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Canadian Cartographic Association Student Mapping Competition

Canadian Cartographic Association Student Mapping Competition

Canadian Cartographic Association Student Mapping CompetitionAre you a University or College student passionate about mapping? Then you will want to participate in the 2015-16 Canadian Cartographic Association Student Mapping Competition. Chances are you have already made some great maps for your projects or course work, so why not submit a copy to the CCA Student Mapping Competition and get recognized for creating your spatial master piece while earning some cash at the same time.

CCA President’s Prize

The CCA President’s Prize recognizes excellence in student map design and production and is open to all post-secondary students who have completed and produced a cartographic project in the preceding school year. The year’s President’s Prize Competition will consist of two prizes of $250, one for entries from college-level or CEGEP students, and one for entries from university-level students in the thematic map category:

A thematic map is a map that is meant to communicate a specific single subject matter within a particular geographic area. They are often defined as special purpose maps and can be either quantitative or qualitative in nature. The International Cartographic Association (ICA) defines the thematic map this way: “A map designed to demonstrate particular features or concepts. In conventional use this term excludes topographic maps” (Dent 1999, 8).

The cartographic project will consist of a single map. There are no restrictions on size but the project must have been completed and produced during the school year preceding the competition. Cartographic projects will consist of a map or a map series forming a coherent whole and may be submitted in any finished form (on paper or other medium). Entries submitted in electronic media, whether GIS or internet mapping applications, should not require specialized software for viewing.

Each entry must be accompanied by a clCanadian Cartographic Association Student Mapping Competitionear and succinct statement of design objectives that will weigh heavily in the judges’ decision. In addition, entries will be judged on the basis of creativity and overall effectiveness in communication as well as excellence in compilation, design, and layout. Students must be enrolled at a Canadian University or College to be eligible to submit their maps made in the 2014/15 academic year. Deadline for submission is May 20, 2016.

Carto-Québec Prize

The Carto-Quebec prize is a special annual competition for the best student-authored cartographic product created in French. Theaward has been established through a gift from the former Association Carto-Québec to promote and recognize excellence in map design.

The competition is open to all post-secondary students in Canada who have completed and produced a cartographic project in the preceding school year. The Carto-Québec Prize will consist of two awards of $500, one for entries from college-level or CEGEP students, and one for entries from university-level students. The Carto-Quebec prize must be in French. Deadline for submission is May 20, 2016.

Carte soumissions pour ce concours suivent les mêmes lignes directrices que le Prix du Président, mais sont nécessaire pour être en français. Remarque: Pour les deux concours, tous les étudiants inscrits dans une université ou un collège canadien sont admissibles à soumettre leurs cartes faites dans l’année scolaire 2014/15. Date limite de soumission est le 20 mai 2016.

Download the Student Mapping Competition entry form here 

OpenStreetMap – the Power of the People

What is OpenStreetMap?

OpenStreetMapWith two technology giants Apple and Google fighting out each other for claiming the top position in mapping technologies, a silent challenger has rapidly approached the top position without too much hassle.

OpenStreetMap launched 10 years ago with the slogan of Free Wiki World Map has taken developers and map lovers by surprise, providing editable map data, making it easier for people to interact and navigate.

Even though the competition has already previously mapped every inch of the globe, their restrictions on availability combined with complexity in rendering of information and lack of detail in many regions has made people to start using OpenStreetMap as an alternative.

OpenStreetMap started in the UK back in 2004 and is still largely dominated by European input, however North America use has grown over the past few years with the help of many organizations such as Esri who has included OpenStreetMap  as one of their free base map layers.  Since OpenStreetMap is a crowd sourced application, its future depends highly on its ability to attract more active users.

So to help celebrate 10 years of OpenStreetMap we have created a series of articles dedicated to open source mapping and web applications that have been either built with or that make use of OpenStreetMap.

Also check out some of these OpenStreetMap & Open Data related Topics:

Creative Art/Map Competition for Nova Scotian Students

International Map Year Canada

The Geomatics Association of Nova Scotia (GANS) have announced that they are hosting a Creative Map Competition for Nova Scotian Students for International Map Year.

The creative mapping GANS contest is open to students of all grades including post secondary students and is intended to help encourage young people to participate in creative cartographic activities while learning more about the geography, heritage and history of Nova Scotia.  
 

