Monday, December 9, 2013

Call for Papers: 45th Annual South Dakota State Geography Convention

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45th Annual South Dakota State Geography Convention  March 20-21, 2014 in the Volstorff Ballroom in the South Dakota State University Student Union, Brookings, SD, USA

Student poster and paper abstracts are now being accepted until March 1, 2014!

Please contact: Josh Bucher, Geography Club President, email:

J.R. Smith Memorial Geography Bowl
Thursday: Social at The Ram Pub, Main Street Brookings,SD
Student Poster and Paper Presentations

Friday: Awards Banquet at McCrory Gardens Center & Keynote Speaker; AAG President Julie Winkler
Convention events will begin at 9AM on March 20!

For more information, contact:
Josh Bucher
Geography Club President

Featured Speakers
* Marc Simard, NASA Jet Propulsion Lab, Pasadena, CA
* John Fraser Hart, University of Minnesota
* John Hudson, Northwestern University
* Derek Alderman, University of Tennessee-Knoxville
* Margaret Pearce, University of Kansas
* Forrest Wilkerson, Minnesota State University-Mankato
* Hilary Hungerford, South Dakota State University
* Lara Prihodko, Geospatial Science Center of Excellence, South Dakota State University
* Gray Tappan, U.S. Geological Survey/EROS Data Center, Sioux Falls, SD

Friday, November 22, 2013

Top 20 Research Institutes in Remote Sensing

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A recent study conducted by Yanhua Zhuang et al. (2013) reported the top 20 research institutes in remote sensing using bibliometric analysis on publications published during 1991-2010 in the remote sensing field. 

Oho, Satellites are making RS research interesting!

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Impact of Google Maps API v2 shutdown on Openlayers base layers and a easy solution

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Finally on Nov 19 2013, Google shut down Google Maps v2 API, which was depreciated in May 19 2010 but was working continuously Nov 19. I was aware of version depreciation, but I procrastinate to upgrade till last minute because of working on too many other things. While checking my Web map (built on Openlayers, Geoserver and Google Maps as base layers (Google Maps API v2) on Nov 20, I saw two map controls one from Openlayers and other from Google Maps API also noticed that map application was unresponsive.

Looking around I found easy steps to fix it without major change in the code-

Friday, November 15, 2013

New 2014 GIS Internship/Jobs Opportunities

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1) 2014 Summer Opportunities: Yosemite National Park, CA
These four summer positions involve a complete remeasurement of the 25.6 ha Yosemite Forest Dynamics Plot, located near Crane Flat in old-growth sugar pine/white fir forest. The plot burned at generally low to moderate severity in the 2013 Rim Fire. Tasks include revisiting each tree and snag; recording mortalities, ingrowth, and newly fallen wood; measuring scorch and snag heights; and mapping shrub patches, down CWD and areas of the forest floor that did not burn. Other tasks include measuring fuel consumption along fixed transects, installing and measuring dendrometers, and collecting data from associated instrumentation. Mortality checks require hatchet use. Staff will supervise students and volunteers.
Qualifications: Previous experience taking vegetation research data, working safely in challenging environments, and following complex data collection protocols is required. Candidates should demonstrate the ability to solve problems and to work both independently and in teams of two or three. Work will involve moving through sometimes steep, rocky terrain with delicate and expensive equipment, as well as the ability to carry up to 15 kg of additional gear. Work experience in post-fire forests strongly desired, as is some knowledge of western flora, tree pathogens, and forest insects. Staff must have a driver’s license and a Wilderness First Aid/CPR certification (or higher) valid until August 31, 2014 (if you are not certified, please include your plans for certification in your cover letter). Other: Practical experience in the operation and maintenance of computer, electronic, and mechanical equipment; familiarity with a variety of software and instrumentation; and experience with periods of outdoor living are all positives.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Free Old Geography Books Available for Kindle and Nook

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Free Geography eBooks from 18th and 19th Century- Available in Kindle and Nook formats.  Click and follow the link to download the ebooks.

A Book for High Schools, Commercial Courses, and Business Colleges
Jacques W. Redway, Published:1903

Geography and Plays
Gertrude Stein, Published:1922

A Historical Geography of the British Colonies
Vol. V, Canada—Part I, Historical
Charles Prestwood Lucas, Published:1901

Thursday, October 10, 2013

MAGIC GIS 2014 Symposium

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The Mid-America GIS Symposium, MAGIC 2014, is quickly approaching and will be held April 27 to May 1 at the Westin Crown Center April 27 - May 1, 2014 in Kansas City, Missouri.

