GeoDesign Track at the ESRI UC: A Note from Eric Wittner

Greetings fellow GeoDesigners,

This year as part of the ESRI User Conference in San Diego we are holding a GeoDesign Track, a day long program of presentations encompassing the world of GeoDesign and GIS. The track is composed of four sessions. All sessions will happen in the Marriot Marina, room Salon F, with the exception of the lunch which will be held in the Marriot Hall rooms 4, 5 and 6.

The first session provides attendees with an Introduction to GeoDesign, and highlights what it means in terms of its concepts, methods, and supporting technologies. GeoDesign will be defined and characterized to differentiate the concept from traditional design and GIS processes. This will be followed with a demonstration showing how ESRI technology can be utilized to support the GeoDesign workflow.

The second session will establish the need to develop a functional definition of the notion of “geo-design” as it relates to smart growth and land use planning. It will demonstrate the value of using ArcGIS editing tools in land use planning, modeling, and policy making. By utilizing the customized modeling and sketching capabilities of ArcGIS, planners and policy makers can successfully enhance collaboration, scenario generation, monitoring of implications, evaluation and ongoing feedback, and selection of preferred scenarios that mitigate environmental ramifications, enhance economic vitality, and foster social equity.

There will be a Wacom-sponsored lunch session, highlighting the role of sketching and inference in the GeoDesign workflow. This session will examine new editing and reporting features available with ArcGIS 10. We’ll look at how the new features, combined with existing geoprocessing capabilities, as well as custom charting and feedback tools come together to form a platform for GeoDesign.

The final session will be a series of Lightning Talks, providing an opportunity for ESRI users to share their GeoDesign related work with attendees. These talks will be clear, quick, and informal presentations highlighting innovative applications of GIS technology to design problems.

If you have time, I invite you to join us for these sessions, and I encourage you to recommend them to your friends, colleagues, and fellow conference go’ers.

Thank you,

Eric Wittner
Product Engineer: 3D GIS, GeoDesign
ESRI, Redlands

Benefits of Tropical Forest Management under the New Climate Change Agreement—A Case Study in Cambodia

Environmental Science & Policy, In Press, Corrected Proof, Available online 26 May 2010

Nophea Sasaki and Atsushi Yoshimoto

“Promoting sustainable forest management as part of the reduced emissions from deforestation and degradation in developing countries (REDD)-plus mechanism in the Copenhagen Accord of December 2009 implies that tropical forests will no longer be ignored in the new climate change agreement. As new financial incentives are pledged, costs and revenues on a 1-ha tract of tropical forestland being managed or cleared for other land use options need to be assessed so that appropriate compensation measures can be proposed. Cambodia’s highly stocked evergreen forest, which has experienced rapid degradation and deforestation, will be the first priority forest to be managed if financial incentives through a carbon payment scheme are available. By analyzing forest inventory data, we assessed the revenues and costs for managing a hypothetical 1 ha of forestland against six land use options: business-as-usual timber harvesting (BAU-timber), forest management under the REDD-plus mechanism, forest-to-teak plantation, forest-to-acacia plantation, forest-to-rubber plantation, and forest-to-oil palm plantation. We determined annual equivalent values for each option, and the BAU-timber and REDD-plus management options were the highest, with both options influenced by logging costs and timber price. Financial incentives should be provided at a level that would allow continuation of sustainable logging and be attractive to REDD-plus project developers.”

Esri Unveils ArcGIS Server 10 on Amazon EC2

Concurrent with the release of ArcGIS 10, Esri has made ArcGIS Server 10 available to customers via Amazon’s Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2).

ArcGIS Server on Amazon EC2 gives customers another option for deploying ArcGIS Server,” explains Ismael Chivite, product manager for ArcGIS Server. “Essentially, ArcGIS Server on Amazon EC2 will reduce the complexity of software deployments for many organizations. Instead of installing and maintaining local instances of ArcGIS Server on premises, customers can launch ArcGIS Server on EC2 instances with ArcGIS Server preconfigured for them. These ArcGIS Server instances run on machines hosted in the Amazon cloud infrastructure but can be administered as if they are local servers.”

