Friday, July 29, 2005

On the plane reading "Wired: 13.8" - "We are the Web"

I’m on the airplane en route back home after the UC and I just finished reading the entire August edition of WIRED, which features articles on the 10th Aniversary of Netscape going public in 1995.

I was a college freshman then, excited and intreguied by the Internet at school, and hashing out early HTML for fraternity and university websites. Anyway, that tapered off when I left school for “a more rewarding career” of driving the Short Bus. But now I’m back at it. A geographer and a technologist, in an exciting field, but nonetheless in a restrictive buracracy. I am frustrated and fueled at the same time. Standing up to “fight the good fight” and “to do the Lord’s work.”

Reading “We Are the Web” by Kevin Kelly here on the plane, my brain went into overdrive with thoughts of how the GeoWEB, hypergeography (a lame attempt to tag the evolution of geospatially enabled hypermedia), and us will emerge as what Kevin calls "The Machine" that will connect every sensor (RFID tags, people, etc) together to make a neural network more complex, more dynamic and grows more rapidly than the human brain.

Some crazy SkyNet stuff, is it not?

The web is growing and society is producing more information than it is consuming. The combination of The Machine learning and us as engineers and geographers giving it the ablity of spatial awareness and sight (combo of slippy map services and geospatially tagged Flickr images) we are creating a reflection of ourselves. This is probably why in the article people are hedging their bets that the Internet will be the first self-aware AI. Heck, it’s never off, we teach it to learn, to see, to feel, to touch, to talk, and to know where it is. It will be us and we will be it.

An interesting thought caught my mind though when Kevin talked about the future wen here the human/web will be embedded with one another. Imagine that we’re all linked to everything (yes, Borg-ish), but our children will have left their memories for their children. This future growth causes an exponential increase in our own neural development as a species and will allow us (and it) to learn from all of our mistakes.

Now, how spooky does that sound: instantaneous wisdom? Anyway, I don’t think we have anything to fear as in The Terminator movies. We will still have our compassion and our reason. Hopefully, transferring those traits to The Machine, which will be all of us?

Thursday, July 28, 2005

Some good comments on GIS Enterprise SOA

I know you're reading this. Yes, you. Now pay attention. If that has been included in your budget? JD O'Neill recently posted some comments on GIS and SOA's such as "What Can I Do With An SOA? and "Access to ArcGIS Server as EIS." You should read these to get an idea of what an SOA is and how a GIS enabled SOA can be utilized as an Enterprise Information System (EIS). Note the idea of transforming the current situation to a service-based architecture, instead of living in the LN hell that we live in.

ArcWeb Services

Note to self: Why didn't I know about ArcWeb Services before? It's like Google Map construction on steroids with spatial data query and some useful geoprocessing. I still like the Google Map cartography anyway, but I think that ArcWeb MapStudio would be a useful alternative to "our primary dissemination" platform to utilize all of the data my office holds. Sorry Curious, you may have a cheaper alternative... Stop! Crunkie: geotagged moblog app for your phone. Schweet! Still, there's a website that uses the crunkie.com address that comes up as StreetHive that looks like it uses ArcWeb Services. Heads up: ArcWeb Services 2005 beta coming late August. Improved carto, speed, vector maps, new web learning site, custom map services, line/poly feature upload (GPS?) WiFi Location service (MSN VE?), enhanced geocoding, enhanced routing, NEW DATA!, and new access methods.

