Nice! Another food and drink (beer, at least) and GIS blogger. It doesn't seem like we'll agree on software at all, but I couldn't agree more about the goodness of Dogfish Head brews. I haven't had the Black and Blue yet, but it seems like it's right up my alley.


Re: Geo-Zymurgy

Author: sean mcginnis

Hey Sean, Thanks for the link... I do not think we are all that different. My background comes from a NPO background and trying to find any which way to get the information out there. I love finding other options out there and trying to find a new way to accomplish something. Do I think we are using different software packages to accomplish the same thing, yes. But I do not think we would disagree on software choices. To me software is just a tool, and if there is a better tool to do something, then I would gladly use that tool. My tool cart in my garage would definitely prove that logic. Right now, I see a lot of opportunity for ESRI software (no matter what users may think of them) to meet people's needs. The company I work for is an ESRI Business Partner, we were actually the Business Partner of the Year in the Philly Region. But we are a very client-centric organization. Whatever their needs are, we will meet them with whatever tools they need to let them get their job down. So if Dogfish Head is your brew of choice, I think we would have a great time sitting down and yapping. Have a great weekend and I hope we cross paths. Keep an eye on my blog, I just ran to the beer store and got a bunch of tasty beers... Cheers. -sean

FRUGOS GeoSummit is on

All spring, on the FRUGOS list, we've been chatting about having a Front Range geo-unconference. Now, thanks to Tom Churchill, we have a venue and the GeoSummit unconference is on.

When: 16 June, from 0900 MDT until topics and participants are spent.

Where: Churchill Navigation (map)

What: intense and fun discussion at the intersection of geography, location, and technology. Business, science, history, environment, transportation, software development, you name it.

People often report that hallway conversations and debates between (and sometimes instead of) scheduled sessions are the best part of conferences. An unconference is all about eliminating the boring stuff and getting right to these vital discussions.

The GeoSummit is not a BarCamp as such, but BarCamp is the model. Sessions will be created ad-hoc during the sign-in. No spectators. Everyone participates. Absolutely bare minimum sign-up fee. If you're interested, join the GeoSummit Google Group so that we can start to get a feel for numbers, and spread the word.

Coming Soon

The Open Archaeology blog writes:

It's encouraging to see that such a large project benefits from free software and, at the same time, gives back to the community.

It would be great if also Pleiades data were available under a free license.

I think Pleiades is producing some nice tools, particularly for Python users. The OWSLib, Quadtree, and Rtree modules are, or have, Pleiades contributions. Our geocoding and slippy map Plone products are also getting playing time. However, to most historians and archaeologists the data is more important than the tools. New Pleiades data will be available under a CC or Science Commons type license, but the negotiation of terms for existing Barrington Atlas data (under similar license) is not quite finished. Fortunately, we're not petitioning solo: people like Eric Kansa, Ross Scaife, and Peter Suber (to name just a few) are making open access to scholarly data a very respectable enterprise.


Re: Coming Soon

Author: Dave Lowther

Could you post links to samples of the Plone mapping products in action?

Re: Coming Soon

Author: Sean

Plone folders (and smart folders) containing geo-referenced objects can be mapped like so:

Re: Coming Soon

Author: Stefano Costa

Sean, thanks for linking I always try to do my best in covering open source projects in the field of archaeology and antiquities and I really think Pleiades is a major one. Open Access is still something we are building, but I think we're going to have it soon. I didn't know your blog but it's very interesting to me (Python is the only language I can somehow r/w, BTW). Cheers, Stefano


It's great to see that three of my favorite hobby-horses -- REST over SOAP or WxS, web search over portals and one-stops, and open source over proprietary software -- are coming to the fore at mainstream industry events.


Re: Progress

Author: Allan Doyle

Progress, indeed. I wonder if Sam liked the answer he got about structured vs unstructured search? But it actually need not be an either/or proposition. People who put a lot of stock in rigorous metadata can still generate it and can still build their own catalog and search systems. People who are not rigorous metadata users/generators can use the "informal" (or should we say "Google"?) approach. To me that means that the geo-search world is (a) expanding by including data that heretofore was not fully documented and (b) providing more choice. Seems like a win-win situation to me.

Rtree 0.2.0

Howard Butler has just uploaded Rtree 0.2.0. Once you've installed the spatial index library on which it depends (no longer distributed with Rtree, see the README), installation should be as simple as:

$ easy_install Rtree

Maybe we can work the dependency into the easy install down the road. I welcome ideas on how to do that.

Persistence of indexes, nearest neighbor lookup, and item deletion are now supported. See the doctests for usage examples.

The Garden is Deployed

I spent about 8 hours digging and planting this past weekend. More time in the gym this spring has paid off, and I'm much less sore this morning than the morning after last year. The garden plan is much the same, but with fewer eggplant, English and Armenian salad cucumbers instead of the bitter pickling variety, more green beans (you can never have too many beans), and potatoes. The spuds are an experiment. Our soil isn't ideal, but I think we can amend it sufficiently, and we've been told that our daughter will be greatly entertained by the treasure hunt for new potatoes.

Spring has been mild, and our plum's blossoms escaped the last hard frost for the first time since 2003. The NOAA CPC 3-month outlook for May-June-July has Fort Collins outside the high temperature anomaly, but we expect to have a drier than normal season. Looks like James Fee will be running his air conditioner overtime this summer.


Re: The Garden is Deployed

Author: James Fee

Yea, the weekend highs were in the mid 100s so it should be a scorcher all summer. Not only the A/C will be running, but I'll have to be using quite a bit of water on the plants this summer (not to mention the pool evaporation).

Victoria, Here I Come

Looks like I'm in. I'm pleased and, honestly, a bit surprised. WxS owns the open source GIS community, and I worried that a presentation on an alternative might be a bit too niche.

Update: Jason Birch and Paul Ramsey have more and more.


Re: Victoria, Here I Come

Author: Jason Birch

I voted for it... From my perspective it is more mainstream than WsX, it's just that some people haven't noticed yet. I come from a strong proprietary background. From my perspective, good open source projects are incredibly quick tend to embrace anything that helps them to play better together, in stark contrast to the anti-commoditization hedging of proprietary products. In your usual jaded fashion, I think you're discounting the open source geospatial community's willingness to adopt new methods that work. ;)

Re: Victoria, Here I Come

Author: Jason Birch

I'm constantly surprised by how many perspectives I have :(

Re: Victoria, Here I Come

Author: Bill Thorp

I'll spare you my anti-300-page-spec-thats-so-complex-you-have-to-devlop-an-essentailly-proprietary-profile-to-implement-it rant. Consider WxS vs. REST-GIS from the viewpoint of the Robustness Principle: "Be conservative in what you do; be liberal in what you accept from others." If you're even meeting half of that, you're doing at least as well as WxS is.