Is Geographic Information Science Proprietary?

Dear colleagues,

It has come to my attention that some proprietary GIS vendors are doing big marketing of thier proprietary products as the Science!  Science is not any specific GIS proprietary tools!

Science2030

GeoForAll is a global community of scientists, academics and teachers  who are all working for  expanding Open Principles in Science and Education.  Our aim is to empower all academics and students worldwide. Openness is fundamental in harnessing the true potential of Geospatial Science and expanding digital economy opportunities for all . Open innovation is key in driving Digital Economy opportunities and we are determined to make sure that everyone benefits.

Why are Open Principles important in science and education ? Please see the links below

http://www.geoconnexion.com/uploads/publication_pdfs/uk_v15i18-058-059-Op951AF3.pdf

http://opensourcegeospatial.icaci.org/2016/07/sharing-is-caring-why-openness-is-key-for-true-empowerment-and-sustainability/
http://opensourcegeospatial.icaci.org/2016/06/open-consultation-on-the-vision-2030-for-open-geospatial-science/
http://opensourcegeospatial.icaci.org/2016/02/future-of-gis-should-be-empowerment-not-enslavement-examples-needed-for-geo4all-newsletter/

My presentation slides on this is at

https://www.slideshare.net/SuchithAnand/open-principles-in-geoeducation

For anyone opposing Open Principles in Education , i humbly request them to please consider supporting Open Principles in Education  as education and empowerment are key for getting rid of extreme poverty and help create digital economy opportunities also for billions of our economically poor brothers and sisters across our planet . Access to quality education opportunities is everyone’s birthright. So do join us and let us all work together to enable open principles in education to help create a world that is more accessible, equitable and full of innovation and opportunities for everyone.

Best wishes,

Suchith

Dr. Suchith Anand
http://www.geoforall.org/
http://opensourcegeospatial.icaci.org

GeoForAll – Building and expanding Open Geospatial Science

Open Principles in Education & Science for bridging the digital divide

Recording of the Global Open Data for Agriculture and Nutrition (GODAN) webinar on capacity development

The Global Open Data for Agriculture and Nutrition (GODAN) supports the proactive sharing of open data to make information about agriculture and nutrition available, accessible and usable to deal with the urgent challenge of ensuring world food security. At the GODAN Summit in September 2016, GODAN launched a new Working Group on Capacity Development. Background information at http://aims.fao.org/activity/blog/recording-past-webinar-godan-wg-capacity-development

The recording link of the first Global Open Data for Agriculture and Nutrition (GODAN) webinar on capacity development is at https://youtu.be/ezOEhsm7hGI

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The webinar will help understand the current developments including overview on the GODAN Action project [1]  and how to be part of the capacity development activities.  Join the Capacity Development WG at https://dgroups.org/fao/godan_cd/join

[1] http://www.cta.int/en/article/2016-08-03/the-godan-action-project-an-innovative-approach.htm

How NASA and the United Nations are using location intelligence to build smart cities in developing countries

Very interesting article on How NASA and the United Nations are using location intelligence to build smart cities in developing countries is at

https://www.devex.com/news/how-nasa-and-the-un-are-using-location-intelligence-to-build-smart-cities-in-developing-countries-89721

GeoForAll is very happy to be part of these excellent global developments happening at all levels and dimensions.There is also strong synergies with UN OpenGIS Initiative. We encourage all to be part of the various calls from Global Food Security to SMARTIES Entrepreneurship competitions [1],[2][3] to expand ideas.

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We welcome everyone interested to join synergies and work together to expand OpenCitySmart opportunities[4][5] and enable Geo technologies in empowering communities and helping improving the Quality of Life and standards of living for everyone. Let us all work together to help create a world that is more accessible, equitable and full of innovation and opportunities for everyone.

