A must read for all GIS professionals! A short quote to get you hooked:
“She [Gladys West] rose through the ranks, worked on the satellite geodesy, and contributed to the accuracy of GPS and the measurement of satellite data. As Gladys West started her career as a mathematician at Dahlgren in 1956, she likely had no idea that her work would impact the world for decades to come.”
Despite the ubiquity of GPS and her role in developing it, West still prefers to use a paper map when she travels. For someone accustomed to trusting their own calculations, some old habits never die.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has released the third edition of a report, ‘Climate Change Indicators in the United States.’ The report presents observed data on key measures of our environment, including U.S. and global temperature and precipitation, ocean heat and ocean acidity, sea level, length of growing season, and many others. With 30 indicators that include over 80 maps and graphs showing long-term trends, the report demonstrates that climate change is already affecting our environment and our society.
The third edition of the Indicators report adds additional years of data and four new indicators: Lyme disease, heating and cooling degree days, wildfires, and water level and temperature in the Great Lakes. In addition, the report adds four new features that connect observed data records to local communities and areas of interest, including cherry blossom bloom dates in Washington D.C., timing of ice breakup in two Alaskan rivers, temperature and drought in the Southwest, and land loss along the mid-Atlantic coast.
EPA compiles decades of observed data in cooperation with a range of federal government agencies, nongovernmental organizations, universities, and other institutions. The Indicators report focuses on long-term trends for key measures of our environment for which high-quality data exist. Each indicator and the report itself were peer-reviewed by independent experts, and extensive technical documentation accompanies the report.
To order a FREE copy of the report, send a request with your mailing address included to firstname.lastname@example.org
To find more information about the Climate Change Indicators report, or to download a PDF copy, visit http://www.epa.gov/climatechange/indicators.html
Check out this article in Computer World about how GIS can help with employment in a broad variety of fields/disciplines.
An article was just published in .NET magazine:
"Even free alternatives to Google's mapping API provide significant advantages. Wm Leler expands your mapping horizons by helping you pick the APIs that are right for your application"
By Jane Lindholm, Produced by Ric Cengeri
There was a time when geography was memorizing chief crops, major bodies of water and picking out countries on a map. Knowing that cloves came from places like Zanzibar and Madagascar or locating the Caspian Sea seemed all there was to this study. Not today.
Anne Knowles, a geography professor atMiddlebury College, is using geographic information systems (GIS) to learn more about the Civil War and the Holocaust. St. Michael’s College professor Richard Kujawa is looking at the public benefit of conservation easements and the complex relationships that tie places together. We look at geography in the 21stcentury with both of them.
Plus, Vermont will get a new Supreme Court justice in the coming year as Denise Johnson steps down. Vermont Law School Professor Cheryl Hanna explains the process and the pressure on judges throughout Vermont's court system.And we hear a recitation from Vermont’s reigning Poetry Out Loud champion Claude Mumbere of Burlington High School. The competition is a national project supported by the Poetry Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts. Claude recently represented the state at the national competition in Washington D.C.
Click here to listen to the podcast.
Summary: Directions Magazine surveyed selected state and local government geospatial technology officials to get their input on the current outlook for jobs. Some states are cutting budgets and we wanted to see how this has impacted hiring or expansion in GIS departments.
Click here to read the full article.
Interior Announces Satellite Imagery of Earth Accessible to Public on "ChangeMatters" Website
WASHINGTON, D.C. - Today Deputy Secretary of the Interior David J. Hayes announced that a new geospatial website, "ChangeMatters," has made the Department of the Interior's satellite imagery of the world more easily accessible to the public.
Developed by Esri, the site allows users to view the Global Land Survey(GLS) Landsat data developed by Interior's U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) and NASA, which spans a time period from 1975 to 2005. By viewing GLS satellite imagery throughout the world, anyone can monitor and map change between epochs resulting from events such as forest harvesting, urban growth, wildfires, floods, pest outbreaks, and drought. "Landsat satellite imagery is one of the most valuable resources for Earth observation," stated Deputy Secretary Hayes. "Esri's website achieves the kind of thing we had hoped to see happen by making USGS's Landsat dataset available to the public. The website will enable people and scientists around the world to more quickly and easily see how landscapes have changed over the years. Nearly four decades of continuously acquired data provide a remarkable window to our planet."
"The site brings the ability to monitor landscape change to internet users worldwide," said Esri President Jack Dangermond. "We are excited to showcase this valuable government resource, using Esri's image-service technology, which allows rapid delivery of imagery over the web through dynamic mosaicing and the on-the-fly processing of a large number of images."
The website leverages the 40-year U.S. government investment in the collection and archiving of continuous worldwide Landsat imagery for earth observation. USGS began providing Landsat imagery to the public for free two years ago. At 30- meter spatial resolution, Landsat imagery is useful for mapping regional trends in agriculture, climate change, wildlife habitat, forestry, regional planning, coastal zones, and national security, providing hundreds of millions of dollars in estimated value to the U.S. economy per year. Each Landsat satellite image "sees" more than humans can by collecting data in the infrared, as well as the visible (natural color) portions of the electromagnetic spectrum.
The website permits users to roam the Earth, choose the decade they want to view, and pick from different combinations of Landsat bands, each highlighting a different application. For example, pest outbreaks can be monitored using the "Healthy Vegetation" band combination, and water flooding can be viewed using the "Land/Water" combination.
The site also includes a change-detection tool that users can employ to view and map landscape change by decade. Several examples and tutorials are included in the site--such as wildfire damage in Grand Canyon National Park, bark beetle mortality in the Rocky Mountains, deforestation in Haiti, conversion from forests to agriculture in Paraguay, wetland loss in the Mississippi River delta, and the decline of water level in Lake Mead.
"This announcement complements Interior's Open Government Plan to incorporate transparency, collaboration and participation into the mission for an open and accountable government," said Assistant Secretary of Water and Science Anne Castle. "We are very pleased that this Landsat data can be the platform for new innovative products that provide great value to many end users and are publicly available."
In March 2011, Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar announced plans to make the USGS the permanent manager of the Landsat series of Earth observation satellites, a recommendation endorsed by both the Obama and Bush Administrations. Landsat has become vital to the Nation's agricultural, water management, disaster response, and national security sectors, providing an estimated $935 million in value to the U.S. economy per year. Working closely with NASA to procure and build future satellites, a USGS-led program will best ensure the continued collection and maintenance of this important scientific resource.
To find out more about USGS's Landsat program, please visit:
The ChangeMatters website is available here: www.esri.com/landsat