GIS Thoughts

Where 2.0.. when GeoData went mainstream

This week sees the O’Reilly Where 2.0 conference take place in San Francisco, which I believe marks a turning point for the GeoData and GIS industries if they want to take it. Where 2.0 gives a pointer to the direction the geodata industry will go if the likes of Google and Microsoft in the form of MSN Virtual Earth are successful.

This direction is characterised by modern internet based applications built using industry wide web standards and exploiting established internet business models. – No talk of GML or the OGC here..

In his pre conference interview Tim O’Reilly identified the role of XML based API’s such as the “google hack” interface of google maps as allowing “mash up” applications to be created by website owners combining data from different sources in a way not possible in the previous generation of web mapping sites such as mapquest and in the UK multimap.

O’Reilly clearly sees data as the key to success in this new market.. resulting in my quote of the year so far

“There is a big concept that hit my radar…the idea that data is the INTEL inside.”

Time will tell to what extent this is true but it will be interesting to see the response of the traditional GIS industry as represented by Jack Dangermond of ESRI who is also speaking at the conference.

I personally think this is a big deal, I just wish my calendar allowed me to attend, the world of GeoData and location based applications is changing as the giants awake.

Written and submitted from the Holiday Inn Express Southampton, using the hotels 802.11 network

GIS Thoughts

The end of maps !!

The BBC report that the rise of satnav spells the end of the map as an in-car navigation tool. I think there is some truth in this, although I still carry a half million scale map in case of system failure in my satnav equipped car.

A point which the article could have made more of is the complete reliance on the system, when as a user, to get used to having a calm voice telling you where to go next. What happens when “she” and it usally is “she” is not there anymore ? – blind panic.. cars stopping with lost drivers not knowing our to unfold their maps 🙂

Still its great to see geograhic information becoming more and more mainstream.

Written and submitted from the garden just before a thunderstorm, using my home 802.11 network

GIS Thoughts

Even Google Maps need cartographers.

Spot the mistake?
Spot the deliberate mistake ?

I am a huge fan of google maps a well designed application and great user expereice, however can you spot the problem on this map of Europe.. Look closely and you will see a error in the text placement routine which means that..

Woops.. Belgium north of the Netherlands

Belgium has swapped places with the Netherlands !