Jack Dangermond, founder and president of Esri welcomed 16,000 attendees from 130 countries to the Esri International User Conference this morning in San Diego. The event began with a tour of user-generated maps detailing natural resources, transportation, telecommunications and utilities, building management, business analysis, human health, public safety and security, disaster preparedness and response, and many others.
The Enterprise GIS Award this year went to Irish Water (Paul Ahern) who realized a countrywide GIS for the water utility. A 12-month deployment with a dashboard, analytics, and field solution. The President’s Award went to the National Audubon Society who are sharing conservation data via story maps to share information both internally and externally.
GIS goes beyond the science, providing a framework and process to apply geography, bringing measurement, modeling, predicting, analysis, design and planning, decision making and ultimately action. This cycle is at the heart of what GIS is about, creating information-based understanding leading to rational action. It is becoming essential to how organizations think and act. The measurement, integration, insight, automation, and holistic thinking are leading to smarter action.
According to Jack, we are entering a period of geographic enlightenment as a framework for creating a better world — understanding the interconnectedness of things and our planet and applying this knowledge everywhere.
GIS is evolving with a new pattern and understanding with more data inputs (UAS and smallest), more portable access (any device), and is much easier to use. GIS is undergoing a transformational architecture with real-time and connected GIS that empowers GIS professionals by moving data and map products to apps.
With Web GIS we open up access that allows all to participate. Delivering engaging apps will awaken the world to the power of GIS.