Thursday, November 24, 2005

'The Map Book' By Peter Barber

This week I received the newest issue of Wired in the mail. Believe it or not it's a pretty good rag relating to technology and other cool stuff, but in the December issue they review a new book of compiled maps plainly called "The Map Book." Editied by Peter Barber, the head of the British Library's map collection, the book has 175 items highlighting 3,500 years of cartographic progress. Wired gave it 5 out of 5 bars. From my observations, the Wired team likes maps. Of course, who doesn't?

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

David Letterman, I Know Where You Live!

That old story about public access to cadastral data in Greenwich, CT, still gets news. No, Dave. I don't really know where you live... But I could. In Hoc. Would They Owe Me Money?

Just dawned on me that I have this news scroller-thing on the PLANET. If the world was right, wouldn't they be paying me for ad space? I now have the FANTOM PLANET Defense Force on high alert. All lawyers have been banished.

URL: I came across this site looking for the top U.S. college geography programs for a friend. Of course, my buddy told me that they couldn't hold a candle against the Canadian programs. [Scoff!?!] That's not for me to decide, but t'is for Lumberjacks.

Severely Slacking

I'm so slacking when it comes to blog posts and other things these days. I still owe Mike Pegg a newspaper, which I still have; and I owe Jeremy at Mapdex a coffee cup; and I need to finish up with the Map & Geography Division video. Now I'll cop out with Seasonal Affective Disorder to blame.

Monday, November 21, 2005

GIS Acronyms

Being the interactive chap that I am, I want to survey all y'all to see which GIS/geography-related acronyms are most important to you. So, please participate by leaving your comments. I'll start... GIS: Geographic Information System. Then try to link your comments to something like the Wikipedia, or... something?

Monday, November 14, 2005

Seth Godin, I Couldn't Agree More With You

In response to recent comments about a particular conference I point you all to a post by Seth Godin. Then there are Ubikcan's comments about certificates. That should start some lively conversation... Or, at least generate a lot of hate mail at the FANTOM PLANET post office.

Tuesday, November 08, 2005

Placing The Geography Back In Geographic

I was at a meeting today with some colleages who, finally, were not obcessed with technology when discussing geography. It was rather refreshing to touch on african migration into Europe, political geography, and culture. Almost national geographic. Ahh. I think with user applications moving into the mainstream I think there has become a disconnect from the geography discipline where even though there is geoinformatics behind apps the user really doesn't care about what it took to bring that "killa app" online. Plus, what even more disturbing is that some geographers have slipped into a state of denial. "Oh, even though Google isn't geography, it has brought up awareness of geography." Yeah; at what price? It's too early to tell. All I can say is that there needs to be some time for reflection about what is happening to the discipline before the word geographer becomes similiar to the phrase, "dropout communications major who isn't really an IT guy or librarian."

Monday, November 07, 2005

Slippy Maps: Naval Research Lab's DMap

If you're into watching the "Slippy Map" Wars, here's a shot across the bow that's been around for a while. The Naval Research Lab's DMAP. It has thick, thin, and PDA clients that rely on OGC and proprietary web mapping services. Pretty neat. I saw a Google Maps implementation today, so I thought I would toss it out for you all to take a look at and review/use. Of note, should be that the DMAP team claims that they have compiled the largest collection of geospatial data on the Internet to date. I wonder if they have seen

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Geography And Google Print

I was just toolin' around with Google Print today and realized, "Wow. This is neat." Of course, I geeked out and searched on "geography." Mostly textbooks, but I found a real gem. "Harper's Introductory Geography" from 1896. I just wish Google Print would also give me the metadata/card catalog record for the publication. Also, how about scanning hardcopy map libraries too, or providing their metadata? Oh! Or, using something like Metacarta to read the books and maps to geolocate pages or chapters of the books in Google Earth?!? That would be cool.

Friday, November 04, 2005

ESRI Skunkwerk Strikes Again

You know I told you that I was getting a "flashy" AWS demo the other day, right? I had one and it ROCKED!!! [GIO's Warning: This tool runs on data and user intuitiveness.] Flash-based schweetness with some wicked collaboration tools. Look for more on this in the coming weeks. ...Now if they could only put it on my iPod...

Thursday, November 03, 2005

Scoble: Google Has Won; We All Go The Way Of The Dodo

Via The Map Room: Scoble says, “’s doomed. So is our Virtual Earth. "Why? Cause we don’t even realize that Google is playing in the Superbowl and left us playing for the high school championships. It’s nice to win the high school championships, but it isn’t close to the Superbowl. "... it’s not about maps, it’s about the advertising platform that Google has built. It’s not about prettiness, it’s about who has the most user generated content (I still hate that term)” Agreed... With one exception. I think it comes down to who can give you the best core information to work from and access to the code to "mash" from... And ease. So, Google wins this round because they can buy everything under the Sun. I aim to be Google in my own mind, someday. Now whose going to be the next Google? Orwellian thought: "Why doesn't Google buy Microsoft, the CIA (who was at GEOINT), the Library of Congress, the National Archives, and the three credit reporting companies?"

Applied Geography: Day Two

I missed the morning sessions due to some personal appointments, but I did make it to the luncheon with Lee Schwartz, Director of the U.S. State Department's Geography & Global Issues group within the Bureau of Intelligence & Research. Dr. Schwartz provided a good overview of what his office does regarding negotiating international boundaries, surveying humanitarian crisis, and mapping relevant issues for the Department of State. With a small staff of analysts, who by the way aren't geographers by education, excel at managing and monitoring relevant geographic issues. So, I wonder if they're hiring?

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Coming Attractions: Library Of Congress Tour

That's right, the Library Of Congress Map & Geography Division Tour will be vlogged. Just give me some time to edit it. Stay tuned.

That's AWSome!

Tomorrow I get a sneak peek at a flashy AWS demo thar looks to be wicked cool. "Thar?" Sorry pirate talk.

AAG: Harvard Geography

At tonight's Applied Geography Conference AAG Executive Director, Doug Richardson, announced that the AAG has helped to establish a geography program at Harvard. The first course to be offered is Cosmotology Coloring Techniques and will be taught by the Bunker Hill Community College staff. I can hear off in the distance Harm de Blij saying, "Now only if Robert MacNamara took that class when he was at Harvard." Oh, look. There's Bob on the phone now with the registar.

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

New Office 12 Formats & GIS

Any thoughts out there about MS Office 12 changing formats to XML-based formats and the implications associated with GIS software? Specifically, ESRI software. I thought I'd ask. So, I'm thinkin'...

  • If MS is going with XML-based Office formats, what's stopping them from coming out with XML-based GIS data formats?
  • Google has XML-based file formats.
  • GML... Der.
  • How 'bout upgrades to ArcGIS or AX to cover the change?
  • Or, will we begin to see Office/Google mash-ups?
  • Or, will Microsoft products become standard mash-ups that anyone can use... As long as you have access to the servers?
Talk about migrating from Windows to the Web. [Web 2.0.1, anyone?]