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?
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.
Experimenting with reblogging some worthwhile posts.
on translation, spatial thinking, data visualization
Since its inception, Stories of the Susquehanna has been a collaborative, interdisciplinary digital 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. At 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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Since the summer, I have been working for UCGIS, the University Consortium for Geographic Information Science, as their Executive Director. Translation: I manage the business-related operations of a small non-profit that’s focused on advancing and supporting the research and education ideas of the GIS-teaching faculty at its 50+ member institutions. Today, Directions Magazine printed an interview I did with them about UCGIS and some of its upcoming activities. And, it’s International GIS Day! Woo-hoo!
Temple University’s Nora Newcombe is well-versed at writing about spatial thinking in a way that makes the topic accessible to lay audiences. New to me: a piece called Seeing Relationships (pdf) in the Spring 2013 American Educator. Now she can share the results of the large meta-analysis recently completed, that documents our mind’s capacity to become more skilled at spatial tasks. She’s still firmly grounded in her own disciplinary perspective, cognitive psychology, but here she ventures into examples involving geographic space and geospatial technologies, not only mental rotation in abstract space. This piece includes call-outs to the Geospatial Semester program at James Madison University and Stanford’s Orbis project.
Nora’s oft-cited, oft-shared 2010 American Educator piece, Picture This, is still available too.
In the College of Arts & Sciences at the University of Vermont, faculty are involved with a year-long initiative to learn more about maps and mapping. I had a chance to be part of their August 2013 workshop and share ideas about teaching and learning supported with geospatial technologies. Members of the department of geography are leading this effort, and though they’re disciplinary experts in this field, they themselves are learning from the new perspectives and novel projects being designed and developed. A way to spread opportunities for spatial analysis and geographical inquiry.
I’ve been following the various projects that research the Holocaust through its geography, often using GIS. I’m most familiar with the work of Anne Knowles (video), connected in one part to the Spatial History project at Stanford. The US Holocaust Memorial Museum also maintains a collection of geographically-based exhibits.
Today I learned about a new site, Exploring the Vilnius Ghetto. The map interface is the standard organization framework to arrange geotagged media. Nicely designed.
H/t to Heather King.
A team at DePauw University used SketchUp to recreate what they believe their campus to have looked like historically, building-wise. Apparently a challenge because whole buildings have come and gone with little archival imagery captured? Seems like a good way to involve staff and students in a project that can engage alumni and highlight the fun of flying (Google Earth-wise) around. Mental images of Harry Potter on his broomstick whizzing past Hogwarts’ buildings.
Nice work, Beth!
H/t to All Points Blog.
From our new website, TeachGIS.org, we published a White Paper today that focuses on how to talk to university administrators about GIS. First, make sure they know what GIS is, and what it’s not (i.e., GPS). After that, it all depends on your intentions. Different messages for different expectations. Build some connections, share some stories, offer some statistics, anticipate and mitigate the tensions. Figure out what your favorite GIS video, book, or website is, and send it to your Provost or Dean, just to say hi.