fredag den 31. juli 2009

Virtual Geographic Environments


Virtual geographic environments are essential to using GIS in design. For example, before a design for a city or landscape can be produced, an environment must be created through GIS. This is then fashioned into a form where users have access to it, first to enhance their understanding through exploration, and then to enable them to change various components in the effort to solve problems that can realize better designs. Only now, through the development of virtual city models and through new ways of enabling users to interact with geographic information using new screen technologies, is the point being approached where design is possible.

Virtual Geographic Environments, edited by Hui Lin and Michael Batty, collects key papers that define the current momentum in GIS and "virtual geographies." In some sense, such environments are the natural consequence of linking GIS to other technologies that deal with information, design, and service provision, and this will undoubtedly grow as it becomes ever easier to integrate diverse software and data across the Web.

The idea that geographic information can be both collected and made available through Web-based services, using Web 2.0 technologies that network many millions of people together, has formed a major research thrust in software development over the last decade.

The numerous contributions by leading members of the geospatial community to Virtual Geographic Environments illustrate the cutting edge of GIScience, as well as new applications of GIS with the processing and delivery of geographic information through the Web and handheld devices, forming two major directions to these developments. But the notion that these Web-based systems can be used to collect information of a voluntary kind through methods of crowd sourcing is also an exciting and widely unanticipated development that is driving the field. As these services gain ground, new business models are being invented that merge proprietary and nonproprietary systems and novel ways of integrating diverse software through many different processes of software development from map hacks to open system architectures.

Virtual Geographic Environments is published by Science Press, China (, 350 pages, hardcover. For more information, contact the responsible editors Peng Shengchao and Guan Yan, Science Press (e-mail:

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GIS to Understand Dance, and Vice Versa

GIS og dans ... ikke umiddelbart set før ... Hvad med Vild med GIS de næste 12 fredage?

GIS and dance ... not seen before ... Prepare your self for 12 new episodes of So You Think You Can GIS ...



  • Geographers used ArcGIS to summarize and investigate spatial patterns of dancers.
  • ArcGIS Spatial Analyst was used to generate density surfaces for each dancer.
  • ArcGIS 3D Analyst showed final density surface as a topographic landscape.
photo; click to enlarge
The entire dance involved 17 dancers, and about 16 minutes of activity was recorded. The minute detail of the records, down to centimeter precision and temporal increments of 40 ms, resulted in a dataset of around half a million points. (Video still from One Flat Thing, reproduced by Willian Forsythe.)

When choreographer William Forsythe invited scientists from across all disciplines to investigate dance and choreography using their disciplinary lenses, it was not obvious that geography and spatial analysis could provide new insights. One of the goals was to make dance more accessible so that anyone, within a matter of seconds, would "get it," and also to explore the possibilities for placing dance at the center of cross-disciplinary dialog and research. After exploring the spatiotemporal data that was generated from tracking each dancer with centimeter and millisecond (ms) precision, a group of geographers saw some familiar and some unfamiliar spatial patterns emerge. Now their findings and visual explanations and those of other researchers at The Ohio State University (OSU) are presented in a new Web project, Synchronous Objects for One Flat Thing, reproduced(, which Forsythe developed in collaboration with Ohio State's Department of Dance and Advanced Computing Center for the Arts and Design.

Forsythe's bold, contemporary works have revolutionized classical ballet for our time, and he is widely viewed as the greatest innovator in this field since George Balanchine. With the formation of the Forsythe Company, based in Germany, he continues to actively explore his multidisciplinary interests in new forms and new modes of presenting his work. His installations constitute progressive additions to his extensive oeuvre: installations for galleries and public spaces, video works, digital media, and publications. The Synchronous Objects project is part of his idea to allow the transformation of choreographic principles from one manifestation—a performance on the stage—to an array of other possibilities, including digital information, animation, and installations.

click to enlarge
One dancer's point data together with outlines of the tables on the dance floor and a density surface generated with Spatial Analyst from all those points.

