General News

CartoMobile available on the App Store

ClueTrust is pleased to announce that Cartographica® Mobile (CartoMobile™) is now available on the App Store. CartoMobile is our GIS for the iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch. Use CartoMobile to view, edit, and create location-based information in the field without having to carry around specialized equipment. Store and access local data, or use CartoMobile with your existing Spatial Data Infrastructure. Dock with your computer and load the files directly into your desktop GIS.

GIS Education in Middle and High Schools

I stumbled acros an interesting article today about the expansion of GIS education into Middle and High Schools. The article in the Gainsville Times describes the process of training teachers and ways to discover new applications of GIS. Exposing kids to GIS seems to be the next step in the evolution of GIS as a commonly used technology. As of now it seems that GIS has remained useful only to professionals who gained training while in college. The early exposure will get more kids, and hopefully parents, interested in discovering the world through science and technology. As technology continues to invade Middle and High schools I suspect that we will see more GIS in the future. I think all people have a natural interests in maps, and it seems like a great way to get kids involved and interested in school.

U.S. Department of Agriculture: Mapping Farm and Food Production

I read an interesting article this morning about the U.S. Department of Agriculture's new study on food production on the East Coast. According to the USDA website, the Agricultural Research Service is conducting a large scale evaluation that includes researchers from "Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Tufts University, Iowa State University, Cornell University, and Pennsylvania State University. Two other USDA agencies—the Economic Research Service (ERS) and the Agricultural Marketing Service—are also contributing to the study."

Hearing on the Future of Federal Management of Geospatial Data

Yesterday (July 23) the House of Representatives Committee on Natural Resources held a hearing about the future of federal geospatial data management. The purpose of the meeting was to cover various issues related to geospatial data, and to talk about the need to promote better geospatial data management and a national geospatial data infrastructure. The hearing was published on the House Committee on Natural Resources website for public viewing. The hearing included a panel of mapping professionals that were at the hearing to testify about the value of geospatial data and the importance of creating a national database of federal data. This panel also testified about the current state of federal geospatial data management, and the progress that has been made toward a national geospatial database. Below is a review of the hearing with a few comments about the issues mentioned.

A Bit of Apple News...

I have a couple of things to write about this morning regarding Apple products and news...There has been a lot of talk around the internet about what is going on with the new iPhone and its battery problems. I have a few updates on that and a few comments about another iPhone 3G problem that has occurred with the new 3.0 update. Additionally, there was an interesting article this morning that mentions Apples place in China's roll out of a new internet filtering software that is designed to limit access to pornography and to sensitive political websites.

iPhone 3G S Problems?

There have been reports circling the internet that the new iPhone 3G S is experiencing problems with the battery overheating. Wired.com is reporting that in some white iPhones 3G S's there are reports that the overheating is causing discoloration. The same article also hinted at older iPhone 3Gs experiencing similar problems after upgrading to the new 3.0 OS. The article also pointed out that the overheating was occurring while the users were playing games or running other applications. At this point it is unclear if all iPhone are affected, if certain apps are causing problems, or if the cases that have been reported so far represent only a small portion of the several million iPhones that have recently been purchased or upgraded. According to PC Worldthe overheating problems are apparently not just affecting the back of the phone where the iPhone's battery is located, but the glass front is reported to be getting hot on some phones as well. I know several people that have purchased the new iPhone or have upgraded to v3.0 OS (including myself), and have had no problems with overheating. Stay tuned for more updates about the phone overheating, and please add your stories if you have experienced problems.

Apple 8GB iPhone 3G Refund

I had a recent experience involving the 8GB iPhone 3G that I thought really shows why Apple is such an amazing company. Let me explain. We all know this week that Apple announced the newest version of its iPhone would be hitting stores by June 17th, which will include the newest version of the Mac OS 3.0, and a number of other new features that will greatly improve the iPhone. Well, me being an Apple advocate to my friends and family, I continually support their purchasing of any Apple products from computers, to cell phones, to programs like Cartographica.

Apple World Wide Developer Conference

Today is the first day of the Apple World Wide Developer Conference (WWDC) in San Francisco, which should be very exciting for any Mac user. Each year a number of new products are presented at the conference, and this year should be no different. There has already been a lot of buzz about the new iPhone software that is due out very soon, and the conference should be a place to highlight the new software's capability. According to Mitch Wagner of Information Week Apple is expected to present the newest version of the iPhone, which is expected to have a number of new advantages including a faster processor, more memory, and additional features that range from a new built in compass to new video recording capability.

The Tenth Crime Mapping Research Conference

For the past decade the National Institute of Justice has held the Crime Mapping Research Conference which focuses on advocating for policy decisions, and solutions to problems, to be guided by GIS related research. The importance of the conference stems from the fact that crime is a phenomenon that can be understood spatially, and as technology improves, so does the quality of the research that is produced. The Tenth Crime Mapping Research Conference gives the growing community of researchers and practitioners a place to present, debate, and communicate about ongoing research.

Apple sees maps everywhere in iLife 09

Just in case we were wondering how much mapping is making it into the mainstream, check out the new features in Apple's iLife '09 products.

For starters, they've added support for manual geocoding (type a place name and drag a pin around on a map) and maps for navigation of photo data. This is all encapsulated in a new feature they refer to as "places". And, the support has been extended from the photo management side to photo book production, providing nearly effortless map addition to a photo book. Pretty neat.

On the video side, Apple's iMovie has map templates that will create an animated fly-to effect from the departure point to the arrival point. It looks like there might be some other related features in there, but we won't really know that until it's available later this month.

Nothing earth-shattering in terms of capability, but in terms of ease-of-use and accessibility it's a pretty amazing step.

Google Earth Plus no longer available

Google has quietly announced that Google Earth Plus is no longer available. Previously, this version of Google Earth contained the ability to speak with GPS devices (although it was never very flexible about talking to a wide variety of them). According to the blog entry, they'll be offering that feature in the free version of the software "in the near future." In the mean time, Google Earth Plus customers can get an extended (2 month instead of 7 days) evaluation license for Google Earth Pro, which has the ability to import GIS data.

Macintosh GIS Survey

If you are interested in GIS for the Macintosh, we have some exciting news for you. ClueTrust, makers of LoadMyTracks, and owners of this site, are preparing for the first preview release of their GIS software for the Macintosh. In preparation, we've put together a survey that we'd like you to take in order to help us hone the message and features. If you get all the way through it and leave your name and email, we'll provide you with an online coupon for a discount on the final release (expected some time in the spring). Thanks in advance!

Don't forget about GIS Day 2008

GIS Day 2008 is coming, November 19! Mark it on your calendar and make sure you come back here for a special announcement from ClueTrust. The GIS Day web site allows you to search for events near you, and provides historical context for the celebration, which is always held on the wednesday in the middle of Geography Awareness Week (sponsored by the National Geographic Society).