Can this be true? Finally a Shapefile replacement which would be a standard coming from the OGC? Maybe we're getting there! Here's an entry on the OGC Draft 'GeoPackage' Specification. You must take a look at the short presentation (below).
From Spatially Adjusted: "The specs are right what I’m looking for:
When I first saw it and the words OGC tied to it, I tried to hate it, I really did. But there is much here to like."
This is a topic we discussed a few times in the past in stories like: The future of the Shapefile format?, FOSS4G 2010 Notes: SpatiaLite, the Shapefile of the Future?, and The Shapefile 2.0 Manifesto.
While this is nothing particularly surprising and local location solutions have been using RFID for years, I don't think we mentioned before such a simple solution using Bluetooth. In a Kickstarter-like crowdfunding launch, here's the StickNFind- Bluetooth Powered ultra small Location Stickers.
From CNET: "StickNFind stickers are equipped with Bluetooth low-energy technology. The stickers are about the size of a quarter and weigh well under an ounce. Slap a sticker on anything (or anyone) and then use the accompanying app to figure out where you put them last. Each little tag also has sound and light that can be triggered separately. The StickNFind app can be set to work kind of like a radar or it can send you an alert when an item comes into range. You can also get a warning when an item (like Sir Fluffypants) goes out of range."
Before you ask, from the officlal FAQ: "Range: Approximate 100 Feet with line of sight. Battery: Lasts up-to 1 year based on 30 minutes per day average use."
Tidbits offers an interesting article comparing Apple Maps with Google Maps.
The article's conclusion: "In the end, I believe that the real area where Google Maps stands out from Apple’s Maps is in transit directions, which I can’t test, but which have been praised by city dwellers like David Pogue of the New York Times, and Jacqui Cheng of Ars Technica, Dan Moren of Macworld, and Andy Ihnatko of the Chicago Sun-Times. Otherwise, both apps do a decent job and do so with entirely reasonable interfaces. Apple’s mapping data undoubtedly isn’t as good as Google’s, overall, but in most cases, I doubt that it will make a significant difference. And it’s now easy enough — thanks to the “via transit” trick — to compare routes in both apps, though I suppose that then raises the issue of which you want to believe."
Related news include:
Google has re-invented maps and GIS. Now we have "Consumer GIS" at a scale and speed that is unprecedented. If you have not played with it, the "Secret Sauce" is Google Fusion Tables (GFT). GFT allows almost unlimited data to be displayed on a Google Map and it is "Clickable". And did I mention it is free!
So what can you build with this? Check out Uber Weather. Built by one programmer with no budget. Amazing!
Google pre-renders GFT data and caches it. The more you use GFT, the faster it gets. So upload your interesting data and make it public. You win, the public wins. If your data would be cool on Uber Weather (UW), send me the link.
Mainstream? What is that all about? Maps and Weather are top search keywords. Combine the two and now we have serious reach! Uber Weather is "maps" and "weather" with GIS "sugar". How about 13,000 "Ski Lifts", instantly on the map at all times. This allows "Visual Search" and discovery at a unprecedented scale.
Game Changing Technology. Since amazing products can now be built and distributed with very tiny budgets, they don't need to be covered in SPAM (Display Ads) to pay for the huge overhead. This is huge. Give the public a choice between the current "Noise" and content that is 100% free of spam and there will be a massive shift in public demand. Be part of it. Help kill spam. Keep the Internet for "Content".
Uber Weather is doing its part. It is a "David & Goliath Story", but it could have the same effect that Netflix had on the entrenched "Blockbuster Video" business model. Did you really like walking up and down the aisles and being spanked if you were late?
Landmax built Uber Weather, here are some related posts with videos that you may find useful:
GIS means accuracy. Accuracy is truth. We need more truth.
Cheers James Swansburg
Done. Google Maps for iOS has just been made available. From the official description: "Navigate your world with Google Maps, now available for iPhone. Get comprehensive, accurate and easy-to-use maps with built-in Google local search, voice guided turn-by-turn navigation, public transit directions, Street View and more. Use Google Maps to discover great places to eat, drink, shop and play, with ratings and reviews from people you trust. Sign in to save your favorite places and quickly access all your past searches and directions from your computer, right on your phone."
MacRumors offers an entry named Roundup of Features in Google Maps for iOS: Better Design than Android Version, iPad Version Coming. Which includes:
Directions Mag offers an article named Research Explores How to Keep Up With Changing Web Mapping Technology, starting with 'change is inevitable: deal with it'.
From the results: "Despite the fact that the Google Maps API delivered on more of the requirements set out in the Needs Assessment Survey, the team selected Leaflet as the answer to the first question of which technology should be used for teaching. Leaflet was, in fact, second best in supporting the requirements, but the Diary Study suggested students made more progress and felt better working with that set of libraries. The team suggests that might be due to the added transparency and control provided by a fully open source library."
Quite a few interesting news in this batch mode edition.
From the open source front:
From the Google front:
In the miscellaneous category:
in the maps category:
Ever wondered where all the gold and diamonds in the world come from? Perhaps you have stumbled across a large mine while exploring on Google Earth but now there is a online platform that enables you to find all the mines on Earth and its called Mining Atlas
Mining Atlas provides a 3D interactive platform that enables you to take tours of mines and their surrounding areas, helping you to understand more about their scale and their impact on the surrounding areas.
The website is aimed at mining industry professionals but everyone might be interested to know whether there are any mines in the area where they live and work. Mining Atlas even has the location of old mines that have long since been closed and covered up.
Just a note: double-click on any icon to activate the tour for that mine.
It's easy to love MapBox for the way they push geospatial innovation. Last week they introduced MapBox Satellite.
What it is? "We’ve been working hard to bring MapBox users a fast, beautiful satellite and aerial imagery layer that integrates seamlessly with MapBox Streets and custom overlays. We’re happy to announce that it’s available today and included in MapBox Basic plans and above.
We are approaching MapBox Satellite in three main phases. Today marks Phase 1 completion with full world coverage to zoom 12 and full U.S. aerial coverage to zoom 17. Phase 2 will arrive in early 2013 as we deploy full U.S. and Europe coverage to zoom 18, followed by an aggressive Phase 3 rollout schedule for the rest of the world to zoom 17 during the first half of 2013."
Here's a really nice entry named Open Aerial: The Data Behind MapBox Satellite: "MapBox Satellite is powered by raw imagery from multiple sources that is then processed by MapBox using open source tools. All the data you're about to see is free, open, and if you're a U.S. taxpayer, available thanks to you."
Apple Maps continues to get attention, here's a MacRumors story named Australian Police Warn Against Use of Apple Maps Due to Safety Concerns. As they say, never trust a single source when you're heading somewhere remote that is new to you.
From the Police warning: "Tests on the mapping system by police confirm the mapping systems lists Mildura in the middle of the Murray Sunset National Park, approximately 70km away from the actual location of Mildura. Police are extremely concerned as there is no water supply within the Park and temperatures can reach as high as 46 degrees, making this a potentially life threatening issue. Some of the motorists located by police have been stranded for up to 24 hours without food or water and have walked long distances through dangerous terrain to get phone reception."
Slashdot also discusses the same news in a story named Australian Police Warn That Apple Maps Could Get Someone Killed.