Researchers at Ohio State wanted to explore structures in the dance that were not apparent from watching the dance or might not even be known by the dancers and choreographer themselves. Starting with Forsythe's ensemble dance One Flat Thing, reproduced as the research resource, a diverse team of collaborators from OSU's Computer Science, Dance, Design, Philosophy, Geography, Statistics, and Architecture departments and schools sought to understand the complex structures of interaction in the dance through an array of creative tools, expressive animations, and information graphics. Among these, a team of geographers used ArcGIS software (through its ESRI university site license) to summarize and investigate the spatial patterns of dancers throughout the dance. The spatiotemporal data consisted of point records of each dancer's location in three dimensions as well as a time stamp for each record. The entire dance involved 17 dancers, and about 16 minutes of activity was recorded. The minute detail of the records, down to centimeter precision and temporal increments of 40 milliseconds, resulted in a dataset of around half a million points.

The entire point dataset is shown with outlines of the tables on the dance floor. Each color represents a different dancer, and their locations were recorded at 40 ms intervals.

The recorded positions of the dancers left a trace of points wherever they moved. To explore potential spatial patterns, the researchers used ArcGIS Spatial Analyst and generated density surfaces for each dancer. Density surfaces are created by superimposing a raster dataset onto the stage, essentially dividing the stage into many small areas represented by pixels, and counting how many points there are within each pixel or within a particular distance from each pixel. A graded color scheme was then added to represent the number of points counted in each area, and the variation in color across the stage informed the researchers about when and where dancers had moved.

By generating a series of density surfaces with 10-second increments, it was possible to create an animation of how the dance evolved through time, and patterns started to emerge as certain areas were used more than others by the dancers. Halfway through the dance, hot spots, or places that were most used by the dancers, showed up as intense, brown-red areas, and places with little activity remained in green shades. The most obvious pattern that emerged from watching the density surface was that most of the activity happened in the center of the stage, but researchers could also observe how the tables that were part of the stage set seemed to act as a structuring element in this dance. Many of the hot spots were located around the back side of the tables.

click to enlarge
A topgraphic rendering of the density surface summarizing all 17 dancers' activity (top layer), and individual dancer density surfaces also rendered as 3D topographies of different colors (underlying stack of layers).

To further enrich the visual experience, researchers used the ArcGIS 3D Analyst extension to turn the final density surface into a topographic landscape where the number of points was used as elevation values, creating a dance landscape of mountains, peaks, and valleys. In this representation, sometimes referred to as a statistical surface, the hot spots are depicted as mountaintops or ridges, and the deep valleys and flatlands represent little or no dancer activity. Separate surfaces for each dancer were visualized using this technique through which differences in individual dancer patterns could be explored. These helped highlight distinct patterns where some dancers were very active across the entire dance floor, while others spent most of their time in only a few areas. Most of the animations were created directly in ArcGIS 3D Analyst and exported to movie files for use on the Web site. The Web site and associated blog will also be used as a continually evolving area for communicating and discussing new findings, thoughts, and uses of these objects as tools for communication, discovery, and teaching. [...]

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Eye-Fi Explore Wi-Fi Wireless 2 GB SD Flash Memory Card EYE-FI-2EX

En kollega fortalte om dette kort for et års tid siden ... nu er det altså i handlen for $81,57 ... 2Gb til den pris så er det jo godt at det kan 'tømmes' løbende ...

A colleague of mine told me about this about a year ago ... and now you can get one for $81.57 ... 2Gb at that price ... You sure need to get rid of data while on the run ...


by Chad

[...] So, with this card, if you are near your home network.. or any open network, you can wirelessly transfer your images to your home computer as you take them. [...]

Using its built-in Wi-Fi, the Eye-Fi Card locates any surrounding Wi-Fi networks as you take pictures. Then, the Eye-Fi Service translates that data into geographic location and adds the information to each picture.

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Beautiful Data - The Stories Behind Elegant Data Solutions

Jeg savner en bog: 'Beautiful GIS - The Stories Behind Elegant GIS Solutions' ...

I miss this book: 'Beautiful GIS - The Stories Behind Elegant GIS Solutions' ...


Beautiful Data

With this insightful book, you'll learn from the best data practitioners in the field just how wide-ranging -- and beautiful -- working with data can be. Join 39 contributors as they explain how they developed simple and elegant solutions on projects ranging from the Mars lander to a Radiohead video.