  • New carto styles via Nat'l Geographic.
  • Vector Mapping = Flash and SVG (AWESOME!) (Standard style sheets; multiple)
  • New ArcWeb Services website w/ detailed info and tools. (Yeah, I need to get on this boat and check it out.)
  • Federate an ArcIMS service using SOAP/REST to reference in an ArcWeb Service. Nice.
  • Create custom services: add/delete info, easy full control of map services
  • New tools for customization
  • Uploadable lines and polygons. I wonder how this works with GPS info?
  • WiFi location services equals waived rights for locating your mobile phone on ArcWeb Services to send SMS to the phones
  • Good routing and traffic info integration along with drive time info
  • Location of landlines in the U.S. and worldwide city level IP addresses (Where can I get this!?!) Uh-oh! The presenter is talking about tracking bloggers and outside visitors... Getting way too "Big Brother" on me. Gives me The Jibblies!
  • Hi-Res commercial imagery services and weather data worldwide (58K weather station and stats going back 30 years) Uff da.
  • New data. See above. (World 30M DEM info)
  • REST API! REST API! REST API! KICK ASS! (Digi, move from SOAP to REST.)
  • J2ME Toolkit
  • OpenLS API... Good.
Demo time. Google News?!? Now they're talking aobut reading news to identify places in ArcWeb Services... Interesting. Very interesting. If it can do this, then why ask for geoRSS? "Riddle me that Batman." New services: the pretty "slippy map" stuffs for web and mobile apps. Hmm... How can I create the killer app for the next two years and become independently wealthy? ArcWeb Services 2005 hi-fi Map Viewer with Flash/SVG on the fly pre-created map tiles and a wicked awesome widget viewer. Also some features to re-0rientate the map in the direction you're going. Excellent. My ESRI rep was right, ESRI wanted to get the slippy map right when it went off into the IMS world. This is some good stuffs. Ok, geeking out here. Going to get some coffee and power down. Actually, my butt fell asleep.

UC Bloggers Meet-Up

Wednesday night I met up with the other geobloggers at the UC. What a great bunch of guys! Smart as heck, know their stuff, and just fun to hang with. One of the highlights of the night was that I may have turned Redlands on to kickball? If you don't know already, the ESRI folk are mad bowlers and from what it sounds like they're in need of a new fix. I know for a fact some of the ESRI peeps in DC are kickball players, but think of a Redlands division. We could have a UC kickball tourney next year. Of course, this is what will happen if we do:

  • Trimble and Leica teams survey the field
  • ESRI maps it
  • MetaCarta will know where it is in the invite
  • TeleAtlas liscenses the info where the field is
  • The Google Lidar guys bring their sharks with "lay-zers"
  • The SANZ guys bring the ducks and the drinks
  • DigitalGlobe will be photographing the tournement
  • Microsoft will hold their own kickball tournement on XBox
  • And, I'll probably end up umpiring
Anyway.... If you're interested in kickball in your area check out the World Adult Kickball Association's (WAKA) website.

San Diego Chargers Cheerleaders

Well, well, well... Looky what I caught on the way back to the hotel.

The San Diego Chargers Cheerleaders photographing the cover of their annual calandar.

Who needs the calander when you have The Planet to find goodies like this.

ESRI UC - Day 3 Wrap

This Is Not Fat Tire Originally uploaded by Fantom Planet.
I really did make it to some workshops. Seriously, I did. Wednesday was heavy on enterprise GIS and service orientated architectures (SOA). Amazingly, I knew what the heck all of these presenters were talking about. There was a lot of SOAP, UDDI, and WSDL slinging . Which is cool, but I think that some of the people in the room really didn't understand the tech aspects that were focused on. Yet, I do belive that they did get the concept of SOA in an IT architecture and how all of an organization's business processes and services can be integrated with the geographic services to provide a much more robust information distrobution network. For those of you from work take note of this. I think that when I return I will need to get with my peeps and re-evaluate our plans and ideas in how we want to transform. Also, how we need to become interoperable with our partners is key. Well, that's the wrap of the Wednesday. I'm currently sitting in the ArcWeb Services introduction presentation. I think I'll have to try out the public services and compare it to Google Maps. Right now it seems to be more robust for geogeeks, but not everyone is a geogeek. And I work with non-geogeeks. Nonetheless, ArcWeb requires some evaluation.

