Quote of the Day

“It’s always been the goal and desire of we technologists that as we provide capability that computers are good at — number crunching, file storage, massive databases that can be searched — that it would free us up to do the things that humans do so well, like pattern recognition and putting thoughts together, intuition and innovation.”

–Leonard Kleinrock

2009 New Hampshire Joint Water and Watershed Conference Features GIS Track and Hands-on Workshop

new_hampshire_water_conference The New Hampshire Department of Environmental Services (DES) invites interested watershed stakeholders to attend the annual 2009 New Hampshire Joint Water and Watershed Conference – Focusing on Water Resources: 2020 Vision, on Friday and Saturday, November 20th and 21st, 2009 from 8:15 a.m. – 3:30 p.m., Registration is from 8:15 a.m. – 8:45 a.m. and will be held at the Grappone Conference Center located at 70 Constitutional Avenue in Concord, NH. To find out more about the conference, read about the informative sessions and workshops, and to register for the conference, please visit www.nhrivers.org.

The organizing committees of the annual New Hampshire Watershed Conference and the New Hampshire Water Conference have joined forces to offer a single, comprehensive event for 2009. The purpose of the merger is to combine talent, resources, and audiences from both events into a unique, two-day event designed to meet the information and networking needs of lake, river, and watershed groups; environmental organizations; volunteer monitors; municipal board and staff members; elected officials; local and regional planners; policy makers; scientists; educators; consultants and students. In addition to DES, the conference sponsors include Comprehensive Environmental, Inc., Weston & Sampson, the NH Water Resources Research Center at UNH, Public Service Company of NH, and the U.S. Geological Survey.

On Friday, the conference will kick off with a presentation by Dr. Christine Feurt titled “Headwaters – Developing a Collaborative Conservation Approach to Support Land Use Decision-Making”. Dr. Feurt holds dual positions as the Coastal Training Program Coordinator at the Wells National Estuarine Research Reserve in Wells Maine and the Director of the Center for Sustainable Communities in the Department of Environmental Studies at the University of New England in Biddeford Maine. She has worked for over 40 years as an environmental scientist and educator navigating the interface between science and management. Following the plenary, the conference attendees will then have six concurrent tracks to choose from encompassing 32 sessions including “GIS”, “Stormwater”, “Climate Change”, “Water Infrastructure”, “Watershed Management” and “Land Use/Land Conservation”.

On Saturday, the conference will commence with a session titled “Treading Lightly on the Land: How Growth and Development Can Protect Water Quality” by former Maryland Governor Parris Glendening. Governor Glendening now serves as president of the Smart Growth Leadership Institute and in that capacity he works with local and state government executives to develop innovative and effective approaches to growth and development that protect the environment, ensure economic prosperity and create healthier places to live. In addition to the plenary session, the Saturday conference attendees will have six informative tracks to choose from with 20 sessions including GIS, Stormwater, Climate Change, Organizational Development, Watershed Management, Land Use/Land Conservation.

There is a different audience emphasis each day – Friday’s presentations are designed more for technical/professional audiences while Saturday’s presentations have been developed with lay/volunteer audiences in mind; local officials and state policy makers will find the sessions on both days very informative.

Throughout both days of the conference, attendees will have the opportunity to network with other professionals, policy makers, educators, consultants, local river advisory committees, lake associations, volunteer monitoring groups, watershed associations, and other organizations. In addition, posters and other exhibits from consulting firms, students, and river and lake organizations throughout the state will be on display.

The cost to attend the conference is $35/day or $50 for both days; if you register online before November 13th. There is an additional $20 fee for those who choose to attend the Geographic Information System (GIS) 2-hour hands-on workshops. The registration fee includes light breakfast, the plenary, lunch, two 60-minute sessions, a two-hour hands-on workshop, and display session. Registrants are also provided with an option to join the New Hampshire Rivers Council and the NH Lakes Association at a special rate. This conference provides a state-wide forum for learning and networking about issues related to water resources in New Hampshire. You won’t want to miss this opportunity!

If you would like more information or have any questions regarding the conference, please call Josh Cline, Executive Director of NH Rivers Council at ( 603 ) 228-6472 or email at josh@nhrivers.org, or you can call Laura Weit, Acting Rivers Coordinator at DES at ( 603 ) 271-8811 or email her at laura.weit@des.nh.gov.

THE REGISTRATION DEADLINE IS FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 13, 2009. Late registration will be accepted on the day of the conference at a cost of $45/day or $65 for both days. So, be sure to register early!

As part of this two-day conference, the NH Rivers Council is hosting the Wild and Scenic Environmental Film Festival on Friday evening which will be held at the Red River Theaters, 11 South Main Street in Concord, NH. For more information about this exciting event, please see the NH Rivers website for more details at www.nhrivers.org.

