Tag Archives: iOS

Apple Using OpenStreetMap Data in iPhoto for iOS and OpenStreetPad for iOS

It's rare there is such great news for open geospatial data. Here's the "Welcome, Apple!" entry from the OpenStreetMap Foundation. Of course there are initial quirks, but it's a start and it's excellent pushing in favor of OpenStreetMap data.

From the welcome message: "The desktop version of iPhoto, and indeed all of Apple’s iOS apps until now, use Google Maps. The new iPhoto for iOS, however, uses Apple’s own map tiles – made from OpenStreetMap data (outside the US). [...] The OSM data that Apple is using is rather old (start of April) so don’t expect to see your latest and greatest updates on there. It’s also missing the necessary credit to OpenStreetMap’s contributors; we look forward to working with Apple to get that on there."

Of course, Slashdot is also discussing the news and MacRumors provides more insights: "Daring Fireball's John Gruber later clarified that Apple was still using Google Maps for the Places functionality in iPhoto for iOS but that maps for Photo Journals and slideshows were coming directly from Apple. [...] Toward that end, Apple has been working hard to beef up its own in-house mapping expertise over the past several years, acquiring several small companies including Placebase, Poly9 and C3 Technologies."

For the U.S., Apple is apparently using TIGER data. If you're curious, here's a nice tool to compare Apple tiles (based on OSM) and OpenStreetMap tiles. If you're eager for more coverage from the generic web sources, APB offers more links.

Related, you know I've been looking for an iOS editor of OpenStreetMap data for a while, and the great news is that the new open source OpenStreetPad project for iOS is exactly this!

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Avenza’s Successful PDF Maps App Surpasses 100 Vendors in its Burgeoning Digital Map Store

Growing Number of Established Map Vendors Select Avenza as its Digital Marketplace for Mobile Devices

TORONTO, (February 14) - Avenza Systems Inc., producers of MAPublisher® cartographic software for Adobe® Illustrator® and Geographic Imager® geospatial tools for Adobe Photoshop®, announces its latest achievement for its award-winning PDF Maps app with the number of Avenza Map Store vendors topping 100. Avenza brings mobile map technology to the forefront of Apple iOS devices and map producers are strengthening the trend by offering their once static maps through this new digitial marketplace.

The PDF Maps app is an all-encompassing solution for the use, distribution and sale of digital versions of paper maps to mobile devices. It includes both an app for consumers to use, discover and purchase maps directly from their devices as well as an in-app store to facilitate the transaction and delivery of maps. Think of it as iTunes or iBooks for maps.

The Avenza Map Store continues to grow and features tens of thousands of maps authored, distributed and sold by individual cartographers, established map publishers, and government agencies. The in-app marketplace provides a new mobile e-commerce venue that allows those in the industry to have access to more than 200 million Apple iOS users seeking information about specific maps.

“We're working hard and continuing to build our community of vendors,” said Ted Florence, President of Avenza Systems Inc. “The PDF Maps app is a great platform and many companies are finally seeing how easy it is to make their maps accessible to consumers. We invite all map publishers to become a part of our vendor network.”

The PDF Maps app recently won the International Map Trade Association best mapping product in the world. Tens of thousands of users are taking advantage of geospatial technology that allows them to view maps, utilize GPS, measure real world locations, and collect and share placemarks. It has become the ultimate accessory for travelers and adventurers where Internet bandwidth is not available or is cost-prohibitive when cellular roaming.

PDF Maps is available now on the iTunes App Store free of charge for personal use. Pricing of each map is set by the publisher and free maps can be downloaded at no cost through the PDF Maps in-app map store.

More about Avenza Systems Inc.

Avenza Systems Inc. is an award-winning, privately held corporation that provides cartographers and GIS professionals with powerful software tools for making better maps. In addition to software offerings for Mac and Windows users, Avenza offers value-added data sets, product training and consulting services.

