ITT Launches Academic Partnership Program to Support Higher Education in Image and Data Analysis

Colleges and Universities will partner with ITT to make advanced image and data analysis technology readily available to students in preparation for the workforce.

ITT Visual Information Solutions, a subsidiary of ITT Corporation (NYSE: ITT), announced a new academic partnership program designed to help educators foster students’ careers in disciplines involving geospatial imagery and complex data analysis. The program, entitled “ITT Innovation Centers,” is available to any college or university in the United States and Canada offering courses that use image and data analysis software as a core component of the curriculum. Under the program, ITT will provide its partners with a number of educational benefits, including access to the company’s products for image and data analysis, ENVI and IDL software, for use in classroom instruction.  Other advantages include access to professional training resources, consultations with ITT representatives on course structure and curriculum, and the opportunity to preview and give feedback on future releases of ENVI and IDL.

As partners in the program, participating academic institutions will contribute to advances in data and image analysis within the ENVI and IDL product lines, and provide curriculum, research, papers, and other resources of value to the greater academic community.

“ITT is committed to supporting academic endeavors that further the growth of fields that help advance science and improve the human condition.” said Nigel Brown, director of academic programs for ITT Visual Information Solutions.  “By providing access to leading software technologies and curriculum and giving our academic partners input into our product development, we are able to contribute in ways that not only support these disciplines, but also advance the careers of professionals nationwide.”

ITT has been a significant contributor to academic initiatives since its flagship data analysis software product, IDL, was developed in 1977.  Both IDL and ENVI, ITT’s comprehensive software product for analyzing geospatial imagery, have been widely adopted across commercial, government and academic disciplines for their value in extracting meaningful information from data and imagery.  Both products are used extensively today in college and university programs around the world.

For more information about ITT Innovation Centers, visit

[Source: ITT VIS press release]

Coastal Informatics: Web Atlas Design and Implementation

The International Coastal Atlas Network (ICAN) has published a new book titled “Coastal Informatics: Web Atlas Design and Implementation”.  Edited by Dawn J. Wright, Edward (“Ned”) Dwyer, and Valerie Cummins, the purpose of the book is to “present the latest developments in the new field of coastal web atlases and to share best practices and lessons learned, which will in turn help readers to determine future needs in mapping and informatics for the coastal practitioner community and improve spatial thinking in the coastal context. This handbook provides a complete guide to CWA development and implementation including established principles and recommendations for atlas design, data requirements, necessary software technology and institutional capacity, as well as best practices for achieving interoperability between CWAs (where concepts, terminology, and even abbreviations that are shared between two or more atlases are understood by all to mean the same thing).”

The book is currently available for purchase here; you can also find the Table of Contents, several sample chapters, and more information here.

Analysis of Spatial and Temporal Evolution of the NDVI on Vegetated and Degraded Areas in the Central Spanish Pyrenees

ISPRS Technical Commission VII Symposium: 100 Years ISPRS – Advancing Remote Sensing Science, 05-07 July 2010, Vienna, Austria

Luis Carlos Alatorre, and S. Beguería

“The temporal evolution of vegetation activity on various land cover classes in the Spanish Pyrenees was analyzed. Two time series of the normalized difference vegetation index (NDVI) were used, corresponding to March (early spring) and August (the end of summer). The series were generated from Landsat TM and Landsat ETM+ images for the period 1984-2007. An increase in the NDVI in March was found for vegetated areas, and the opposite trend was found in both March and August for degraded areas (badlands and erosion risk areas). The rise in minimum temperature during the study period appears to be the most important factor explaining the increased NDVI in the vegetated areas. In degraded areas, no climatic or topographic variable was associated with the negative trend in the NDVI, which may be related to erosion processes taking place in these regions.”

Sensor Web and Geoprocessing Services for Pervasive Advertising

Proceedings, Informatik 2009 – 2nd Workshop on Pervasive Advertising. 28 September 28 – 02 October 2009, Luebeck, Germany

Theodor Foerster, Arne Bröring, Simon Jirka, and Jörg Müller

“Pervasive advertising attracts attention in research and industry. Sensor information in this context is considered to improve the content communication of Pervasive Environments. This paper describes an architecture for integrating sensor information into Pervasive Environments. The sensor information is accessible through an abstraction layer, the Sensor Web, which is based on Web Service technology. The Sensor Web provides access to any deployed sensor for any compliant infrastructure, such as a Pervasive Environment. It thereby does not only access sensors that are deployed specifically for this system, but any sensor in the world that is available through the Sensor Web. In order to extract specific sensor information from the available sensor data, Geoprocessing Services are deployed as an intermediate component in the proposed architecture.”

