Italian Baseball Stadiums in GeoJSON

I’ve been working at cleaning up all the GeoJSON-Ballparks records this past month. While the MLB stadiums and many of the AAA minor league teams have been updated, the international and small market teams have not. Some were out of data by almost 5 years. Long tail baseball stadiums are what they are and I’m working on automating much of this moving forward. The last two leagues that I’m updating are the Italian Baseball League and the German Bundesliga League. I hope to finish Germany tonight but I did post Italy yesterday.

Ballparks of the Italian Baseball League in GeoJSON

While Italy can’t go out and enjoy baseball just yet, at least their top tier baseball league has been mapped. If you’re looking for some live baseball, check out streaming Korean KBO League league (I’ve been watching the Giants of course). The next live stream will be on March 25th at approximately 7:40pm PDT.

No More Boot

So the doctor said my boot can come off my foot. Things are looking really good which I can’t tell you how happy that makes me.

So I’m not clomping around all over the place which should make my wife much happier.

No, this wasn’t me exactly, but imagine the sound and you’ve got it. Those hardwood floors I put have an amazing echo…

Well I’m not out of the woods yet, I still can’t do much beyond walk and even that still hurts. But at least I don’t wake the baby girl as I walk around the house. I see the doctor in 3 more weeks (assuming the world doesn’t come to an end) and then maybe I start therapy.

Bing Maps and COVID-19 (Updated)

Update (03/23/2020): It looks like Microsoft has made some good changes. They now tell you when the data was updated and the news links work much better. I can see myself using this over other maps because it is so simple. Simple is quick.

There are no shortage of COVID-19 maps online. EVERYONE has one so why even bother posting one? Well I looked back on my blog posts and the last time I posted anything about a Microsoft map was back in 2006 and that was when it was called Virtual Earth. Well here it goes, the Bing COVID Tracker.

According to the info section, the data is from the CDC, WHO, ECDC and Wikipedia. It is a pretty bare map and if you didn’t see the Bing logo in the upper left or the Microsoft credits in the lower right, you might not even think it was a Microsoft product. There is no notification as to how often the data is updated but it appears that when I’m checking at the time of this post, it is current for the past hour. If you click on a state you get information about the cases and links to news articles about COVID-19 in that state. Pretty basic as you can see from the Arizona view below. COVID and Biden…

This feels more like a mashup than a multi billion dollar companies attempt to education the public to the threat of COVID-19. A real shame as events such as this usually bring out the best in technology, this attempt by Microsoft feels so very dated. At least I got to post my first Bing map….

Self-quarantine Blog Cleaning

I’ve spent the last week cleaning up old blog posts. You won’t see them live just yet, I have a dev version of this blog that I’ve been playing around with. What I’ve done is search all posts for any links that don’t go 200 and then either attempt to find a corresponding version in the Way Back Machine or if a source doesn’t exist (using CSS) make a modification to the post indicating that the link is no longer valid.

Touching 2400 blog posts is dangerous stuff…

I’m also cleaning up the categories and tags which I think have little value anymore. I think at one point people subscribed to tags/categories in a blog, but search really has taken that over. So the complexity of tagging or categorizing posts really doesn’t make sense. I mean I like to think someone is coming to my blog and saying, “Hey look there, he’s got a category for Virtual Earth” but I seriously doubt it.

I’m also playing around with AWS Lightsail. I’ve been using it for this dev version of the blog and I might try it with production. Linode seems to be cheaper, but I like having more of my things on AWS rather than a little bit all over the place.

I hope to push up the changes to the blog here this week. I really feel that given I have almost 2400 blog entries with over 400,000 words. Checking old blog posts has really shown me how much we’ve lost. So many people, blogs and information has been lost forever. This is a shame because I learned so much by reading what others had written. I hope that while not every one of those 400,000 words has value, the majority of this blog helps people and in turn, preserving what I’ve written will always be a priority.

I had to have written something at some point worth saving…

Surreal Saturday

It’s hard not to read about all the doom and gloom (rightly so) that is about to head down on this great country. I’m expecting next week to make last week look boring. I’m still stuck in the house with my foot but the weather finally cleared today and I’ve been sitting on the patio look at the golfers on the 9th green. Whatever madness is going on elsewhere, right here the world is normal and beautiful. Boy do I hope it stays that way.

9th green on the Arroyo Course at Gainey Ranch GC

Friday the 13th

So what a week, am I right? I’m trying to put everything into perspective but I can’t. I just went down to the Safeway to get some beer and it was like end of days. Apparently I should be stocking up on beans and tuna fish by looking at the isles. Top it all off, we’ve had more rain in this past week than I can recall, thanks California.

Since there is nothing to do anymore and I probably don’t want to be around people right now, I think I’m going to work on cleaning up my old blog entries and fix deal Google links this weekend. I’ve moved this blog so many times and so many different blogging engines, that many entries go 404. I think I’m also going to try and relink dead links using Archive.org so the context of what I was linking to still works. This is a daunting task of course, I have almost 2400 blog posts to go through.

Stay safe everyone!

Foot Surgery Self-quarantine

I felt sorry for myself with my achilles surgery. That I couldn’t go out, see spring training games, have brunch in crowded restaurants with all the spring tourists.

