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Thursday, February 22, 2018

GIS Education Weekly: Good News in Michigan, Minneapolis; Bad News in Nebraska, Montana


MSU-GEO's Career Day and Job Fair is on Fri, Feb. 23 from 2:30-4:30p in Bessey Hall 108. All are welcome to attend! Want to brush up your resume before the event? Bring your resume to our resume critique session, Tu, Feb 20 at 10a in Geography 105. Via @onGEOatMSU. I love the idea of these events, but it seems online students can only attend in person.

The GeoTech Center provided more information about its regional workshops. There are stipends for teachers, and no registration fees, but travel and lodging are not covered.

Geo:Code is a hackathon at the Hennepin County Library (Minneapolis, MN) set for Saturday, March 24 from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday, March 25 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. It's a place to "learn/brainstorm about using open data to solve civic challenges" and it's free. Via @geocodetc.

Programs and Courses

The University of Vermont will offer a drone course as part of the University of Vermont’s Summer Academy. The Summer Academy is an academically challenging 4-week program (2 weeks on-campus, 2 weeks online) for high school students who have completed 10th, 11th, or 12th grade and are interested in exploring a specific field of study. The course is NR 95: Using Drones to Map, Monitor and Measure our Changing Landscape.

Star Herald: NU system's potential cuts include geography at UNL, baseball at UNK - The geography cuts are significant; they include the University of Nebraska Lincoln's geography bachelor's, master's and doctoral programs. The current faculty webpage (under construction) lists seven faculty members, including an interim head. Responses from professionals and students are appearing.

Montana Kaimin: Cartography lecturer working to prevent poaching in Senegal among those cut - Kevin McManigal, a former lecturer in cartography and GIS at U Montana lead students in making maps for Panthera, a wild cat conservation organization. McManigal was laid off due to budget cuts; some GIS courses remain in place, but some, including advanced cartographic design, are gone. There is good news: McManigal will continue to work with students.


IWITTS: "Your college can now access the same WomenTech Educators Training System that has helped so many community colleges grow their programs and start enrolling more female (and male) students in STEM and CTE courses as soon as the next semester."

Directions Magazine: Can Geospatial Smartness Be Learned, Taught, and Measured? - Diana Sinton continues her series.

Reddit/GIS: The future of GIS - An informal discussion on the topic includes references to cyberGIS and cryptocurrencies.

Reddit/GIS: My ArcGIS teacher sucks & I need help! - Positive responses help a student learn how to learn GIS.

"I have to give a shout out to@CartoGuild when I was leaning how to draw maps their advice and community was indispensable." Via @FinlamElman

JEOS Jena is hosting a course on @GRASSGIS as part of our Master Geoinformatics degree program. The program invites downloads of the course material. Via @JEOS_Jena. For those like me who wondered, Jena is a city in Germany.

Brookings Blog: Does TV bear some responsibility for hard feelings between urban America and small town America? - A look at the "where" of TV shows since 1950 and how American's think about place.

WaPo: Using the best data possible, we set out to find the middle of nowhere - Interesting exploration of the friction of distance, though that concept is not mentioned.


This Insider: A heroic geography teacher died protecting his students from the Florida high school shooter - Geography teachers out on the landscape, including Scott Beigel, are our colleagues. Donations can be made to provide relief and financial support to the victims and families. 

University of Georgia: Amazing StudentsSam Tingle - "I am currently working with NASA doing research through a NASA DEVELOP node here at UGA. This semester, I am working on a team that is using imagery from NASA satellites to assess threats to river water quality and mangrove health in the Osa Peninsula of Costa Rica."

Penn State: Graduate student leverages geography, coding skills to land Google internship - A Ph.D. student interned at Google last summer and tuned an algorithm using geographical data.

Cogentoa: Women in Geoscience: an interview with Claire Parkinson - Parkinson uses satellite imagery in her work with NASA; this is one of many interviews with women in tech on the site. Via @MurrayStateGSC

For Students

Azavea announced that 2018 Summer of Maps paid summer fellowship applications are available. The company hosts student GIS analysts who work with mentors to complete projects for nonprofits. 

On and Off Campus

Clarksville Online: APSU College of STEM starts Drone Racing Team - Austin Peay State University (TN) will use the team to promote the college. Is drone racing the next football?

CityLab - How to 'Queer the Map'—and Fend Off Attack - A school crowdsourcing project goes viral and teaches about privacy and security.

IEEE Spectrum: Accurate Navigation Without GPS - University of Utah researchers use IMUs and other tech installed in a boot to provide decent locating.

Chicago Tribune: MVCC officially an arboretum thanks to 1,300 trees, says international program - Moraine Valley Community College in Palos Hills, IL is both a school and an arboretum. A geography student finished his GIS certificate while mapping the trees.

Education News

E-Literate: Hawai’i Senate OER Bill Update: Amended language saves the day. - The bill in question would require all of the state university campuses to use open education resources. The original version also included an unfunded mandate that required educators to create OER materials if they did not yet exist. The mandate was removed and some funding and evaluation of the program was added.

EdSurge: Can an Online Puzzle Make Geography Fun—and Relevant? - The answer, based on a trial in three elementary classrooms: "We found that PuzzleMap has great potential for improving geoliteracy. Students who used it in conjunction with their social studies curriculum, or as a stand-alone resource, showed statistically significant growth, with test averages increasing by 12 and 8.4 percent, respectively." I suspect the author is not aware of Betteridge's Law of Headlines.

Industry News

Wired: Snap Map Will Now Live outside Snapchat. - "[Until last week] Snap Map lived exclusively inside Snapchat itself. It presented a range of experiences and emotions, but little in the way of context, being divorced from the rest of the web. Users could record or take photos of their screens to bring those videos to the wider internet, but there was no streamlined method. On Monday, Snapchat announced a potential solution to that problem. Beginning today, Snap Map, which has 100 million monthly users, will exist outside of the Snapchat app on a dedicated website." The maps are embeddable but will disappear after 30 days. 

MIT Technology Review: The race to map the world for autonomous cars is on—and messy - The best way to make the required maps is not clear, according to a new study.

Emacsen's Blog: Why OpenStreetMap is in Serious Trouble - One long time advocate's take on the state of the organization and its product.

Tweet: Ban "storytelling" - Alberto Cairo takes on storytelling. I too, have concerns about using the term story, when it doesn't quite fit.

Media Literacy

Spatial Reserves: How to Spot Fake News and Implications for GIS Practitioners - My colleague Jospeh Kerski looks at a new infographic and how it can help us look at maps with care.

Data Society: The Promises, Challenges, and Futures of Media Literacy - A new report offers five suggestions for educators and others who try teach this challenging topic.

Media Literacy Quiz: Is this an authoritative article? GIS/Geography: The Remarkable History of GIS. Back up your answer!