GIS Technology

Is the show over ?

Remember the excitement of your first trade show, hundreds if not thousands of people thronging the showfloor, bags full of brochures, silly bug giveaways, I remember one year at Autodesk we gave away bottles of bubble liquid – popular with the kids !!, fond memories.

Increasing distant memories perhaps as the trade show slowly dies in importance, once again this year it appears than the Comdex Show in Las Vegas has been cancelled. This used to be THE IT show 200,000 or more attending five years ago – so what has happened, its simple the vendors no longer see value in it. If you are interested in new technology, detailed specs, independent reviews you may turn to Google and the vendors website before emailing an account manager.

It is not just the general IT industry when this trend is apparent, GIS shows both in the UK and USA are shrinking from their high points at the end of the last decade, the obvious exception here is the annual ESRI user conference which continues to grow. The ESRI show may be a special case with a very active community of users who often receive fee places at the conference along with their software maintenance, but other user conferences seem to be holding onto numbers better than the more generic shows.

The relative success of user shows is clearly partially due to the number of relevant and detailed user presentations on offer to visitors, but there is also an important element which in that vendors are not worried about losing customers to competitors stands.

Written and submitted from my hotel room using the hotels wifi network

GIS Technology

Magic batteries – not aprils fools yet!!

The Register this morning reports that Toshiba have developed a new type of battery for mobile devices which can be fast charged reaching 80% capacity in just one minute!! The battery also lasts much longer than today’s best of breed Lithium ion batteries and operates more effectively over a wider temperature range, down to -40°C.

This is potentially important news for the GI and GIS industry as it makes mobile GIS a more realistic proposition. At the moment Mobile GIS workers must compromise their working routines with frequent battery swaps, sophisticated power management techniques, which drastically reduce computing power and general hassle. Improved battery performance has had the focus of much of the ICT industry for the pass couple of years driven mostly from the needs of the mobile phone industry, but it looks like the GIS industry will also be grateful recipients of these improvements.

Afterall GI is often at its most valuable when available on in the field!

Written and submitted from home, using my home 802.11 network.


Just a few more seconds… taking control of my mobile.

How many times have you missed a call because your mobile has diverted to voicemail after a few rings?. A search of the web came up with a solution – changing the time it takes for a call to divert is something which needs to be set on the network not your phone.
So for fellow Vodafone users, your just need to do the following…

1) Key the following shortcode and then press SEND
This returns you your voicemail number which normally you get to by dialing 121

2) Now enter the following code using the number from step 1 and press SEND
where xxxx is you voicemail number in international format and NN is the number of seconds before the call is diverted ( This needs to be an increment of 5 in the range of 5 to 30).

So if your voicemail number is 07878 298399 and you wanted a 20 second delay you would key..
**61*+447878298399*10*20 #

Written and submitted from home, using my home 802.11 network.