In addition to simplifying deployment, ArcGIS Server on Amazon EC2 provides an ideal environment for scaling a geographic information system (GIS) to support compute-intensive GIS tasks, providing virtually unlimited computing power for jobs such as sophisticated GIS analysis and large batch geocoding. With an Esri enterprise license agreement (ELA), customers can take advantage of Amazon’s elastic computing infrastructure and deploy unlimited ArcGIS Server instances to handle peak load situations and scale back as demand dissipates.

Support for ArcGIS Server on Amazon EC2 includes

  • A virtual image of GIS services, which include ArcGIS Server, SQL Server Express, and ArcGIS Desktop software
  • ArcGIS Enterprise Geodatabase—A virtual image of an enterprise geodatabase running on PostgreSQL
  • Esri technical support including best practice documentation and tutorials

Esri Developer Network (EDN) developers will find that ArcGIS Server on Amazon EC2 is an excellent way to rapidly launch ideas for proofs of concept and testing of applications for online deployment. Once the requirements are met, the Amazon EC2 instances can be thrown away, thus limiting costs to only those for the hardware used.

“Amazon Web Services is excited that Esri is now offering the ArcGIS Server on Amazon EC2 to organizations around the world,” said Terry Wise, director of business development, Amazon Web Services LLC.  “This new offering leverages the scalability, security and utility based pricing model of Amazon EC2, enabling Esri customers to deploy critical spatial data and GIS servers within minutes without having to go through the time and expense of procuring, deploying and managing in-elastic compute resources.”

For more information about ArcGIS Server on Amazon EC2, contact Esri Customer Service. Outside the United States, contact your local Esri distributor. For a current distributor list, visit

[Source: ESRI press release]

Rocky Mountain Supercomputing Centers and ESRI Collaborate on HPC Cloud Applications for Advanced GIS

The Rocky Mountain Supercomputing Centers, Inc. (RMSC) is collaborating with the world’s leading GIS software company, ESRI, to leverage the HPC Cloud paradigm in real-world geospatial applications. RMSC is a leading provider of High Performance Computing (HPC) Cloud technology, which offers significant advantages in scalability, performance and pricing over other cloud platforms.

“The cloud computing paradigm is the future of GIS,” said Earl J. Dodd, RMSC Executive Director. “HPC Cloud technology has the potential to scale-up GIS software and boost its volumetrics to solve geospatial data processing challenges much faster than previously possible.”

Under the collaborative agreement with ESRI, RMSC is running ESRI ArcGIS 10 software in a dynamic HPC Cloud environment to evaluate processing capacity of existing models and expand ArcGIS throughput and performance capabilities for advanced geospatial projects. Some of these GIS modeling and simulation applications require processing terabytes of data in (near) real-time. RMSC will examine a variety of techniques and configurations that make it possible to scale-up ArcGIS 10 and maximize its performance in the HPC Cloud.

“ESRI’s collaboration with the Rocky Mountain Supercomputing Centers allows us to efficiently and quickly determine areas to address when customers with advanced GIS needs migrate to the HPC Cloud,” said S.J. Camarata, ESRI Director, Corporate Strategy. “Having the ability to stress and run the most advanced GIS models and visualization at RMSC will truly deliver on our message that ArcGIS 10 transforms the way people use GIS.”

“The Elastic Compute Cloud has been applied to some GIS applications,” explained Dodd. “But the HPC Cloud that RMSC has created can significantly reduce processing time with expanded model sizes, especially in critical geospatial applications such as 3D modeling, visualization and simulation supporting national security, emergency management and policy decision support.”

A non-profit Montana corporation, RMSC is a public-private partnership involving the State of Montana, IBM, Microsoft, Adaptive Computing and NextIO. RMSC was created with the goal of driving local and regional economic development by making on-demand supercomputing available to commercial businesses (especially small- to medium-sized businesses), government agencies, academic institutions and tribal enterprises. RMSC offers Supercomputing Platforms as a Service (SPaaS) and professional expertise to help eliminate barriers of use when moving into the HPC Cloud.

