Tag Archives: privacy

Batch Geonews: Remaining Relevant as a GIS Professional, OpenGeo Suite 4.0, 30TB of Imagery in Esri, and much more

Here's the recent geonews in batch mode, covering a too long timespan once again.

On the open source / open data front:

  • That's just incredible to see this that snappy in a browser, Dynamic hill shading in the browser
  • Open source software can be popular, over 2,500 participants for the Free CartoDB for Beginners Webinar
  • Tyler Mitchell offers a new book, Geospatial Power Tools - Open Source GDAL / OGR Command Line Utilities
  • With Google Maps API v2 going dark, Upgrading from Google v2 API? Free yourself and upgrade to OpenStreetMap
  • Getting speed, Marble Virtual Globe Graduates OSGeo Incubation
  • GRASS GIS 7 is still in development, but you can learn about it in News in GRASS GIS 7
  • Open source software update, Boundless Releases OpenGeo Suite 4.0
  • Another update, GeoTools 10.1 Released
  • Impressive what you can quickly do with open source javascript libraries, Showing GPS tracks in 3D with three.js and d3.js
  • MapBox, strong contributors to open source geospatial, hired, amongst many others, the creator of Leaflet and Sean Gillies, they also announced MapBox.js v1.4.0

On the Esri front:

  • 30TB of fresh data, Latest DigitalGlobe imagery updates span the globe
  • ArcGIS development is getting multiplatform, Introducing the ArcGIS Runtime SDK for Qt and updates, Version 10.2 of ArcGIS Runtime SDKs for iOS and OS X are now available and Announcing the ArcGIS Runtime SDK for Android v10.2 release!

On the Google front:

  • New versions of Google Earth don't happen every day, Google Earth updated to version, mostly a bugfix release
  • New features in Google Maps, including virtual trips in full 3D, From where you are to where you want to go
  • Another new tool for recording and sharing stories, Tour Builder: Tell your stories with Google Earth
  • Related to the recent international surveillance discussions, Brazil Orders Google To Hand Over Street View Data
  • An interesting story, Revisiting the UTA Flight 772 memorial in Google Earth
  • As usual, New Google Earth Imagery – November 12

In the everything-else category:

  • James is optimistic, Does Ideas4OGC Fix Problems with OGC Standards?, it seems it really helps
  • Geoff has a nice summary named James Fee on remaining relevant as a GIS professional
  • Not from Google, India gets its own Street View: Wonobo
  • While Autonomous Cars Will Save Money and Lives, before more driverless cars, we'll get more driverless trucks, Autonomous Dump Trucks Are Coming To Canada's Oil Sands and why not, UK Town To Get Driverless 'Pods' Mixing With Pedestrians
  • Also related, Driverless Cars Are Further Away Than You Think
  • What's great is that we're also getting closer to Finland's Algorithm-Driven Public Bus
  • In Canada, one of the biggest communications provider is tracking location of all users, no opt-out possible, but it won't be that simple, Is Bell's Plan to Monitor and Profile Canadians Legal?
  • In the same vein, Seattle PD Mum On Tracking By Its New Wi-Fi Mesh Network, and you can also Connect To Unsecured Bluetooth Car Systems To Monitor Traffic Flow, I did not know that even car tires have RFID tags that can be tracked
  • And we mentioned before being tracked in malls, it gets even more serious with Google Starts Tracking Retail Store Visits On Android and iOS
  • Nothing really new there for our regular readers, Police Use James-Bond-Style GPS Bullet, and in the US, Court Rules Probable-Cause Warrant Required For GPS Trackers
  • Not the first time we see a similar initiative, Oregon Extends Push To Track, Tax Drivers Per Mile, and this one titled Police Tracking License Plates Nationwide for Massive Data Base of Citizen Car Trips
  • There's the usual story on the theme of US Mini-Satellites to Track and Kill Terrorists
  • Unsurprisingly, New Job Listings Point to Continued Work on Transit Options in Apple Maps, transit is currently the big absent from Apple Maps, and what might be surprising, Apple Maps Significantly More Popular Than All Other iOS Mapping Apps, Including Google
  • VerySpatial shares an entry named The Geography of Twitter
  • Two articles on maps and marijuana; Tabulating the Underground Economy, and the DEA’s Pathetic Attempt to Map the Marijuana Trade and Unnecessary Environmental Destruction from Marijuana Cultivation in the United States
  • In case you need to know, RapidEye changes name to BlackBridge
  • Remote sensing will be more popular than ever, Government and industry to combine for 1150 satellites over next decade (including telecommunications)