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OpenStreetMap News: Syrian Uprising and OSM+GMM Data, TomTom vs OSM Data, U.S. OSM Terrain Layer, SotM in Tokyo, and much more

Okay, there is much more geonews that were waiting for me than I expected. Please give me some time to catch up everything. Anything worthy, I'll aggregate and share with our users.

There has been several interesting articles and entries posted in the past two weeks about OpenStreetMap. Here they are!

  • Ogle Earth shares an interesting article on what's happening in Syria with Google Map Maker and OpenStreetMap relying on crowdsourcing for their maps, in the context of the Syrian uprising
  • Cédric highlights an article on TomTom data vs OpenStreetMap data, specifically for Germany
  • Cédric also enumerates 13 reasons why OpenStreetMap fails to replace official or proprietary base maps in a sustainable way - this list identify several interesting 'challenges' for OpenStreetMap
  • Meanwhile, James Fee was one of many that reacted to Wired's article named Open Source Maps Gain Ground as Google Paywall Looms
  • Related and worth reading, Nestoria explains why it dumped Google Maps in favor of OpenStreetMap, served by MapQuest
  • James also linked to an article about OpenStreetMap data and what makes spatial data 'authoritative'
  • Mapperz mentions the nice OpenStreetMap Terrain layer for the U.S.
  • The OSM summary links to the video of OpenStreetMap edits, but don't expect to see details in this video
  • The State of the Map conference will take place in Tokyo, September 6-8th
  • Sadly, I still haven't found an appropriate iOS app to contribute to OpenStreetMap, anyone has?
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Batch Geonews: Pleiades-1 in Orbit, GeoInt at the US DoD, Hyperspectral UAV, GLONASS Global, and much more

Here's the recent geonews in batch mode. I've been overly busy lately - like a lot of us are at that time of the year I guess - please allow the unusual delay of this entry. Have a nice holiday break!

On the Esri front:

  • Via an Esri email, I learned about the National Geographic World Map to be used as a basemap with Esri products and services

On the Google front:

  • Again, there's new 45° imagery available, now for Detroit, Fayetteville, Nashville, Baton Rouge and Huntsville
  • The GEB has an entry on Google Earth on the Samsung Galaxy Nexus
  • The GEB also shares another entry on using Google Earth in the classroom
  • Finally from the GEB, here's an entry named Visualizing Google Analytics data in Google Earth
  • Slashdot is discussing a story about British Telecom suing Google over Android, including several location-related patents
  • Here's the official entry on last week's imagery update

In the miscellaneous category:

  • APB shares their top 10 GIS stories
  • SS informs us that France's Pleiades-1 high-resolution is now in orbit: "Pleiades-1 has a 70cm resolution, mulitspectral views in the visible and near-infrared bands, and a swath width of 20km"
  • Read this if you want to grasp how important geospatial intelligence is to the US Department of Defense
  • We often mentioned the LightSquared debacle, now they want the FCC to rule now, not a bad idea since they might run out of money in the coming months
  • SS also informs us of an hyperspectral imager that can be deployed on UAVs
  • We mentioned GeoSMS before, here's the OGC blog the use of GeoSMS for disaster management
  • APB informs us that Facebook added Location Tagging to their Timeline Rollout
  • Two weeks ago in a PR we mentioned GISLounge's GIS job skills and employment survey
  • Also from a recent PR, we never mentioned before the free Dinamica EGO software, now at version 1.8, EGO standing for Environment for Geoprocessing Objects
  • V1 informs us that Russia's GLONASS satellite navigation system is officially global again
  • Slashdot discusses how the brain's structure changes with your spacial and navigation skills, at least for taxi drivers
  • Another location-related story discussed at the same place is named Japanese Use Wild Monkeys To Track Radiation
  • Finally from the same source, DigitalGlobe's satellite spotted China's first aircraft carrier
  • WebMapSolutions reviews 8 mobile GIS apps for iOS and Android
  • Microsoft tells us about the Updated Spatial Features in the SQL Azure Q4 Service Release
  • MapQuest updated their Mobile Flash Maps API to v7.0.7, but with Flash for Mobile officially abandoned by Adobe, what's the future of Flash?
  • O'Reilly shares a long entry on the Public Mapping Project for gerrymandering the U.S. elections, which we mentioned before
  • Hum... APB shares an entry named Confidence Key to Women Doing Well at Spatial Tasks

