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Thursday, August 9, 2018

GIS Education Weekly: Teachable Moments from Google, US Defense Secretary

Teachable Moments 

Google Maps zooms out to a globe!
Engadget: Google Maps now zooms out to a globe instead of a flat Earth - What do students think about the change that for now is only on the desktop. Does it matter? Will it impact how people understand maps and globes?

The New York Times: As Google Maps Renames Neighborhoods, Residents Fume - Who should decide what places are called? Why?
comedian and broadcaster praises rise in geography entries at GCSE and A-level." Do celebrities impact how our discipline is viewed? Students might consider the impact of other "geography friendly" celebrities like will.i.am and Alex Trebek.

ZDnet: Pentagon bans military from using GPS apps and fitness trackers - "In a memo posted by Deputy Defense Secretary Patrick Shanahan on Monday, the Pentagon revealed the new rules, which will prevent members of the US military on active duty from using fitness trackers, any applications in mobile devices which use GPS, as well as any 'other devices and apps that pinpoint and track the location of individuals.'" While this is one solution to soldiers inadvertently sharing their locations, what other options did the Defense Department have?


NCRGE: NCRGE Funds Research Networks on Geography and Civics, Geo-Computation, and International Curriculum Research - "The third cohort of Transformative Research grantees will begin their research planning and networking activities in July 2018. One research group, under the direction of Rebecca Theobald (University of Colorado Colorado Springs), will focus on geography and civics education in the context of decennial procedures of apportionment and redistricting at the federal level, which will next take place following the 2020 Census. ... A second group, to be led by Chew-Hung Chang (Nanyang Technological University, Singapore), seeks to develop a framework supporting future international comparative analyses of geography curricula in schools. ...Coline Dony (American Association of Geographers) was awarded a grant from NCRGE to organize a group on the topic of geo-computation in undergraduate geography."

On and Off Campus

Weirton Daily Times: Port authority and YSU team up to put area on interactive map - The Columbiana County Port Authority (Ohio) has teamed up with Youngstown State University. YSU Jeff Masccarella is serving as an intern, and will help launch an interactive map detailing area manufacturing information about the companies and industries up and down the Ohio River.

Radio NZ: In case of emergency: Children map community using Lego and Minecraft - "Year five and six students at Maraekakaho School in the Hawkes Bay region, have been using the computer game Minecraft, and Lego bricks, to map their community. Researchers from the University of Auckland, Auckland University of Technology and East Coast LAB came up with the idea to teach children about local hazards and what resources could be useful in an emergency."


Dan Quintana on Twitter: Here are a few tips for repurposing your talk for sharing on social media - A nice follow up to last week's suggestions about not taking questions after a talk. Via @limnoshane.

EdTech Didi: Google Earth Education Experts Unite - Gretel Patch recaps a meeting of Googele Earth Education Experts.

Quote of the Week

This is from Chris Anderson, writing in The Economist. He's CEO of 3D Robotics and founder of DIY Drones and, when I read him regularly, the Editor in Chief at Wired. Via @TimOreilly.
It's time for schools to teach Python, not Java, as their main intro to computer science. Along with being easier to learn and *actually* able to run anywhere on anything (like Basic back in the day), it's the dominant language of AI and computer vision
Programs and Courses

OCCC: GIS technicians are in high demand and OCCC has the degree to help - Oklahoma City Community College will offer an Associates degree in GIS.

New Maps Plus: The new M.S. and previously available certificate from the University of Kentucky are open for applications until Sept 23 (or 24). Prospective students are asked to contact NewwMapsPlus@uky.edu for admission requirements.

The Knight Foundation: Introduction to Mapping and GIS for Journalists - Darla Cameron, senior designer and developer, and Chris Essig, designer and developer from the Texas Tribune, will teach the free, four-week course. It starts August 27; there's a $30 fee for a certificate.