Articles by Dr. Derek Paulsen

  1. TV GPS helps provide location indoors

    Apparently TV isn't the soul sucking waste of time that my mother always told me it was. Redwood City, CA based Rosum Corporation has developed a TV-GPS chip that triangulates TV signals to provide location information indoors and is working with Trimble to bring it to the consumer. While this isn't in any way "new" news, it is the first time that I have seen or heard about it. Popular Science has a good overview article about the technology. If this works as stated and can be produced cheaply and in a small enough package, this seems like a great …

  2. U.S. has no idea where it is on a map

    The results of the annual National Geographic Society survey of geo-literacy are in and we are once get a country that is largely "geo-illiterate". The results indicate that despite fighting a war in Iraq for several years, 63% of 18-24 year olds can't locate Iraq on a map. Other major news also failed to have an impact on our geographical knowledge as 3/4 of all respondents couldn't locate Indonesia (Tsunami) on a world map and that 1/3 couldn't find Louisiana and 48% couldn't locate Mississippi on a map. For more depressing news about our country read the article …

  3. Tracking ships at Sea

    Although I live in a very landlocked area of the U.S. I am fascinated by the ocean and sailing upon it. Now my fascination has a new place to manifest itself in the form of Sailwf.info. This site provides a live tracking map of ships locations around the world, powered by the World Meterological Organization's Voluntary Observing Ship service. The site allows users to select different areas of the world as well as different classes of ships (Tall Ships, Cruise Ships, Research Vessels, etc ..) for viewing. In addition, users can query for specific ships as well and chart …

  4. Mapping the Marvel Comic World

    For those of you who spent too much time reading comics in their youth, or still do, there is a new map project being undertaken to map all of the Marvel Comic world. Entitled the Marvel Atlas Project (MAP), the project is the work of Sean Kleefeld and it currently encompasses quite a few maps from around the world of Marvel Comics. While the navigation is a little clunky at times (you can't click on the maps to view other maps) it is nonetheless an interesting site. In addition to maps there is a lot of interesting information relating to …

  5. Putting Maps on an iPod: a review of different products

    Amazingly, despite my gadget freak nature I had largely avoided getting an iPod until very recently. However, a few short weeeks ago my family (thanks again) gave me a new 5G 60 gig do everything you ever wanted and more iPod. While I spent a week or so playing with the music and putting video on it (Get Eye TV 2 if you don't have it already), I finally got around to trying to put USEFUL maps on my iPod. As with everything, there are various different alternatives, some good, some not, some free, some not. Read more after the …

  6. Stalking goes spatial with Gawker Stalker maps

    While Gawker has been providing celebrity sighting information for years in their "Stalker" section, they have recently started using Google maps to provide mapped locations of the celebrity sightings. Interestingly, once they put them in map format, everyone decided to freak out. Notably celebrity manager Ken Sunshine has said "It invites weirdos, if not dangerous weirdos, to physically come in contact with anybody they choose to expose on this site". While, I agree that people are a little celebrity obsessed, the information is hardly stalking as it is presented and not worthy of all the negative publicity it has been …

  7. Look up and smile, better satellite imagery is coming soon

    While we are still years away from live tracking by satellite in applications like Google Earth, Wired magazine has an article about how several companies are busy launching new satellites to improve both resolution and image refresh. In particular, the article discusses the plans of companies like GeoEye and DigitalGlobe are launching new satellites that will allow for users to view objects as small as 1.3 feet across and to capture more imagery more often. All of these new features will provide enhanced imagery that will help allay some of the complaints about old and blurry imagery currently used …

  8. Crime comes to the AAG: Day 3 of AAG

    My third and final installment about AAG 2006 concerns mostly my own selfish interests in the mapping of crime. Although we didn't do much advertising of the presentations and the times were bad (Friday 8:00 and 10:00 a.m.) in a converted guest room in the middle of a labyrinth maze, the audience was solid. Moreover so were the presentations and the discussion. More after the jump.

    As a researcher who focuses almost exclusively on the spatial aspects of crime in all of its many facets, our small, by comparison, presentations on Friday were important for a couple …

  9. Google Earth and spatial mis-perception: Day 2 of AAG

    Although it is actually several days since day 2 of my AAG experience, I am only now getting around to blogging about the days events. While day 2 involved some of the same problems as Day 1, namely over crowded rooms and too many good presentations at the same time slot, there was one presentation which was quite notable involving Google Earth and its impact on spatial perceptions. More after the jump.

    The best presentation of Day 2 for me was in session 3514 "Geography v2.0: Internet-based Virtual Globes". The session dealt completely with new internet based products from …

  10. Geoblogging, Walgreeens, and Sprawl. Day 1 of AAG

    Well it was an interesting first day at the AAG conference for me, starting with being part of a panel on Blogging organized by Jesse and Susan of Very Spatial and including seeing some good presentations on spatial analysis and Sprawl. As with any academic conference, much of the best stuff occurs in informal meetings with other attendees, in my case a discussion with a Walgreens Executive about how spatial analysis and modeling is used to determine store locations. Read more about each after the jump.