In this insightful book, you'll learn from the best data practitioners in the field just how wide-ranging -- and beautiful -- working with data can be. Join 39 contributors as they explain how they developed simple and elegant solutions on projects ranging from the Mars lander to a Radiohead video.

With Beautiful Data, you will:
  • Explore the opportunities and challenges involved in working with the vast number of datasets made available by the Web
  • Learn how to visualize trends in urban crime, using maps and data mashups
  • Discover the challenges of designing a data processing system that works within the constraints of space travel
  • Learn how crowdsourcing and transparency have combined to advance the state of drug research
  • Understand how new data can automatically trigger alerts when it matches or overlaps pre-existing data
  • Learn about the massive infrastructure required to create, capture, and process DNA data


3D Perspective in the Maps API for Flash!

Må vi få nogle flere parallelle dimmensioner ...

Some more parallel dimensions, please ...


2-D maps are great, but sometimes it's cool to gaze into the distance. Today we're happy to announce support for perspective in the Maps API for Flash. We've taken the regular API, added pitch and yaw, borrowed the look-around control from Google Earth, and thrown in some nifty camera trajectory support. The opportunity to see the world from a chosen point of view is now in the hands of a user!

Here's a perspective map in action. Sit back and watch or dive in and drag the view. Try holding down the zoom plus (+) or minus (-) buttons to see the new smooth continuous zoom.

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3D model af Stockholm lavet på 3D printer

Gammel nyhed, men ikke mindre flot af den grund ... Enhver by burde have sin egen 3D model ...

Only Danish ...


Svenske Mitekgruppen har skabt en komplet 48 m2 stor 3D model af Stokholm på en brøkdel af den tid, det normalt ville tage at bygge en lignede model. Mitekgruppen har benyttet sig af luftfotos og tegninger til at skabe CAD modellerne af byens bygninger. Det har desuden været altafgørende for den korte produktionstid, at gruppen benyttede sig af Google Earth baserede data til at lave de nødvendige CAD modeller på steder, hvor luftfotos og tegninger ikke var tilgængelige. CAD modellerne blev herefter printet på en Dimension 3D Printer.

Den samlede model er ret så imponerende, og den har da også haft en enorm publikumssucces på Stockholms Kulturhus, hvor den sidste år var den anden mest besøgte attraktion i hele Sverige. [...]


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ESRI Users Can Now Leverage their 2D Data in 3D with FME

Safesoft, den moderne tids Babelfisk ...

SafeSoft - the Babelfish of the modern world ...


Safe Software announced today that FME, the leading spatial ETL (extract, transform and load) solution, now enables ESRI users to leverage their 2D Data in 3D within their existing ESRI ArcGIS environment. FME's data transformation capabilities along with its support for over 225 formats, including many popular 3D formats, ensure that ESRI users can access the data they need and make use of it for innovative 3D applications.

FME's transformation capabilities and 3D support make it possible to take 2D data with an implied 3D aspect and turn it into true, 3D data for visualization in ArcGIS 9.3. Soon, organizations will also be able to use it with the 3D editing and routing tools that ESRI announced will be available in ArcGIS 9.4. FME also extends the format support of ESRI ArcGIS, enabling users to directly integrate their true 3D information with other data for the most complete situational overview possible to date. [...]

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MooTools Tutorials and Resources Round-Up

Lyder spændende og et godt initiativ ... JavaScript er den der bandit i klassen som endte med at blive succesfuld i sit voksenliv ... Det ændrer ikke ved at der stadig er en lille røver indeni ...

Good initiative ... JavaScript was the odd one out in little school and ended up as a succes when growing up ... There is never the less still a little rebel hidden inside ...


One of the core principles of MooTools is to provide a better application programming interface for JavaScript developers, making the language better by extending its native elements and providing more concise object oriented utilities.

As a consequence of that, some people may be inclined to think that MooTools treats browser scripting as a less important feature. Indeed, MooTools is not a DOM scripting toolkit, but the whole purpose of making JavaScript better is that developers have a more solid base over which to create readable, robust, reusable browser scripting libraries. [...]