GIS covers such a broad range of subjects, applications and types of people that use it, that developing a conference program that meets everyone's needs is a challenging task. Even more challenging is an attendee trying to figure out exactly which sessions or topics will be most interesting and helpful. MAGIC 2014 is intended to focus the content of the presentation options into a program specifically geared to each attendee's needs.

Your 2014 Program Committee is working very hard to bring you the best Symposium yet. If you have ideas or comments, please send them to the Symposium Chair.

Anyone is free to submit an abstract to MAGIC 2014.
Submissions should be received by December 6, 2013.
You will be notified by January 20, 2014 if your presentation was accepted.

Read all about the MAGIC Symposium here:
Please submit your abstract proposal online at the MAGIC Web Site here:

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

US address correction, address verification, and geocoding using ZP4, Google Geocoding API, and Bing Maps API


From a couple of months, I have been involved in Tax certificate address verification project for educational purpose; I have around 8 million parcel address  collected and maintained by different tax collecting agencies in various format for instance COBOL ,CSV, ASCII, Excel , and some are even in pdf for their tax districts. 

My task was to find the address from those different files and export them in CSV with corrected standard USPS address format (STREET, CITY, STATE, and ZIP) to make Universal Tax File format for data analysis by removing unwanted data from the address rows.  Initially, I used ZP4 software, it has “official United States Postal Service data files on a single DVD-ROM that provides a powerful tool for automatically determining the correct mailing address, ZIP + 4 code, and mail carrier route number for any location in the United States”, works fine for few address (about 15%) which has proper USPS standard address format. The real challenge starts with remaining   85% of the parcel address that has no USPS standard address format (either address without city and zip information or the vacant parcel lots that cannot accept mails and therefore not entered in the USPS mailing address database).

Looking around the Web, Google leaves me with tons of pages entitled on address correction and validation including close source and open source software APIs, tools, and datasets, but hard to figure out which method works for my project in terms of address quality(address was poorly written), quantity(8 million addresses), and resources (cheap and easy to implement) . After spending few days here and there, finally I come up with a solution that works for me, an integrated address correction strategy using ZP4, Google Geocoding API, and Bing Maps API.

Here, I am going to share how ZP4, Google and Bing integration makes my job easy and relatively cheap to validate and correct US physical street addresses.

Monday, September 9, 2013

How to Land on Top-Paying GIS Jobs

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Author Bryan Frost, published a 88 page book on “How to Land a Top-Paying GIS mapping technicians Job”, which compiles all the information candidates need to apply for their first GIS mapping technicians job, or to apply for a better job for instance guide to opportunities, resumes and cover letters, interviews, salaries, promotions, what to expect from recruiters and more.

The describes the book as-
For the first time, a book exists that compiles all the information candidates need to apply for their first GIS mapping technician’s job, or to apply for a better job.
What you'll find especially helpful are the worksheets. It is so much easier to write about a work experience using these outlines. It ensures that the narrative will follow a logical structure and reminds you not to leave out the most important points. With this book, you'll be able to revise your application into a much stronger document, be much better prepared and a step ahead for the next opportunity.
The book comes filled with useful cheat sheets. It helps you get your career organized in a tidy, presentable fashion. It also will inspire you to produce some attention-grabbing cover letters that convey your skills persuasively and attractively in your application packets.
After studying it, too, you'll be prepared for interviews, or you will be after you conducted the practice sessions where someone sits and asks you potential questions. It makes you think on your feet!
This book makes a world of difference in helping you stay away from vague and long-winded answers and you will be finally able to connect with prospective employers, including the one that will actually hire you.
This book successfully challenges conventional job search wisdom and doesn't load you with useful but obvious suggestions ('don't forget to wear a nice suit to your interview,' for example). Instead, it deliberately challenges conventional job search wisdom, and in so doing, offers radical but inspired suggestions for success.
Think that 'companies approach hiring with common sense, logic, and good business acumen and consistency? ‘Think that 'the most qualified candidate gets the job? ‘Think again! Time and again it is proven that finding a job is a highly subjective business filled with innumerable variables. The triumphant jobseeker is the one who not only recognizes

Monday, August 19, 2013

New features on 2013 TIGER/Line Shapefiles & Geodatabases

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On Thursday, August 22, 2013, the 2013 TIGER/Line Shapefiles will be released along with a new product, the TIGER Geodatabases. 