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

GeoRSS/ATOM/RDF/Whatever

Ok, kids. Time to strike your curiosity. What kind of resources do you need to create the second part of the changing Internet? Pssst. That's the geo-enabled hypertext. I wasn't there for Where 2.0, but I really want to know what kind things strike your fancy as wave of the future stuff like... AM Radio. Err... Geotagged RSS for placenames, addresses, and other "where's". Because I deal in both the Geo-Space and the Info-Space I want to merge the two to be able to use the Earth as the search engine and the common link between people, places, things, and time. I figure that GeoRSS is only as good as the gazetteer that you use, but that can be fixed. If you work in an interoperable environ, you should be able to use a tool like MetaCarta to read your hypertext to search for placenames, or you can manually enter them, and save your text in GeoRSS that can be read and aggrigated by a GeoRSS reader. Creating an output for ArcIMS/GIS, Google Earth, or whatever. Thus linking the text or multimedia to features on the Earth that will link you to other info near or about that place (and time.) I guess you would need to build a filter too? Nonetheless, what the heck needs to be done? Do you want me to pitch this on the exhibit floor today? Because I can. And I know people who would be very interested. If I do generate interest, we'll move onto resources needed. Just let me know. Please.

Rehetorical Question

I'm all about interoperability. It may be because I have this appreiciation for interchangable working parts first pattened by Eli Whitney and one of the reasons why our country is such a rockin' place. The past couple months I have been reading and trying to understand "open source" and the proprietary "evils". Well, I'm here at the UC and I hear OGC, WMS, WFS flying around as part of the GeoWeb. Ok, great. Getting the word out about compatable data is cool. But... I have been also coming to the realization that as cool as "open source" sounds, who is going to make money off of it to grow the standards and formats? I'm thinking like a capitalist pig. If you look at the development of technology in our society, you see that tech becomes a reality to fill a human need. Not a want. And it most often a crisis or last minute thing. Unless, the open source community can develop a need for OGC standards, in the scope of the country or the world, they are going to have slow development cycle and/or a lack of resouces to keep up with some of the proprietary standards that sell because the address a specific need. Please don't hate me. Anyway, if you can convince the guys with the resources (not the U.S. Govenrment) to invest in open source where there is a happy medium between profit, useablity, access, and innovation where they will invest in developers and programmers who can contribute and advance the technology for the common good. Open source could be off in the background. On the other hand, it could very well be WAY out in front of everything. I'm not a psychic, nor do I claim to be an expert. So, don't you all go hatin' on me now. Yet, if organizations can scope their enterprise to be interoperable and work with service/software providers like ESRI, Google, Microsoft, and the Thales Twins, you could have your interoperable utopia. If you can afford it. And who said interoperablity has to be with everyone? I dunno, but I reckon that it is all relative to what an organization's needs are. With that I'm moving on to my next post.

The General Lee

The General Jack Originally uploaded by Fantom Planet.
AWESOME! I passed this on the way to the Padres game last night. Ah, every man's early adolescent dream car. Well, it's either this or KIT.

Actual 1800's School Map


Actual 1800's School Map
Originally uploaded by Fantom Planet.
On the exhibit floor of the UC, I came across this interesting Artifact.

An 1854 pull-down school map of the United States. The booth dude noted that it was his great-great-grandmother's from when she was school teacher. For being that old, it's in really good shape.

I may ask the owner if I should put him in contact with the Library of Congress Map & Geography Division. Hopefully, to arrange something that will preserve this wonderful piece of history.

ESRI UC - Day 2 Wrap

Ah, day 2. Aside from the massive collection of swag, which I have yet to catalog, it was the day you get lost on the exhibit floor. Someone is looking for something to buy and sell. You typically find something of interests and exchange business cards, loosely assured comments of "I'll get back to you when I return home," and you later realized that eight hours has passed and you have not attended a session yet. At least I made it to one... NGA's Palanterra presentation. It's pretty good stuffs. I don't want to go into too much about it, but it is one of ESRI's primary partnerships in the homeland security arena. It does some schweet stuff and it is awesome that someone in government has a pretty clear vision about what they want to do and the ability to do it. I still wonder how they get around the buracracy. Anyway, cheers to Palanterra. Yeah, that's day one. I'll probably hit some of the SOA presentations on Wednesday. This is Wednesday, isn't it? I will probably meet up with the other geobloggers tonight too. So, if you're around I'll talk to you later tonight.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

Thales Twins


Thales Twins
Originally uploaded by Fantom Planet.
Thales wins the ESRI Swag Award again with the "find your twin" button gig. But this time they really sealed it with the three sets of twins.

(I was forced by Tim to take this.)

SANZ Duck Army


SANZ Duck Army
Originally uploaded by Fantom Planet.
Booth 611.

