Sensors and Systems
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Monday, July 15th, 2013

Sensors for a Multi-Purpose World

A lot has changed in the geospatial industry since I started my career back in the early 1980s. GIS software today has a level of sophistication that we could have only dreamed of back then. Digital technology and the Internet have transformed how we do business and how customers utilize imagery. And the geospatial industry

Monday, April 15th, 2013

Sensor Sensibility: Communications Design Considerations for Energy Efficiency

One of the key design constraints in the deployment of a sensor network is the optimization of power consumption and energy efficiency. A problem familiar to those working with embedded devices is the need to eke out every possible capability while working within a set of hard and fast constraints.

Tuesday, January 8th, 2013

Making Sense of Geospatial Intelligence

For the past decade – especially in the wake of the devastating 9/11 attacks – the provision of real-time, actionable intelligence to the security services and to the warfighter has been a major goal for the intelligence community. The proliferation of geospatial data – whether from UAVs, LiDAR, remote sensing or commercial satellite imagery –

Thursday, December 6th, 2012

Speaking to Mapmakers About Our Social Machines

Good data, more data, more accurate data; these are not sufficient to solve our world’s social and environmental problems. With these data, we can map the polygons of poverty like we map political preferences or climate change, but they are not sufficient to explain the social mechanisms that create and maintain poverty. Without understanding and

Thursday, December 6th, 2012

So What Do You Do? On the Need for a Professional Geo Identity

“So, what do you do?”—it’s the dreaded question whenever I meet someone new. Dreaded because I can’t really sum up what I do to myself, let alone to someone else. How I answer often depends on my level of investment with the person.

Wednesday, November 21st, 2012

Laser Scanning Provides a Uniquely Detailed Map

The European LiDAR Mapping Forum (ELMF), which takes place in Salzburg from 4-5 December 2012,  is all about innovation and step change in a market which benefits all sectors of the population. The Conference’s objectives are simply to spread the word about the latest advances in the laser scanning and mapping market, launching new technologies

Monday, September 24th, 2012

Is All Crowdsourced Data Valid for the Geospatial Sector?

For many years, major governmental agencies, like the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) and the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA), have been embracing new and innovative ways for accessing and sharing crowdsourced data through social networks. While this is a natural progression for organizations to access data for decision making, it begs the question: is all

Tuesday, September 18th, 2012

Security Breaches Reveal Need to Integrate Sensor Systems into Intelligent Networks

Two well-publicized incursions at heavily protected U.S. facilities this summer illustrate the glaring weaknesses that still remain in high-tech perimeter security systems. Although the breaches were ultimately benign, the incidents at JFK Airport in New York and the Y-12 nuclear weapons plant in Tennessee serve as not-so-subtle reminders of the high stakes involved in safeguarding

Monday, June 25th, 2012

Sensor Sensibility: Sensors Transform the Information Ecosystem

Welcome to the inaugural issue of Sensor Sensibility. This column will focus on a number of topics related to sensors ranging from sensor platforms to sensor data, standards to architectures. Sensors are transforming the information ecosystem, providing an opportunity for real-time data acquisition of ambient conditions.

Monday, March 5th, 2012

Vast Sensors, Big Data: Big Opportunities

Every ten years or so, we achieve a technological breakthrough that drives innovation for the next decade. We are coming out of the age of emergence of the Internet, which has seen this enabling technology move from novel to ubiquitous. By 2010, cell phones and smart phones were on the path to becoming standard, with

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