-in-time delivery of materials.”

With dispatch, cancelled jobs created holes in the schedule. “Scheduling and dispatch are really the same thing,” Riveland pointed out. “The only difference is how they apply over time, and the urgency of them.”

One-Call Connections

Numerous sessions were offered on One-Call Connections at GITA. This technology, outlined in a seminar moderated by Bill Balin, the initiator of Pennsylvania's One-Call System, the largest in the nation, drew a large crowd.

How it works for underground utility notification: the excavator calls the One-Call Service with an excavation request, the underground facility owner is notified and responds whether to go ahead with a dig or be careful. Responses are returned to the excavator, who follows those instructions. This system is being reviewed for use with critical infrastructure protection, as one call centers can provide a single data source for critical infrastructure data. It can also make use of existing relationships with partners to expand services to other potential members, and serve as a focal point during emergency response situations.

All aspects of protecting critical infrastructure can be supported - response, recovery, prevention, assessment, detection and preparedness.

According to Pete Gomez, manager information requirements at Xcel Energy, the need for a central repository of critical data was highlighted in the case of September 11. There was a repository of data for the State of New York, but it resided in the basement of Tower 2, which was demolished. There was a backup site where they were able to get their information, but there was no one-stop shop for data, so it took additional time to assemble necessary data.

Several national government agencies are looking into developing a national strategy for critical information protection. There are numerous challenges, for example, there are limited resources that are knowledgeable about bringing the data together; the sharing vs. cost to develop argument, i.e., why should anyone get to access the data for free; coordination of map production across different agencies.

The only province that has developed a fully functional system for responding to a terrorist attack is Alberta, Canada.

Integration Extraordinaire

With a strong push for interoperability and integration at all levels in the utility industry and government, it's not surprising that so many integrators have turned up in this marketplace.

An example is CH2M Hill, an engineering and construction firm for many years, that has in the last four years gone into the services business, offering consulting and integration services for E/C/O. Why would anyone choose to go with this firm rather than with one provider such as Autodesk, Intergraph or ESRI? CH2M Hill's answer is that they are vendor-neutral. They will put together the best solutions to create an enterprise view, whatever that might be for the client. Since most larger firms do maintain several different solutions in several different departments, this sounds like it could be valuable to some companies.

Showcased at GITA were the GE Tracker from CH2M Hill, a solution with the ability to plot the location of GPS-enabled devices in real-time through Google Earth's 3D interface. Using Google Earth visualization again, CH2M Hill demonstrated the R911 application that provides real-time early warning, visualization and communication during a disaster.


All these efforts to integrate and increase productivity in the utility and telecom industries and in the various government agencies has prompted what some spokespeople see as a “blurring” of the boundaries of these technologies in the future.

“We will see the blurring of office, contractor, and field staff capabilities,” predicted Chuck Drinnan. “because we are moving a lot more capability out in the field. The mobile unit should be a unit that gets the data through with good connection. When we walk out of the communication area it continues to work.”

The advent of Google Earth-type technology has also changed the way we view location and mobile technology. Now, using the Google Earth client and a Web-enabled database, customers can track resources or people in real-time, bringing powerful new functionality to applications for emergency response, critical infrastructure protection, asset tracking and much more.

Top News of the Week

Evans Data's recent worldwide survey on Wireless Development reported that almost 1 on 5 software developers picked Google as a first choice for developer tools. Additionally, the Evans Data Spring 2006 Wireless Development Survey also noted that a good portion of location-based websites which combine content from more than one source employ Google.

The next most commonly used location-based tool sets fell under the generic Open Source Software category, with just less than 10% of developers using them as a first choice. In a virtual tie, Yahoo, Microsoft MapPoint, and Nokia were the third most cited providers of tool sets.

Tadpole Technology announces the general availability of GO! Sync® Mobile GIS Framework (MGF), the latest evolution in field force automation.

GO! Sync MGF is an open, extensible framework that enables organizations to immediately deploy a new class of mobile GIS. The unique framework has been developed to enable users of ESRI software to improve the efficiency of field operations and leverage enterprise systems in pursuit of optimized return on investment.