In the maps category:

  • It has been popular recently, the Digital Attack Map, A Live Map of Ongoing DDoS Attacks
  • It happened to Google Maps in, Taiwan Protests Apple Maps That Show Island As Province of China
  • In the U.S.? Is there too much arsenic in the soil where you live? Metals, Minerals, Poisons and Maps
  • Also for the U.S., Two Detailed Rail Maps and an attempt at Mapping Honesty and Property Crime
  • Crime? Police relaunches its crime map
  • Let's learn a bit more, Get to Know a Projection: Lambert Conformal Conic
  • The paper edition is $400, you can get the digital version for $20, The Barrington Atlas Comes to the iPad
  • A map of the Countries most vulnerable to climate change
  • I'm not certain if we shared that link before or not, the excellent series of 40 maps that explain the world
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Londoners Were Tracked By Advertising Firm’s Trash Cans

This story happened during our holiday break earlier this month, but is still interesting to show to which extent we can be geographically tracked without our knowledge. The Slashdot story went this way: Londoners Tracked By Advertising Firm's Trash Cans.

Their summary: "Hundreds of thousands of pedestrians walking past 12 locations unknowingly had the unique MAC address of their smartphones recorded by Renew London. Data including the "movement, type, direction, and speed of unique devices" was recorded from smartphones that had their Wi-Fi on. First reported by Quartz, the data gathering appears to be a Minority Report-esque proof-of-concept project, demonstrating the possibility for targeted personal advertising. 'It provides an unparalleled insight into the past behavior of unique devices — entry/exit points, dwell times, places of work, places of interest, and affinity to other devices — and should provide a compelling reach data base for predictive analytics (likely places to eat, drink, personal habits etc.),' reads a blog post on the company's site. In tests running between 21-24 May and 2-9 June, over 4 million events were captured, with over 530,000 unique devices captured. Further testing is taking place at sites including Liverpool Street Station." (The name sounds a bit like a government project, but Renew London is actually an advertising / marketing firm.)

Quickly enough, the followup story was London Bans Recycling Bins That Track Phones.

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Batch Geonews: Google Views and 150 New 3D Cities, Future of National Mapping Agencies, Sentinel Imagery Free, and much more

A batch mode edition while on holidays. Next one will be late August since I'll be away from computers (and even without electricity!) for a few weeks.

From the open source / open data front:

  • With open source software, you can get Super Sharp 50cm Pléiades Satellite Imagery on MapBox, "Any point on Earth, everyday, with 50cm resolution. With this guide you can go from image download to rendered maps in minutes, all with open software."
  • Here's a Digital Trends article named Google Map Maker vs. OpenStreetMap: Which mapping service rules them all?
  • With Foursquare direct OpenStreetMap editing, could encourage others to provide the same direct OSM editing (via Mapperz)
  • Fiona 1.0 released, "Fiona is OGR's neat, nimble, no tears API", a Python library
  • Work continues, OpenLayers 3.0 alpha 4
  • Interesting, Why OpenGeo Has Taken on Outside Investment

From the Esri front:

  • There's New Developer Subscriptions for ArcGIS Online​
  • Esri and open source, New Esri Open Source Javascript Projects: Esri-Leaflet, Geoservices.js, Terraformer, Pushlet
  • Still competing, Esri and MapBox play well together via Arc2Earth
  • More integration with Microsoft too, Esri Maps for SharePoint 3.0 Released!

