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Perspectives

Tuesday, February 5th, 2013

Do the Google-sponsored research reports shed new light on the Geo services industry?

This past week, Google unveiled two reports they commissioned that take a close look at both the domestic (U.S.) and global market for Geo services. The reports were prepared for Google by The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) for the domestic portion, and Oxera for the global take. Both studies are keyed toward three outcomes: the

Tuesday, January 29th, 2013

Has your organization broken free of siloed departments along with systems?

There has been a big push over the years to open up systems for more of an enterprise-oriented view, rather than fiefdoms of domains. This move has been largely successful across many enterprises through the benefits of databases, web services, and cloud-based resources. Now that data is freer to mix and interact, it’s possible to

Tuesday, January 15th, 2013

If GIS is media, are geospatial analysts journalists?

The idea that GIS is new media grows with relevance as we move toward more real-time insights, and as spatial analysis is being used widely to develop and enhance news stories. This concept was coined by Daniel Sui and Michael Goodchild in a guest editorial that appeared in the Intl. Journal of Geographical Information Science in

Tuesday, January 8th, 2013

If mapping is never done, then how far done are we?

One beauty of a geographical systems pursuit is the never-ending to-do list of items that need mapping. Where we once charted unknown lands, and added place names, today’s tools allow us to catalog many more attributes, and monitor change through modeled and simulated captured reality. We’ve come so far in our mapping abilities in a

Tuesday, December 18th, 2012

Ten Predictions for 2013

Much time is spent this time of year looking forward. Sensors & Systems spent some time reflecting on emerging stories and growing trends to come up with the following predictions for 2013. On the list are technology advancements, policy initiatives and the continued evolution of model-based design. Read the full list and please add your

Tuesday, December 11th, 2012

Top Ten of 2012

In our regular end-of-the-year reflection, Sensors & Systems looks back over the past 12 months to come up with the top developments of 2012 that will have strong implications for geospatial industry growth and diversity in the coming years. Making the list are technology disruptions, acquisitions, modeling frameworks, mapping efforts and global change. Read the

Tuesday, December 4th, 2012

In the infrastructure modeling space, do the 5 percent hold back the 95 percent?

The world’s top design firms make up a disproportionate majority of the users of professional design software tools. Autodesk has been quoted in the past as saying 5% of customers make up 95% of revenue. While that mix may not hold true today, other large AEC software providers likely have a similar skewing, because the

Monday, November 19th, 2012

Now that the election is over, are geospatial practitioners better off?

It’s been a few weeks since the election outcome, and it’s fitting to take a look at some of the implications of the election for geospatial practitioners. While it’s impossible to know what types of policies would have been enacted by an unelected candidate, it is fitting to consider some of the policy directives under

Monday, November 5th, 2012

How much of the geospatial industry is dedicated to discovering more about the known unknowns?

Nate Silver, the statistics mind behind the “Moneyball” changes in baseball recruiting, has just written a book titled, ‘The Signal and the Noise.’ Within it, he outlines a broad number of complex questions where we just can’t predict an outcome with any degree of probability. The book essentially becomes a catalog of the known unknowns

Monday, October 29th, 2012

Can we move beyond prediction to synchronized action?

This past week saw a travesty of justice when Italian scientists were convicted of manslaughter because they didn’t adequately prepare citizens for the severity of an earthquake that took the lives of 300 people. The membership of the scientists on the National Commission for the Forecast and Prevention of Major Risks, translated into responsibility in the

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