Creative Map Competition for Nova Scotian Students

Prizes will be awarded to 1st, 2nd, & 3rd place entries in 7 different categories thanks to several generous sponsors including Heritage Trust of Nova Scotia, Centre of Geographic Sciences (COGS), Esri Canada, Geomatics Association of Nova Scotia (GANS) and Canadian Geographic.

Nova Scotian teachers/students may submit maps, on the theme “Nova Scotia – A Province Rich in Heritage”.

Categories of competition: Creative Map Competition for Nova Scotian Students

  1. Primary – Grade 2 – Creative Maps
  2. Grade 3 – Grade 6 – Creative Maps
  3. Grade 7 – Grade 9 – Creative Maps
  4. Grade 10 – Grade 12 – Creative Maps
  5. Grade 10 – Grade 12 – GIS Story Maps
  6. Post-secondary – Creative Maps
  7. Post-secondary – GIS Story Maps
Contest rules,  guidelines and more details are available from the GANS website: http://gans.ca/map-competition.html

W. H. Pugsley Collection of Early Canadian Maps (1556 to 1857)

In 1971-72 Dr. William Howard Pugsley, donated his collection of early Canadian maps that he had collected during the late 1930s and World War II. Download digital scans of these 50 early Canadian historical maps published between 1556 to 1857 that help explain the discovery and exploration of early North America.

ColorBrewer Color Scheme Selector

ColorBrewer – an online tool for selecting colors for your maps

ColorBrewer 2.0 is a simple online tool that helps you choose appropriate color schemes to use with your online mapping projects. It works with 3 different types of data schemes: sequential (data that ranges from low to high), diverging (data with equal an emphasis on critical values and extremes) or qualitative ( best suited for nominal or categorical data). ColorBrewer

You start with a sample map that does not depict actual data but has been carefully designed for evaluating the robustness of color schemes.

Choose the types of data scheme that best suits your data set, next select the number of data classes and then select a color palette range. Then you will be provide with the color codes that best represents your data.

You can also download a ColorBrewer style file for use in ArcGIS, Excel file including all color schemes in one file, CartoCSS styles and several other formats.

You can find Color Brewer at colorbrewer2.org

The video below does a great job of demonstrating how to use the ColorBrewer tool.

Digital Earth 2015 in Halifax

Digital Earth 2015 in Halifax

I first started attending conferences during University when it was required that we present our research work to professionals and other researchers in the Industry. Then the year I graduated was fortunate enough to attend the PDAC conference (now this was prior to the internet and my main focus then was to find a job in my field). PDAC is a large annual conference held in Toronto and the best conference I have ever attended. And I have been attending events & conferences ever since …. I find that although CanadianGIS.com and its social media accounts provide me great networking opportunities, it always better to have opportunities to meet other professionals in the geomatics sector and network one on one.Digital Earth 2015 in Halifax Nova Scotia

International Symposium on Digital Earth (ISDE), also known as Digital Earth for short, was held this past week (Oct 4th-9th) in Halifax. It’s goal is to bring global leaders from the geospatial community together to further discuss topics themed around “A One World Vision for the Blue Planet“.

Atlantic Canada is well known for having a rich history in the world of Geomatics

Digital Earth 2015 in Halifax Nova ScotiaAtlantic Canada is well known for having a rich history in the world of geomatics, tracing back to the post-war era when some of the earliest computer applications in surveying and mapping were developed, and integrated information systems for geographical applications began to be used.  This was also the second time that International Symposium on Digital Earth was hosted in Canada (the last time was 2001 in New Brunswick) since its inaugural start back in 1998 when former US Vice President, Al Gore gave his Digital Earth speech.

Digital Earth is meant to be an event that virtually represents our dynamic planet, encompassing all of its natural and social aspects together in a geographic framework for research and everyday applications. It provides a venue that allows the geospatial community come together to work towards sustainable development ensuring that what most of us take for granted will be here for future generations.

Digital Earth in Halifax explored a wide variety of geographic related theories, technologies, applications and achievements focused around planetary sciences, information technology, computer sciences, social sciences and big data.