    The day began with a panel on Blogging by geography types that was organized …

  11. Going to the AAG Conference

    Starting tomorrow I will be attending the Association of American Geographers conference in Chicago, making and attending presentations and generally getting my fill of all things spatial. Of note will be the panel I am participating on led by the folks at Very Spatial dealing with blogging about spatial issues. Look for a podcast of the panel sometime this week. I hope to post some articles concerning interesting presentations, books, etc... from the conference, but if it is too busy the posting may go down.

  12. NY Times Overview of GPS

    It is always interesting to me to see when mainstream media decides to discover a trend that has been around for a while. Today, the trend is the growth and improvement in GPS units and the mainstream outlet is the NY Times. The article is basically an informative piece about how to choose a GPS unit and what features to look for. Overall it is nothing ground breaking, but it is still an interesting piece especially if you are a novice in the ways of GPS and the changes in the market as of late.

  13. Mac GIS software review, Part 1

    With the announcement today by Apple of the new Mac Mini and hifi stereo I thought it would be a fitting time to review the current state of GIS on Macs. As anyone who is familiar with GIS knows, the Mac has been virtually ignored by the GIS community in terms of software options. However, there are a few options that serve different markets and have different price points and thus a review was born. Read more after the jump.

    As some one who teaches GIS at the University level and is an avowed Mac user, GIS has been the …

  14. Patent may threaten Google Maps and others

    According to Very Spatial and other sources, a patent issued February 14th to Neil Balthaser, a former Macromedia Executive, may cause problems for Google Maps and other sites that use dynamic movement. Apparently, the patent covers rich media such as Ajax, Flash, and Java, and could impact any web site that use dynamic movement, including video and animation.In particular the patent could spell problems for all of the major web mapping sites although it is unclear if the patent will stand up to legal challenge. Importantly, Very Spatial mentions that one of the options for the patent holder may …

  15. Donuts + GPS = Spatial Goodness

    IN what could be the beginning of a great new set of partnerships in the GPS world, Tom Tom has partnered with Dunkin Donuts to place each and every one of the companies 4,400 store locations on Tom Tom maps. Moreover, supposedly the deal calls for them to add all 2,700 Baskin Robbins locations as well in the future in case your sweet tooth is more ice cream then custard and dough. Of course those of us who are bigger fans of Krispy Kreme dounts and Graeters Ice Cream we are hoping that Garmin will partner with …

  16. Soprano Highlight Map

    In order to help viewers of HBO's Sopranos remember what happened in the story when it last aired nearly 2 years ago, HBO is teaming up with Google Maps and Deep Focus, an online marketing company, to show images and video footage from the last season. Using satellite images from Google, the map displays 15 icons that represent the locations where important points in last seasons storyline took place. When a user clicks on the icon the scene plays in a pop up window which also provides a description and list of characters. Apparently Google is allowing the use of …

  17. Historical Satelite/Aerial photos available

    GlobeXplorer, a major provider of satellite and aerial photo data, has just introduced a new feature to its ImageAtlas aerial/satellite map viewer that allows users to instantly pick, compare, and purchase images from multiple dates. In particular users will be able to use a pull down menu to select from all the different images available from GlobeXplorer. While the range of images available will vary greatly by the location, in some major metropolitan areas the images will go back 15 years or more. Although Google and others have gotten a lot of the press it is good to see …

  18. Cellphone Camera + GPS = Georeferenced pictures

    Engadget Mobile is reporting that the new HP iPaq hw6900 series has a feature that is quite unique, but quite useful for many. Specifically, they are reporting that when the user takes a picture with the built in camera (1.3 mega pixel I think) that the hw6900 will automatically stamp the photo with the coordinates from the built in GPS unit. While I have seen specialized professional software that allows GPS coordinates to be attached to digital pictures this is the first consumer application I have seen. Although some might think this feature is gadget conversion gone awry I …

  19. Battle of the GPS all-stars

    It appears that there is a big fight brewing in the GPS business as Garmin is suing Tom Tom over the use of several patents. Specifically, Garmin filed two suits against Tom Tom stating that they have infringed on 5 Garmin patents used to make using their GPS systems easier to use. The patents cover a range of functions including the removal of unimportant streets from the view to make it easier to view the car on the map. Not a whole lot more information has been published about the lawsuit as of yet, but expect to see more as …

  20. Teleatlas to offer 3-D maps of select cities by the end of 2006

    According to a report on My TomTom Go, Teleatlas is working on providing 3-D maps of select cities in Europe and America by the end of 2006. In order to create these maps Teleatlas has been using 6 cameras on their map-data-capturing moblihomes as well as measuring the height of buildings with a gyroscope. While it is undecided what GPS units will be the first to to employ the 3-D maps, or which cities will be the first to be available, it is likely it will be dedicated GPS units. Because of the power needed to render the maps it …

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