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Thursday, November 30, 2017

GIS Education Weekly: The Search for Happy Cities

Journal of Maps Best Map Award Winner

Daniel M. Stephen & Bernhard Jenny won the Journal Of Maps Best Map of 2017 award. The full paper (open access) is available online.

2017 Information is Beautiful Awards - Some lovely maps and visualizations to explore.

For Students

The AAG invites students to apply to be a Conference Assistant for its annual conference in New Orleans by January 31.

NEGIS offers $1500 scholarships for students (junior, senior, grad student) studying GIS in New England and New York colleges and universities who plan to complete an internship in 2018.  Deadline: January 8. Educators: please let your students (deserving future GIS professionals) know they can get free money to support their studies!


National Geographic: These Are the Happiest Cities in the United States - "...bestselling author Dan Buettner and Gallup’s social scientists teamed up to develop an index that assesses measurable expressions of happiness and identifies where Americans are living their best lives. Designed by Gallup senior scientist Dan Witters, the study established 15 metrics—from eating healthy and learning something new every day to civic engagement, financial security, vacation time, and even dental checkups—that signal happiness. The National Geographic Gallup Special/Blue Zones Index draws on nearly 250,000 interviews conducted with adults from 2014 to 2015 in 190 metropolitan areas across the U.S as part of the Gallup-Sharecare Well Being Index." Idea for an assignment: have students develop their own criteria and create their own maps.

Wired: Mapping the Future: Cartography Stages a Comeback - I agree with a few folks on Twitter who suggest that the authors may be conflating geographer and/or data scientist and/or GIS professional with cartographer. [I run Esri's MOOC program. We are offering a MOOC, Cartography., starting in April.]

Proceedings of GIS Ostrava: Applications of GIS in Analysis of Mars [Abstract only, pay wall] - "The analysis took into account the temperature, slope inclination, the distance from craters and volcanoes and the occurrence of dust and sandstorms, as well as other factors favouring the colonization of the surface of Mars." Summary for the lay public.

CandyStore.com: Top Christmas Candy by State [Interactive Map] - Lots of Skittles, Pez and candy canes.

On and Off Campus

UCR Today: UC Riverside Debuts New Center for Geospatial Sciences - "Launched in late September, the University of California, Riverside’s Center for Geospatial Sciences (CGS) is the campus’s new hub for GIScience research and spatial analysis. Overseen by Founding Director Sergio Rey, a professor of public policy, the center is stationed inside Room 159 of UCR’s Tom├ís Rivera Library and designed to be a university-wide resource."

Worcester Magazine: WPS teacher lobs plagiarism charge at Worcester State study - "A Worcester Public Schools teacher is accusing Worcester State University researchers of plagiarism after they released a report [with maps] this week covering similar ground as the teacher’s 2014 doctoral dissertation." A letter to the editor from a GIS person at Clark added to the defense.

University of Arizona News: UA Researches How Distinct Form of Buddhism Originated - "Traditional historical and textual study will be augmented with digital humanities methodology, including GIS mapping and the creation of a "virtual Hangzhou" in collaboration with the UA's new Center for Digital Humanities."

John Hopkins Hub: Interactive maps chronicle time Frederick Douglass spent in Maryland before making his escape north - "Working with the Maryland Historical Society, the four students combed archives, old newspapers, and census records to trace Douglass' pathways in the 1820s and '30s. Then, with JHU's Sheridan Libraries, they used the ArcGIS digital mapping platform to construct a visual narrative."

The Flat Hat: GIS Finds Its Space On Campus At The Center For Geospatial Analysis - "From combatting public health crises in Africa to creating maps of Middle Earth, Geographic Information Systems are an up-and-coming force on campus. Leading the way in GIS research, events and education is the Center for Geospatial Analysis, which is housed on the second floor of the Earl Gregg Swem Library." The school paper fetes the William and Mary center.

WDBJ7: Virginia Tech team helping grape growers find perfect land for vineyards - "Just last year the Center for Geospatial Information Technology at Virginia Tech launched GeoVine.org, a site for those curious of starting vineyard or starting another."

Ravel Republic: Stevensville Walking Map is good way to exercise and explore - The Stevensville Walking Map was developed by a partnership of Montana State University Extension and the College of Nursing. MSU nursing students Sarah Del Rae and Rhonda Gold’s internship under Katelyn Andersen in the Ravalli County Extension Office, was designed to engage the community in physical activity. Previous interns designed a Hamilton Walking Map [pdf] and held a successful Walk and Win competition last spring.


Class Central: Udacity’s Blitz.com, A Freelancing Platform for Nanodegree Alumni, Shuts Down - "So it seems Udacity doesn’t really need the job guarantee program anymore to attract new Nanodegree students, and that may be one of the reasons why Udacity has decided not to pursue Blitz further." Said another way, the company does not need to provide much more than futuristic nano-degree titles to gain students, many of whom find jobs on their own.

Class Central: Class Central Learner Survey (2017): MOOC Users Highly Educated, Have Experienced Career Benefits - A survey of 2,500 learners worldwide suggests MOOCs are still a thing.

Esri's The Location Advantage MOOC is hosting an Ask Me Anything (AMA) today (Nov 30) at 12:30-1:30 PT. We've been exploring this format to encourage live interaction with students. You are welcome to drop by when we are live or read the transcript afterward!

Programs and Courses

UMaine: GEO 305 (undergraduate) or GEO 605 (graduate) Remote Sensing - Theory and techniques of image processing and analysis for remotely sensed digital data acquired from airplane and satellite platforms. Topics include image enhancement and classifications, spectral analysis, and landscape change detection techniques. Practical applications of natural and built landscapes are considered using remotely sensed datasets and techniques. The spring 2018 course (registration) is online with in-person meetings on USM Portland campus or possible remote attendance with Dr. Firooza Pavri, Environmental Geographer and Remote Sensing Researcher.