Opening its doors in July 2009, RMSC applies its particular type of cloud computing to applications in the diverse fields of energy, agriculture, manufacturing and climate change, among others. Already, RMSC is involved in modeling complex carbon management and global food security issues for the USDA’s International Production and Assessment Division. The Center also provides 24×7 supercomputing support for weather forecasting for renewable energy resource management organizations.

For more information on how the Rocky Mountain Supercomputing Centers is demonstrating HPC for the New Main Street, please visit

[Source: RMSC press release]

Esri Supports Strategic Geospatial Initiatives at NGA

Esri and the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) announce the formation of a strategic alliance to strengthen national geospatial intelligence (GEOINT) capabilities.

The agreement was signed in June by U.S. Navy Vice Admiral Robert B. Murrett, NGA director, and Jack Dangermond, Esri president. The alliance will provide a framework to advance the strategic goals and objectives of the National System for Geospatial Intelligence (NSG) in geospatial sciences and systems and computer science.

This new strategic alliance is meant to support the strategies and goals Murrett set last year to ensure the interoperability and reliability and improve the quality of NSG products and services.

“We have successfully collaborated with the NGA for more than two decades,” said Dangermond. “This new initiative will permit us to continue working together on projects that will use and improve on geospatial technology, thereby strengthening our country’s national security. We are honored to partner with NGA in this important endeavor.”

The mission of the NGA—which combines aspects such as technology, data, people, and policies needed to produce GEOINT—is to provide timely, relevant, and accurate geospatial intelligence to support national security. The NSG is a unified community of GEOINT experts, producers, and users organized around the goal of integrating technology, policies, capabilities, and doctrine to produce GEOINT in a multi-intelligence environment. The NGA, as the functional manager for the NSG, provides strategic thinking, guidance, and direction to the intelligence community concerning all aspects of GEOINT, from acquisition to utilization. The NGA collaborates with its mission partners to ensure that accurate and timely GEOINT is a part of decision making and operations where and when it is needed.

The agreement underscores the critical role geospatial technology plays in GEOINT within the national security community, which provides geographic information system (GIS) products, services, and analysis to intelligence officers and decision makers. GIS continues to evolve in national security. Originally restricted to technical analysts working on the desktop, the technology is now available throughout the community in Web-enabled enterprise applications.

Agencies, allies, and coalition partners increasingly rely on GIS to share geospatial data and products with one another within this worldwide network. This is increasingly important in intelligence, counterterrorism, counterinsurgency, and humanitarian operations. The GEOINT system—cloud computing, mobile environments, Web, and embedded geospatial capabilities—requires robust enterprise software that supports the global information grid. Esri’s research and development in these areas provide the technical leadership needed to deliver critical geospatial support to meet these requirements of the intelligence communities’ fast-paced mission.

[Source: ESRI press release]

Esri Partners Quick to Adopt ArcGIS 10

Partners Demonstrate ArcGIS 10 Based Solutions at the Esri International User Conference

Esri’s partners are migrating to the ArcGIS 10 release. By integrating the new tools and performance enhancements in ArcGIS 10 into their solutions, key partners will improve the productivity of their customers.

Attendees of this year’s Esri International User Conference (Esri UC) will have a firsthand opportunity to see more than 35 new solutions run with ArcGIS 10. They will be demonstrated in the exhibition hall in those booths displaying an ArcGIS 10 Enabled sign.

ArcGIS was developed in collaboration with users and partners, with more than 100 partners providing feedback through the ArcGIS 10 Beta Program. As a result of this exposure, many partners have been quick to migrate to ArcGIS 10 and make it their standard geographic information system (GIS) software platform.

Esri partners commented on ArcGIS 10 deployment within their solutions.

“ArcGIS 10 is a major release for us,” said Rand Knight, senior vice president and general manager at Critigen. “The new capabilities for cloud-based deployment of geodatabases, Web mapping, and real-time geoprocessing allow us to provide fully integrated situational awareness. This is important to our business and government clients who rely on visual intelligence and spatial analytics across their enterprises for mission-critical operations on a day-to-day basis.”

Jim Tochterman, vice president of research and development at Bradshaw Consulting Services, said, “The ArcGIS 10 family of products has supplied us with an unrivaled level of interoperability and performance when developing our applications and solutions.”

