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GeoManitoba 2012

Event: GeoManitoba 2012
Date: September 30 to October 3, 2012
Venue: Fairmont Hotel downtown Winnipeg, Manitoba

GeoManitoba 2012

GeoManitoba 2012Manitoba is not often considered a hot bed for GIS in Canada but it certainly has shown some increased potential lately as this is the second Geomatics related (Although it may be more Geotechnical based then then Geomatics) event submitted to the site this summer about events scheduled to take place in Manitoba latter this year.

The Canadian Geotechnical Society (CGS) and the Manitoba Section of the CGS are planning their 65th Canadian Geotechnical Conference witch will take place September 30 to October 3, 2012 at the Fairmont Hotel in Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada.

The theme of GeoManitoba 2012 will focus on building on the success of past conferences, reflecting the heritage of geotechnical engineering in Canada and how history will help Geomatics going forward into the future. They also plan to address the ever increasing need to restore and upgrade Canada’s aging infrastructure.

For more information and to register for this event see http://www.cgs2012.ca

Society for Conservation GIS Conference

Date: July 19 – 22, 2012
Venue: Asilomar Conference Grounds in Monterey, California

Society for Conservation GIS Conference

Society for Conservation GIS ConferenceThe Society for Conservation GIS (SCGIS) assists conservationists worldwide by using GIS through communication, networking, scholarships, and training. Membership to the society is open to any individual who seeks assistance in the achievement of personal or organizational conservation goals. The Society for Conservation GIS would like to announce its 15th Annual Conference “Building Resilience”, to be held July 19 – 22, 2012 at Asilomar Conference Grounds in Monterey, California.

“The theme for the 2012 SCGIS Conference is “Building Resilience.” Our topics range from communication and public understanding of science, to how interdisciplinary cooperation can offer solutions to seemingly unyielding problems.”

SCGIS, made up of conservationists, geographers, scientists, students and educators is a diverse group of professionals dedicated to using GIS to achieve conservation goals. If you share similar interests and are willing to learn and share, please consider this the conference for you. And unlike other conferences where you are constantly hustled from one place to the next, you will be given time to talk to people: meals are shared, there are socials, and plenty of down-time between sessions to ask questions and share experiences with fellow attendees.

For more information see http://www.scgis.org/Lev3Page.aspx?Page3ID=21

Geomatics Atlantic 2012 – Looking Back and Moving Forward

Event: Geomatics Atlantic 2012 “Celebrating 25 Years of Bringing together Spatial Leaders”
Date: June 12th – 14th, 2012
Location: Saint Mary’s University in Halifax, Nova Scotia
Registration:  see the registration page

Geomatics Atlantic 2012 - Looking Back and Moving Forward

Description:

Mark your calendars and plan to celebrate the 25th Anniversary of Geomatics Atlantic June 12th thru the 14th.

This years event is being hosted by GANS (Geomatics Association of Nova Scotia) and will be held at the Sobey Building at Saint Mary’s University in Halifax Nova Scotia. The conference is intended to represent the past 25 years of successful geomatics in Atlantic Canada while still concentrating on the wide range of current hot topics such as “climate change, social media, geomatics in education, and infrastructure”

More details about the event will be added as it becomes available or you can get more information and registration information from the conference GeomaticsAtlantic.com

Note: the Call for papers deadline for presentation and posters is March 23, 2012

 

Update:

With Geomatics Atlantic 2012 less then two weeks away, things are starting to fall into place, Speakers have been arranged, Program has been finalized, and all activities have been scheduled. In recognition of COGS turning 25, they are planning a celebration on the evening of June 13th during Geomatics Atlantic, with speakers, food, and entertainment. For more details see http://lanyrd.com/2012/geomaticsatlantic2012/srytx/

If you are a COGS student or alumni then they want you to show your support by helping GANS map out where COGS grads are now – see http://www.gans.ca/cogsgradmap

 

 

Canadian GIS Software

Geographic Information SystemsGIS software packages come in many different formats and designed to handle many applications. Some are more robust then others offering a wide range of tools and applications while others are much more simple, the software you use should depend a lot on what your needs are.

