Best Day of the Year – 2011 Edition

MLB Opening Day Scoreboard

Put me in coach, I’m ready to play!

Thoughts Could be “Tabled”

RRW is reporting that sources say and other open gov sites could be turned off.

Today the Sunlight Foundation and Federal News Radio reported that the public projects,,, IT Dashboard and as well as a number of internal government sites including, FedSpace and many of the efforts related the FEDRamp cloud computing cybersecurity effort would be taken offline in coming weeks due to budget cuts by Congress.

So the spring of open data websites has hit the autumn of budget cuts. Don’t worry about bigger budget issues as our government is totally on top of things. Remain calm, all is well…


New York City Census Analysis — Using Google Fusion Tables

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again. Simple wins out every time. Case in point, working with demographic information. Sure you can spin it up all up in a spatial database, analyse it with R and then output some pretty PDFs. Or just roll it all in to Google Fusion Tables and output this beautiful thing.

WNYC 2010 Census Maps

John Keefe shows how he did it. Spoiler alert!

Using Google Fusion Tables made it super easy to manage, map and serve up a lot of data. And the FT feedback team was fantastic about responding to questions and glitches I encountered along the way.


NoGIS – The Engine Behind NeoGeography

So another year has gone by and we need yet another meme to wrap our hands around. Strait from the NeoGeography crew, we’ve got something new we can play with.


As with anything, everyone is quick to say we’ve all been doing this since the 1960’s so ignore it and move on unless you’ve got one of the following to accomplish:

  1. Give talk at some 2.0 conference, NoGIS will put fannies in the seats.
  2. Want to write a book; clearly we need textbooks on the subject.
  3. Need differentiator between your product and ArcSDE/PostGIS/SQL Server/Oracle Spatial
  4. Just like to shoot the shit about crap

The NoGIS Club line forms at the right folks.

NoGIS Club

The NoGIS Club is forming, no Esri allowed!


Heading to TUgis 2011

By this time tomorrow night, I’ll be in balmy (I can only assume so as it’s been in the low 90s here in Tempe. I assume the rest of the country is dry and warm as well) Baltimore, MD at Towson University for the 2011 edition of TUgis. I’ll be giving a talk on scripting and GIS (Now before you get all depressed, trust me it will be fun plenary stuff, not dry keynote fare) that I’m sure you won’t want to miss.


OpenGeo Releases OpenGeo Suite Enterprise Edition 2.4.0

What else to do on a gloriously sunny day (Well at least here in Tempe, AZ – YMMV) than release OpenGeo Suite Enterprise Edition 2.4.0? The OpenGeo Blog has all the details but I’ll highlight a couple that I think are pretty important.

  • OpeGeo Suite Enterprise Edition 2.4.0 has a nice long name that is hard to say like all enterprise software packages. Kudos to OpenGeo for realizing this and supplying a name only an enterprise would love.
  • Lastest versions of all the OpenGeo Suite packages – staying on top is critical.
  • Analytics so you can either show off your popular site or see that no one loves your maps.
  • GeoExplorer updates including all those great new maps.

Clearly, you could waste your time somewhere else (Was there something going on this week?) or check this stuff out.

OpenGeo Suite; it’s bona fide!


LBS and Fusion Tables and Vector Tiling, Oh My!

Another week has passed and we are all still alive and kicking. Humanity never fails to surprise me. Anyway, Geo (That is “Geo” with a big “G” vs “geo” with a little “g”) continues to roll on and keep us excited.

  • Skyhook Wireless and Sony are hooking up to give the next generation PSP some location capabilities. Good news for Skyhook, but aren’t devices like the PSP and Nintendo DS on their way out? I guess we’ll see this summer when everyone is playing the latest EA games on their iOS devices.
  • Work with R? Check out RStudio! IDEs are usually hit and miss with me but this has enough awesome to warrant a download. (HT: PHXGeo)
  • Protected Maps in Google Fusion Tables? Yes please! 2011 may be the year of Google Fusion Tables (oh and the iPad 2, right?).
  • Google Maps labels look better, but why? Justin again analyses how Google does this and compares it to Bing and Yahoo!. I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, you’ve got to be following Justin’s blog!
  • IBM puts out a weird blog series on the “The Case Against Google Maps in IBM Cognos Reports” (parts two and three). To me I’m left wondering where the content is on that case to use Esri map services. They sum it up this way, “In solid Boolean logic: NOT Cognos BI AND Google Maps.” Say whaaat?
  • Lastly, Matt Kenny brings us the awesome that is TileStache. Seriously now, why are we still using WxS and Esri ArcGIS Services? (Sure, you can give me thousands of edge cases where such overhead is needed, but rarely does one need such things. We need to break out of our bad practices and embrace the future). Read Matt’s blog and get cracking. Bonus points for rolling TileMill and TileStache together!

Esri Releases ArcGIS API for JavaScript 2.2

Just in time for the Esri Developer Summit, Esri has pushed out the ArcGIS API for JavaScript (Horrible name, but great API). Esri says it includes “many oft-requested features that will improve the usability of the Web apps you build”. If that doesn’t get you excited there is always the “What’s new in Version 2.2” in the docs with lots of samples.

On a related note, did anyone else notice that Flash Gordon (with help from Prince Vultan and the Hawkmen) attacked the War Rocket Ajax (Yes, Ajax. Weird huh?) in the movie Flash Gordon? Every time I hear someone talk about Flex/Flash I too want to scream, “repel all boarders”.