Clearion Software’s cofounder Christopher Kelly explained, “We are taking advantage of powerful new features such as ArcGIS Engine and the feature layer service for editing Web applications on ArcGIS Server. The key importance of ArcGIS 10 for Clearion is the improved speed and ease of building integrated, multiplatform solutions that scale with our clients’ needs.”

Pictometry‘s director of partner relations, Brian Beha, said, “With the enhancements to the geodata transform [transformation] in ArcGIS 10, the use of Pictometry oblique imagery is now native to Esri products. This is an extremely powerful development for all GIS users.”

Steven Myhill-Jones, president and CEO of Latitude Geographics, said, “ArcGIS Server 10 allows us to combine simplicity and power in ways we’ve always hoped for. This is a watershed release that will enhance our Geocortex solutions and generally make Esri customers more successful. ArcGIS Server 10 is the release that relatively cautious organizations have been waiting for to shift from ArcIMS to ArcGIS Server. ArcGIS Server 10 is a big leap forward for both application developers and end users.”

See a list of Esri partners demonstrating ArcGIS 10 at the Esri UC at

[Source: ESRI press release]

Spatial and Temporal Changes in Access Rights to Shellfish Resources in British Columbia

Coastal Management, 1521-0421, Volume 37, Issue 6, 2009, Pages 585 – 616

Alyssa Joyce and Rosaline Canessa

“Over the past decade, the shellfish and finfish aquaculture industry has expanded rapidly in coastal British Columbia (BC) Canada. Foreshore and nearshore shellfish and finfish aquaculture leaseholds are sited in close proximity or in direct competition with habitat for wild shellfish. As a result, some wild shellfish harvesters believe shellfish farms are significantly reducing access to beaches and estuarine areas for wild harvesting, or that salmon farms are contaminating wild shellfish stocks. In this article, Geographic Information Systems (GIS) are used to analyze spatial and temporal trends in the growth of shellfish and finfish aquaculture tenures in BC, while interviews with stakeholders in coastal communities are used to explore user conflicts and the implications of changing access rights on the distribution of marine resources. Qualitative and quantitative findings suggest that shellfish aquaculture provides significant economic opportunities for coastal communities, but that such development may hold increased risk of spatial conflicts over marine habitat as the aquaculture industry continues to grow.”

Prospecting for Safe (Low Fluoride) Groundwater in the Eastern African Rift: The Arumeru District (Northern Tanzania)

Hydrology and Earth System Sciences, 14, 1081–1091, 2010

G. Ghiglieri, R. Balia, G. Oggiano, and D. Pittalis

“A multidisciplinary research effort, including geological, hydrogeological, hydro-chemical, geophysical and hydrological investigations, was aimed at locating a source of safe groundwater for a district of northern Tanzania, within the western branch of the East Africa Rift Valley, where water shortage is common and much of the surface water carries unacceptable levels of dissolved fluoride. The 440 km2 study area lies in the northern part of Arumeru district and is dominated by Mt. Meru (4565m a.s.l.). The local climate is semi-arid, with distinct wet and dry seasons. Four hydrogeological complexes were identified, occurring within different volcanic formations, either alone or superimposed upon one another. The groundwater flow system was interpreted from the spatial distribution of the springs, combined with a lithology- and geometry-based reconstruction of the aquifers. The dominant pattern consists of a multi-directional flow from the higher elevations in the south towards the lower areas in the north, but this is complicated by structures such as grabens, faults, lava domes and tholoids. After the identification of the major fluoride source, an interference pattern between groundwater and high fluoride surface water was drawn. Finally, vertical electrical soundings were performed to define the location of aquifers in regions where release of fluoride was prevented. The methodological approach for the prospecting of safe water in a semi-arid, fluoride polluted region was validated by the drilling of a 60m deep well capable of supplying at least 3.8 l/s of low fluoride, drinkable water.”

Locate the USGS at this Year’s ESRI Conference

The U.S. Geological Survey will showcase its latest high-resolution geospatial data and state-of-the-art mapping technology at the annual ESRI Users Conference in San Diego, California, July 12 – 16, at the San Diego Convention Center.