Talk to the SANZ Crew to get your favorite bathtub fun time item.

Pancakes, and Waffles, and LiDAR. Oh, my!

This poster from the Map Gallery is from the University of North Dakota. My peeps. This is a cheap plug for the geography program, but it really is a darn good program. They even have a distance learning GIS Certificate. I had a great time learning my 100 to 200 courses there before I went off to drive the short bus in Hawaii. An remember, UND has the best hockey arena in the world. The Ralph. $100 Million of swag. I still wish they would put the benches back in the student section. Sioux! Yeah! Yeah!

Empty Starbucks?


Empty Starbucks?
Originally uploaded by Fantom Planet.
Monday afternoon I caught this pic of Starbucks at the UC pretty much empty. Either the geographers hit the field, went to lunch, are off using Google Earth and MSN Virtual Earth, or, I have the erie feeling that Caramel Machitos are made out of people and ArcGIS 8 manuals.

Map Gallery Spread


Map Gallery Spread
Originally uploaded by Fantom Planet.
This is the spread from the Map Gallery opening on Monday.

I spent most of the time conversing with the Google Earth guys and met them later for dinner with some of my colleagues. I must say, they are some awesome people.

I think I need to reconsider my career options...

Later. After I do the Lord's work. (Wink-wink)

Freedom Ain't Free; Neither Is Flickr

I was going upload pics from yesterday to my Flickr account, then... BAM! I went over my monthly upload limit. Crap! [Scoff.] So, I did what any good blogger would do. Pay.

ESRI UC - Day 1 Wrap

Ok, ok, ok. So people of importance really do read this experiment in diahrea of the keyboard. Day one of the ESRI Users Confrence was a really interesting one. This being my second, an the first where I actually felt interested in listening to Jack and the rest of the presenters. Mostly due to the new "wide-body" design of the seating this year, as compared to last year's arrangement. Nonetheless, it was a good start with some new features and improvements to the ESRI product line, a few outstanding uses of ESRI products, and finally Dr. Goodall's keynote address. Then there are the rumor mills and the under the table stories. Ha! Do you really think that I am going to ruin my blog-a-listic career on spreading the filth of rumors? Ok, I will. Or not? Monday I learned about some cool news, but I would rather leave that to corporate communications teams and Jack. When I do hear news that is pretty cool, I'll post it, but if it's with a company that I work with or friends who give me the scoop. I really feel like posting that juicy information would be a breech of confidence with my business partners and friends. What is dude to do? Anyway, I'm sure you will hear all about it later in the geography rumor mill on the Exhibition Floor. If you're going to be at Dick's Last Resort for the meeting, I may fill you in. Then the hit squads will be on my butt.

Monday, July 25, 2005

Monkey Meat

I'm at the half-way point of Jane Goodall's keynote address at the ESRI UC and am watching a demonstration from one of Dr. Goodall's colleagues using GIS in the Gombe National Park in Tanzania. It's an interesting keynote, Dr. Goodall has noted that there were once over 1 million chimps in the park when she stared her studies, but there are now less than 150,000 chimps. That's an amazing stat if think about it. With local logging compainies building roads deep into once untouched African wilderness, they bring hunters who kill chimps for their exotic meat and parts. Ick. It's amazing that the economies of the world create such situations. I'm not from PETA (not People Eating Tasty Animals), but I am one who realizes how fragile our world is. I guess that is why Jack has Dr. Goodall on stage. Providing us with reasons why GIS and geographic science can help us manage our world. I really have drank the the Kool-Aid. Uff da.

Is it just me, or...

My instant messenger program that I typically use is hating life. It's not connecting in the exhibit hall, so if you're here I'll miss chating with you. Maybe later, eh? And, I left my power cord in my hotel room... Shutdown in 3... 2... 1...

Jack Onstage


Planary 5
Originally uploaded by Fantom Planet.
This pic was from Jack's intial presentation.

Right now, as I'm uploading pics, I'm getting the lowdown on ArcGIS 9.2 Carto improvements.

Nice.

I'm still partial to MaPublisher and Illustrator. Nonetheless, the new ArcGIS digs are good.