In the maps category:

  • While I'm a bit late for Christmas gifts, VS mentions interesting typographic maps of various U.S. cities on sale, VS also links to reasonably priced 'vintage' geography gifts
  • Here's OWNI's list of Best Maps, a few of them previously mentioned here
  • Discussed over Slashdot, a New All-Sky Map Shows the Magnetic Fields of the Milky Way
  • O'Reilly shares this British map of traffic casualties
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National Geographic ‘7 Billion’ App Review

Over the past week, I read all the content of National Geographic's '7 Billion' iPad app. I found it of excellent quality and pretty interesting. Interesting enough for me to spend some time sharing my thoughts about it with you. 'Geography' is at the core of the topic and content of the app. The iPad app is free "for a limited time", so I encourage you to download it right away (provided you have an iPad of course).

But first, here's the official description: "National Geographic magazine presents 7 Billion: How your world will change - to coincide with the arrival of the 7 billionth human being to our world. This app explores the challenges of a growing human population in a world of limited resources with informative videos, interactive maps, in-depth articles, and stunning photography. 

Featured content includes….
  • How big is 7 Billion? An insightful video of the demographic trends that got us here today and how it will impact us tomorrow.
  • Birth of a New Brazil: How big families are out, to the credit of strong-willed women—and the steamy soaps that inspired them.
  • The Face of Seven Billion Interactive: Tap on the “typical face” to find out who the most typical human is
  • Rift in Paradise: As the global population increases Africa’s Albertine Rift gives us a glimpse of what is at stake in the decades ahead.
  • Bangladesh: See how resourceful residents of this country refuse to give in to rising seas
  • Food Ark: Explore how preserving heirlooms seeds and breeds are crucial if we hope to feed our hungry world.
  • And to be incorporated into the app in December, Cities are the Solution: They may be the best way to lift people from poverty and preserve the environment."

And now my notes:

  • The app contains several beautiful photos with captions, quite a few slightly interactive maps, about three short videos, and about a hundred pages of articles to read
  • The articles are generally very well written, documented and quite pertinent, well worth the time
  • The design is the app is beautiful, and so are the maps, but in both cases, design takes precedence on usability. Ideally, maps must be beautifully designed -and- usable
  • The surprise of the first section, is that despite population having increased exponentially in in the past decades, most scenarios indicate we'll stabilize and start to decrease in the middle of this century. In fact, population is even already on a decreasing course in a lot of parts of the world, notable exceptions are India and Africa, so the problem is not population, it's resources, mainly food and energy (both are linked of course (population <=> resources & food <=> energy), everything is related, and as we know in geography, near things are more related than distant things)
  • The second section, focusing on Brazil, shows that you don't even need laws to reduce family sizes, you need "modernity"
  • The section on Africa is insightful, and shows that we're not safe from additional Rwanda-type wars, since population is not evenly distributed and so are resources. When people starve, they don't care about "national natural reserves" and are willing to pillage anything they can to survive (this reminds me of Collapse, by Jared Diamond)
  • The section on Bangladesh is reassuring. When we don't have access to much, we do with what we have and imagination helps, but be ready to move frequently and systematically adapt to new situations. To be bold, I'm not sure we're that flexible in the "modern" world
  • There's a section on oceans acidification, dubbed "climate change's lesser-known evil twin". Oceans are degrading at a dramatic rate, mostly because we don't do anything and continue with our unsustainable practices, and we're going to start paying the price real soon 
  • There's also a section on food production, but I don't remember reading anything surprising in there
  • The last part of the app, titled "Cities are the Solution" is not yet available (next month), I will certainly read it once it becomes available

In short, it's a great informative app that I can only recommend. It's well documented, beautiful and pertinent. Anyone else has comments?