Technical presentations will describe applications of USGS geospatial data to such complex issues as monitoring a dam’s affect on aquatic habitat, restoring ecosystems, and mapping across international borders. The extensive USGS conference participation takes place in multiple venues: the Map Gallery, Technical Sessions, and the Exhibit Pavilion.

Below are highlights of USGS participation in the conference.

Map Gallery:

USGS maps and posters will be on display in the Map Gallery beginning Monday, July 12 at 3:30 p.m. and will be on display throughout the conference. (Sail Area, 2nd floor, San Diego Convention Center) Sample of some USGS titles are below:

  • The National Hydrography Dataset
  • Partners in Stewardship of the National Spatial Data Infrastructure
  • The Development of a Fisheries GIS Resource Database
  • A Window to the National Geologic Map Database Map Catalog via ArcGIS Image Server National Water-Quality Assessment Toolbox
  • Quaternary Fault Mapping on the Web Using ArcGIS Server
  • Applying GIS to Monitor Native and Endangered Fish Species in the Little Colorado River, Grand Canyon, Arizona
  • Land Cover of the United States
  • Harmonization of Binational U.S./Mexico Watershed Boundaries and Hydrography Network
  • The Hydrographic Setting for Mercury Sampling
  • Streamflow Estimates with Divergences – Modified for Trans-continental Divide Divergence
  • Seismicity of the Earth 1900-2007
  • GIS-Based Analysis of Secondary Craters as Stratigraphic Markers, Mars
  • Seismic Design Maps for the International Building Code
  • The Status of Mountain Lion Research in the southwestern United States
  • Applications of GPS and high-accuracy positioning in GIS for monitoring the Colorado River ecosystem, Grand Canyon, Arizona
  • Lunar Mapping and Modeling Geospatial Infrastructure

Exhibit Pavilion:

On the ground floor of the Convention Center, the USGS has a large exhibit booth in the Federal Showcase area of the Exhibition Hall, Tuesday through Thursday, during the conference. Please stop by Booth F 2747 for demonstrations, displays, and for answers to any questions.

Technical Sessions:

Introduction to the Hydrography Event Management (HEM) tools

The Hydrography Event Management Tools are a set of shared components to allow for creation and management of scientific data that is referenced to the National Hydrography Dataset. The current version of the tools can create, update, copy, and delete events, import features, measure linear distance, and more. The HEM tools were developed by the U.S. Forest Service and the Bureau of Land Management to help link biologic or water use data to the NHD. These agencies along with the USGS and U.S. EPA are now involved in ongoing collaboration to further develop and support the HEM tools and HEM user community. The presentation will elaborate on the uses of the tools and review real world examples, as well as discuss the importance of hydrography events and the availability of resources to receive training in HEM tools.

Ariel Bates, Tue, July 13, 8:30 a.m. – 9:45 a.m., San Diego Convention Center Room 25 C

Diversion structures in the National Hydrography Dataset

The National Hydrography Dataset provides a comprehensive representation of the surface water of the United States. These data largely represent the natural flow of water on the landscape using streams, rivers, and lakes. However, most of the engineered diversion features are not properly incorporated into the network. Although the typical diversion conduits of canals, ditches, pipelines, and tunnels are normally present in the NHD, an explicit identification point is needed to identify where an engineered diversion or confluence occurs. Such points also need a linear referencing address. Network analysis can then use these points to more accurately model flow. Most state water agencies have extensive diversion databases and the goal is to incorporate the pertinent structures into the NHD to assemble standardized information useful to land managers and other data users.

Jeffrey Simley, Tue, July 13, 8:30 a.m. – 9:45 a.m., San Diego Convention Center Room 25 C

WBD/NHD integration – A new opportunity for Geographic Information Systems

The National Hydrography Dataset and Watershed Boundary Dataset are popular GIS components in water resources. Integrating them into a common data model will unleash even more capabilities for analysis. A highly functional data design taking advantage of geodatabase technology means an advanced dataset that will serve sophisticated analysis while at the same time remain simple and easy to use so users at all levels of expertise have the ability to apply the data. Developing the new dataset has demonstrated a strong inter-agency collaboration at all levels. The result of this inter-agency collaboration is a new GIS dataset that is well on its way to providing useful new data to scientists and users for years to come. Examples of national, regional, and local applications showing how WBD improves management, exchange, and analysis of hydrologic data demonstrate the usefulness of the new integrated database.

