New Slashgeo media partnership: Remote Sensing Summer School

Being held in Quebec City on July 10-11, the Remote Sensing Summer School (RSSS) has concluded a media partnership with Slashgeo. This event organised by the IEEE Geoscience and Remote Sensing Society (GRSS) will offer students the opportunity to gain state of the art knowledge on selected topics of remote sensing related to sustainable resource. The students will meet ...

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Geospatial Advancement Canada (2)

On Day 2 and 3 at the Geospatial Advancement Canada, speakers were putting emphasis on new opportunities of collaboration, actions and technology development aligned with the need for a new Geomatics business strategy plan for Canada based on the initiatives emerging elsewhere (e.g. INSIPIRE, US Geospatial Platform Business Plan and Strategic Plan).

Here are some of the main speakers and key elements of presentations held on Tuesday and Wednesday:

  • Walter Natynczyk and Denis Robert presents the upcoming Radarsat Constellation Mission (RCM) which will include 4 Radarsat satellites (1 Radarsat-2 & 3 RCM) for the target date. This new Canadian Space mission will give 2 to 4 coverage capability per day over the Arctic region and a daily coverage almost elsewhere on Earth, with still spotlight (1 X 3 m) as the best resolution. With 5 to 7 minutes images processing time frame for unclassified content, multiple applications might continue to arise on the market, especially for Space-based Maritime Domain Awareness for National Defense surveillance (e.g. best Open Ocean capability, 25 m ship detection), Ice monitoring (actually the biggest consumer of Radarsat-2 imagery) and Emergency management (e.g. flood monitoring, maritime search and rescue). This mission is also open to international collaboration from the European and US Space agencies.
  • Industry leaders of “pixels” openly discussed new products coming to the market, such as PlanetLabs or SkyBox Imaging and the possible change of imagery-resolution restrictions (better than 50 cm). This industry has improved its range of services by innovation and to deliver better product other than just images, such as effective cloud-based service, automated extraction tool, Web Map / Coverage / Image Processing and Tile as a Services. Satellite technology has also been able to compete with the emergence in the civilian world of Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) or known as Drones. Most of the speakers were agreed that UAV’s is complementary to satellite and more adapted to middle-size area, data on-demand and target area rapidly, when good regulation are put in place.
  • Mladen Stojic inspire the crowd with geospatial actions to be taken on two main subjects: spatial analysis and effective way of finding geospatial assets. From the spatial analysis perspectives, suggested actions should be taken to improve result’s communication derived from automated spatial analytics, streamline analysis and modeling, as well as building new Web Geoprocessing Service (WPS) to benefit fully of this current open, real-time, distributed and connected dynamic world. On the subject of finding geospatial assets, actions needed to be made to benefit from the richness of information related to “data is everywhere” trends by searching in comprehensive metadata by the “BBOX philosophy” using intelligent crawlers connected to federated geo-catalog. This simple BBOX target mixed using a network of web services were amongst the solutions of solving “big data everywhere” issues to “find best, up-to-date and needed data now”.

Based on this first Geospatial Advancement Canada, Canadian industry is in a good position on the “location” global world. It has being said by Mohamed Abousalem of Tecterra: the Geomatics economic sector in Canada (because of its large territory and low density of people) representing over 20% on the global market, 2.8 billions revenue, 2500 companies, 35 000 employees and has a 15% annual growth. In this context, a clear National strategy for the years to come needs to connect all those assets together. However, the Geomatics Canadian community is at critical stage (e.g. Tecterra, GEOIDE and GeoConnections programs are ended) and needs to initiate a new cycle of development to reinvented himself. If this community still want to keep up his good position on this competitive market, it needs new intelligent and agile collaboration / partnership models to stay one of the top leaders and continue to build upon what has been accomplished by the missed Roger Tomlinson (Canadian inventor of modern Geographic Information System) and others since 1960’s. Thanks to this first Geospatial Advancement Canada edition, with its more than 140 participants, for having discussion and identifying challenge related to the role of Geospatial Intelligence and Geomatics managers in the development of a new Strategy that is looking ahead to build a new cycle.

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Geospatial Advancement Canada (1)

This Monday started the Geospatial Advancement Canada conference. The conference aims at discussing Geospatial trends around a National Geospatial Strategy for Canada.