On the same topic and in addition to what we already shared, O'Reilly has an entry on visualizations of 7 billion humans.

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Batch Geonews: Bing Maps Updates, Nokia’s Yahoo Maps, U.S. Geoplatform Launches, GIS and the Cloud, and much more

Here's the latest geonews in batch mode. But first, as a media partner of the Geomatique event, if you participated to the conference, we invite you to fill this survey and get a chance to win an iPad 2.

On the Google front:

  • The GEB introduces the free Maxwell Render Suite to make your SketchUp models more realistic, the screenshots are impressive 
  • You can now Share biking and walking directions with Custom Maps
  • We told you before that Street View is available inside businesses now, and here's a Slashdot discussion about it
  • The Google Model Your Town Competition has begun
  • Google requests feedback for their map news channels, if you fill that survey, you can tell them you're reading Slashgeo ;-)
  • And there was new imagery released yesterday for Google Maps and Earth

On the Microsoft front:

  • Microsoft announced several updates and new features in the Bing Maps REST web services and the Bing Spatial Data Service
  • In another entry, Microsoft informs us that the improved map sharing and Bing Maps route modifications

On the Esri front:

  • Mandown mentions that the ArcGIS API for iOS 2.1 is now available

On the open source front that wasn't mentioned yesterday:

  • Via O'Reilly, I learned about an jQuery open source Country Selector that has autocomplete
  • I also forgot to share this DM article named Experiences Teaching Free and Open Source GIS at the Community College Level

In the miscellaneous category:

  • APB reports that Yahoo Maps is now powered by Nokia
  • The U.S. Geoplatform launched based on Esri's Portal for ArcGIS, here's the direct link
  • V1 has an interesting perspective named What Do You Think GIS in the Cloud Will Be Like? and on the same topic, DM shares an informative article named Is Geospatial Cloud Computing a Commodity?
  • SS mentions a iOnRoad, free Android app that includes colision avoidance
  • MapQuest Vibe is now available for the iPhone
  • O'Reilly tells us about Dark Sky's app Kickstater project for "hyperlocal hyper-realtime" weather prediction, with similarities to NowCasting
  • If you're into podcasts, VerySpatial mentions another geospatial-related podcast now in English, Geografree
  • APB informs us of a OGC survey of the business value of geospatial standards
  • V1 lists what he thinks are the Hottest Jobs In The Geospatial Sector Today
  • APB has excellent coverage of the SimpleGeo acquisition by Urban Airship
  • Remember we told you about Atanas Entchev? There's now a petition to help him

In the maps category:

  • StrangeMaps shares an informative map of electric sockets of the World
  • Here's a Google Maps mashup on disease risk and migration
  • O'Reilly shares an animated map of how dance music travels
  • APB share their disappointment at the map of the American Jobs Act
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Apple Announces ‘Find My Friends’ Location Service

In their round of announcements, Apple today announced the 'Find My Friends' location app and service. Here's what the Apple press release has to say about it:

"Find My Friends is a new app available as a free download from the App Store that lets you easily share your location with people who are important to you. Friends and family appear on a map so you can quickly see where they are. Find My Friends also lets you temporarily share your location with a group of friends, whether it's for a couple of hours for a dinner or a couple of days on a camping trip; when the time is up, the sharing ends. With Find My Friends, you get a notification every time you get a new friend request and if you give them permission, they can see your location. With a simple tap you can hide your location. Parental controls help you manage how your child uses Find My Friends."

It will be available on October 12th along with iOS 5. This service has similarities with Google Latitude, launched in February.  