GO! Sync MGF resides in the core of GO! Sync Mobile GIS, built on ESRI's ArcGIS Engine. It provides a framework within which users can access core functionality to create advanced mobile applications, customized to precise operational and technical requirements. Custom solutions can be built by developing the highly-configurable user-interface and integrating the system with existing work practices, third-party applications and business processes.

The principals of Airborne 1 Corporation, a provider of lidar services, software, and training worldwide, are pleased to announce that they have taken delivery of an Optech ALTM 3100 Enhanced Accuracy (EA) sensor. The new sensor will be the latest addition to the company's collection of state-of-the-art airborne laser mapping systems and lidar assets. Following a thorough set of diagnostic tests, the 3100EA sensor will join Airborne 1's fleet and become available for upcoming assignments throughout North America and abroad.

YELLOWPAGES.COM announced the launch of its next generation mapping that gives consumers more options for mapping, viewing and connecting with local businesses. In March 2006, the YELLOWPAGES.COM Network reached 27.3 million monthly unique users.*
After an evaluation process, YELLOWPAGES.COM selected Microsoft's Virtual Earth platform to power the mapping and location imagery offerings provided through the YELLOWPAGES.COM website. See
press release

John Copple, CEO of Sanborn announced the company has been selected by the Cincinnati Area Geographic Information Systems (CAGIS) consortium to perform base map updates and acquire high resolution digital orthophotography for 550 squares miles of Hamilton County, Ohio and surrounding areas.

The CAGIS consortium has determined that the best interest of the organization can be met by acquiring digital orthophotography for the whole of Hamilton County. Core deliverables for this project include 6 inch resolution digital color orthophotography, two foot contours, planimetric updates and a comprehensive digital terrain model.


The program committee for the 2006 GIS in the Rockies Conference announces that exhibitor and sponsorship information is now available online. Interested companies and educational institutions may register for booth space and sponsorships on the event


MapInfo Corporation reported net income for the second quarter of fiscal 2006 calculated on a non-GAAP basis (excluding the impact of stock-based compensation expense) of $3.0 million or $0.14 per share, on record revenue of $40.4 million. The net impact of the stock-based compensation expense for the quarter was approximately $0.6 million, or $0.03 per share. On a GAAP basis, net income was $2.3 million, or $0.11 per share. Second quarter revenue and earnings per share, on both a GAAP and non-GAAP basis, are in line with management's previous guidance. See full
press release

Intergraph Corporation, a global provider of spatial information management (SIM) software, announced financial results for its first quarter ended March 31, 2006. Revenue for the quarter was $139.0 million, an increase of 1.9% from the $136.5 million reported in the first quarter of 2005. Operating income for the quarter was $6.2 million, or 4.5% of revenue, compared to $5.9 million, or 4.3% of revenue, reported in the first quarter of 2005. The Company reported a restructuring charge of $4.7 million in the first quarter of 2006, compared to $1.7 million in the first quarter of 2005. Operating income before restructuring (a non-GAAP measure) for the quarter was $10.9 million, or
7.9% of revenue, compared to $7.6 million, or 5.6% of revenue, reported in the first quarter of 2005. See full
press release

NAVTEQ Corporation, global provider of digital map data for vehicle navigation and location-based solutions, reported record first quarter revenue for the quarter ended April 2, 2006.
Revenue in the quarter rose 17% over the first quarter of 2005 to $122.3 million. Operating income was $20.7 million, compared to $24.8 million in last year's first quarter. Net income was $16.2 million, compared to $16.8 million in the prior year's first quarter. Earnings per diluted share were $0.17, compared to $0.18 in the first quarter of 2005.
See full
press release

Contract Awards

Galdos Systems Inc. is pleased to announce the signing of a contract for the development of a data registry with Shell International Exploration and Production B.V. (Shell). Royal Dutch Shell plc is a market leader in oil and gas exploration and production; production and marketing of Liquefied Natural Gas and Gas to Liquids; manufacturing, marketing and shipping of oil products and chemicals and renewable energy projects including wind and solar power.