The TIGER/Line Shapefiles will include a coastline feature starting this year.  The coastline was delineated by the Census Bureau in the MAF/TIGER database based on water measurement class for display of statistical information only; its depiction and designation for statistical purposes does not constitute a determination of jurisdictional authority or rights of ownership or entitlement and it is not a legal land description. 
The TIGER Geodatabases will include:
  • National Edges file (14.5 GB)
  • National Roads file (3.6 GB)
  • National Blocks file
  • National Linear Hydrography file
  • National Aeral Hydrography file
  • National Sub-State Geography file (includes state, county, incorporated place, census designated place, consolidated city, county subdivision, census tract, and block group geography)
  • National Nation-Level Geography file
  • National Legislative Areas file
  • National School Districts file
  • National American Indian Area Related file
  • National Rails file
  • National Address Ranges file
  • State-based files (one per state)

Friday, July 26, 2013

Geospatial Power in Our Pockets: ASPRS 2014 Annual Conference

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ASPRS 2014 Annual Conference
Geospatial Power in Our Pockets
March 23 - 27, 2014
Galt House Hotel  *  Louisville, Kentucky USA

ASPRS 2014 Annual Conference invites presentations on all types of topics impacting the Geospatial Industry. Conference tracks have been redesigned to fit YOUR real-life business needs. The NEW tracks are listed below with a few subtopics.

Track #1: Geospatial Power in Our Pockets
Geospatial Apps, Mobile Data Collections, Wearable GIS, 3D/4D Visualization
Let your imagination run with this open and innovative track!

Track #2: Emerging Technologies
Surface from Motion, Cyberinfrastructure, Cloud Computing & MORE

Track #3: Business Management & Business Tools
SBA Loan Limit Increases & Your Business, Contracts & Bidding – Processes & Opportunities, Workforce Recruitment, Project Management Overview
This is YOUR chance! Submit a presentation, roundtable discussion or panel session pertaining to YOUR business needs. We want to hear from YOU!

Track #4: Core Technologies
Feature Extraction, Data Compression, High-Resolution Satellite Imagery – Just to name a few

Track #5: Application Areas
Radar Mapping, Land Use, Change Detection, Urban Mapping

Opportunity to Waive GIS Conference Registration

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The 2014 MAGIC Symposium board has put together an ambitious schedule of short courses to help make this Symposium the best yet! We are now seeking instructors who are willing to share with others their expertise and enthusiasm for the many disciplines within GIS.

A list of possible short course titles is below. Other topics are welcomed and encouraged.

Instructors must be able to pay for their travel and expenses. MAGIC does not offer any discounts to instructors or presenters. Instructors who come in only to teach their short course are not required to register for the Symposium. Any other participation in the Symposium, including meals, requires registration.

If you are communications officer for a state GIS mailing list or related local community of GIS professionals, please forward this email. Thank you.

ArcGIS 10 Refresher Course
ArcGIS Online
Introductory Geoprocessing with Python
Open Source GIS
US National Grid
Flex Web Mapping API
GIS and Mapping A to Z
Intermediate Geoprocessing with Python
Introductory Geodatabases
Introductory GPS and Mobile GIS
Introductory ModelBuilder
Silverlight Web Mapping API
Advanced Geoprocessing with Python
Advanced ModelBuilder
Cloud GIS
Introductory LiDAR
Remote Sensing and Mapping A to Z
Using Census 2010 Data
Advanced Geodatabases
Advanced LiDAR
Emergency Response using GPS and Mobile GIS Workflows Infrastructure Management with Imagery Next Generation E911 Utility and Public Works using GPS and Mobile GIS Workflows National Hydrography Dataset HAZUS FEMA NFIP Non-Regulatory Products ARC Server Addressing 

Monday, June 10, 2013

How to get raster pixel values along the overlaying line?

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One afternoon at Java City, my friend Eric and I were discussing about the ways to to get raster pixel values along the overlaying line. The conversation encourages me to write an quick and dirty solution to solve the issue. The following R code snippet helps to conceive an idea to extract the raster values which are intersect or touch by the overlaying straight line in easy fashion using R raster package.

#Print the raster pixel values along the overlaying line in R. The line's start and end row/col (coordinates) must be provided.

#Create an arbitrary raster, for instance I used a names of color as raster pixel values.
r <- as.raster(matrix(colors()[1:100], ncol = 10))

#Start coordinate of a sample line
x0=1      #row = 1
y0=3      #column = 3


#End coordinate of a sample line
x1=10        #row =10
y1=7 #column=7

#Easy sample line generation algorithm : A naïve line-drawing algorithm


for( x in x0:x1)
y = y0 + (dy) * (x - x0)/(dx)

#Print the raster pixel values along the line


Pretty simple concept. You can tweak the code & the line drawing algorithm as your requirement. There are several line drawing algorithm available in the internet. Here I used a simplest one that I found.

