ESRI 2011 UC Live Blog

Esri UC 2011 Live Blog

We’re about to get underway at the 2011 ESRI UC.  We’re getting the opening Rocky-esque montage of GIS in action.  Jack takes the stage and here we go!

Jack starts with a big thank you and appreciation to us all and why we’re all here.  Jack’s a big fan of the f2f interaction, clearly.  He’s saying it’s the largest meeting they’ve ever had – around 15,000 people by the end of the week.  There’s around 14,000 in here right now.  Around 1/3 are here for the first time – great on them!  I’m a little surprised given governmental budgets that many people are here.  That’s a really good sign.  We’re now having our request meet and greet of the people around you.  Met a nice lady from ESRI just now.  Jack started a new process called the Deep Dive process.  Sounds like MBA speak, but I think he’s just saying he’s gone and fully explored a few select projects.  Hope it’s a representative sample 🙂  

Today’s sample – urban planning, well, really any planning; managing land (land information systems); environmental purposes; managing transportation; utilities and communications; building planning – basically he’s covering the normal big hits.  Oh, a mention of visualizations, which is cool.  Jack mentions geobusiness intelligence is an emerging field.  Not sure how that’s much different from geodemographics exactly, but I guess it adds more modeling and analysis.  Have to look into that later.  Given the unfortunate events in Japan in the spring, he’s naturally talking about emergency management and response.  I expect when they have people come up and talk about what they’ve done in the field, we’ll get at least one example from the Tsunami.  Crowd sourcing and engaging citizens (yay!) is getting bigger and bigger.  I still have issues with looking at this as primarily a top down endeavor, but I’m glad they’re talking about it more and more.  Regional and national GIS infrastructures.  Being in a state GIS data infrastructure, this area interests me, particularly the regional.  I wonder how they get around all the politics of interaction?
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ESRI EDuc Plenary Session – ArcGIS Online Improvements

At the ESRI Education User Conference Plenary this morning a few things struck me as significant for GIS use in the classroom.  Bern Szukalski reviewed some of the revisions that occurred last Wednesday and these are what I thought could enhance the use of GIS in the classroom:

Intelligent Mapping – Essentially pop ups that display data in graphical formats about the feature selected ( fun stuff like pie, bar and line charts).

Time enabled mapping – The ability to connect to time aware services and bring them into the mapping environment and have a time slider available.

And what I feel is the most significant advance, “Drag & Drop Mapping” where a text or Excel file can be dragged directly into the mapping environment to add features and their associated data.  Remember creating an Excel sheet with Latitude and Longitude fields, displaying events, and then exporting that event as a layer?  Not anymore, just drag that excel file over the map and drop it!

While the emphasis of the plenary was to enable GIS education, the undertone was that of increasing the capabilities of web mapping and the continued integration of cloud services.  The Pennsylvania State University also announced today for the first time publicly that it will be offering an open course tentatively titled “GEOG 8xx – Cloud/Server GIS“.  Enrollment for this course will be open on November 7th 2011.

VerySpatial at the Esri EdUC and UC

It is that time of the year again…we are prepping for the pilgrimage out to San Diego. We will be wandering the halls and…well…the halls talking to folks and learning a more about what folks are doing with geospatial technologies, especially the Esri ones. As usual we will have our live show and you are all invited. We will kick things off at 5:30pm on Wednesday, July 13 in Room 30E of the SDCC. If you get a chance head over to the VerySpatial facebook page and let us know you are attending on the event announcement or send us a tweet (@veryspatial) so that we can know how many cupcakes to bring to celebrate our 6th anniversary.

In addition to the live show we have a few presentations as well:

  • Jesse will be presenting the paper “Putting Digital Earth to work: Earth Observation Sensors and Data” Sunday morning at the EdUC in the session I Found this Awesome Website! Finding and Evaluating Information. The session starts at 8:30 in Marina F. @dianamaps and @adenas will be presenting in the session as well.
  • Frank will be presenting “Flood Hazard For The Public: An Arc Server Case Study” Tuesday morning at the UC in the session Considering Design and User Requirements in Application Development. The session starts at 8:30 in Room 28 D.
  • Sue will be presenting “A Walk on the Virtual Side: teaching with virtual landscapes” Tuesday afternoon at the UC in the session Video games and social media in the classroom? Yes! . The session starts at 3:15 in Room 26 A. @geogypsea will be the other presenter in the session.
  • After Sue’s session be sure to stick around for the “Geogames and Geoplay Interest Group” in Room 26A at 4:40.
  • As always, there are a ton of great sessions to check out at the EdUC and UC. If you are going to be there you may want to swing by one of ours.

    Must – Have – Coffee!