Stephen Daw, Tue, July 13, 8:30 a.m. – 9:45 a.m., San Diego Convention Center Room 25 C

Improving stream flow estimates in NHDPlus

NHDPlus Version 1 included mean annual stream flow estimates using the Unit Runoff Method. There are three plans proposed to improve the stream flow estimates in the NHDPlus Version 02. The first improvements are based on the lessons learned from the UROM V01 stream flow estimates and opportunities to expand the stream flow estimates to include mean monthly and 7Q10 flows. The second method is the development of Regional Regressions. Regression equations would be developed and used to compute the flow estimates. The third flow estimation technique proposed is to use the Spatially Referenced Regressions on Watershed Attributes, or SPARROW model. One major aspect of the proposed effort is the establishment of the selected set of stream flow gages upon which to base stream flow estimation. This gage database will provide an extremely valuable resource for other modeling efforts.

Kernell Ries and Richard Moore, Tue, July 13, 10:15 a.m. – 11:30 a.m., San Diego Convention Center Room 25 C

An ArcInfo programming odyssey – AML to Python Script conversion

In 1999 the Snow Cover Comparison Tool, an AML (ARC Macro Language) geoprocessing script, was developed to process and visualize snow cover from both observed and synthetic, or modeled, data using the ArcInfo Workstation module. Ten years later, the underlying GIS software and data models have changed significantly. This has led to the need for updating and converting the AML script to a Python script. This was not as straightforward or easy as first assumed due to increased functionality in some areas (raster processing) and decreased functionality in others (cartographic output). Another difficulty was the need to convert a script written for a procedural programming language to an object-oriented language. This talk will discuss the solutions to these problems and how ArcGIS 9.4 may resolve the inability of ARCGIS 9.3 to create cartographic output through Python scripting.

Donna Knifong, Tue, July 13, 1:30 p.m. – 2:45 p.m., San Diego Convention Center Room 28 D

Building a Water-Resources Geodatabase for the Rio Grande Basin

Water-resources data in the Rio Grande Basin from San Acacia, New Mexico to Fort Quitman, Texas have been collected for a variety of purposes over several decades by numerous agencies, researchers, and organizations. However, these data have not been integrated or thoroughly evaluated to enhance usability. The U.S. Geological Survey, in cooperation with the New Mexico Interstate Stream Commission, has built a geospatial water-resources database, or geodatabase, to meet this need for an integrated and comprehensive data compendium, which will aid in the understanding of spatial and temporal trends in water quality and quantity. The end-product of this effort is a water-resources geodatabase that enables the visualization of primary collection sites and associated data for surface-water discharges, groundwater elevations, and water-quality for the Rio Grande Basin in an environmental context.

Thomas Burley, Tue, July 13, 3:15 p.m. – 4:30 p.m., San Diego Convention Center Room 25 C

Linking fish-population characteristics with habitat structure using GIS

Completion of Glen Canyon Dam in 1963 significantly altered the physical processes and environments of the Colorado River in Grand Canyon. This affected the aquatic food web and the native and non-native fish communities. As the designated science provider to the Glen Canyon Dam Adaptive Management Program, the Grand Canyon Monitoring and Research Center is investigating habitat requirements of native fishes and how dam operations have influenced these habitats. In this session, preliminary results are presented showing relationships between the physical characteristics of native-fish populations and their spatial distributions in respect to the geometry of the habitats that they occupy. These results are based on several large fish-sampling expeditions where samples were stratified based on automated classifications of shoreline habitat derived from digital, airborne imagery within a GIS environment.