ESRI Image Server

Crazy as it sounds, related to me, is the Image Server Jack introduced this morning was pretty wicked. Having something that draws from you imagery cans, does on the fly orthorectification, processing, and other nifty stuff (like washing my car) is going to be the buzz at the office later this week and next when I return. The General Population, who I work with, will be eagar to introduce ESRI Image Server into our office architecture. Because when you work with tons and tons of data in the timeframes that we work in, something like Image Server would really come in handy to process info as it comes in and when it had to go out a half hour ago. Oh my God! I'm drinking the Kool-Aid... "Oh! Yeah!"

Post Jack Planary

This morning Jack did his annual planary presentation to kick off the UC focusing on this year's theme about managing our world. Emphasizing data managment, the GeoWeb (which I am a big-big-big proponent of), and some new and upcoming ArcGIS 9.2 features. Most notably, ArcExplorer 9.2, which is friggin' awesome! AE 9.2 is the ESRI answer to Google Earth/Maps and MSN Virtual Earth. As a FREE tool, it provides the spatial query features that are typical of ESRI products reaching into multiple GeoWeb services that could consist of geodatabases, ArcWeb Services, or, I assume, OGC compliant services too. This is big news. I saw the founder, John Henke of Keyhole/Google Earth fame, in the audience earlier. I wonder what is running through his and the Google Earth team's mind after this presentation? As for the rest of Jack's presentation, I though it was good. The emphasis on the GeoWeb and the intergration of data - although through ESRI translation tools - is a step in the right direction. Anyway, gotta bail off to meet some friends. I'll post pics later.

Saturday, July 23, 2005

ESRI Swag - 1

I'll try doing this in pictures...

ESRI Man Purse

ESRI Man Purse Originally uploaded by Fantom Planet.
Ah, the ESRI Man Purse. A fine, fine, fine piece of machine and child made personal accessory. This Man Purse sports the lovely ESRI 25th Annual Users Conference logo along with a clear plastic pouch to keep your name tag and drink tickets in. An addtional feature is a mesh side pouch, which one ESRI employee noted, "is there to hold your water."* This is an excellent accessory if you are collecting ESRI swag at this year's ESRI Users Confernce. It is big enough to fit both John Wayne and Ted William's heads, but not big enough for or capable of carrying your map tube. (*Secretly deep down inside, I know they meant martini to go shaker.)

Many ways to geo-tag The Planet

I better get this out there... The photos I'm taking... Geo-tagged on Flikr using STEEEV's Greasemonkey scripts for Firefox as described on GeoBloggers.com. You can also search for my geotagged photos using the esriuc05 tags in Flickr. Also, if you're using Firefox and Greasemonkey, you can view some geotagged material in the same webpage by adding the GreaseMap script. Adding a Google Map frame to display geotagged content in the page. This is a learning experience for me and I'll see about what goodies I can come up with for you all. Now, who's gonna buy me a beer and then a coffee to keep me up for the planary session on Monday?

Who's on Strike? Not the Empire.


IMGP0850
Originally uploaded by Fantom Planet.
This was taken on my hoof to find some grub after I got into town. I guess someone has issues about working.

My answer: "You should have been smart enough to be a geographer."

Although not PC, it gets some chuckles.

I seriously think that what ever these people's issues are, they are resolved, and that the world becomes a better place.

Speaking of "better place"... Where is it? Can it be geo-tagged?

If I find it; I will let you know.

Registered! Hoo-ha!

Ok, since I got to the hotel before the 3pm check-in I decided to hoof it down to the Convention Center and register. Talk about express registration, no one was there at 1pm. So, with my ESRI man purse in hand I grabbed something to eat and started making phone calls to people who I thought were in town to plan for a slow and interesting evening. But, no. They're all still in the airport waiting to board their flights. Or, some of them don't show up until tomorrow. Meh! I guess it will be a slow and relaxing weekend evening after all.

Map Machine?


Map Machine?
Originally uploaded by Fantom Planet.
Just arrived in San Diego and checking in to the hotel I noticed this...

Two bucks in quarters for a map!

Now tell me, who has $2 in quarters for a map. Heck, that's my laundry money.