There are also many other things to consider such as cost, usability, supported data formats just to mention a few. Canada has many software companies that offer GIS software related packages and many others that sell packages made abroad but available here.

Free GIS software

Geographic Resources Analysis Support System (GRASS) – GRASS software is a free GIS package with multiple functionality including image processing, both raster & vector compatibly, 2D/3D vector network analysis and much more functionality. It operates on various system platforms including shell and a graphical user interfaces.

Google Earth – new twist on traditional GIS that allows you to create 3D maps with existing aerial data sets

Licensed GIS software

PCI Geomatica – Geomatica 2012 from well known Canadian based PCI Geomatics is a powerful easy to learn GIS and Remote sensing package with a wide range of traditional remote sensing, photogrammetry, GIS, cartography, and web development tools.

MapInfo GIS desktop mapping application that now includes CAD tools and .NET program-ability.

ESRI – ArcGIS v10 is the most popular and dependable GIS desktop mapping application available, used world wide.

More software …

Other Mapping Tools

Need to quickly convert spatial coordinates from MTM, UTM or LAT/LONG?

 DataAppeal – Online mapping tool that provides Highly Effective & Interactive 3D Maps

Google Map Maker for Canada

GPS Software

Trimble GPS Planner – handy little FREE software package for planning of GPS Missions, allows you to optimize your base destination region with multiple station locations allowing you to determine where it would be best to record observations, determine elevation masks, generate graphs showing satellite coverage, DOP coverage, and create sky plots of GPS satellites.

York University – GIS and Remote Sensing

Get certified by York University’s Certificate in Geographic Information Systems (GIS) & Remote Sensing. This program understands that together GIS and remote sensing are the backbone to many decision-making systems and location-based services emerging in the decades to come.

Comparison of top Free Online Map Sites (part 3)

 Click Here to go to the start of this article or 

Click Here to go back to part 2

This is part 3 of the feature – Comparison of Free Online Map Sites ‘Bing Maps vs Google Maps’ that takes a closer look at Google & Microsoft’s web mapping services.

Major Differences/Pros and Cons

User Experience

Vancouver - Bing Slide ViewBing Maps tends to offer more automated features than Google Maps does and it automatically changes style and details as the user zooms in and out. As you scroll around the map, the bar at the left dynamically updates things such as weather, pictures, and Photosynths for the current area. Google Maps is more basic in form, sticking to its trademark look, offers fewer features and uses JavaScript making it often more choppy zooming in and out.

Location Search Accuracy

Both have done a great job utilizing spatial database data to provide a better accurate search, although sometimes you may find one does a better job over the other in different areas (with no real reasoning of why). Also the more information you have to provide (e.g. adding postal code) in your search then obviously the better your results will be.

Both map services offer driving directions that can be easily achieved by stating a start and end point. Driving directions that I have tested with both services were usually pretty accurate with estimated travel times based on mode of transportation provided by both has been pretty good as well.

Satellite Image Resolution

Imagery data sets for both services vary from place to place but overall it seems that Bing Maps uses newer and better quality satellite images than Google Maps does. Bing Maps images are generally about a year old (about 215 terabytes of high-resolution imagery to Bing Maps was recently added by Microsoft), where Google Maps images have an average of about 2 to 3 years old. With Bing Maps, you can also zoom in closer than with Google Maps (if the data exists).

Bird’s-eye View of Bing Maps offers a 3D view of buildings in major cities (mostly in the USA) and many places that are not highly (like most parts ofCanada) populated will not have any higher resolution imagery and only basic larger scale Landsat data will be provided. Sometimes Google imagery does not flow well together, mixing dark and light data sets and some with clouds and other obstructions (usually a pet peeve for anyone who works in Remote Sensing) . However both vendors provide better imagery as they obtain it so aerial imagery in various areas is constantly changing.

In a bid to keep up with its arch mapping rival, Microsoft is taking on Google Maps in the high-resolution space with a 215 terabyte update of Bird’s Eye imagery.