[Source: press release]

Using GIS for Air Quality Management and Air Pollution Assessment: A Bibliography

Addressing Ambient Air Pollution in Jakarta, Indonesia

Air Pollution Sources in South Coast Air Basin—Impacts of Meteorology, Terrain, and Other Sources

Using GIS to Investigate Children’s Exposure to Air Pollution

Managing Air Quality Information in Tehran Using GIS

Spatial modelling of air pollution in urban areas with GIS: a case study on integrated database development

Carbon Dioxide Sequestration Communications Supported by GIS

Dust Mapping in Arizona Uses GIS and Satellite Imagery

Mapping Ozone Conditions Across Europe in Real Time

How GIS Is Changing Loma Linda University Medical Center’s View of the World

Automating the Use of Geostatistical Tools for Lake Tahoe Area Study

Case Study: The Atlanta Environmental Project Problems and Challenges Students Produce GIS Databases

Integrating Computational Models with GIS in Engineering Applications

Method to Compare Maps That Show a Direction Variable

Visualization and Analysis of Multidimensional Data: Atmospheric Data Modeling

Using ArcGIS in Environmental Monitoring at Idaho National Laboratory

Modeling Air Quality in the Las Vegas Region

TCEQ—Environmental Monitoring Response System, Part 2

Community-Based Evaluation of Air Pollutants Using GIS

Geospatial Modeling of Ship Traffic and Air Emissions

A GIS-Based Kriging Approach for Exploring Air Pollutants and Asthma

Acid Deposition Response to the 1995 Clean Air Act Amendment

Use of GIS Databases in Urban Air Quality Modeling

Fighting Bombs with Social Science

wired…from Wired Magazine

“In 2005, Col. Steve Fondacaro, then-head of the Joint Improvised Explosive Device Defeat Task Force in Baghdad, received a laptop filled with software that attempted to map out the country’s cultural landscape. The laptop — designed in part by anthropologist Montgomery McFate — was supposed to help commanders understand the social networks that supported insurgent bombmaking cells.

“He promptly threw the laptop out. But the idea lived. That effort would lead directly to the Human Terrain System, the Army’s controversial effort to tap social science research to support counterinsurgency campaigns in Iraq and Afghanistan. Now things are coming full circle: JIEDDO, the organization that jump-started the human terrain program, is planning a major new investment in social science research. Total price tag: $140 million for the upcoming fiscal year.”

The 13th AGILE International Conference on Geographic Information Science

AGILE_Logo_kleinAGILE 2010: “Geospatial Thinking”

11-14 May 2010 in Guimarães, Portugal

AGILE 2010 builds on the success of previous conferences in this series held in Crete (April 2004), in Estoril (May 2005), Visegrad (April 2006), Aalborg (May 2007), Girona (May 2008) and Hannover (June 2009).

AGILE 2010 will take place in Guimarães, Portugal. Guimarães is one of the Portugal’s UNESCO World Heritage cities recognized by its beauty and historical monuments.

The conference venue will take place at the Vila Flor Cultural Centre. This Cultural Centre was inaugurated in September, 2005, and incorporates the 18th century Vila Flor Palace, with its magnificent gardens and charming architecture, and a new design building added on to hold all types of cultural events.

Call for Papers

On behalf of the AGILE council, we invite you to participate at the 13th AGILE International Conference on Geographic Information Science, scheduled to take place in Guimarães, Portugal.

The program will offer parallel paper presentation sessions, keynote sessions, poster sessions and pre-conference workshops to share your ideas, explore on-going research, future developments, including state-of-the-art applications, and to network with the professionals from academia, industry, and government who are interested in promoting GI teaching and research activities among GI laboratories at the European level.

Conference Topics

Contributions are invited on all topics within the fields of geoinformation, geomatics and geocomputation, including (but not limited to):

  • Perception and Representation of Geographic Phenomena
  • Cognitive Aspects of Human-Computer Interaction for Geographic Information Systems
  • Spatial and Spatiotemporal Data Modelling and Reasoning
  • Spatial and Spatiotemporal Data Analysis
  • Spatial and Spatiotemporal Data Visualisation
  • Spatial and Spatiotemporal Data Mining and Knowledge Discovery
  • Spatial Semantics and Spatiotemporal Ontologies
  • Semantic Web and GIS
  • Web Services, Geospatial Systems and Real-time Applications
  • Location Based Services and Mobile GI Applications
  • Geospatial Decision Support Systems
  • Public Participation GIS and Participatory uses of Geospatial Information Systems and Technologies
  • Volunteered Geographic Information
  • GIScience Education and Training
  • Demographic and Socioeconomic Modelling
  • Environmental/Ecological and Urban/Regional Modelling
  • Health and Medical Informatics
  • Natural Resources Management and Monitoring
  • Disaster and Risk Management
  • Geosensor Networks

