Plummeting winter temperatures mapped

Sunday, 27 December, 2009

Nice example of environmental monitoring over at NASA, this time using MODIS Land Surface Temperature to compared temperatures in Europe this winter (11-18 December) with the 2000-2008 average. The UK is a little cooler than “normal”; the real problem areas are Russia, Scandinavia and Poland, with parts up to 20C colder than previous years.

Consultation on release of OS data

Wednesday, 23 December, 2009

As reported by FoD and Mapperz, DCLG have begun the consultation concerning the release of OS data. There is an accompanying impact assessment. Well worth leafing through both.

Happy Birthday NASA Terra

Sunday, 20 December, 2009

NASAs Terra is now 10!! Launched to much fanfare in 1999, of interest to Earth scientists it carries MODIS (wide swath, medium resolution, super spectral) and ASTER. The latter also being super spectral, but high resolution (upto 15m) and also stereoscopic. Note the earlier post on the recently released global DEM product. An extremely successful mission and the celebration pages show some fantastic examples of environmental change.

Patched FireFox RSS Editor

Saturday, 19 December, 2009

RSS Editor is a great extension for Firefox that adds functionality to allow you to edit (doh!) RSS files. It supports both local and remote file editing (although not over SSL) and is brilliant for simple RSS tasks. At both the Centre for GIS and CEESR I have implemented a simple news aggregator on the front page that formats news feeds from RSS. This is one of the easiest ways of getting a news feed on a website.

Unfortunately RSS Editor was only updated to early alpha versions of version 3.x and currently doesn’t work. If you read the feedback on the extension’s page you’ll see someone has fixed the code (in rssio.js) to get it working; this is in the form of a patch file which I couldn’t get to work on Windows. However I have fixed the bug manually and made it available here. Enjoy!

Open Topography Portal Expanded

Saturday, 19 December, 2009

As reported by lidar news, the Open Topography Portal is to be expanded following a grant from the NSF. The OTP provide a valuable service, albeit somewhat small at the moment. However growing interest in point clouds and DEMs are driving interest and so its excellent to see further investment like this.

Low Cost LiDAR

Friday, 18 December, 2009

Lidar news have a nice article on low cost 2D LiDAR. Well worth looking at the OXTS webpage and related videos. This clearly demonstrates how young the mobile LiDAR (and for that matter static LiDAR) area is so expect to see big strides to making it more cost effective.

ERDAS goes where ESRI fears to tread

Thursday, 17 December, 2009

Slashdot reported earlier this year on the FOSS4G web server benchmarking. The big news was that ESRI were taking part, but then pulled out. The hope was to get both ESRI and MapGuide in to the frame to see how they did. With the recently announced ERDAS 2010 released, Chris Tweedie over at ERDAS took it upon himself to run some benchmarks (also reported in Slashdot). The results certainly look impressive (up to twice as fast as Mapserver) which I guess is why they were happy to put the product forward. ESRIs silence is deafening….

DMC 22m Multiispectral Data Available

Wednesday, 16 December, 2009

Slashgeo report on the availability of 22m multispectral data from DMC via the UK-DMC2 and Deimos-1 satellites. Good to see this constellation is proving successful and improving; a great advert for the new British Space Agency!


Tuesday, 15 December, 2009

I recently came across LeoWorks an educational remote sensing package that is free for use in teaching. Developed by ESA and the Romanian Space Agency (yes they have one and obviously for a considerably longer time than the UK!) its not going to win any cutting edge awards but it is a very capable piece of software. It surprises me that there are no reasonable open source remote sensing packages (unlike GIS), but there you go….. anyway, it appears to be developed in IDL (which would make sense) and offers the following features (amongst many):

-image information/historgram
-split, combine, rotate, mirror, raster math
-stretching, histogram equalization
-convolution filtering
-supervised/unsupervised classification
-scatter plots

As you can see, surprisingly capable and certainly pretty much everything you would want to cover in an introductory module. And, to boot, it appears to run fine from a USB stick.

Christmas Every Year?

Monday, 14 December, 2009

I’m sure this is a result of “middle age grouch” syndrome hitting me, but the whole “Christmas thing” seems to get bigger, earlier and glitzier each year. How refreshing to see this petition to number 10. Shame its lapsed as I would have voted!!!!