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Off to the UC

I'll be hittin' the road in a vain attempt to understand the largest geotechnology event of the year. Anyway, I'll be geoblogging the event in the ubiquitious style that the FANTOM PLANET tries to promote... random junk on geography. Maybe we'll get a scoop that I can tell you about? Or, perhaps I'll just geoblog from the inside of a jail cell after one of San Diego's Finest drags me off for shouting: "Interoperability you fooooools!" Ah... I love the UC.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Corporate Secrets: Arrrggg!!!

Knowing about things before they will become news... sucks. Prior to the ESRI UC today I have been engulfed in corporate information and rumors that are AWESOME! Alas, I don't think it would be ethical for me to spill the beans, per se, about what people have told me in confidance. It's just really, really, really frustrating. Woe is me!

Monday, July 18, 2005

The Office Gets A Wiki

Crazy thougth: Why doesn't my office get a wiki? Good news: It's official, my office has a wiki. Bad news: It's official, my office has a wiki. It's strange, it wasn't advertised, nor was it easy to find. Fortunately, someone on my GIS bulletin board posted it after my lamenting about establishing a wiki, some blogs, and migrating the bulletin board away from an archaic Lotus Notes database. My concern is how to migrate the bulletin board to the wiki. It's on a standalone network which I couldn't really link to anything, but now, it's the wiki content itself. I will be interested in how and who post wiki entries. Also, who from the front office lays down the content policy. Then who lays down the office policy. Then who lays down the group policy. Then... Get my drift? I work in a buracracy. This may be a good thing, or, a really, really bad idea. Give me a week. I'll break it, or, cause trouble. ...Most likely the later

Saturday, July 16, 2005

Caught in a WorldWind

This weekend I have began to start fussing around with NASA's WorldWind 3D viewer. Initially taughted as a "learning tool" this app actually has some practical uses such as viewing NASA sensor information (I used to be an intern w/ the Spacecraft Sensor Branch modeling Mars & planetoids), and finding places on the Earth (ok, kinda vague.) Yes, Virginia, there is Google Earth. But... WorldWind is a completely open source app. Write whatever suits your needs and plug it in. I found such add-ons such as the GPS plotting and real-time tracking plugins to be cool. As with the worldwide aeronautical flight path information and the path of Ewan McGreggor's "Long Way Round" path. Nonetheless, it is still an open source project in its infancy with all the issues associated with open source projects. Yet, I think it's poised to take a stab at the Google, ESRI, and MSN Virtual Earth users due to its ability to be easily modifiable for a client's needs. Still, as I am working with it, I am having a hard time trying to get data into it: SHP's, and geoTIFFs. I'm not a programmer but I'll figure it out. Take a stab at WorldWind. It's a great app. Has a good knowledge base via its wiki, http://worldwindcentral.com. Check out NASA's WorldWind at http://worldwind.arc.nasa.gov

Monday, July 11, 2005

The Geographer of the United States Passes Away

Bill Wood, the Geographer of the United States, passed away on July 4, 2005, at the George Washington University Hospital from complication from cancer. The title, Geographer of the United States, is a U.S. State Department title granted to the head of the Office of the Geographer and Global Issues (GGI). The Geographer and GGI are the custodians of the official position the United States recognizes regarding boundaries and sovereignty issues.

Saturday, July 09, 2005

CubeWerx releases an OGC Connector for Google Maps

Well, I guess someone's working to make Google Earth & Maps OGC compliant. Thank goodness the Canadians are on it! Now, Brett... What does OGC stand for?

Oh, how do I ever love the Great White North!

Gatineau, Québec, July 08, 2005 -- CubeWerx, a leading provider of spatial data warehousing and web service products based on a Service-Oriented Architecture (SOA) today announces the release of a WMS Connector to Google Maps service. This software product implements the Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) WMS specifications.

CubeWerx WMS Connector for Google Maps has been implemented within CubeWerx CubeSERV Cascading WMS product and is available now! All users of this product agree to be bound by Google terms and conditions of Google Services as developed by Google.

