Saturday, July 29, 2006

GeoBlogger MeetUp Map

After a "few" hours of trying to remember JavaScript and trying to figure out how to add this map to Blogger, I've finally done it!

ArcWeb Explorer Collaborative Atlases

I was wondering. Has anyone developed a collaborative atlas using ArcWeb? I mean has someone, somewhere made a site like Platial, Flagr, or Community Walk?

Multimedia Geotagger: BlockRocker

I was going through the Flickr geotagging group's discussions looking for another geotagger for my pics—since is now gone—I came across BlockRocker. This thing is pretty cool for the following things you can geotag:

  1. Flickr Photos
  2. YouTube Videos
  4. Any website using a bookmarklet
  5. Your blog posts using Technorati tags
It's something that's pretty handy if you think of it. The BlockRocker developers have understood that "something happens somewhere" and they've built a tool that helps to locate where something happens. BTW, I need to bring this thing into work. I have so much junk to locate, it's just crazy! Give BlockRocker at whirl and then decide for yourself if it's cool or not.

ESRI UC Geoblogger Meetup: Tiki! Tiki! Tiki!

Tiki! Tiki! Tiki! Originally uploaded by Fantom Planet.
I found a place!
Place: Mister Tiki Mai Tai Lounge 801 5th Ave, San Diego, CA (619) 233-1183 Time: 8pm, 9 August
It should be a good time. Hopefully, James, Ed, and others will be there. I think we're looking at about 25 people showing up, so it should be a good time. I hope to meet all of you geobloggers again, let me know if you plan on attending. The Mr. Tiki tiki photo is geotagged.

Thursday, July 27, 2006

An Interview with

A few months back I came across and their T-shirts. You may have noticed one of their shirts that says, "I survived a NAD shift?" Well, I was intrigued as to who these budding GIS entrepreneurs were. So, I asked if they could answer five questions for FANTOM PLANET about their business so we could learn more about them. 1. What's your most popular selling tee?

The "NAD83 We're not in Kansas anymore", "Raster Master", and "Never Make Cartographers Mad. They'll tell you where to go and draw you a map" t-shirts are our best selling shirts.
2. How much product are people buying?
We're really just getting started. Business has been steadily picking up, and GIS enthusiasts have started to report sightings of our shirts.
3. What sparked the idea to create GIS themed t-shirts?
While on vacation at the beach, I was listening to some GIS training materials on my laptop, and I was forcing my husband (who is now a GIS convert) to listen with me. While we were listening, he said, "You know, I'd really like to have a t-shirt that says 'I survived a NAD Shift.' That would be pretty funny." I replied, "Well, why don't you get one?" That began a brain storming session for other funny GIS sayings to put on shirts. By the end of the week, we considered ourselves quite witty and were convinced that others would like our shirts as well.
4. Where can others submit their witty GIS slogans for your store? (Personally, I've always wanted to make a t-shirt that said, "Map Pimp.")
Several fans have submitted ideas to us by emailing the store. All of them have made us laugh, and we plan to use several of them in the future. We will soon add a submissions page to make it easier for visitors to submit suggestions.
5. Will you be expanding if business picks up into other areas such as embroidered hats and polos, coffee mugs, mouse pads, stress balls? You know the types of toys GIS professionals mess around when their data is processing.
Definitely. We are currently getting ready to offer coffee mugs and mouse pads.
There you have it, your five questions from Leslie and Robert at Now go by one of their t-shirts.

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

ESRI UC Blogger Meet Up: Where?

Some of you have commented or emailed recommending that we meet after the .NET SIG Wednesday night. That's cool. Time: 9 August, 8pm (I'll be there earlier) Where: I don't know? Since I'm not too familiar with San Diego, my search skills for "San Diego Restaurants" sucks, and you've said "No Dick's Last Resort; I can't hear myself think." I would like to toss it back at you who know more about San Diego than I do. Just pick a place close to the Convention Center so we can walk, then go bar hoppin' afterwards. I'm looking out for you guys. I'll be on my way back to the hotel to get my beauty sleep for my Thursday panel. Anyway, pick something that's cool, seats 50, and make it somewhere where we can have a conversation. I'll see if I can get Google or someone to sponsor it. Yo, Rob, buddy!

Sunday, July 23, 2006

My Secret Alternative GIS Lifestyle: Curious World Maps

Well, I wouldn't call Curious World Maps a GIS, but I would call it a cartographic alternative that many of you probably have never had the chance to use to make maps. I wanted to quickly bring it up, because while chatting with James, I actually used something he never heard of. What was the quote, James? "The more I learn the more I learn how much I don't know." Ditto. My office has only the base model of a Curious license, which is pretty hefty in price. We do use it everyday to support news in our intranet portal, but most users are only creating simple country-level political maps. Lately though, I've been trying to expand my knowledge of it to create some interesting and detailed maps. Granted, the base license doesn't bring the drawing and paint module with it. It's pretty easy to use and comes with it's own gazetteer, which is the reason for the high price I gather. If you have used a GIS and have worked with any Adobe graphic design suite, Curious should be a snap. It's trying to master the overlays, shadows, animation, and 3D advanced features that's interesting. I'll admit, I haven't tried the 3D suite yet, but I think that's next on my list this week to work with. So far, to get some "drawing" functionality into my maps I've exported Google Earth's terrain and imagery to Photoshop; added my graphics and exported it to Curious for layering aspects of our style sheet that we use in my office. I have made some nice maps using that technique, but is it really efficient? That's why I hope the natural 3D component to Curious works out to my benefit. I can't wait to make fly-throughs too——it should be fun. I don't know about all y'all, but how many of you would say that using a GIS for cartography is "fun?" Another side note: I haven't used the full Google Earth suite either, but am interested in comparing the two applications. I wonder if SketchUp can export to Curious? Guess I'll just have to experiment—I'll let you know how it goes. [Photo courtesy of Curious]

ESRI UC Blogger Meet Up Thoughts

Ok, we're about two weeks out from the UC and it's time to think of when we want to meet up. Initially, I thought that Wednesday or Thursday evening would work well. Last year I think we met on Wednesday at Dick's Last Resort and had a pretty good turn out. Let me know when and where you'd want to meet. I'm partial to Thursday only because I'm presenting Wednesday and Thursday mornings. Let's face it, I need my beauty sleep.

Geotagging an Oldie, but a Goodie

Just visiting Originally uploaded by Fantom Planet.
I was cleaning out my office at home yesterday and found this picture of me at the Equator and the International Dateline (off to the left.) I added it to Flickr and geotagged it—because I'm a geek like that. I'm wondering if I should add it to the Degree Confluence Project? Honest to God, the line and the labels really are there!

Saturday, July 15, 2006

CNN & Geography: F-

It's a lazy Saturday morning here in DC, some veggin' on the coutch, and catchin' up on my current events. Unfortunately—as some of you have noted—I can't leave the job at the office. I have to say the "news art" team for CNN really jacked up their maps this morning. Reporting on Israeli strikes near/in Tripoli, Lebanon, CNN displayed a map showing the location the strikes. It was Tripoli, Libya. I just wanted to remind us all that toponyms are important. Because if Stephen Abrose's quote that "War is God's way of teaching Americans geography" is true: God and CNN just made us lose a bunch of IQ points.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Lost for Weeks in the Northwoods

Originally uploaded by Fantom Planet.
I just wanted to let all my fans know that I was off lost in the north woods of Minnesota pimping MetaCarta and some maps while on vaction.