In related news, the iOS Maps app can apparently be invoked and used via the new Siri advanced voice recognition part of iOS 5.

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Geonews CatchUp: QGIS vs gvSIG, Landsat 8 Milestone, Shaderlight 2, osmdroid, and too much more

That's probably our biggest "geonews in batch mode" issue ever. That's the price I have to pay for three weeks of holidays! ;-) I tried to keep only the most pertinent geonews. After reading this unusually long entry, you and I are back to being up to date in terms of geonews.

On the Google front:
  • Here's a Google Earth mashup of Fukushima and Chernobyl meltdowns side-by-side
  • Google added a Regional Expert Reviewer Program to Google Map Maker
  • The tool Shaderlight to create awesome SketchUp models is now at version 2
  • Google purchased Zagat Survey, a firm offering local ratings of restaurants and much more  
  • And there's new imagery in Google Earth released on September 7
On the ESRI front:
  • ArcGIS 10.0 SP3 is coming next month
  • Spatially Adjusted has an entry seemingly confirming You Can’t Edit Spatial RDBMS with ArcGIS for Desktop without SDS
  • V1 reviews the Esri Map Book, volume 26
On the open source front:
  • Via no solo I read this informative QGIS and gvSIG comparison, useful to understand the differences between what are probably the two most mature open source desktop GIS packages available
  • The FOSS4G conference will take place in Beijing, China
  • We did mention them before, but only indirectly - here's osmdroid, OpenStreetMap tools for Android (maybe that's what missing for iOS?)
  • In case you don't read our geospatial press releases, the OSGeo-Live 5.0 DVD has been released
  • If you're interested in Brazilian topography, see this entry on TOPODATA's version of SRTM-DEM for Brazil

In GPS news:

  • North Korea forced a US reconnaissance plane to land by jamming GPS signals
  • Via Spatial Law, Bangladesh Mandates Use of GPS in Vehicles

In Apple news:

  • Autodesk released the 'Lite' version of AutoCAD for MacOS X, in addition to the full version available since a year
  • For their iOS devices, Apple is exploring enhancing maps with augmented reality
  • APB mentioend Apple's patent application on crowdsourcing data for local searches
  • The class-action lawsuit against Apple in South Korea over location data collection has started 

In Microsoft news:

  • Streetside is now available for parts of London
  • Microsoft shares an entry on the Bing Maps v7 Module CodePlex Project
  • Even if Virtual Earth 3D is discontinued, Microsoft posted details to enable you to use it longer
  • Microsoft released the Bing Maps 'Windows Presentation Foundation' (WPF) Control
  • Here's an entry on the Wall Street Journal using Bing Maps in their hurricane tracking tool

In transportation news:

  • SignalGuru system that change your route to avoid red lights
  • Regarding tracking and privacy, the NYC mayor wants traffic cameras at every corner

In remote sensing news:

  • A critical milestone has been reached for Landsat's LCDM mission in, aka "Landsat 8"
  • Both NigeriaSat-2 and NigeriaSat-X remote sensing satellites have been launched successfully
  • The ERS-2 mission is completed, its last image has been taken
  • Can you believe that over 700 government satellites will launch in the next 10 years? Obviously not all for remote sensing purposes
  • The bankrupted RapidEye has been purchased
In the miscellaneous category:
  • It seems UniStrong has 40% of GIS marketshare in China
  • V1 shares a perspective named Where Did All the Talk About Spatial Data Quality Go?
  • The data provider Infochimps have a new GEO API
  • Slashdot discusses a story named Judge Nixes Warrantless Cell Phone Location Data
  • Of course I'm a bit too late, but here's a recap of mapping and mobile data for Hurricane Irene
  • Here's an entry named Everything you wanted to know about UK Coordinate Systems
  • It's confirmed, Kansas is flatter than a pancake
  • Do we need another map building website? There's the new Build-A-Map site in Beta
  • APB mentions 'Location Aware', a free location-aware task management app for Android