Official Documentation

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torsdag den 30. juli 2009

GeoWeb 2009 presentation by Peter Batty from Peter Batty

Hvor er du nu, men mere vigtigt hvor er du på vej hen?

Where are you now and more importantly where are you going from there?


GeoWeb 2009 presentation by Peter Batty from Peter Batty on Vimeo.

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Easily Paste ArcGIS Maps into Documents




If you're new here, you may want to subscribe to my RSS feed and also follow me on Twitter. Thanks for visiting GIS Pathway!

Placing maps into documents such as Microsoft Word, Excel, Publisher, and PowerPoint can become a pain at times. The usual process involves exporting the map into some type of image file. The file is then inserted into your desired document. For some projects this is fine and may even be necessary; however for those quick put-together projects there is an easier way. [...]


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sql server and mappoint 2009, together at last

En lignende SQL Server PlugIn må komme til ArcGIS ...

Give me an SQL Server ArcGIS PlugIn that can do the same ... bye bye SDE ...


by Chris Pendleton

[... ]

for the first time outside the walls of Redmond, The Microsoft® MapPoint® Add-In for SQL Server


At a high level, you can now:

  • Create maps from your spatial and non-spatial data stored in SQL Server 2008.

  • Customize the display of your map data using a variety of query and retrieval options and map symbolization.

  • Query, edit, and insert individual rows in your database from the map.

  • Seamlessly integrate maps into the work you do in Office programs.


Map Management

  • Create, open, edit, and save layers

  • Reload a map file into MapPoint when creating a new map

  • Map files are stored as XML and can be edited with text editors or created by external programs

  • MapPoint will reflect any database changes when a map is re-opened.

  • Information stored in each map file include layer definitions, symbology, map extent, MapPoint base map type, current MapPoint map view and database connections


Map Layers

  • Select the data source for each layer from a list of tables with geography columns

  • Dynamically view the data source by entering a SQL Server common table expression (CTE)

  • user can select a geography column for each feature’s geography

  • user can optionally select a column to be the source for text for feature labeling on the map

  • the optional generalize distance can be entered to reduce the amount of detail for each feature

  • the optional feature limit can restrict the amount of data returned by the database

  • whether the layer is based on a table or a CTE, the user can enter a SQL WHERE clause to select specific rows

  • WHERE clauses (and the CTE definition) can contain spatial queries. For example, a WHERE clause may select only those features within a certain area contained in a row in a different table

  • WHERE clause execution can be optimized by using a parameterized query

  • SQL expressions are fully validated before being used to creating layers

  • features can be limited to a particular area of the map

  • the mapping limit can be taken from the current map view, from a selection box on the map, or the coordinates can be entered directly

  • the geometry type of the features in a layer can all be the same type, or differ (points, lines, or polygons)

  • the feature geometry shown on the map may be altered by the SQL code used to define the layer

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How to map out a new role for yourself as a cartographer

Har du prøvet at sammensætte et kort fra bunden så ved du hvor svært det er at lave et kort som både er informativt, læsbart og pænt ... i alle zoom niveauer ...

Have you tried just once to make a map from scratch you'll know how hard it is to make it informative, readable, and nice ... at all zoom levels ...


If you like geography, are good on detail and have ace computer skills, you should consider a career as a cartographer.

By Caroline Roberts

You might be forgiven for thinking that most of the world has been mapped by now. But, because of the constantly changing landscape and the growing amount of information about the earth available through technological advances, there's still a need for skilled cartographers to sift the data and turn it into something meaningful for the rest of us.

"Cartography involves assessing and amalgamating bits of geographic information and presenting them in a map form that's relevant for a particular user," says Mick Ashworth, a former editor of The Times Atlas Of The World who now runs his own company, Ashworth Maps and Interpretation. This can mean producing anything from maps to keep ramblers on track to surveys for oil and gas exploration.

It's a diverse field. There are opportunities in mapping agencies such as the Ordnance Survey, national and local government departments, and in industries such as utilities, and commercial map publishers. Britain also has some important map collections, and cartographers can choose to specialise in historical maps. [...]