Michael Breedlove and Michael Yard, Tue, July 13, 3:15 p.m. – 4:30 p.m., San Diego Convention Center Room 30 E

Creating the U.S. Topo – A process discussion

In 2009 the U.S. Geological Survey began production of the “Digital Map – Beta”. The “Digital Map – Beta” was the first step toward a new generation of digital topographic maps delivered by the U.S. Geological Survey. The “Digital Map – Beta” set the stage for the next step – the production of the U.S. Topo. These maps are built from The National Map data, which are integrated from local, state, and federal agencies, along with other sources. Production processes and a variety of software have been implemented to streamline production methods and product delivery. This presentation will discuss the overall U.S. Topo production process and its use of ESRI software products, including ArcGIS Server, Job Tracking Extension, Production Line Tool Set, ArcGIS Desktop, and ArcGIS Image Server, which were used throughout the production cycle.

Larry Davis and Helmut Lestinsky, Tue, July 14, 10:15 a.m. – 11:30 a.m., San Diego Convention Center Room 23 B

The National Atlas of the United States 1:1,000,000-Scale Hydrography Dataset

The National Atlas of the United States produced a 1:1,000,000-scale (1:1M) hydrography dataset that consists of streams, waterbodies, and coastlines of the United States, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. Hydrographic features were selected, generalized, and refined from the National Hydrography Dataset at 1:100,000-scale to create regional networked geodatabases and nationwide shapefile data that can serve multiple cartographic and scientific purposes. The hydrographic features are vertically integrated with other 1:1M National Atlas cartographic frameworks such as transportation features and national boundaries. The harmonization of U.S. hydrographic data with 1:1M streams and waterbodies from Canada and Mexico supports mapping at continental and global scales through the North American Atlas and the Global Map.

Florence Thompson, Tue, July 14, 10:15 a.m. – 11:30 a.m., San Diego Convention Center Room 23 B

The Geospatial Platform

President Obama’s Fiscal Year 2011 budget includes direction to the National States Geographic Information Council to create a new Geospatial Platform that will enable government agencies and their partners to access geospatial capabilities to meet mission needs, ensure transparency and accountability, and geo-enable the business of government. The Platform will serve as a vehicle to leverage the expertise and experience of federal geospatial agencies, and the tools they have developed, to assist in meeting the needs of partners. These tools include data, services, and applications that can be built once and used many times, resulting in greater efficiency, savings, and enhanced geospatial capacity and utilization. The Federal Geographic Data Committee is developing a Modernization Roadmap for the design and implementation of the Geospatial Platform. The Roadmap will describe a future-state technology architecture that leverages industry standards and best practices, identifies the processes and organizational elements needed to ensure success, and outlines a strategic path forward to implement the Platform vision. This session will provide an overview of the Roadmap activities to date, with reactions and perspectives from stakeholders and questions and comments to follow.

Ivan DeLoatch (USGS), Karen Siderelis (DOI),Tony LaVoi (DOI) Tue, July 14, 10:15 a.m. – 11:30 a.m., San Diego Convention Center Room 28 D

Designing USGS topographic mapping for multiscale online use

Federal topographic map production has moved to digital delivery. Design work for multi-scale mapping to improve The National Map will be discussed. This effort complements USGS’ work on orthophoto-based GeoPDFs (Digital Map – Beta) and Maps-on-Demand. Designs are prepared using automated geoprocessing to produce generalized hydrography for scale change with stream categories and hierarchies symbolized. In addition, we automate labeling; display transportation and boundary line features; represent point locations for populated place, cultural, and emergency-response features; and combine contours and hillshading with selected land cover and land use symbols. Categories and hierarchies of symbols are structured using hue, lightness, and size. Map displays change systematically as scale is reduced through feature weighting, symbol-level drawing, elimination, and symbol change.

E. Usery, Tue, July 14, 1:30 p.m. – 2:45 p.m., San Diego Convention Center Room 23 B

Albuquerque Army Corps of Engineers Civil Works and Restoration website

The Rio Grande Civil Works and Restoration Projects Web Application (, developed by the U.S. Geological Survey in cooperation with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Albuquerque District, is designed to provide publicly available information through the Internet about civil works and restoration projects in the Rio Grande Basin. Since 1942, USACE Albuquerque District responsibilities have included such projects as flood protection, supplying water for power and public recreation, participating in fire remediation, and protecting and restoring wetlands. In the process of conducting this vast array of engineering work, a need arose for easily tracking the locations of and providing information about projects to stakeholders and the public. The Website and Web mapping application were developed using ArcGIS Server, ASP.NET and Flex to enable users to visualize locations and search for information about USACE projects throughout the Rio Grande Basin in southern Colorado, New Mexico, and Texas.