In the maps category:

  • O'Reilly shared a map of U.S. job losses
  • Here's the U.S. National Parks as seen from space
  • Tthe USGS launched their Historical Topo Map Collection
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Find-my-car Location Service for Malls Using License Plates Reading

Slashdot discusses a story about a find-my-car location service for malls that uses license plates reading. The linked article is named 'Find my car' app can also catch crooks

Their summary: "Westfield Group, one of the largest shopping centre (mall) operators in the world, has launched a find-my-car iPhone app. The system uses a series of license plate reading cameras dotted throughout their multi-level car parks. Westfield said police could also use it to find stolen or unregistered vehicles. (Hello, slippery slope.) Initially launched in just one Sydney centre, it will be rolled-out to others if the trial is successful."

This is not the first time we discuss tracking license plates, here's some related previous stories:

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Thursday Geonews: Bing Maps Map Style Updated, London Transit in Google Maps, Timezones Shapefile, Backseat Driver, and much more

Here's the recent geonews in batch mode covering the last two weeks. It's a bit longer than usual.

On the open source front:

  • Almost two weeks ago, the OSGeo released their 2 minutes video promoting the FOSS4G conference, Slashgeo is proud to be a media partner
  • The FGT blog offers a long entry on the portable version of gvSIG, an open source GIS - portable meaning running from a USB key with a host computer with no intallation required
  • Several sources mentioned that Canada's British Columbia opened their province-wide open data portal, with plenty of geospatial data in it
  • While we mentioned the its preview in May, here's more documentation on the upcoming GeoRepository, an advanced authorization manager for GeoServer
  • ImageI/O-Ext 1.1.1 has been released
  • uDig 1.2.2 has been released too
  • There's a PostGIS Drupal module in the works

On the Google front (well, new since yesterday):

  • Public transport directions of London is now available in Google Maps
  • Google details the new Google Maps version 5.8 for Android, adding photo uploads and My Places
  • Mapperz tells us how to load OpenStreetMap data in Google Earth via FME with BBOX.ME

On the Microsoft front:

  • Most visible changes for users are updates to the Bing Maps road map style, they even offer a 9-pages guide to detail what 's new
  • APB reports that Microsoft will use Gigwalk to enhance Bing Maps search results
  • Microsoft announced Bing Maps updates to Account Center, REST Services, and Documentation
  • Another entry enumerate what's new in the Bing AJAX Map Control

In the miscellaneous category:

  • O'Reilly links to a free shapefile of the TZ timezones of the world
  • SS mentions the GeoTime software that "displays movement over time in an intuitive manner"
  • Here's an article on the technical, scientific, historic and political background to the GPS system
  • On the topic of the future of GPS, V1 shares an entry named the Significance of LightSquared Debate to Europeans and APB shares ESA's reaction to LightSquared potential interference with Galileo
  • MacRumors have an entry named Apple Pays $946 in Korean Lawsuit Over Location Data Collection, New Class Action Suit Coming
  • In the funny category, APB mentions (video included) ToyToyota's Backseat Driver GPS iOS game for kids that uses the real-time itinerary of the car

Discussed over Slashdot:

  • 3D Hurts Your Eyes
  • Chief NSA Lawyer Hints That NSA May Be Tracking US Citizens
  • Google Grabbed Locations of Phones, PCs
  • Undersea Cable Map Shows Where The Data Pipes Are

In the maps category:

  • SS shares an entry named eLEAF Maps the World’s Water for Food Security
  • Ready for the hurricane season, the UK Met Office launched their Storm Tracker (beta), with free and paid versions, and on the same topic, the GEB offers an entry on tracking hurricanes in Google Earth
  • V1 mentions Africover WebMap from the UN, offering geodata for Africa
  • O'Reilly have an entry on cellphone connections in the U.S.
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