From the Google front: 

  • Google is Introducing “Views” - A new way to contribute your 360° photo spheres to Google Maps
  • Many will be happy, Google pushing out 3D Imagery at a rapid pace, with about 150 new cities with the 3D imagery
  • Not intuitive, What the imagery dates really mean in Google Earth
  • Tips on Making high-quality movies with Google Earth
  • I have one too and I agree, The SpaceNavigator remains the best way to use Google Earth

A big bunch of geospatial-related news discussed over Slashdot:

  • We mentioned a few times GPS spoofing, Students Hijack $80 Million Superyacht With GPS Spoofing
  • Autonomous, aka driverless cars, are really getting closer, Full-Size Remote Control Cars
  • For 3D printing, Fuel3D Start-Up Promises Affordable Point-and-Shoot 3D Scanner
  • And an 'undo', 3D Printing In Gel Enables Freeform Design and an Undo Function
  • Privacy again, Fifth Circuit Upholds Warrantless Cellphone Location Tracking
  • Privacy in Russia, Moscow Subway To Use Special Devices To Read Data On Passengers' Phones
  • And we told you before that RFID isn't safe, Long Range RFID Hacking Tool To Be Released At Black Hat
  • Drones in the sky? No, that's underwater drones now, DARPA Hydra: An Unmanned Sub Mothership to Deploy Drones
  • Stores too, Retail Stores Plan Elaborate Ways To Track You
  • Crowdsourcing the perception of cities via pictures, MIT's "Hot Or Not" Site For Neighborhoods Could Help Shape Cities
  • If you feel up to, DIY Satellite Tracking
  • To end with a map, A Circular New York City Subway Map To Straighten Things Out

In the everything-else category:

  • Geoff shares a summary of the UN report on The future of national mapping agencies over the next 5-10 years - this is a must read even to those not in the governmental sector
  • More free imagery, from the Sentinel satellite this time, The European Commission Plans Remote Sensing Satellites and Free Access to their Data  
  • Apple is looking to improving power management of mobile devices by remembering charging locations and usage patterns 
  • Interested in contributing to Apple Maps? Apple Filling Out its 'Ground Truth' Mapping Team with New Regional and Local Job Listings
  • For your non-geo colleagues, Get to Know a Projection: Mercator
  • Here's a 4-minutes video, DigitalGlobe takes a look at the last 50 years of the satellite industry
  • An ESA article on watching wetlands from space

In the maps category:

  • Cars, Visualizing New York’s Road Accidents With the Interactive ‘Crashmapper’
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Batch Geonews: 89% Use Google Maps, New Google Maps UI and iPad app Available, Esri UC Round Up, and much more

Here's the recent geonews in batch mode. Several interesting bits in there that may have deserved a full entry, but it's Summer time and I'm on holidays :-)

On the open source / open data front:

  • Remember Maki, the open / free cartography symbols? Maki got significantly improved and even gets an API
  • Announced, OpenGeo dives deeper into QGIS, along with the OpenGeo Suite 3.1 release
  • Jody shares his experience on OSGeo and LocationTech software foundations and their different cultures
  • Getting closer, OpenLayers 3.0.0-alpha.3
  • A success story in the Netherlands, Open standards open source projects for sharing geodata among provinces saves €4.5 million
  • A book review of 'Interactive Map designs with Leaflet JS Library How-to' by Jonathan Derrough

On the Esri front:

  • Lots of Esri news in the Round Up of Directions Magazine Esri UC Coverage 
  • A popular template, Map Tour story map template updates
  • James goes on with ArcGIS for Minecraft this time
  • Overview for Using the power of Amazon EC2 to build ArcGIS Server map caches

On the Google front:

  • Bang! 89% of websites that use mapping technologies use Google, while that may not be the exact figure, it does mean something
  • The new Google Maps interface is available to all, but you still have to opt-in, it's *really* an improvement
  • I'm amongst the happy ones, The new Google Maps app for iPhone and iPad is here
  • This goes along with the SDK version 1.4, Street View, indoor maps, and an updated map design in the Google Maps SDK for iOS
  • Jumping in, Google joins LocationTech
  • Indoor mapping everywhere, Where are we going to eat? See inside before you decide!
  • New places, On top of Mt. Fuji with the Street View Trekker and Scaling the heights of the Eiffel Tower
  • Still on a parallel track of OpenStreetMap, Growing the Google Map Maker community in Europe
  • And today, there is new imagery again