Above is a video we created by combining photos & videos (ones we took as well as others from social media)

The five day conference was packed with multiple presenters from all over the world.  Three to four concurrent sessions took place at the same time several times a day, each with speakers taking up to 20 minutes each to present and discuss their topics. Keynote speakers (13 in all) took place in the larger main conference room and lasted between 40 minutes to an hour.NASA at Digital Earth 2015 in Halifax Nova Scotia

With almost 150 presentations, some presenters were able to speak several times. The down side of having so many presentations occurring in overlapping time slots meant that there were times when you had to choose to attend one presentation over another (and thus missed out on some of the talks).

Half way through the conference there was an Education Outreach program that was open to the public, providing hands on activities and scientific excursions aimed to help people better visualize our planet.

The Canadian Geographic Education provided one of their iconic giant floor maps and the Canadian Space Agency (with NASA) provided an opportunity to interact with some Astronauts as a way to get a better understanding of how large our Planet is and at the same time understand how small it is in comparison to the Universe.

Jeremy Hansen and Reid Wiseman together provided an amazing presentation about how big Canada is, and Keynote Dawn Wright from Esri at Digital Earth 2015 in Halifax Nova Scotiawhat it is like to live on the International Space Station. NASA provided detailed digital representations of geographic data on their large high definition hyper-wall (screen made up of 9 smaller screens).

Other social events included some pre-conference workshops, Student Career workshop, Opening and closing Receptions, a Pub Night, Celebration Ceilidh, Student Sociable, Mentor Lunch, and various tours to scenic areas across Nova Scotia.

Considering the wide array of speakers and broad topics covered, the action packed agenda, and the abundant opportunity to network, I think Digital Earth was a good conference. I myself attend several conferences and events in the geomatics sector every year and was fortunate enough to attend Digital Earth in Halifax and certainly would go again if it returned to Canada.

Below is a slide show of photos from Digital Earth 2015 in Halifax

Below are some tweets from Digital Earth 2015 in Halifax

Click here for more Digital Earth Tweets & photos

Atlas of Mi’kmaw Place Names

Nova Scotia Mi’kmaw Place Names Atlas

The most complete geographical representation ever created of Mi’kma’ki (territory inhabited by the Mi’kmaq) and Mi’kmaw Place Names is now available online thanks to the efforts of more than 100 people, spanning thousands of hours  of work over five years.Interactive Atlas of Mi’kmaw Place Names in Nova Scotia

The digital atlas includes an online interactive map with more than 700 place names derived from approximately 1500 names collected throughout Nova Scotia from interviews with Mi’kmaw Elders and others.

The digital atlas also includes pronunciation, translations, etymology, and other features, such as photos and videos of some of the interviews. The user has the ability to customize the map by selecting various GIS layers including hydrology, terrain elevation, historical maps of Nova Scotia and much more.

To find out more see Mi’kmawPlaceNames.ca and to access the digital atlas go to sparc.smu.ca/mpnmap/

 


The Regina Online Culture Map

Regina Online Culture Map

The city of Regina, second largest in Saskatchewan is a beautiful little city situated in the center of the prairies offering many different attractions and events that take place every year for residents and tourists alike.

Regina Online Culture Map - online web map

Information of various events and activities can now be easily found on their online interactive Culture Web Map. With this neat little tool the city provides information on many of Regina’s cultural resources with promises of expansion as Regina grows and changes (major updates are expected to happen at least every six months)

The Regina Cultural Map is based on ESRI web server technology and has been looks rather sharp while keeping it as simple as can be so that it appeals to almost everyone.

Along the top of the interactive map contains is a quick tool bar with a variety of leisure and culture categories represented by artsy little icons. Selecting on of the icons then populates the map with the data from that category (categories such as Art Galleries, Cinemas,Festivals, Heritage properties, museums, public art and much more).

Regina Online Culture Map

Clicking on one of the icons that appears on the interactive map will then zoom the user into that particular area of interest and provide more information about it including, web site links, address location, photos and sometimes more details about it.

The Regina Online Culture Map is a great example of how data for an area can be spatially stored and presented in a tool that almost anyone can use while providing residents and tourists with details that can help them find the latest events and activities available to them.

To check out the Regina Culture Map for your self simply follow the link here http://culture.regina.ca

Bird’s-eye view of Victoria, BC

Bird's-eye view of Victoria

 

Bird’s-eye view of Victoria

Today we wanted to share an image that has been posted all over the internet lately, it is a bird’s-eye perspective view image of Victoria, British Columbia illustrated by E. S. Glover, A.L. Bancroft and Co., and published by M.W. Waitt & Co. in 1878.  In 1871, British Columbia joined Canada and the population of Victoria was around 7900 but dropped to less then 6000 around the time the image was published economic decline. These days the population of Victoria is over 78,000.