If you would like to follow the conference discussion on Twitter, search this tag: #gcan14.

Here are some of the main speakers and key elements of presentations held on Monday:

  • Major General Christian Rousseau explain the role of its GeoSpatial Intelligence Group that needs to find ways of spending less time looking for information and more time for geospatial analysis;
  • Julie Lefevbre expose the main projects of R&D in Defense & Security such as Arctic Intelligence and situation awareness (e.g. MASAS) in Canada, but also what she sees as the future of cloud-based architecture that might be built on collaboration (e.g. Virtual USA, US GeoSpatial platform) and knowledge;
  • Steeve Guillemette present the case of health crisis management in Québec City during legionnaires disease outbreak and how geospatial analytics become the main integrator of information gathered by specialist;
  • Gido Langen explain how he sees 3rd Generation of Web Mapping: establishing a network of REST end points, as the effective way of providing resources to increase quality control and improve capacity of apps deployment;
  • Richard Akerman and Deena Yanofsky identifies current limitations of most of Open Data portal which undermines standardization (e.g. common licence such as the International Creative Common 4.0, stable & unique Digital Object Identifier, etc.) and lack of intermediate tools (less developer centric) for vizualisation and spatial analysis (that might help to decrease data illiteracy & improve data skills of the general public);
  • Trevor Taylor expose his own definition of Big Data (e.g. Volume+Velocity+Veracity+Variety) and what OGC is promoting: One Open Architecture and Open Standards (e.g. not just OGC, but OASIS, W3C, Web3D) and what are the recent emphasis of OGC: Open Mobile, Internet of Things, cloud computing and privacy.

Based on the presentations made on Monday, the concept toward "built in collaboration" and "Service Oriented Architecture" is likely to be the way of doing things in the GeoSpatial world, in which at the same time the development of open and big data seems to overwhelm GIS managers and public users, but challenges the data skills of the tech guys for the good!

Slashgeo as media partner of this event will publish other articles this week on other hot topics of the conference.

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Slashgeo is a proud media partner of the Geospatial Advancement Canada conference in Ottawa

We are happy to inform you that Slashgeo will be a proud media partner of the upcoming Geospatial Advancement Canada conference in Ottawa in March 3-5!

"Geospatial Advancement Canada will bring together Canada’s leaders in Geomatics to continue the discussion on developing a National Geo strategy. You will network and learn from industry experts who will detail, through case study presentations, how you can develop your own program or improve what you‘ve already achieved. Attending the summit will ensure that you are up-to-date on insights from industry leaders, able to defend against critical obstacles, and are implementing effective methodologies into your GIS programs. Register today to confirm your participation at one of the most sought-after events in the industry."

Slashgeo will publish articles during and after the conference on what has been highlighted in presentation and innovative ideas on the geospatial sphere.

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Slashgeo at the Geospatial Advancement Canada conference in Ottawa

Slashgeo, as proud media partner of the upcoming Geospatial Advancement Canada conference in Ottawa in March 3-5, is happy to be part of this meeting that has the involvement of the most crucial stakeholders within the Canadian geospatial field.

Over 40 leaders in Canadian geomatics and the Canadian Armed Forces will be giving you their first hand experiences and take-ways. You can download your own copy of the full agenda here. 

Here are the main key speakers of this major Geospatial event: Major-General Christian Rousseau (Chief of Defence Intelligence for the Canadian Forces)General (Retired) Walter J. Natynczyk (President of the Canadian Space Agency)Trevor Taylor (Director Americas of the Open Geospatial Consortium)Dr. Marc Fortin (Assistant Deputy Minister Defence Research and Development Canada)David Jackson (Director of the Canadian Ice Services), etc

The agenda is divided into three key themes:

Day 1: Exploring the Latest Technology and Innovation to Overcome Interoperability Challenges;

Day 2: Better Understanding the Canadian National Geomatics Strategy through Collaboration by All Levels of Government and Private Industry;

Day 3: Challenges and Opportunities Associated with GIS Governance; Policy Development, Senior-Level Buy-in, Workforce.


