As we have mentioned on the podcast a couple of times, we are kicking off a book club to focus on Geography themed books. We will focus on popular and trending books with an eye towards texts that are current and less expensive (under $20). We are using Goodreads’ group functionality to host the book club. We encourage you to go over and check out the group and join us.
Our first book is Alastair Bonnett’s Unruly Places: Lost Spaces, Secret Cities, and Other Inscrutable Geographies, which will be discussing through September. As this is part of VerySpatial you probably expect that we hope to have a conversation with each of the authors on the podcast. Our talk with Dr Bonnett and future authors will come out mid-month to give us time to chat about the book before and after the podcast. You can get sense of the book by listening to Dr Bonnett’s NPR interview from July.
We are already searching for future books, so let us know if you have any suggestions. If you are an author or a publisher, please let us know about your book so we can put on our list of potential reads. One thing we plan to do as we get a clear schedule (both for the discussions and future books) is to give away a few copies of the book we choose. To that end, keep an eye on the VerySpatial Twitter account later this week as we give away a couple of ebook versions of this month’s read.
Howdy! I hope everyone is enjoying their weekend. We probably are (ask us later) since we are pushing this week’s episode (469) back to mid-week. It is mostly to do with a last minute schedule change I caused, but a little bit to wait and see what else hits by the Esri UC keynote on Monday.
As you might expect we had planned to run interviews from the Esri EdUC and UC for the main topics in 469 and 470 (and others). Even though we canceled our trip to San Diego this year in mid-June…I forgot to plan something for this week. Add in the last minute schedule change and it may lead to the rest of the July podcasts as mid-week releases. I guess we will find out together on the 20th.
One last note. As a fun bit of nostalgia, watch out on Sunday for Special Episode 72 which a retrospective that highlights the intros from our first 8 years of podcast anniversaries as we head toward our 9th anniversary. It is the beginning of our year long(ish) countdown, first to episode 500 in February and then our 10th anniversary next July.
We are stuck on the east coast this summer and will not be at the Esri UC for first time since 2006. We hope to be back next summer for a 10th anniversary shindig, but for this year we are missing out on some of the great hallway and exhibit hall conversations we normally bring to the podcast.
If you are presenting or exhibiting at any of the number of user conferences this summer and you would like to talk about your project or product, please contact us at podcast at veryspatial dot com. We can schedule a phone, Skype, or Google+ interview for sometime in July.
Since I don’t put together a highlight reel of our outtakes at the end of the year anymore, I figured I would start sharing them as I cut them out of an episode.
This week I destroyed the flow and disabled Sue for almost a minute with nothing more than a sound.
We are looking for one or two interns to support blog and podcast activities on VerySpatial.com for the Spring 2014 semester or Summer 2014. Any undergraduate or graduate student in Geography or a related field can apply. Activities for the internship will include:
To apply, please send a short writing sample and a resume to podcast at veryspatial.com. We will begin the review of applications as they arrive, including setting up potential Skype or Google+ interviews, and make a decision by the beginning of January 2014.
We downloaded several apps for our Very Spatial Road Trip that were recommended by friends, online reviews, and VerySpatial podcasts. Since she was acting as navigator, Barbara insisted on stopping at AAA and picking up a stack of paper maps for back up. We found that there is no better crucible for road testing a travel app than a lengthy trip into the unknown under sometimes stressful and time imperative conditions. We felt like the explorers in Dava Sobel‘s book “Longitude” who were sent to sea with new technologies that we hoped would live up to their claims. It wasn’t until after our trip that we heard more honest opinions on the strengths and weaknesses of the apps we packed. A friend, who is a global traveler, told us that it is good travel etiquette to leave our own input on any crowd-sourced apps as our “payment” for using it and to “pass it on” to other travelers. In that spirit, we have written a review of the apps that we used on our road trip from WV to CA.
Sorry for the long delay between the post for day 4 and day 5. Like most travelogues, not everything goes as smoothly as anticipated and documentation gets overridden by circumstances. Then, we got distracted by the ESRI User’s Conference and then by all the stuff we didn’t get done back home because of the Road Trip and the User’s Conference. But we’re back at it and have lots more to report!
One of the really interesting things about driving across the US is that distances seem to get longer when you go West. They’re not any longer, obviously, but there does seem to be more ‘openness’ between places. As a colleague of Frank’s said, “After Kansas City, there’s a whole lot of nothin”. Luckily, we found that axiom to be deceptively both true and false.
Day 3 we started in St. Louis. The night before we found this great restaurant called Annie Gun’s through Yelp, a smart phone app that can find great food and accommodations along your way . Yelp can really knock it out of the park and has so far on this trip, not least is the example of Annie Gun’s. That restaurant got a near perfect score on Yelp and we can see why. I had one of the all time top 5 sandwiches I ever had there. Unfortunately for us, this place is jumping even on a Sunday night, so we had to order to go. That’s ok, because we ended up in a nice conversation at the bar with some locals. Funny enough, the conversation started because the gentleman mentioned Thurmond WV and we said we just came from around that area. Turns out he is going next week down to that area to work communications for the National Boy Scout Jamboree taking place around the New River Gorge area this summer. His coworker was excited to talk about the great things to see and do around St.Louis and other customers chimed in with their own comments on the area and its culture. Moral of the story is this: don’t be afraid to engage people on a long Road Trip. They can be very nice and turns out the world can be a lot smaller than you think. Continue reading