Post Update: Had a few people send us a link to the image below, same Bird’s-eye view of Victoria lithograph image but the scan is much better.

[Images sources: above: Library of Congress, Geography and Map Division and the version below: Toronto Public Library]

Bird's-eye view of Victoria

DMTI Spatial & Intact Financial Awarded Technology of the Year Award

DMTI Spatial & Intact Financial Awarded Technology of the Year Award

This week, DMTI Spatial and Intact Financial were awarded the Technology of the Year award, Insurer category, at the 6th annual Insurance Canada Technology Conference (ICTC) for their work in implementing real-time location analytics technology at Canada’s largest insurance company.

DMTI Spatial and Intact FinancialThe risks presented by flood zones, elevation, or environmental factors can affect infrastructure development and insurance underwriting. To better understand these risks during the underwriting process, Intact Financial engaged DMTI Spatial to work on a solution that could easily integrate into their existing systems and processes.

Through DMTI’s location analytics tool, Intact’s 1,200 underwriters can now differentiate various risks based on the location and determine the most appropriate premiums. New quotes and active policies can, for the first time, be grouped to highlight concentration risks in a table form. Underwriters can also select a specific radius around a property to analyze. This function allows underwriters to view all properties within that radius (either active policies or new quotes being considered) in a table format.


TORONTO, March 13, 2015 – At the 6th annual Insurance Canada Technology Conference (ICTC), DMTI and Intact Financial Corporation were awarded the Technology Implementation of the Year award for their work in implementing real-time location analytics technology at Canada’s largest insurance company, resulting in a 15 per cent reduction in processing time. Judging for the ICTA is based on the positive impact that a specific technology or application of technology has had on business.

In 2014, Intact Financial tasked DMTI with building a real-time application that would integrate into the legacy underwriting systems and processes while allowing their team of underwriters to better understand the risks presented by existing and new policies during the underwriting process.

“We are honoured to be recognized as the ICTA Technology Implementation of the Year,” said Philip Kaszuba, President, DMTI Spatial. “As a leader in the insurance industry, Intact came to the project with a clear vision and a desire to leverage location to empower their underwriters with innovative analytical tools to better price and assess risks more efficiently. We’re excited by the results and strongly believe that this solution will help to meet evolving customer demands in the insurance industry.”

Leveraging DMTI’s Location Hub®, Intact implemented a mapping tool that provides a visual user interface within Intact’s underwriting systems, allowing underwriters to quickly identify risks and accelerate decision making. With this tool, underwriters can see properties on a map, street map data, existing risk layers, flood zones, elevation and proximity to water data and more.

“The entire underwriting community at Intact highly values the features associated with this new application,” said Alain Lessard, Senior Vice President, Commercial Lines, Intact Insurance. “The tool has a great visual component that makes it easier to see exactly where a risk is located and how it relates to other risks that Intact writes. We appreciate the efficiency it brings to the underwriting process, but more importantly, it helps us deliver on our promise to provide outstanding customer service and support by accelerating our decision making.”

The award-winning solution from DMTI Spatial has resulted in a 15 per cent reduction in processing time during the quoting process, making the payback period for this project six months. Contributing factors for this reduction included the ease of entering addresses as well as the reduction of errors when entering risk addresses. Further, the street map functionality quickly highlights concentration of risks in relation to environmental factors.

About Intact

Intact Financial Corporation (www.intactfc.com) is the largest provider of property and casualty insurance in Canada. The company distributes insurance under the Intact Insurance brand through a wide network of brokers, including its wholly owned subsidiary, BrokerLink, and directly to consumers through belairdirect.

About DMTI Spatial

DMTI Spatial, a member of the Neopost group, is the Canadian market leader in location based information and data quality. For almost 20 years, DMTI Spatial has been providing industry leading location economics and Master Address Management (MAM) solutions to Global 2000 companies and government agencies. DMTI Spatial is the creator of market leading CanMap® mapping solutions, Location Hub® and maintains the gold standard for GIS location-based data in Canada. DMTI Spatial is headquartered in Markham, Ontario. Learn more at www.dmtispatial.com