Geonews discussed over Slashdot:

  • Cheer up, Spatial Ability a Predictor of Creativity In Science
  • Another one, Disney Algorithm Builds High-Res 3D Models From Ordinary Photos
  • 3D printing for the masses, eBay Dips Toes Into 3-D Printing Market With iOS App
  • In case your weren't certain, U.S. DOJ: We Don't Need a Warrant To Track You
  • If you have a car, you can be tracked, "Smart Plates" Could Betray California Drivers' Privacy
  • And why not, ACLU Study Says Police Cameras Create Database of Our Movements
  • But some good news, Texas School District Drops Embattled RFID Student IDs; Opts For Cameras
  • Unsurprisingly, New Android Eyewear Wants To Compete With Google Glass
  • We mentioned what3words before, and now over Slashdot, Describe Any Location On Earth In 3 Words
  • What's in an Interactive Nukemap, Now In 3D

In the miscellaneous category:

  • Exposing online devices, Shodan lets you search and find the physical locations of online devices
  • On Apple, Apple Acquires Locationary to Address Location-based Big Data and Acquires HopStop for public transit  ... and according to Slate,  Apple's Maps Strategy Is Working Just Fine
  • An interesting discussion on mapping millions of dots and making great maps out of it
  • Via OR, an architecture book and design book named Operative Design: A catalogue of spatial verbs
  • OR shares a interesting quote: "We’re all carrying little networked laboratories in our pockets. You see a photo. I see millions of light-sensor readings at an exact coordinate on the earth’s surface with a time resolution down to the millisecond. The future is combining all these signals into new ways of understanding the world, like this real-time stream of atmospheric measurements."
  • BIM is there to stay? 71% of AEC professionals in annual UK survey see BIM as the future and Widespread adoption of BIM by national governments

In the maps category:

  • This was a hot topic in the U.S. recently, Mapping the Trayvon Martin murder case
  • Maps of Global Patterns of Tobacco-Related Economic Issues and another one on tobacco consumption
  • O'Reilly shares an Interactive map: bike movements in New York City and Washington, D.C.
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Batch Geonews: Debacle over OGC and the GeoServices REST API Standard, OpenLayers vs Leaflet, More Geo from Google I/O, and much more

The recent geonews in batch mode, covering a larger timespan than usual.

On the open source front:

  • The OSGeo presented an Open Letter to OGC on the GeoServices REST API standard, and it's pretty well documented and informative
  • Here's an interesting entry on comparing OpenLayers and Leaflet
  • The schedule for FOSS4G-CEE is now known
  • Sean pointed me to  Tom MacWright's online GeoJSON editor
  • In releases, there was GeoServer 2.3.2 released and GeoTools 9.2 Released
  • Getting closer to QGIS 2.0, here's nice examples of the alpha channel in QGIS color ramps
  • If you did not see the press release, OpenGeo is not non-profit anymore

On the Google front:

  • The influx of Google Glass stories continues, now Facial Recognition Comes to Google Glass
  • Here's Kurt's list of maps-related videos from the Google I/O conference

On the Esri front:

  • ABP reminds us of Esri's Severe Weather Map, including tornadoes...
  • An entry on why Esri is excited about the Android Location APIs
  • Data updates, World Topographic Map updated with content for the Middle East, North Africa, and the United States
  • along with other updates, including Additional DigitalGlobe and community imagery added to the World Imagery map
  • Also updated, ArcGIS for Windows Phone and ArcGIS API for JavaScript v3.5 Released

In the everything-else category:

  • MapBox tells us they got a huge satellite update, now cloudless and with aerial imagery, but also interesting are the OpenStreetMap updates making they way to MapBox maps in only 5 minutes
  • Here's a Make article on mapping buildings with a Kinect
  • Some of you might be interested by the GiT4NMD conference, Geo-information Technologies for Natural Disaster Management
  • Space Daily share an article named World's major development banks look closer at Earth observation
  • Here's links regarding the history of apostrophes in place names
  • Via SL, an article named China's Drone Program Appears To Be Moving Into Overdrive
  • Those interested in the exciting MapBox work may also want to read about vector tiles of MapBox Streets
  • While CAD and GIS have come closer, they remain distinct, here's an entry named Integrating geospatial into construction: the challenge
  • Geoff also shares two other interesting entries, one named Economic value of big geospatial data could reach $700 billion/yr by and the other Estimating the economic and financial impact of poor data quality

Slashdot discussed a few minor geo-related stories:

  • One involving GPS named Researchers Are Developing Ad Hoc Networks For Car-To-Car Data Exchange
  • Privacy stories goes on, UK's 4G Network Selling Subscriber Tracking Data To Police, Private Parties and this one Congress Demands Answers From Google Over Google Glass Privacy Concerns
  • Along with new challenges to locating North itself, Global Warming Shifts the Earth's Poles

In the maps category:

  • Here's The Best Geographic Visualization I’ve Seen In Ages according to VerySpatial, basically a circle centered in Asia where over half of the world's population resides
  • In Paris? Apple Maps for iOS Adds 3D Flyover Coverage in Paris
  • MapBox shares a Q&A of the City Guides by National Geographic mobile app
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Tool Reveals iPad and iPhone User Locations

Slashdot discusses a story named Tool Reveals iPad and iPhone User Locations. Not the first time this happens to major location services providers. We can expect Apple to fix this loophole.

Their summary: "A researcher has found that Apple user locations can be potentially determined by tapping into Apple Maps and he has created a Python tool to make the process easier. iSniff GPS accesses Apple's database of wireless access points, which is collected by iPhones and iPads that have GPS and Wi-Fi location services enabled. Apple uses this crowd-sourced data to run its location services; however, the location database is not meant to be public. You can download the tool via Giuthub."

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Batch Geonews: Google Earth 7.1 Released, OpenSnowMap, OpenPOIs, MapBox.js 1.0, and much more

Here's the recent geonews in batch mode.

On the open source front:

  • Both Leaflet and MapBox are current hot topics, today you get both in the same announcement: Announcing MapBox.js 1.0 with Leaflet
  • With open data, there's no limit to new services... here's OpenSnowMap, leveraging OpenStreetMap and MODIS snow cover data (via OGD)
  • GeoTools 9.1 has been released
  • And GeoServer 2.3.1 too
  • Here's the open source OSCAR-js javascript map API, which "extends OpenLayers and uses popular UI libraries (jQuery UI and YUI)"
  • The FOSS4G CEE conference completed their Keynote Speakers lineup

On the Google front:

  • The GEB informs us that Google Earth 7.1 has been released, with enhancements mostly for the Google Earth Pro 7.1 version
  • Google is Celebrating the 50th country on Street View, with Hungary and Lesotho being the latest additions, with expansions in Poland and Romania
  • For those interested, The Boston Marathon Manhunt in Google Earth
  • If you prefer Ice Hockey, here's The world of Hockey in Google Earth
  • Canadian Public Alerts are now included in Google Now, Google Search and Google Maps

In the everything-else category:

  • Here's the U.S. New Strategy for Earth Observations, directly from the White House: "The new Strategy outlines a process for evaluating and prioritizing Earth-observation investments according to their value to society in critical areas such as agriculture, global change, disasters, water resources, and weather."
  • The Spatial Law blog offers a summary on Privacy of geolocation: the new European and American law
  • Indications that Facebook and Google Would Like Apple to Feature Them More Prominently on iOS
  • An interesting entry on crisis cartography
  • Discussed over Slashdot, Should California Have Banned Checking Smartphone Maps While Driving?
  • Also discussed by the same site, Why Local Is So Damn Hard For Startups: Foursquare Borrows $41M To Try Again
  • On standards, interesting read the consequences of the GeoJSON 1.0 axis order policy (via James)
  • Also on standards, in this OGC blog entry, you'll learn about the efforts related OGC OpenPOIs Registry: "A database of points of interest information containing names and point locations for millions of businesses and civic places across the globe"
  • The GEB tells us about the new Geo3D Market website, a place to buy and sell 3D models
  • APB informs us that Microsoft Updates Maps App in Windows 8
  • From the same source, a definition of geoblocking: "Geoblocking is the system used to limit your access to the internet, based on your geographic location."