Microsoft has piled on another 215 terabytes of high-resolution imagery to Bing Maps, less than a month after it dished out a massive 165 terabyte cache of mapping data to the service. [source: news.cnet.com ]

          Bing Slide View CoverageGoogle Street View Coverage

Streetside View vs. Streetview

Both Bing Maps and Google Maps have street-level views, where there is a panoramic view taken from the top of a car and stitched together so it looks like you were standing there. Bing’s “Streetside view” shots are clearer, with higher resolutions and more features (such as Flicker and Photosynth) integrated into the viewing experience. Bing’s Worldwide telescope integration is a feature that allows viewers to look up to view the night-time sky above them. Google’s streetview also has a “user images” feature that offers more photos than Bing does, but they are presented as a slide shoe, instead of being layered as they are with Bing. Google’s Streetview is worthy of an honorable mention because of the numbers of areas around the world that it has captured.

Ottawa - Ontario - Google Maps

 Summary

Both Bing Maps and Google Maps offer effective web mapping platforms with very similar yet unique features . Bing tends to have better features and tools integrated into it, and can operate smoother than Google Maps but their coverage of data in Canada is relatively pretty weak.

Both have great features to offer but neither one seems to really fully out shine the other over all, witch in a way can be a good thing as these two web giants continue to go head to head providing us with more free web mapping tools to make our every day lives better.

I myself tend to use Google Maps more perhaps out of habit from being a big Google Earth user, but can honestly admit I do go back and forth between the two mapping applications  depending on what I am using them for. ArcGIS now offers Bing products as free base maps for ArcMap layouts so that certainly has increased my Bing maps usage.

For example, I find that Bing does a better job of providing names of streets and rivers and the Bird’s Eye imagery always provides more than one view of an object (although not available for many places in Canada). And a lot depends on the imagery of data that is available in the area I am working with, so I tend to sometimes check both to see which one is better.

And actually someone has come up with a web application that provides both mapping applications in the same window for times when you want to compare (http://www.jonasson.org/maps/). So go ahead and check out these two popular free web mapping applications and then leave some comments about witch one you prefer over the other.

Maps - Bing Maps vs Google Maps

References

Microsoft – http://onlinehelp.microsoft.com/en-us/bing/ff808582.aspx

Google – http://support.google.com/maps/?hl=en

Wikipedia. – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Google_Maps & http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bing_Maps

 

 

 

Comparison of top Free Online Map Sites (part 2)

 Click Here to go back to the start of this article

This is part 2 of the feature – Comparison of Free Online Map Sites ‘Bing Maps vs Google Maps’ that takes a closer look at Google & Microsoft’s web mapping services.

Bing Maps – maps.bing.ca

Ottawa - Ontario - Google Street View 1

Bing Maps is Microsoft’s web mapping service provided as a part of their Bing suite of search engines and powered by the Bing Maps for Enterprise framework. Originally called Microsoft Virtual Earth, the first version was released in 2005.

In 2010 a fully overhauled design for the default view was launched as well as adding dynamic labels. Bing optimizes the power of the Silverlight engine combined withAJAXto serve the map data into your browser application.

It offers street maps, featuring road view, aerial view, bird’s-eye view, streetside view (with geo-tagged photos from Flickr and Photosynth integration), and 3D view (as an add-on), driving directions, and several different map apps.

The Bird’s Eye imagery feature provides end-users with high-resolution, oblique look angle imagery in four different look-directions providing a different visual context appealing to many spatial tasks. This neat feature allows you to look at an object from one angle and then spin your screen around and see the same object from a different perspective.

Ottawa - Ontario - Bing Birds Eye View 2Ottawa - Ontario - Bing Birds Eye View 1

Bing Maps provides traffic information and ClearFlow traffic data, as well as allowing users to share maps and embed them into their websites. Other features include people, location, and business search functions, and satellite imagery (“Bing Maps,” 2011; Pike, 2010).