Download call for papers [PDF]

Visit the AGILE2 2010 web site

Local Indicators of Geocoding Accuracy (LIGA): Theory and Application

plagueInternational Journal of Health Geographics 2009, 8:60

Geoffrey M Jacquez, Robert Rommel


Although sources of positional error in geographic locations (e.g. geocoding error) used for describing and modeling spatial patterns are widely acknowledged, research on how such error impacts the statistical results has been limited. In this paper we explore techniques for quantifying the perturbability of spatial weights to different specifications of positional error.


We find that a family of curves describes the relationship between perturbability and positional error, and use these curves to evaluate sensitivity of alternative spatial weight specifications to positional error both globally (when all locations are considered simultaneously) and locally (to identify those locations that would benefit most from increased geocoding accuracy). We evaluate the approach in simulation studies, and demonstrate it using a case-control study of bladder cancer in south-eastern Michigan.


Three results are significant. First, the shape of the probability distributions of positional error (e.g. circular, elliptical, cross) has little impact on the perturbability of spatial weights, which instead depends on the mean positional error. Second, our methodology allows researchers to evaluate the sensitivity of spatial statistics to positional accuracy for specific geographies. This has substantial practical implications since it makes possible routine sensitivity analysis of spatial statistics to positional error arising in geocoded street addresses, global positioning systems, LIDAR and other geographic data. Third, those locations with high perturbability (most sensitive to positional error) and high leverage (that contribute the most to the spatial weight being considered) will benefit the most from increased positional accuracy. These are rapidly identified using a new visualization tool we call the LIGA scatterplot. Herein lies a paradox for spatial analysis: For a given level of positional error increasing sample density to more accurately follow the underlying population distribution increases perturbability and introduces error into the spatial weights matrix. In some studies positional error may not impact the statistical results, and in others it might invalidate the results. We therefore must understand the relationships between positional accuracy and the perturbability of the spatial weights in order to have confidence in a study’s results.

The Washington Times: Geographic Awareness Needed

TWTlogo…from The Washington Times

“For decades, geographers have noted that the key to better planning for wars, disasters, climate shifts or any other major force of change is a broader understanding of their spatial dimensions. They also have demonstrated time after time that a lack of geographic awareness about the peoples and places affected by war, natural and other disasters often exacerbates the misery and compounds the challenges to effective recovery. New technologies such as geographic information and global positioning systems can help build awareness about changing environments, and they can provide the foundation upon which meaningful spatial analysis, and thus appropriate policy, is created.”

Why Your Doctor Should Know Where You Have Lived

sciam…from Scientific American

“Genes and how you live are important to good health—but where you live is also critical, and its importance has been overlooked in the past. At the TED MED conference yesterday, Bill Davenhall, global marketing manager, health and human services solutions at ESRI, a geographic information system developer, made a compelling plea to add a history of places to medical information that doctors review. “TED” is for technology, entertainment, design; the conference runs from October 27 through 30 at the Hotel Del Coronado in San Diego.”

Map of the Day: Bedrock Geology Map of the Wolfville-Windsor Area

…from the ESRI Map Book, Volume 24


“This bedrock geology map of the Windsor-Wolfville area, Nova Scotia, was compiled at a scale of 1:50,000. ArcGIS software was used to digitize the map, design and populate the databases, and produce the cartographic product, including shaded relief illumination of the geology using a digital elevation model.

“The map includes features such as bedrock units, anticlines, synclines, drill holes, faults, mineral occurrences, outcrops, shafts, trenches, quartz veins, structural data, glacial striations, quarries, and karst topography.

“The area comprises a number of important geological terrains in Nova Scotia, including Triassic-Jurassic zeolite-bearing basalt of the North Mountain; Triassic sedimentary rock in the eastern end of the Annapolis Valley; carboniferous rocks of the Windsor Group, containing some of the largest gypsum quarries in the world; Cambro-Ordovician metasediments of the gold-producing Meguma Group; Devonian uranium- and tin-bearing granitic rocks of the South Mountain Batholith; and Devonian to Carboniferous zinc- and barite-bearing rocks of the Horton Group.

“Acknowledgments: GIS databases and cartographic work by Angie L. Ehler, Jeff S. McKinnon, Brian E. Fisher, and other staff members of the Geoscience Information Services Section.

“Courtesy of Nova Scotia Department of Natural Resources, Mineral Resources Branch.”