ER Mapper is proud to announce the appointment of Guy Perkins as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of ER Mapper's global operations. Until recently, Mr Perkins was Vice-President of ER Mapper Asia-Pacific. Mr. Perkins replaces Stuart Nixon who will continue with ER Mapper as Founder and will concentrate on strategic projects and deep research for the next generation of imagery solutions.

Analytical Surveys, Inc. (ASI), a provider of utility-industry data collection, creation and management services for the geographic information systems (GIS) markets, announced that Don Fryhover has rejoined the company as senior vice president.


The British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) is announcing a new option for those pursuing a Bachelor of Technology degree in Forensic Investigation. The new option, Crime and Intelligence Analysis (CIA), is the first of its kind in Canada - and is unique internationally as an applied program at a polytechnic institute - and seeks to meet increasing demand for crime and intelligence analysts in the fields of law enforcement, business and security. This program is supported by a number of industry partners, including Criminal Intelligence Service Canada, and with it, BCIT becomes the first Canadian institute to be a part of the i2 Collegiate Outreach Program (COP).

Wallingford Software, Inc. will launch its new USA training program in Philadelphia, PA on June 26th offering training courses approved by the International Association for Continuing Education and Training (IACET). Under the new program, training courses on Wallingford's full line of software products will be offered around the country in cities such as San Francisco, Atlanta, Seattle, Tampa, and Austin, TX.

For more information on the new training program, email
Email Contact or call 1-888-520-2224 (US) or +1-817-370-2425 (Canada).

New Products

LizardTech, a division of Celartem, Inc. and a provider of software solutions for managing and distributing digital content, announced the company's further support of JPEG 2000 within its Spatial Express application which enables storage of MrSID and JPEG 2000 images natively in Oracle(R) Spatial 10g, an option to Oracle Database Enterprise Edition. Oracle Spatial 10g provides a robust foundation for storing and retrieving geospatial data from Oracle Database 10g.

Intermap Technologies Corp. has expanded its online offerings to include countrywide and statewide SRTM (Shuttle Radar Topography Mission) elevation datasets, contours and Global Mapper geospatial software. All of these offerings complement the Intermap suite of NEXTMap(R) digital elevation models.

AccuGlobe Mobile Command Center, a new application designed by Digital Data Technologies, Inc. (DDTI), allows public safety officials to view the location of their fleet online, at any time from any location.

An extension of DDTI's Automatic Vehicle Locator (AVL) product used in Public Safety Answering Points (PSAPs) like Sheriff's offices and 9-1-1 dispatch centers, Mobile Command Center gives the option of viewing on one screen via the internet the units actively protecting their communities.

GeoLytics' Block Level Estimates gives you 2005 population estimates for the over 8 million census blocks in the U.S. If you need up-to-date information at the smallest census geography level, GeoLytics has the data you need.

There are over 8 million blocks in the U.S. so with Block Estimates you get the most detailed demographic data. GeoLytics also has an expanded variable list for the block estimates, which includes sex by age by race for the most precise population estimates available.

NAVTEQ announced that with complete Detailed Coverage of Spain and Portugal all roads in the Iberian Peninsula have been fully attributed to the NAVTEQ(R) data specification. One hundred percent Detailed Coverage represents collection of up to 160 data attributes, such as access restrictions, one-way streets, and speed categories, for all the roads in both Spain and Portugal thereby helping to optimize navigation.

3n (
National Notification Network) announced the availability of InstaCom 4.0, its flagship mass notification. InstaCom 4.0 consists of significant enhancements to the GIS offering. The new version also introduces 3n's Intelligent Message Service Prioritization (IMSP) methodology to guarantee 100 percent message delivery, as well as a new set of more comprehensive tools to further ease integration between InstaCom and customers' internal systems including most ERP and business continuity applications.

SRC, a developer of geographic business intelligence software, announced the release of its Explorer geocoder technology to the open source community. SRC's Explorer is the industry's first open sourced geocoder that is data and country independent, enabling developers to integrate digital address databases in any country to support geocoding processes. By open sourcing Explorer, SRC continues to further the expectation from business leaders that business intelligence tools will provide their organizations with immediate, revenue generating opportunities via a content neutral environment.

Infor announced general availability of the next generation of the Datastream 7i enterprise asset management solution.