No, I picked the best time to get my foot operated on. I’m able to give it the rest it needs because there is no where to go. I feel lucky that I was able to time this so perfectly for myself and my family.

Please, everyone. Stay safe!

The Story Behind Earthgoogle

If you search my blog you’ll find an interesting post titled earthgoogle. Well it really isn’t that interesting, it just has a link to download Google Earth and a link to my blog. So what is this thing and why does it have such a weird title?

For those that might not remember, 2005 was a crazy time for GIS blogs. Katrina brought satellite imagery to everyone and people searched the internet for ways to find out more. Google Earth was probably the easiest and best way for the average person to learn more about satellite imagery and get some really helpful tools to mark up the area.

This was about as amazing as anything anyone had seen outside of our industry.

About this time in September 2005, I noticed a lot of people arriving to my blog due to the search term “earthgoogle”. So as most people who blogged back then, I loved to talk about blogging. I created a simple blog post asking what was this all about.

To all those reaching this site using MSN search with the term “earthgoogle” hello. You’ve been filling up my server logs with this request. I’m curious why you’ve typed this in to only MSN search and not Google/Yahoo/other search engines.

So obvious, right? MSN users, not typing a URL correctly? Anyway, what this blog post of mine actually did was make this page the number one result in Google for the search term “earthgoogle”. I got so much traffic by being the way most people, who didn’t understand how URLs work, find Google Earth. Eventually I changed the page to what you see now.

I put Google AdSense on that page too. I mean everywhere (really wished I took a screen shot because it was so tacky). The result from that tacky was that I was making over $1,000 a month in ad revenue from that blog post alone. People who wanted to find “earthgoogle” apparently also like to click on ads.

Eventually the page died down, people stopped being directed to my blog via search for “earthgoogle”. I probably pulled ads off the blog in 2006 and couldn’t care less. But the page remains, a reminder of how crazy Google Earth was back in 2005.

Software That Changed Your Life – 2020 Edition

Way back in 2006, I wrote a blog post called Software that Changed Your Life.

Well that might be a big title for this post, but I was talking with some folks over the weekend about software you’ve used or software that has really influenced your life. I think many people say Google Earth has changed how they view data, but for me it really wasn’t that impressive since Google Earth is more of a validation of what we’ve done over the years than a life changer

I thought it would be fun to look at how things have changed since then. My job is very different, I can’t remember the last time I created a map or changed cartography in a mapping product. I think one can look at that 2006 list as how I got to the point that I lived the rest of my life. So here is the updated list:

  1. HyperCard – I just can’t stress enough how much this changed my life. The concept of a database and visualization. The scripting language on the backend, and everything that eventually become the web (buttons, forms, etc) on the front. I’d like to think that I would have learned to program a different way, but teaching myself Hypercard is exactly how I go to where I am today.
  2. BBEdit – to this day I still use BBEdit. I think I purchased my first copy back in about 1994 and I’ve used it probably every day since then. I’m sure I’ve used every text editor. Today I use BBEdit, VS Code and of course Nano, yet I find myself in BBEdit more than anything else. I taught myself Grep using BBEdit and probably after a hypertext markup language, Grep has done more for me than just about anything. From JSON to Python, from CSS to GeoJSON, from JavaScript to Perl, I write it all right here.
  3. Perl – I was going to put JavaScript here. I probably should have put JavaScript here. But I have to be honest, the scripting language that got me thinking about scripting was Perl. I rarely use it anymore, other than pulling some script out of a folder and running it one off. I use Python more for my scripting or JavaScript. But from the time I bought the first edition of Programming Perl I was hooked.
  4. PostGIS – So another one I thought about. Elastic? MS Access? DBF? SQL Server? I mean what database should be the one that changed my life. It has to be PostGIS. Without it I would probably have put MySQL right here. But no, it’s PostGIS. The reason this blog was created was to learn more about PostGIS and how to get that damn thing installed on Windows Server. Some day on my newsletter I’ll write about the impact of Simple Features for SQL. From the moment in 2005 when I got PostGIS working until today, I’ve always had PostGIS running somewhere near me.
  5. Safe FME – Sadly I don’t use FME anymore. But let me be crystal clear here. There is no better tool out there to help you manage data. I probably should find myself a copy of it and run it again. At WeoGeo we used it for everything. I’ve used it while at Architecture firms, Engineering firms, startups and in between. Data is agnostic and using a tool that is helps keep the integrity of data. Before FME I spent so much time trying to keep all the data in one format and in one projection (I was young, let me be), but when I was able to drag a reader on to a workspace, throw up a transformer and then connect that to a writer, I was hooked. FME should be standard issue for any true Geospatial data user.

Some other software that didn’t make the list but could have and I didn’t mention above? GDAL/OGR, Tippecanoe, ArcGIS, Excel, Google Earth and Photoshop. Such a personal list and one I think changes over time. I think the core of what makes me who I am is up there, but it is also up in that 2006 list too. For fun you can look at the Way Back Machine and see the comments on that blog post. I see Sean Gillies, Morten Nielsen, Brian Timoney, Steve Pousty, Bill Dollins, and others in that list.

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