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Analysis: Which technology to use for disaster management?

a service of the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs

For more info on the model of open source and GIS in Quebec, see these links:

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Géomatique: publishing open data hosted by ESRI and perspective of augmented reality

While being present at one of the main geospatial event in Quebec (Canada) called: Géomatique, I will do the same as Alex and give some of my impression on the event. I was there mainly to link with my peers as well as discover the new data, apps or development project in the region. I was appealed by two main conference themes: data management and augmented reality.

On the data management side, ESRI Canada presented its new community driven project which offers a complete platform to publish data for free and hosted by ESRI Canada using ArcGIS Online as framework:. The project's main goal presented at Geomatique was to support open data initiatives in public organisation especially at municipal level, such as the one made for the City of Nanaimo, Toronto, Kamloops and Moncton, but elsewhere in municipality around Canada, like Sherbrooke in Quebec (and federal and provincial levels, if data are available).

In terms of mobile technology and augmented reality, a young developer Team from Fujitsu presents what has been developed during the Quebec Open Jeep Volleyball tournament in Quebec City in summer. This generic apps for the public has been quite simple but demonstrate the use of augmented reality. This apps was showing point of interest and beer location on-site with 2D/3D moving objects added to the scene taken by mobile phone. The next Open Volleyball event in might be more innovative and integrating more 3D models. Like explained in the summary of Alex of Slashgeo about the topic of augmented reality in the presentation made by Sylvie Daniel, the challenge and perspective of augmented reality are still huge, but right now augmented reality is still made for fun and exploration game and product. In summary, geospatial professional needs to stay in touch with opportunity related to augmented reality, but cannot see it as an easy way to develop serious geo-engineering / surveys project in today’s world. The slides and video of all presentations at Géomatique will be available soon, once it is on-line, Slashgeo will publish the news.

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FOSS4G: WMS Shootout and Sol Katz Award

While at FOSS4G in Spain last year, UMN MapServer (Linux) won the annual competition WMS Shootout with Mapnik not fare behind. During this year event, for distributing vectors (PostGIS) data only : Mapnik was at its best, for vector seeding : MapServer on Linux was way much faster than the other products, for vectors and raster data : Mapnik and MapServer Linux looks better and finally for vectors, rasters and DEM data: MapServer Linux was the fastest.

At the same time, MapServer on Linux was about 3 times faster than on MapServer on Windows on some of charts! The results in details of WMS Shootout will be published soon. At the end of the conference the annual Sol Katz Award was given this year to the lead developer of the JTS Topology Suite, Martin Davis. Congratulations to the first "Java" contributor to win this FOSS4G award!

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FOSS4G: What about a Tiling Shootout?

This year at the FOSS4G the WPS Shootout was introduced and presented some of the conformance / interoperability results, which PyWPS was the most interoperable, as well the ZOO project, while GeoServer had a poor client support. The performance of each WPS software was not evaluated, but with the WMS Shootout coming in this Friday afternoon, the domain of map tiling or Web Map Tile Service (WMTS) could be another standard to be evaluated at the FOSS4G. With so many products now in the market for map tiling, such as MapCache, Tilecache, Mapnik, TileMill, GeoWebCache, MapProxy, I think it might be a good idea to form a WMTS Shootout. It could validate the tiles generation process, the interoperability with clients and the performance on delivering the tiles to the client (ex. OpenLayers) as well as features offered (e.g. reprojection on-the-fly, etc.).

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FOSS4G: Brian Timoney, GeoSpatial One Stop, Irene, USA

One of the key speakers at this FOSS4G Denver conference which impressed the crowd (and me as well!) was Brian Timoney. He did not use big “digital slide presentation”, he just let his own passion to geospatial speaks by it self. On Tuesday, he exposed in a simple way without any slides presentation: how the federal government with its GeoSpatialOneStop web portal was outdated, why it was not suitable in the evolving market of today and how public organisation such as NGA and the military industry is driving the FOSS4G world in the USA. He pointed out that during the Hurricane Irene along the East Coast only pdf type of maps were released to the public to help themselves to know which area were asked to evacuate. It was a really good presentation by Brian as well as its implication in the workshop related to Business of Open source. I hope his ideas might open the minds of some people outside the FOSS4G environment to look at open source software not only military and defence type of organisation, so it can be integrated into others types of organisation in the geospatial world!

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