“Google clearly demonstrates the benefits of using geospatial data in the context of an information infrastructure and cleanly illustrates the importance of navigating into an Earth framework for map/satellite display and applying dynamic web-enabled geo-processing services,” said Edric Keighan, President & CEO of CubeWerx Inc. "With this product CubeWerx expects to further build on OGC vision to providing interoperable geo-processing services based on open specifications. Google Maps services based on OGC specifications bring us closer to a Global Spatial Data Infrastructure and peering of Spatial Data Infrastructures from many communities of practice.”

GeoTagging With MulitMap & Flickr

STEEEV, the wonderguy of geoblogging and tagging, has posted a few scripts to help us all out with our Google Map and Streetmap hacks. Which reminds me I have some items on my list:

1) Get off my duff and relearn all the code I have forgot in the past two years. (Pimpin' Maps is fun, but not that fun.)

2) Actually write a map hack.

3) Implement a plan for my office to build off of what all of the cool things that STEEEV & Co. have been doing to make the world a better place.

Photo By SteeevI've written another couple of Greasemonkey / GeoTagging / Flickr scripts. This pair of scripts utilise multimap.com which has much better worldwide map coverage than maps.google.com

If you have either the geotagging with google maps, or the geotagging with streetmap.co.uk scripts installed and you wish to try these new scripts out, you should first disable them before trying out the new multimap.com scripts.

You can get the new scripts here:

geotag.multimap.user.js & geotag.flickr.multimap.user.js

To install these scripts you need Firefox + Greasemonkey to be installed.

The only major difference between these scripts and the older ones is when you click the "Add GeoTags" link on the flickr photo page, instead of being presented with an input box to enter the location data, you are instead redirected to the multimap.com site. When you get to the site, you should select the country you wish to search in and then enter the location data into the form, and from there locate the position that you would like to geotag the image with. Once you have pinpointed the location, just click the "Add GeoTags" link which should then be located beneath the map. And from there the procedure is the same as with the other GeoTagging scripts ive written.

BTW This script also adds a tag for the country name.

GeoTagging and Plug-ins for Firefox

You know how I was talking about GeoURL's on Friday? Well, if you're a Firefox user there are extentions that will read the geographic information in your tags. So far I've only noticed Nearby and GeoURL. Both seem to use the "ICBM" feature of META, which came from the old Usenet mapping project for selecting missile targets. This is one way of tagging websites or content.

As for specific place names for a slippy map?
There are two projects that are indexing geotagged sites: GeoURL and GeoTags. GeoTag has its own format. Where GeoURL uses both the ICBM tag and GeoTag's format.
Then you have the info I sent you on Friday about the standardization effort for geotags after the Where 2.0 conference. Also, check out GeoBloggers. The guy who runs GeoBloggers recently posted this note about his experiment with GeoBloggers and Flickr. Supposedly, there are 30,000 images on Flickr, then there are 20,000 geotagged images that GeoBlogger knows of from Flickr. Now, 1 out of three? As they say in my native language, "Uff da."
Also note that GeoBloggers is utuilzing Google Earth to locate photos.
Think about where geotagging and the industry are going. Then think about how we want to drive it.

Shows you Flickr photos, provides GeoURL links and Degree Confluences nearby the website your viewing. Nearby sits on the status bar and lights up whenever the site your viewing has Geographical META data, if so clicking on the Earth logo in the status bar will take you to a page of photos. Here's an example page. Nearby is based on Redux's GeoURL extension.

GeoURL: https://addons.mozilla.org/extensions/moreinfo.php?id=530

Opens useful sites for pages geographically marked with ICBM or geo.position META tags. Changes from 0.2 to 0.3: - complete rewrite - user has a selection of geo sites in the context menu - through the options dialog, user can select their "preferred" site, which then becomes default for left-click of the statusbar button - completely removed redundant toolbar button

ICBM address: n. http://www.catb.org/~esr/jargon/html/I/ICBM-address.html

(Also missile address) The form used to register a site with the Usenet mapping project, back before the day of pervasive Internet, included a blank for longitude and latitude, preferably to seconds-of-arc accuracy. This was actually used for generating geographically-correct maps of Usenet links on a plotter; however, it became traditional to refer to this as one's ICBM address or missile address, and some people include it in their sig block with that name. (A real missile address would include target elevation.)

Thursday, July 07, 2005

Slippy Maps Are Great. Now, How Do We Sell Them?