This version of Datastream 7i includes a number of new modules and enhancements designed to help customers optimize the performance of their capital assets, uncover hidden profit potential and gain more granular control over their asset management operations.

Upcoming Events

MapWorld 06

Date: May 2 - 4, 2006

Place: Pointe South Mountain Resort Phoenix, AL USA

MapWorld 06 will help you work smarter, improve your industry standing and cultivate a valuable network of colleagues. Learn practical new ways to do things more efficiently with fewer resources. Seize this opportunity to gain a competitive edge by learning valuable skills that will take you to the next level.

Achieving Actionable Situational Awareness

Date: May 4, 2006

Place: Executive Conference Center 4301 Wilson Boulevard, Arlington, VA 22203 USA

Geo-Spatial Solutions - The Next Generation This Achieving Actionable Situational Awareness: Beyond GIS conference will focus on trends in secure Geo-Spatial enterprise solutions that provide actionable situational awareness for the enterprise. Speakers and topics will focus on integrated geospatial applications, data/sensor fusion, data security, and related technologies. Future and present needs for user defined common operating pictures that integrate multiple technologies and data sources to deliver true actionable situational awareness will also be addressed.

DGI USA 2006

Date: May 8 - 10, 2006

Place: Westin Arlington Hotel Arlington, VA USA

The North American Defense Geospatial Intelligence Conference Advancing geospatial intelligence for National Defense and Homeland Security is crucial to our efforts to disseminate data quickly, effectively gain the tactical edge, and ultimately save lives. As we face a new enemy with the War on Terror, it is critical that we come together in a cross-Service forum to seamlessly support the Warfighter and first responder through enterprise-wide transformation.

NEGIS 2006

Date: May 8 - 10, 2006

Place: Sheraton Ferncroft Resort Danvers, MA USA

NEGIS is the largest gathering of GIS professionals in New England with over 40 exhibitors. Plus, dozens of presentations.

GID 2006

Date: May 8 - 10, 2006

Place: Westin Arlington Hotel Arlington, VA USA

The rapid advancement of geospatial intelligence has gained the attention of Intelligence leaders across the globe. The benefits of geospatial intelligence to our WarFighters and first responders are crystal clear and GID 2006 offers you a forum to push the potential of geospatial intelligence to its limits!

2006 Washington GIS Conference

Date: May 8 - 10, 2006

Place: Tacoma, WA USA

The Washington State Chapter of the Urban and Regional Information Systems Association (WAURISA) has begun accepting presentation proposals for the 2006 Washington GIS Conference, to be held May 8 - 10, 2006, in Tacoma, Washington. WAURISA is seeking potential speakers to provide fresh, dynamic solutions to today's challenges. Presentations are invited that address the subjects of interest to GIS practitioners. This is an opportunity to share your experience, expertise, and knowledge with colleagues and offer solutions for success. Individuals chosen to present will gain recognition by their peers, raise awareness of critical issues and identify current trends in the industry.

Pennsylvania GIS Conference 2006

Date: May 16 - 17, 2006

Place: Radisson Penn Harris Hotel and Convention Center Camp Hill, PA USA

BE Conference

Date: May 20 - 25, 2006

Place: Charlotte Convention Center Charlotte, NC USA

The BE Conference is a once-a-year learning opportunity for Bentley users and their managers who want to sharpen their skills and expand their knowledge. The BE Conference includes hundreds of information-rich sessions.

GeoAlberta 2006

Date: May 30 - June 1, 2006

Place: Edmonton, Alberta, Canada

Join us for Western Canada's #1 independent GIS and Geomatics show! This year, GeoAlberta will be held at the Shaw Conference Centre in Edmonton, Alberta from May 30 to June 1st, 2006. It features world class keynotes including Joseph Berry from the University of Denver and Peter Batty, CTO of Intergraph. The three-day conference is also packed with hands-on workshops, insightful sessions, engaging speakers, and plenty of fun, entertainment, and networking opportunities. This event is vital to professionals who create and promote the effective application of GIS and Geomatics. Early bird registration deadline is April 30, 2006.

You can find the full GISCafe event calendar here.

To read more news, click here.

-- Susan Smith, GISCafe.com Managing Editor.