In the maps category:

  • APB links to a Greenpeace Map of the Arctic, nicely wrapped I must admit
  • In Vietnam, you may get a 2,400$ fine for National Map violations
  • A New chart shows the entire topography of the Antarctic seafloor in detail for the first time
  • Via APB, an article named Can quality of life be mapped?
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Mobile Location Data Privacy Study

A recent article on the BBC website outlines a study undertaken at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and the Catholic University of Louvain which established that individuals can be uniquely identified by just four points of mobile phone location data. The study makes interesting reading regarding the collection of "Big Data" and personal privacy.

The full report from the study can be found here.



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Have a Wi-Fi-Enabled Phone? Stores Are Tracking You

That's the name of a story discussed over Slashdot Have a Wi-Fi-Enabled Phone? Stores Are Tracking You. This topic has been covered quite a few times, last occurrence was 5 days ago.

Their summary: "Call it Google Analytics for physical storefronts: if you've got a phone with wi-fi, stores can detect your MAC address and track your comings and goings, determining which aisles you go to and whether you're a repeat customer. The creator of one of the most popular tracking software packages says that the addresses are hashed and not personally identifiable, but it might make you think twice about leaving your phone on when you head to the mall."

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Batch Geonews: Shapefiles in Bing Maps, 80% of Data is Not Spatial?, In-Location Alliance, ArcGIS for AutoCAD 300, and much more

This is my tentative to catch up the geonews since my mid-August holidays. Here they are!

On the open source / open data front:

  • UDig 1.3.2 has been released with several new features and supports Axios spatial editing tools again
  • Since the USGS provides the Landsat archive, but this entry mentions that a substantial part of the Landsat archive is available on the fast and reliable public Google Earth Engine cloud storage

On the Esri front:

  • The free plugin ArcGIS for AutoCAD version 300 is now available
  • There's now an ArcGIS Runtime for iOS for ArcGIS WebMaps

On the Google front:

  • Google made a few Google Maps announcements, including voice guided directions in India, Map Maker in New Zealand and new Street View in 150 university campuses
  • In another entry, Google offers a roundup of their August Google Maps related news, most news we already shared with our users
  • Nothing surprising, new imagery released on September 1

On the Microsoft front:

  • Microsoft shares an entry on overlaying Esri shapefiles in BIng Maps
  • Microsoft's Global Ortho Project is complete for the United States, meaning there's high resolution 30cm imagery everywhere in the country
  • There's a new Bing Get Me There App for iOS for London, UK
  • An entry on Bing Maps V7 AJAX Highlights

In the everything else category:

  • James shares a must-read short entry named '80% of Data Is Not Spatial So Stop Claiming It Is', read the comments for insights
  • Here's a pertinent entry related to a UN paper, Criticism - Future Trends in Geospatial Information Management: The Five to Ten Year Vision
  • Here's an update on the OGC standards and the semantic web (aka Linked Data)
  • APB informs us that 22 companies formed the In-Location Alliance to Enhance Indoor Positioning
  • O'Reilly links to an article on Yelp Checkins to Measure Geopositioning Accuracy Across Phones
  • Slashdot discuss the Location Privacy Act Approved By California Legislature
  • Other stories at Slashdot, The Rapid Rise of License Plate Readers and UK License Plate Cameras Have "Gaps In Coverage"
  • Big numbers, APB indicates that the GIS market will soon reach between 3.7 - 10.6 Billions, depending on who you ask

In the maps category:

  • On APoD, there's a pretty interesting map of hurricane and tropical storms paths (screenshot below)
  • An interesting map of the Global Decline in Religiosity
  • Some London Olympics maps: The politics of London Olympic medal counts

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