    Where you live might decide where you get your AM cup of joe (unless you get your fix from a local favorite).  Numbers Run has a neat series of maps that shows the number of store locations (Starbucks Vs. Dunkin Donuts) by zip code.  Living in New England I can already tell you that I don’t need a map to find a Dunkin Donuts.  They’re in every gas station, grocery store, shopping plaza… I think one is going in at the end of the hallway in my department!  To be honest, I’m looking forward to visiting the zip code with the largest number of Starbucks next month for the 2011 ESRI UC in San Diego, CA.

    From: Numbers


    National Geospatial Technology Skills Competition heads to Round 3 at the Esri EdUC

    We have talked about the GeoTech Center’s National Geospatial Skills Competition a couple of times on the podcast during the first two rounds, including an interview with Amy Bullard outlining the competition. Round one was an online test, and those who scored at a certain level were able to move on to Round two. Those in Round two created a video highlighting a software based project. The fourteen videos submitted to Round two have been judged and six finalists are heading to Round 3 to present their project at the Esri EdUC in San Diego. Those finalists are:

  • Evan Maier from Central Piedmont Community College
  • Feather Stolzenbach from the Community College of Baltimore County
  • Felicia Glapion from Northern Virginia Community College
  • Nathanial Wigington from Monterey Peninsula College
  • Paul Giers from Central Piedmont Community College
  • Sarah Tucker from White Mountains Community College
  • If one of the finalists can not make it to the presentation the next highest rank runner up will be invited.

    The presentations are currently scheduled for Sunday, 10 July at 3:15 in Marina – Salon F according to the EdUC schedule.

    Good luck to each of the finalists and well done to all of those who have competed in the first 2 rounds!

    Call for presentations, AAG 2012 session

    With the AAG taking place in February next year, the call for papers will close earlier than usual (Sept 28). Due to this earlier timeline I am putting out a call for a session I am putting together that will be made up of papers that will look at Participatory or Community Integrated GIS since the broad introduction, in 2005, of user generated and crowd sourced data along with Web 2.0 technologies. The broad question underlying the session will be “How have open data and accessible technologies changed Participatory GIS approaches?”. Presentations should provide:

  • a discussion of the changes in participatory projects,
  • an overview of the connection between participation and new data sources,
  • a specific example of new technologies in action,
  • or a sample of how communities are taking advantage of open data and new software.
  • If you plan to attend the AAG in NY and would like to be included in the session please contact me and provide a tentative title and a one sentence description of your topic. I will post a second call in August and finalize the session in early September.

    VerySpatial at AAG 2011

    With the AAG taking place in just over 2 weeks in Seattle we are ramping up for a great conference. All of the VerySpatial regulars and many of the contributors who are coming on board will be there. As always we will be wandering in and out of sessions (including our own) and capturing interviews with those souls intrepid enough to speak into a microphone. If you have something going on at the AAG that you would like us to catch or if you like to arrange a conversation in advance please email me and we will see what we can do.

    Also, be sure to come by our panel session on Saturday morning (April 16) where we will talk about geospatial technology outreach: what is out there, who is doing it, and how you should be involved or whatever we actually end up talking about. The session will be at 10 AM in 618 – Washington State Convention Center, Level 6.

    Also, since I will be there in the audience, I would encourage everyone to check out the Geography Education Specialty Group’s Gail Hobbs Student Paper Competition on Wednesday afternoon (April 13) in Boren – Sheraton Hotel, Union Tower, Fourth Floor…or any of the student paper or poster competition sessions. There is always great content in these sessions.

    Earth Observation Day 2011

    Coming to a remote sensing shop or school near you on April 8, 2011 is Earth Observation Day. The main objectives of Earth Observation Day are:

      to recognize the importance of using remotely sensed data to monitor the Earth and its environments; and
      to promote the use of remotely sensed data by K-16 teachers and students

    Of course we would like to think our readers and listeners recognize and promote remotely sensed data everyday just as they celebrate GIS everyday, but Earth Observation Day offers us all a chance to do this explicitly. This year’s focus is on land cover which is a ubiquitous, but important measure gathered from remotely sensed data. Be sure to find out more and grab resources from the Earth Observation Day site.

    Be sure to plan something remote sensing-y for Friday, 8 April.

    North Carolina GIS Conference

    As I mentioned recently on the podcast I plan to attend the North Carolina GIS Conference on February 17 & 18th and I will definitely be at the Academic Assembly on Feb 16th. With that in mind if you woud like to have a chat while I am on site about a project you are working on (or presenting), a product you would like to highlight, or just to say hi I will have the mobile recording unit (not it isn’t a taser) so just shoot me an email. I will get back to you and arrange a time to meet and talk.

    While I am interested in talking to anyone for VerySpatial, I am especially interested in talking to folks who are using remote sensing data for a research project that I working on to highlight earth observation data, research and related activities.

    I hope to see you in Raleigh next week.