Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Interactive Map: Looking Earth from Moon and Sun

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Earth and Moon Viewer, an Impressive site which shows orthographic views of the Earth and the Moon using a mosaic of various satellite imagery including a full-color image of the Earth by day and night, a topographical map of the Earth, up-to-date weather satellite imagery, or a composite image of cloud cover superimposed on a map of the Earth, a color composite which shows clouds, land and sea temperatures, and ice, or the global distribution of water vaporYou can view either a map of the Earth showing the day and night regions at this moment, or view the Earth from the Sun, the Moon, the night side of the Earth, above any location on the planet specified by latitude, longitude and altitude, from a satellite in Earth orbit, or above various cities around the globe.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Geospatial data Mashups with Google

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Abstract
Analyzing space-time variation is common in Geography. Appropriate geo-spatial visualization enables us to understand data in a precise manner. There have been numerous researches, tools, and methods in pursuit of a better visualization method for geospatial data. Here we present the sets of examples developed by us to show the benefits of the web cartography using Google Earth/Google Maps mashups to display geospatial data. Moreover, we include the practical implication of applications that are useful for visualizing geospatial world.

Automated Tools for Integrating Remote Sensing Data Into Spatial Epidemiology Research

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Satellite remote sensing provides valuable information that can be used to map infectious diseases and forecast future health risks. However, amassing and managing the geographic information from diverse datasets is difficult and time-consuming. Therefore, there is a need for a geoinformatics system that integrates the acquisition, processing, management, and analysis of geospatial data sets from various sources.

Here, we present our software model for automated data capture and processing of satellite remote sensing data for public health applications.  The system incorporates land surface temperature and vegetation indices from MODIS precipitation data from TRMM, and a novel measurement of actual evapotranspiration.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

2013 Free and Open Source Geospatial Software Conference

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FOSS4G is the global conference for Free and Open Source Software for Geospatial, organized by the Open Source Geospatial Foundation (OSGeo). In 2013, 2013 FOSS4G North America Conference (FOSS4G-NA) will take place May 22-24 at the Marriott City Center in Minneapolis, MN. The gathering of Open Source Geospatial Developers, Users and Leaders from North America will offer a broad program to discuss and build tools to help solve some of the world’s most pressing problems and business needs.

This regional event complements the larger FOSS4G International Conference, the leading global conference organized by OSGeo focusing on Free and Open Source Software for Geospatial. 2013 marks the 10 year anniversary of the first MapServer Users Meeting in Minnesota, the immediate predecessor of the FOSS4G Conference Series. foss4g-na 2012 was held on Washington DC.

 The 2013 FOSS4G International Conference  is currently scheduled for September 17-21 in Nottingham, UK.

 Reference: 
http://2013.foss4g.org/
http://foss4g-na.org/
http://www.osgeo.org/

Sunday, January 13, 2013

Popular GIS Books

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Books Pro Cons
It provides solid guide to how geospatial analysis work, particularly with respect to GIS. The book emphasizes conceptual workflows and with basic math which is helpful for creating own code and also getting an understanding of what's happening under the hood in contemporary GIS. It is better to have an update because lots of changes in GIS software over last five years.
This book is for typical GIS user aspiring to design good maps. It is illustrating GIS map software and throughout with map samples in color which is especially useful for those who has little prior training or experience in map making. This is acceptable book for beginners but very little information of advanced users. It hardly touches on advanced cartographic representations.
This book explains the computational geometry and algorithms concisely and very readable. It emphasis on describing algorithms and data structures theoretically. It presents pseudo code with lots of figures that is very easy to understand and follow.

It's also worth reading for all computer scientists and mathematicians who are working on geometry.

This is good text/reference book for graduate course.
Focused on geometric computation and algorithm, very complicated for beginners, who does not have prior computer programming knowledge.

The various algorithms and concepts often used in this book are triangulation, indexing, calculating intersection, shortest paths etc.
The book illustrates the most common cartographic deceptions, and provides some excellent color guides. If you want to learn how to make influential maps for a cause, this is the book!. The reader can learn what to look for and how to avoid the inadvertent or unintentional 'lies'. Worth the effort! Basically, the book as an introduction to the science of cartography and targeted for prospective cartographer or decision making authority.
The book details the use of freely available open source mapping software and tools such as MapServer, GDAL, OpenEV, and PostGIS to create web gis and web maps.

Mostly focused on UMN Mapserver for web mapping and building web gis.
Not much technical discussion on how GPS databases work, how to decode GIS information.
The book is fairly shallow. It will give you a couple of basic examples of how to use some pieces of software, but for anything more complicated, you have to look elsewhere.

Friday, January 11, 2013

LAStools - efficient tools for LiDAR processing: Conference

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The International LiDAR Mapping Forum (ILMF), taking place from February 11-13 2013 in Denver, is delighted to announce that the American Societyfor Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ASPRS) will be running special ‘hot topics’ sessions alongside the main conference. 

ASPRS plays a vital role in the lidar industry as it is the key organization that sets data format and accuracy standards for kinematic laser scanning.  With a full morning dedicated to ASPRS on February 11, it will be sharing the results of crucial projects to benefit the lidar community; providing information to help improve accuracy and cost efficiency.
       