Digital Earth: Decadal Experiences and Some Thoughts

International Journal of Digital Earth, Volume 3, Issue 1 March 2010 , pages 31 – 46

H. D. Guo, Z. Liu, and L. W. Zhu

“The understanding that mankind should reasonably exploit and utilize earth resources and effectively protect the planet on which we live, is now widely accepted. However, effective actions can only be conducted if we better understand and visualize the earth. To meet this need, digital earth science and technology have been put forward and developed. This paper introduces the evolution and development process of digital earth, and presents an overview by reviewing and analyzing the 1999 and 2009 Beijing Declaration on Digital Earth, the scientific and commercial digital earth systems, global and regional digital earth research, and some existing platforms of digital earth science. It also presents some thoughts about digital earth’s future development.”

Seminar Spotlights How to Visualize and Analyze Imagery

Free Training Provides Overview of the New Imagery Tools Available in ArcGIS 10

Esri’s ArcGIS 10 technology provides new capabilities to quickly access, visualize, process, analyze, and exploit all forms of imagery. To familiarize users with these tools, Esri will host the free online seminar, Visualizing and Analyzing Imagery in ArcGIS 10, later this month.

The seminar will air live at on Thursday, August 12, at 9:00 a.m., 11:00 a.m., and 3:00 p.m. Pacific daylight time.

Attendees will see a demonstration of the new Image Analysis window and process functions. They will learn how to quickly access common image enhancement and display tools including clipping, masking, dynamic range adjustment, and gamma and stretch adjustments. The Image Analysis window is also the platform for accessing new, on-the-fly image processing techniques such as filtering, Normalized Difference Vegetation Index (NDVI), pan sharpening, and creating composite bands. They will also be given a demonstration of the new Image Classification toolbar, which provides a single location for classifying imagery.

Attendees will also learn about

  • Creating viewsheds and shaded relief maps from digital elevation models
  • Using on-the-fly processing to orthorectify and pan sharpen images
  • Using enhanced images as input into standard geoprocessing tools

This live training seminar is geared toward geographic information system (GIS) and image analysts who visualize, interpret, and analyze imagery and for administrators who manage large volumes of images and need to make them accessible to others.

A broadband Internet connection and an Esri Global Account are needed to participate in the training seminar. Creating a global account is easy and free: visit, click Login, and register your name and address. A few weeks after the live presentation, this seminar will be archived and available for viewing on the Esri Training Web site.

[Source: Esri press release]

Linguistic Spatial Classifications of Event Domains in Narratives of Crime

Journal of Spatial Information Science, Number 1 (2010), pp. 75-93

Blake Stephen Howald

“Structurally, formal definitions of the linguistic narrative minimally require two temporally linked past-time events. The role of space in this definition, based on spatial language indicating where events occur, is considered optional and non-structural. However, based on narratives with a high frequency of spatial language, recent research has questioned this perspective, suggesting that space is more critical than may be readily apparent. Through an analysis of spatially rich serial criminal narratives, it will be demonstrated that spatial information qualitatively varies relative to narrative events. In particular, statistical classifiers in a supervised machine learning task achieve a 90% accuracy in predicting Pre-Crime, Crime, and Post-Crime events based on spatial (and temporal) information. Overall, these results suggest a deeper spatial organization of discourse, which not only provides practical event resolution possibilities, but also challenges traditional formal linguistic definitions of narrative.”

Quote of the Day: “…applying our scientific knowledge to real problems is the payoff”

“It’s true that, as scientists, our basic job is to describe the world as it is. But I don’t think that that’s the only thing that matters. In fact, I think the reason why we’re here, the reason why we think this is such an exciting topic, is not that we think that the new moral psychology is going to cure cancer. Rather, we think that understanding this aspect of human nature is going to perhaps change the way we think and change the way we respond to important problems and issues in the real world.  If all we were going to do is just describe how people think and never do anything with it, never use our knowledge to change the way we relate to our problems, then I don’t think there would be much of a payoff. I think that applying our scientific knowledge to real problems is the payoff.”

–Joshua D. Greene

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