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Der er sket meget siden Sputnik ...

A lot has happened since Sputnik ...


By: Shawn Gano

JSatTrak is a Satellite tracking program written in Java. It allows you to predict the position of any satellite in real time or in the past or future. It uses advanced SGP4/SDP4 algorithms developed by NASA/NORAD or customizable high precision solvers to propagate satellite orbits. The program also allows for easy updating of current satellite tracking data via Because this application was written in Java, it should run on almost any operating system or directly off the web using java web start!

Questions or comments? Check out the discussion forum.

To help get you started: some demo screenshots and saved files.

New Features in Version 4.0/4.1 (Screen shot on Left)

  • ECI plane grid visualization (3D) (v4.1)
  • Custom Satellite node to load ephemeris from a file (v4.1)
  • Many bug fixes (v4.0/4.1)
  • Increased accuracy in coordinate system transformations (v4.0)
  • New SGP4 Propagator based on the Center for Space Standards & Innovation (CSSI) version [ref: Vallado 2008] (v4.0)
  • 3D sun shading effects (World Wind) (v4.0)
  • More 3D view options
  • Coordinate system selection for the satellite information dialog (J2000, TEME, MOD, TOD) (v4.0)
  • Relicenced under LGPL v3 (v4.0)
  • Saved files use zip compression resulting in significantly smaller file sizes (v4.0)
  • NOTE: File format has changed, this version will not open the saved scenarios from older versions.


Requires Java 1.6 - and uses NASA's World Wind Java SDK (included) and JOGL for 3D rendering (included for win).

  • Real-time and non-real time tracking modes
  • Orbital elements for over 3,000 satellites which are easily updated
  • Ground stations: 800+ built in and the ability to create custom locations
  • Tracking tool - includes tracking angles, polar plotting, and pass predictions (visible and radar) with elevation constraints
  • 2D ground track display
  • 3D globe with streamable high resolution imagery via NASA's World Wind SDK
  • Capture 3D animations
  • Custom Satellites using a mission designer interface with solver loops to allow for modeling of maneuvers
  • Custom high precision propagation - 4th, 8th, and adaptive 7-8th order Runge-Kutta methods
  • XML saving/loading of scenarios
  • Command console using BeanShell
  • Plugin capabilities using bean shell scripts
  • Remote command server (and client) for sending commands to the application remotely over a TCP/IP connection
  • Earth Coverage Analysis (screenshot, movie) (v3.2)
  • Create movies of any window or entire app (v3.2)
  • 3D model loader and new model centered view mode (ISS example) (v3.5)
  • Full screen exclusive mode for 3D windows (v3.5)
  • Nimbus look and feel support (screenshot) for java 1.6 update 10 or greater (v3.5)
  • More 2D map images and ability to load customized maps (v3.5)
  • Added 2D Earth lights night image effect (v3.5)
  • Run script without displaying GUI (v3.6)
  • TLE data importing and user defined datasets (see the readme in data/tle_user) (v3.7)


Current Version

Note: the executable download contains the JOGL binaries for 32-bit windows, if you are using a different platform please download the corresponding JOGL binaries and place them in the main folder.

For windows just download the above file, unzip, and run the .exe. To run the executable jar on any other OS download and install JOGL for your OS and run the jar with the following command line options: java -jar JSatTrak.jar -Djava.library.path="/path/to/jogl/Libraries/"

Old Versions

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onsdag den 29. juli 2009

Misunderstanding Markup: XHTML 2/HTML 5 Comic Strip

Så er der ikke længere nogen som burde være i tvivl ...

Now nobody needs any longer being confused ...


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Why is Open Street Map Brilliant?

OSM er mange ting ... og mange projekter ...

OSM is many things ... as well as many projects ...


OpenSea Project


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Animated Infographics for the Eat Local, Eat Real Campaign

Udskift Canada med et hvilket som helst andet (vestligt) land og du vil se det samme mønster ...

Interchange Canada with any other western country and you'll see similar patterns ...


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Video: Back to School - Flash as Web Format

Den første video en serie fra Adena ...

The first in a row of educational videos from Adena ...


(c) Adena Schutzberg, 2009

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