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Generate Euclidean distance matrix from a point to its neighboring points in R

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#Generate Euclidean distance matrix from a point to its neighboring  points in R
#Load sp library

#Create a 2D metrix of X & Y coordinates of the neighboring  points
neighbours_point <- matrix(c(5, 6,3,5,4,8,7, 10, 60, 60,11,12), ncol=2)

     [,1] [,2]
[1,]    5    7
[2,]    6   10
[3,]    3   60
[4,]    5   60
[5,]    4   11
[6,]    8   12

#Create a point vector with x and y coordinates from which distance should be calculated

[1] 2 3

#Compute the distance matrix

distmat <- spDistsN1(neighbours_point,refrence_point, longlat=FALSE)

[1]  5.000000  8.062258 57.008771 57.078893  8.246211 10.816654


Monday, April 29, 2013

Call for Presentations

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The Annual Missouri Mappers Conference will be held
July 23 - 26 at Tan-Tar-A Resort at
Osage Beach, MO.

Go to to learn more about us!

We are changing our format up a bit and will hold even more workshops and break-out sessions this year! We are looking for presenters willing to do 30 or 45 minute presentations.

Examples of prior conference topics include: Property Assessment & Mapping (Pen & Ink or Digital), Emergency Management, Deed Interpretation, Mobile/GPS, topics concerning local governments and mapping.

This promises to be an awesome conference in a brand new location so come share with us!. Please contact the Conference Chair Lisa Perry at for information and time slots.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Free GIS and 911 Seminar

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Mid-AmericaGIS Consortium (MAGIC) has teamed up with GeoComm, St. Clair IL, and WashingtonUniversity St. Louis to offer a FREE E911 and GIS Seminar in St. Louis, MO on May 29, 2013.

This workshop is for folks working on 911 system and GIS data. This seminar will help build the foundation for understanding requirements, roles, responsibilities, and standards for present 911 systems and NEXT GENERATION 911.

This one day seminar will cover:
·         911 and GIS today
·         Developing communication between 911 and GIS professionals
·         Where is 911 going and what are the new GIS functions?
·         NENA GIS model for public safety
·         Roadmap to future GIS requirements

Date and Location
May 29, 2013 (9:00 am-4:00pm), Washington University-West Campus
7425 Forsyth Blvd. St. Louis. MO 63105


Registration is FREE.
For more information, and to register:

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

How to Use Boost Library 1.53 in Visual Studio 2012 Professional?

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Friday, March 22, 2013

First Image of Earth from LandSat 8

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The LDCM/LandSat 8, which is launched from Vandenberg Air Force Base on February 11, 2013 is started   to send Earth’s picture to the ground from the space. This week, the Landsat Data Continuity Mission (LDCM) released its first images of Earth, collected at 1:40 p.m. EDT on March 18.LDCM is performing as planned and everything is on track for a May operational transition. LDCM is a joint mission of NASA and the Department of Interior's U.S. Geological Survey.

According to NASA website, LDCM’s first instrument, Operational Land Imager, or OLI instrument, that took the natural color image. The natural color image showed the landscape in the colors our eyes would see, but Landsat sensors also have the ability to see wavelengths of light that our eyes cannot see. LDCM sees eleven bands within the electromagnetic spectrum, the range of wavelengths of light. OLI collects light reflected from Earth's surface in nine of these bands. Wavelengths on the shorter side include the visible blue, green, and red bands. Wavelengths on the longer side include the near infrared and shortwave infrared. LDCM's second instrument, the Thermal InfraredSensor (TIRS) detects light emitted from the surface in two even longer wavelengths called the thermal infrared. The intensity of the emitted light at the longer wavelengths measured by TIRS is a function of surface temperature.

Good Book for GIS Beginners : Book II

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Understanding GIS: An ArcGIS Project Workbook, is a very user-friendly written book for those interested to begin using ESRI ArcGIS Desktop 10 or ArcGIS Desktop 10.1 using real data from the City of Los Angeles' Department of Public Works, Bureau of Engineering's Mapping Division, and Department of Recreation and Parks and to manipulate it using the power of GIS.

 Don't expect to become a GIS expert at the end because this is simply a good introduction to ArcGIS. The book guides the reader step-by-step, mouse-click-by mouse-click, decision-by-decision through a GIS project to determine for yourself which locations along the river are best suited for public recreational use in Los Angeles. At the end, you will have learned many of the fundamentals of GIS generally and ArcGIS specifically which aims at finding a suitable land parcel(s)for a new park area in Los Angeles .You use real data which comes in the companion DVD. When you reach the final stage in chapter 6 and follow all the careful steps to manually select the best areas and you learned why you do so, you discover in the following chapter (chapter 7) that you can do the same in a much quicker way by using a visual graphing tool, a marvel in my opinion of ArcGIS Desktop.

