March Map-Madness at Davidson

It’s been a while since I’ve posted, but I just heard this story and I felt like sharing it widely.  Undergrad students at Davidson making maps of basketball plays and helping their team – via their coaches – be more successful than ever.  They watch the game VERY CAREFULLY and plot the data.  This is manual data collection, then manual data entry. Not, as the NPR story suggests, the same way that the big guys do it now, with lots of overhead cameras.  And now that Kirk Goldberry has hit the big time in letting the world know about this strategy, it’s surely becoming a more widespread practice.

I like that the guys at Davidson have figured it out on their own. I like that the first time, they turned in a “5-page essay” of the results to the coaches, and discovered how less-than-helpful that was.  So now they produce the much more visually effective “heat maps” and help the team learn about their competition, spatially, before tip-off.  And that they have the work-flow down to 10 minutes?  Give these guys a hand.  And, @NPR, next time – it’s okay to say “spatial analysis” and “GIS” as well.

Of course, smart undergrads have been doing this exact thing for a while. Like the Travis Gingras from St. Lawrence who did this with hockey, almost 10 years ago!

Winter Snow Landscape Art

Check out these snow patterns.  This takes a LOT of planning and significant capacitsnow-4y for spatial visualization in the process!  Especially interesting how only with the curve of the road in the lower right do you have any sense of scale.

h/t to Nag on the Lake.

Future of R with GIS

I was a total newbie to R before spring 2014. Then it was a little trial by fire, trying to learn just enough to keep up with grad students in a class I was co-teaching. Thank goodness for the “co-” part, as my partner was an expert in the topic, and I could contribute in my own areas of expertise, which were/are not R!  But I finished the semester with a new-found respect and, frankly, awe for what is possible with R. I have much to learn, and maybe, someday, the time.

Fast forward a few months and the topic keeps cropping up.  I shared a beer in Salzburg with Lex Comber and learned about one of his forthcoming publications, an Intro to R for Spatial Analysis and Mapping. Haven’t got my own copy yet, but if it’s what it seems to be, it’ll be one of my assigned texts in the future. In one of our webinars, Trisalyn Nelson spoke about her use of R with her graduate students. And today, I silently scanned through Alex Singleton‘s recent presentation on the Changed Face of GIS, in which R figures prominently for him.  There’s something going on here that some smart people have figured out.

GIS makes the xkcd comics

One of my favorite cartoonists – Randall Munroe – has made a call out to GIS for its ability to identify whether items or objects fall within certain “enclosures” of space based on their coordinate locations.  Will there be a day when the public can read a cartoon panel like this one and know what is being referenced?

Sharing Ideas at EdUC

It’s that time of year again, July in San Diego with a whole lot of other people, all talking about GIS.  Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose.  This year I’ll be in two sessions, the first on our ROGTAL project, Research on Geospatial Technologies and Learning, a group effort in which I’m honored to be a member.  You’ll hear about our proposed research agenda and recommendations for this field.  Saturday afternoon, in the 3:15-4:30pm session titled Meeting Education Mandates, La Costa Room.

Then on Sunday morning (early!, before the Plenary!  Set your alarms and bring your coffee!) I’ll be leading a session on Cultivating Spatial Thinking & Problem Solving with SpatiaLABS.  8:30am, Leucadia Room.  Don’t know about Esri’s SpatiaLABS yet?   This is your chance to get all the insider information on this FREE resource, get a sneak preview at a new search-and-sort website, get your questions answered by the series editor, and find out how you too could become a (paid) contributor!  Don’t snooze, come schmooze instead.

 

On using ArcMap Collector as a mobile app for SSV

dianamaps:

Experimenting with reblogging some worthwhile posts.

Originally posted on Katie Faull:

Since its inception, Stories of the Susquehanna has been a collaborative, interdisciplinary Screenshot 2014-05-08 21.41.18digital project that has at its core a geospatial interface. What started out as historical/cultural mapping of the Native American landscapes of the Susquehanna in ArcMap Desktop with maps published in static image format (as discussed in the interviews of me and Emily Bitely) has evolved through the iterations of ESRI’s software development.

About a week ago, one of our Digital Scholarship Coordinators and SSV  project manager, Diane Jakacki pointed to to the fact that ESRI was now publishing apps. photoAt first skeptical, I proceeded to delve further into the Collector app and battled my way through tutorials designed for insurance adjusters gathering data in the field (no, I don’t need fields labeled “Habitable” or “Partially Destroyed”) to create a feature layer that could be added to any map in ArcMap online. This feature layer was supposed to be…

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the Golden Era of Visual Storytelling

What I like about this notion of the Golden Era of Visual Storytelling is that it’s seen in the here and now as being special,  and it suggests that we might even consider this period an extraordinary one, even from a future perspective. That its value and worth are widely enough recognized that the energy can go into refinement and production, rather than basic awareness building.

Surely the tremendous growth and maturation of infographics reflects this too.  I think infographics are some where on this Gartner Hype Cycle, maybe on the slope of enlightenment?   Or have they yet to reach that stage, and maybe are still stuck in the disillusionment trough?

Visual story telling is an element of visual reasoning and visual literacy, which is grounded in spatial reasoning and spatial literacy. An idea that will one day reach its own plateau of productivity, I know.  I tried pointing out the spatial thinking behind the visual thinking identified in the ASIDE blog, but no responses yet.