Lewis Graham, Lidar Division Director of ASPRS, will kick off the morning by revealing exciting new plans for the development of LAS validation software.  LAS is the standard data delivery format used throughout the world.  It is supported in all commercial lidar hardware and software and is also the required delivery standard for nearly all private and governmental kinematic lidar projects.  The new LAS validation software will be key in ensuring LAS file compliance and the software will be discussed publicly for the first time at ILMF.  

Another session not to be missed will be the first public update of a major project funded by the United States Geological Survey.  The project is investigating new approaches of calibrating and geometrically adjusting broad area airborne lidar projects and over the past year ASPRS’ Airborne Laser Scanning committee has been assessing new techniques.  The committee will provide a fascinating insight into the project so far, which is expected to have a major impact on how airborne laser scanning data are adjusted in the future.  

Thursday, January 10, 2013

pyKML - a Python library for generating and parsing KML

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pyKML is an open source Python library for generating, parsing, and modifying KML, the geo-spatial data language used by Google Earth, Google Maps and a number of other GIS platforms.

pyKML helps working with large and complex KML documents by leveraging the use of basic programming constructs (looping, branching, etc.). In this regard pyKML is similar to libkml, Google’s open source C++ library, but takes advantage of the highly readable syntax of the Python programming language and the processing capabilities of the popular lxml Python library.


pyKML v0.1.0 documentation :  http://packages.python.org/pykml/



Wednesday, January 9, 2013

GIS Programming for GIS Analyst using Python

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Penn state has a nice collection of ArcGIS & Python programming step by step guide for their GEOG 485 students, which is also available for non-students via Penn state website.  This course’s is main aim is to make student able to use the Python scripting language to automate GIS tasks in ArcMap, assemble ArcView geoprocessing tools into models to solve GIS problems, and run the tools from scripts to automate GIS tasks. 

Although no previous programming experience is assumed, the course's target is to make a student as a GIS programmer/analyst in ArcGIS and Python environment. 

The course is basically divided into four parts:

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Geographic Visualization for the Web : Book Review

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This book is an attempt to share the knowledge I've gained from the experts at Google. When I joined it, the KML team consisted of two engineers: Bent Hagemark and Michael Ashbridge ("Mash"). Bent and Mash's mission was to corral the existing KML into a formal XML schema, to create compelling examples that would represent good coding style, and to shepherd the language to its new and deserved status as an international standard. I was to create a website for KML and expand the existing documentation. I managed to complete that task, but it always felt as though I'd exposed only the tip of the iceberg. Well, here's The Iceberg.”          – Author

"KML Handbook :Geographic Visualization for the Web" is primarily targeted for people who are curious about how to create customized presentations for an Earth browser such as Google Earth but have little or no experience with computer programming. It has step by step guidelines to create and customize Google Placemarks and Ballons, Google Earth Overlay, Static and dynamic KML/KMZ update and manipulation.

Pro: This  book has  a step by step guide to writing and using KML programming language to produce enhanced graphics as overlays onto web based mapping programs such as Google Earth. You do not need to have any programming skills to use this book except basic knowledge of HTML and XML.

Con: Some images in the books are fuzzy and hard to read. It is highly Google centric, may be because the author, Josie Wernecke, senior technical writer at Google.



Spatial Developer must keep in your shelf : Book Review

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One of my client’s requirements was to create and open source geospatial DBMS to hold utilities and city shape files. As looking through the internet, I found PostGIS is an open source software program that adds support for geographic objects to the PostgreSQL object-relational database.  As project reference, I choose PostGIS in Action, as project accomplished successfully I realized  my judgment was excellent.

PostGIS in Action is a very comprehensive introduction to PostGIS for developers of all levels of experience. Basically it is split into 3 parts:

Part 1- Nice and slow startup with PostGIS. You can skip this section if you have prior knowledge about any kinds of spatial databases and geometry data types.

Part 2- Put PostGIS in work. It contains technical details on proximity analysis, geocoding addresses, manipulating polygons and lines, and scaling and rotating geometries as well as efficient queries and how to tune your database and
selection of appropriate indexes and keys for your data.

Part 3- Use of PostGIS with other tools and frameworks. It describes manage raster datasets in PostGIS with PostGIS raster module, development of Web applications using PostGIS.

The Book will provide the much needed skills in building a spatial database, Application Server, Desktop GIS and Cartographic map renderer, Map tile server and Web map component using the following software: PostGIS/PostgreSQL, GeoServer, Apache/Tomcat, uDIG, Openjump, QGIS, GRASS GIS and Openlayers.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Learn Supercomputing - FREE FREE

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If you are considering migrating your work to the next
level of computational resources this is a great introduction to what's out there and how to get started. This year's "supercomputing in Plain English" workshop is free for audience of not just computer scientists but especially scientists and engineers, including a mixture of undergraduates, graduate students, faculty and staff.

These workshops focus on fundamental issues of HPC as they relate to Computational and Data-enabled Science & Engineering, including:



 

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