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

GeoExt Layer Tree: Showing BaseLayers and Overlay Layer

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I was looking for GeoExt's tree example for my project, and I found official tutorials are kind of hard to understand for the GeoExt beginners. On Googleing through the internet, I found nice and easy way of creating tree  structure menu using GeoExt BaseLayer and Overlay layer tree.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Geography of Pizza : Trying to Explore VGI and Crowd Sourcing

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 Mark Turgeon, a graduate student studying GIS at California State University is studying and analyzing regional pizza preferences, styles and identity as his MS thesis. To collect anonymous data about the regional pizza preferences he built up a nice survey website,

He classified pizzas by:

  1. Style
  2. Crust
  3. Cheese
  4. Sauce   
  5. Toppings
  6. Sold by
  7. Slices Cut
  8. Oven
Check it out and help him in collecting data or know about pizza more.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Geographic Information Science (GIS) Internships Summer 2013

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Click Link for Details
Summer 2013 Internship 
Burlington, Vermont  
GIS Mapping Project - This internship includes a stipend of $4,000 for 10 weeks work. 

GIS Intern
Anchorage, AK
-Knowledge of Esri ArcGIS software, GIS analysis, ---Microsoft Outlook, Microsoft Office suite.  Knowledge of AutoCAD/Microstation is a plus.

GIS Intern
Oakland, CA
 Currently enrolled as a junior or senior in Geography or related field.
- Intermediate skills using Esri ArcGIS version 10
- Good written and communication skills.

Intern - GIS  Summer
-Demonstrated working knowledge of ESRI data formats and Microsoft Office products
-Must have a minimum of one year undergraduate education in GIS, Cartography, or other related discipline and be currently enrolled in and actively working towards a degree

Horticulture & GIS Interns
Missouri Botanical Garden, MO
Various Openings

GIS Intern
Boston, MA
-College Graduate BA/BS 
-Understanding of excel and economic modeling a plus.

12-Week GIS Internship
National Park Service , Gatlinburg, TN
-Experience in geographic information systems (GIS), computer cartography a must, specifically experience using ArcGIS Desktop (ArcMap/ArcCatalog). Experience with geodatabase formats is a plus.

GIS Intern
Arlington, TX
Skill in Arc GIS, Arc GIS editing environment and Geo-processing tools is essential.

GIS Intern
Southlake, Texas
-Work requires knowledge of a specific vocational, administrative, or technical nature that may be obtained with advanced study or training past the high school equivalency. 

Environmental Intern

-Proficiency with GIS software preferred.
-Must be enrolled in a planning program in an accredited School of Planning

Intern II
Philadelphia, PA
-Bachelors or Master’s degree complete or in progress
-Experience with GIS, simple web design, and graphic design a plus

Wildfire Planning Intern
North Carolina

-Undergraduate or graduate program focusing on Environmental Studies, Biology, Forestry, or related field
-Ability to perform physical work, sometime under adverse conditions or in inclement weather
-Ability to make maps using GIS

GIS Intern
Libertyville, Illinois
-Knowledge of geography as applied to concepts and principles of GIS, map projections and datums, coordinate systems and cartographic designs.
-Ability to use GIS equipment, instruments and devices

GIS Coordinator Intern
Sioux Falls,SD
-Working knowledge of ESRI and ArcGIS software
-Knowledge of GPS or GPS/GIS data collection.
-Knowledge in CAD and design software.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Call for Student Volunteers : FOSS4G-NA 2013

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Free and Open Source Software for Geospatial North America is calling for Student Volunteers to encourage student participation at FOSS4G-NA Conference 2013 at Marriott City Center, Minneapolis, MN May 22–24, 2013.

Apply by April 1, 2013 to select on random drawing.

As a volunteer, students will be able to participate in all of the conference activities such as  staffing the registration desk or being a room monitor for a session. You will get a complimentary registration to the conference, but you will still need to get yourself to Minneapolis and find lodging.

Applicants need to be a currently registered, full-time student at a college or university in North America. Volunteers may be asked to confirm their student status.To ensure volunteer opportunities are spread across institutions, only one person from each college or university will be selected until all institutions are represented by one student. For institutions with multiple campuses, each campus will be allowed one student.

Click below for more information:

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