Table 1

Top Features of Bing Maps and Google Maps

Bing Maps

Google Maps

Road, Satellite, Bird’s-eye views

Road, Satellite, Terrain views

Streetside view, with Flickr and Photosynth picture overlays

Streetview

3D models ofU.S.cities

Panorama Integration

Driving Directions and Traffic Information

Mobile Map apps

Bird’s Eye imagery

Driving Directions and Traffic Information

 

Washington Bing Street View 1Washington Google Street View 1

 

Major Differences/Pros and Cons

User Experience

Bing Maps tends to offer more automated features than Google Maps does and it automatically changes style and details as the user zooms in and out. As you scroll around the map, the bar at the left dynamically updates things such as weather, pictures, and Photosynths for the current area. Google Maps is more basic in form, sticking to its trademark look, offers fewer features and uses JavaScript making it often more choppy zooming in and out.

 Click Here to continue reading … or Click Here to go back to the start of this article

 

Simon Fraser University Bachelor of Science GIS

Simon Fraser University GIS

Simon Fraser University GIS

Location: Burnaby, British Columbia
GIS Programs: Certificate in Spatial Information Systems / Bachelor of Science (BSc) in Geographic Information Science

 The Certificate in Spatial Information Systems (SIS) is comprised of nine undergraduate level courses. It can be taken in conjunction with an undergraduate degree or on its own. Students with a previous degree or proficiency in specific areas may be exempted from certain courses but at least 50% of the courses in the program must be taken at SFU to fulfil the requirements of the certificate.

Simon Fraser University GIS - Campus

The Simon Fraser University GIS program is comprised of nine undergraduate level courses. It can be taken in conjunction with an undergraduate degree or on its own. Students with a previous degree or proficiency in specific areas may be exempted from certain courses but at least 50% of the courses in the program must be taken at SFU to fulfill the requirements of the certificate. British Columbia is an international leader in developing SIS products, applications and research. The installation and maintenance of the SIS lab as a state of the art facility has allowed SFU to feed this growing industry with qualified individuals who have learned the fundamentals of spatial information systems.

The B.Sc. in GIS is offered though the Faculty of Applied Sciences in partnership with the Department of Geography and the School of Computer Science. The program combines the theoretical, practical and intellectual issues surrounding the use of Geographic Information System technologies. Graduates are exceptionally well qualified to contribute to a rapidly growing industry. They learn how to model data effectively; how to visualize those models using computing graphics; and how to program in object environments. SFU students are encouraged to participate in Cooperative Education to experience these and other career opportunities.

Contact

8888 University Drive
Burnaby, British Columbia
V5A 1S6

778-782-3321 / geog-info@sfu.ca for further information

See the GIS B.Sc. Course page or GIS Certificate page for more details.

 [source: sfu.ca]


If you are a student, facility or someone who has any more knowledge, feedback or comments to share about the GIS programs at Simon Fraser University then I encourage you to share it . You can either use the contribute more info form or the comment functionality below.

Canadian Maps

A major part of any GIS are Canadian Maps produced that help illustrate and provide visible spatial information, the Canadian GIS & Geomatics site has been providing people with map resources since 2005, and continues to list great resources. To find some awesome Canadian maps, check some of the links below, browse through our data and Canadian map listings, use the search tools found along the right hand side or follow us on Twitter (we post images and links to a wide variety of maps daily).

Canadian Maps

Canadian Maps & many more GIS Resources

UTM zones & rows map – With this world map you can easily find out what UTM zone you are working from.

Geomatics & Cartography – great basic overview of Cartography with examples and plenty of resources.

Various Canadian maps resources

Old Canadian Maps from various Provinces

Web mapping applications featuring Canadian maps

Do you have any great Canadian maps that you would like us to share? Then let us know!

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Map Maker for Canada

Google Map Maker Canada

Explore Map Maker for Canada

Leave your mark on the map, share your local knowledge about Canadian places with other Canadians.

Google has launched a product that they call Map Maker for Canada that provides users with the ability to add and update geographic information for millions of others to see in Google Maps. People can add businesses, create building outlines, move other peoples place markers to the correct locations. So why not help out the cause by adding places of interest, your school, campus or add your business location.

Check the Map Maker User Guide for help to get started or just be like most other GIS professionals and give Google Map Maker a try and learn as you go.  Google.ca/mapmaker

Share your feedback and comments on this neat little Google Maps feature.

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