Christy-Ann Archuleta, Tue, July 14, 1:30 p.m. – 2:45 p.m., San Diego Convention Center Room 24 B

Mobile mapping of fish movements in the Lower Missouri River

Multidisciplinary research is being conducted to investigate sturgeon spawning movement and habitat use in the Lower Missouri River. An extensive telemetry effort using two sturgeon species (pallid and shovelnose sturgeon) relies on a customized ArcPad application to record sturgeon relocation events and search efforts. Customized forms streamline data entry by prompting users to collect data for each telemetry location event or search effort. The custom electronic forms reduce errors by automatically verifying data entered by field crews. Interactive drop-down lists are used to expedite data entry and further reduce entry errors. By electronically capturing information at the time of collection, the forms within ArcPad eliminate data entry by office personnel. Data for sturgeon relocations and search efforts are uploaded to a secure server on a daily basis using a secure internet webpage, ensuring near real-time data delivery and reporting.

Kim Chojnacki and Aaron DeLonay, Tue, July 14, 3:15 p.m. – 4:30 p.m., San Diego Convention Center Room 30 B

Using ESRI software for 3-dimensional mapping of geochemical data

Geochemical data may include many element concentrations, multivariate factors, sample media types, analytical tests, and measurement units. Traditional 2-dimensional mapping of more than a few of those data layers on a single map is often ineffective. Visualization can be improved using 3-dimensional symbolization. ESRI ArcInfo, Spatial Analyst and 3D Analyst extensions, ArcGIS Server, and ArcExplorer are software modules that allow 3-dimensional arrangement without obscuring any data. Resulting map documents can be published to the web, enabling the spatial exploration of various element suites and multivariate factors by non-GIS professionals. Advantages of using these techniques include the reduction of printed materials, and the capability of creating a variety of high quality, information-dense digital map products tailored to various types of audiences and users.

Stuart Giles, Tue, July 15, 10:15 a.m. – 11:30 a.m., San Diego Convention Center Room 28 E

Completion of the Binational U.S.-Mexico watershed boundaries and hydrography network

Water availability and water quality are critical issues for the U.S.-Mexico border region. To facilitate hydrologic analysis applications, the U.S. Geological Survey and the Mexican Instituto Nacional de Estadística y Geografía collaborated to harmonize shared hydrologic drainage areas along the U.S. – Mexico border and build a connected hydrographic network of surface water features for the binational region. The harmonization process included participatory meetings at the national level between team leaders for the U.S. Watershed Boundaries Database, the U.S. National Hydrography Dataset, and Mexico’s Red Hidrográfica and Cuencas Oficiales to agree on standards, content, connectivity, and binational cross walk attribution tables from each country. Each country will be free to distribute these binational datasets agreed to in the USGS and INEGI Project Annex VI agreement. This presentation will discuss the harmonization process, status, and final results.

[Source: USGS press release]

Florida’s Statewide Coastal LiDAR Mapping Initiative

2010 ESRI Southeast Regional User Group Conference

Bill Millinor, Mark Nelson, and Jones Edmunds

“The Florida Division of Emergency Management (FDEM), in conjunction with Jones Edmunds, is finalizing a $29 million mapping effort to update coastal storm surge models and Regional Evacuation Studies with more current and accurate elevation data—LiDAR. From Pensacola to the Keys, up the East Coast of Florida and down the St. Johns River, over 15,000 square miles of new LiDAR data has been acquired as part of this project. The LiDAR data collection, processing, and deliverables are guided by detailed and conservative ESRI-friendly Baseline Specifications that were developed with collaboration from multiple agencies to help ensure high-quality and consistent deliverables. A significant challenge was balancing the high accuracy requirements of the project and user community with FDEM’s schedule and budget constraints. This presentation will discuss the challenges associated with quality assurance reviews, coordination with multiple agencies, project timing, and many of the other challenges associated with managing a large multivendor LiDAR mapping initiative.”