With the release of the Google & Yahoo! Map API's and the explosion of interest in such "slippy maps", how do we as geographers use this as a tool?  I'm agonizing to enhance information sharing and fusion in my bureaucracy, because I'm trying to find a damn good business case to justify geocoded text syndication, metadata & data interoperability, metadata & data quality, and cost of data conversion. How do I justify the need for resouces?
 
How!?!
 
So far, I have examples like today's London bombing. Websites that fuse information together like www.dynamite.co.uk/local/ and www.geepster.com/london.php do work as good examples of how to make information multifaceted and important. Yet, does the managment really get it? Do your colleagues who are not geographers?  And! Do they know of all of the other working pieces behind the "slippy map?"
 
The Man Behind The Curtain, is extremely misunderstood.  Trying to convey interoperabiltiy and open sources is like pulling teeth. Simplification of the problem can be accomplished, but the high numbers pertaining to cost... That will get you tossed out of the room.
 
Anyway, I'm frustrated.
 
If you have any ideas. Let me know.

Friday, July 01, 2005

"Peanut Sauce! Does Anyone Have Any Peanut Sauce?"

In this photo released by World Wildlife Fund-National Geographic, two Thai fishermen show a 646-pound giant catfish they caught in the Mekong River in Chiang Khong district of Chiang Rai province, northern Thailand June 11, 2005.
 
646-pound catfish

GeoURL: https://addons.mozilla.org/extensions/moreinfo.php?id=530

Opens useful sites for pages geographically marked with ICBM or geo.position META tags. Changes from 0.2 to 0.3: - complete rewrite - user has a selection of geo sites in the context menu - through the options dialog, user can select their "preferred" site, which then becomes default for left-click of the statusbar button - completely removed redundant toolbar button

ICBM address: n. http://www.catb.org/~esr/jargon/html/I/ICBM-address.html

(Also missile address) The form used to register a site with the Usenet mapping project, back before the day of pervasive Internet, included a blank for longitude and latitude, preferably to seconds-of-arc accuracy. This was actually used for generating geographically-correct maps of Usenet links on a plotter; however, it became traditional to refer to this as one's ICBM address or missile address, and some people include it in their sig block with that name. (A real missile address would include target elevation.)

|W|P|112091454158346723|W|P|GeoTagging and Plug-ins for Firefox|W|P|10/26/2005 05:44:00 PM|W|P|Anonymous Anonymous|W|P|If you like Geobloggers, you may like Panoramio.com7/07/2005 06:27:00 PM|W|P|GeoMullah|W|P|
With the release of the Google & Yahoo! Map API's and the explosion of interest in such "slippy maps", how do we as geographers use this as a tool?  I'm agonizing to enhance information sharing and fusion in my bureaucracy, because I'm trying to find a damn good business case to justify geocoded text syndication, metadata & data interoperability, metadata & data quality, and cost of data conversion. How do I justify the need for resouces?
 
How!?!
 
So far, I have examples like today's London bombing. Websites that fuse information together like www.dynamite.co.uk/local/ and www.geepster.com/london.php do work as good examples of how to make information multifaceted and important. Yet, does the managment really get it? Do your colleagues who are not geographers?  And! Do they know of all of the other working pieces behind the "slippy map?"
 
The Man Behind The Curtain, is extremely misunderstood.  Trying to convey interoperabiltiy and open sources is like pulling teeth. Simplification of the problem can be accomplished, but the high numbers pertaining to cost... That will get you tossed out of the room.
 
Anyway, I'm frustrated.
 
If you have any ideas. Let me know.
|W|P|112078603139967875|W|P|Slippy Maps Are Great. Now, How Do We Sell Them?|W|P|7/01/2005 03:07:00 AM|W|P|GeoMullah|W|P|
In this photo released by World Wildlife Fund-National Geographic, two Thai fishermen show a 646-pound giant catfish they caught in the Mekong River in Chiang Khong district of Chiang Rai province, northern Thailand June 11, 2005.
 
646-pound catfish
|W|P|112021246808688841|W|P|"Peanut Sauce! Does Anyone Have Any Peanut Sauce?"|W|P|-->