[1] http://aims.fao.org/es/activity/blog/godan-local-farming-challenge-2017

[2] http://opensourcegeospatial.icaci.org/2017/03/smarties-entrepreneurship-competition-nasa-europa-challenge-2017/

[3] http://opensourcegeospatial.icaci.org/2017/01/invitation-to-nasa-citysmart-challenge-solutions-for-sustainable-cities-2/

[4] http://opensourcegeospatial.icaci.org/2016/02/opencitysmart-the-open-platform-for-smart-cities/

[5] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aWuMfMMPfPw

The Rise of OpenStreetMap as a World Mapping Agency

The Geospatial IG [1] of the Research Data Alliance will be meeting in Barcelona on 5th April 2017 to keep building ideas for the global research agenda for Geospatial Data Science.

https://www.rd-alliance.org/ig-geospatial-rda-9th-plenary-meeting

I would also like to make use of the Geospatial IG meeting opportunity at RDA9 in Barcelona to further discuss ideas on the rise of OpenStreetMap (OSM) as a World Mapping Agency (WMA) build by the efforts of thousands of volunteers.   It is also interesting to see the community links of the OpenStreetMap and  the Open Source Geospatial Foundation (OSGeo) expanding rapidly both locally and globally. OSM has now reaching the level of a Global Mapping Agency build by the efforts of thousands of volunteers and OSGeo is the world’s largest geospatial ecosystem.  What a great combination of synergies. Both initiatives are just over a decade  old and have fundamentally changed the whole geolandscape.

osm

Myself and colleagues are working on a paper on OSM and OSGeo and i want to use this meeting to discuss more ideas with the community. I look forward to welcome you all to RDA meeting in Barcelona.

Best wishes,

Suchith

Help Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team map against malaria!

Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team (HOT) is calling all mappers to help us and our partners eliminate malaria with our biggest project to date! Nearly half of the world’s population is at risk of malaria. In 2015, there were roughly 212 million malaria cases and an estimated 429 000 malaria deaths.*

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Fig 1 – A very special and successful mapathon with more than 200 ,10-year old children was held in March 2016 at GEOlab , Italy, see this post on HOT’s blog.
HOT is working on two projects, mapping over 500,000 square kilometers in 7 countries. This project collective is part of the Missing Maps initiative in conjunction with DigitalGlobe, the Clinton Health Access Initiative, the Gates Foundation, PATH and MapBox.  We’re dedicating this whole week to support this crisis mapping project, including a competition for our Youth Mappers chapters.

Lab of the Month – GEOlab , Politecnico di Milano, Italy

It is my great pleasure, to introduce our colleagues at GEOlab (Geomatics and Earth Observation laboratory, http://geolab.como.polimi.it) at the Politecnico di Milano,   Italy as our “GeoForAll” lab of the month. GEOlab is a multi-disciplinary, multi-department research group established at Politecnico di Milano, Italy focused on collecting, modeling, analysing and representing Earth observations. Core research includes the following topics: GIS, cartography, global gravity models, GNSS (monitoring and navigation), remote sensing, photogrammetry, and signal processing.

PoliMappers

Fig 1 – Polimappers @ GEOlab

The GIS research group, lead by Prof. Maria Antonia Brovelli and Dr. Marco Minghini, is active in the research fields of Web Mapping, multi-dimensional visualization and virtual globes, spatial statistics, Volunteered Geographic Information (VGI), geo-crowdsourcing and Citizen Science. The team has a long and outstanding tradition in the use and development of open source geospatial solutions. The main software packages used include GRASS GIS, QGIS, PostGIS, GeoServer, MapServer, OpenLayers, Leaflet, PyWPS, istSOS, Rasdaman, and NASA World Wind.

group_photo_FOSS4G_Europe_2015

 

Fig 2 – FOSS4G-Europe participants

GEOlab is a great example of linking GeoForAll synergies with all key initiatives in Europe and globally. In addition to GeoForAll, GEOlab is officially affiliated to the AGILE network of laboratories. Members of the GIS GEOlab team are personally involved in a number of national and international associations, including SIFET (Italian Society for Photogrammetry and Topography), ASITA (Italian Federation of Scientific Associations for Environmental Information), GIT (Geosciences and Information Technologies), OSGeo (Open Source Geospatial Foundation), ISPRS (International Society of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing), ICA (International Cartographic Association), HOT (Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team), UN-GGIM (United Nations Global Geospatial Information Management) Academic Network, and UN Open GIS.

Some projects which are currently ongoing or just finished include giCASES – Creating a University-Enterprise Alliance for a Spatially Enabled Society, funded by Erasmus+ programme of the European Union; URBAN GEO BIG DATA (Urban Geomatics for Bulk Information Generation, Data Assessment and Technology Awareness), funded by the Italian Ministry of Education; MIGRATE (MIGRation pATterns in Europe) and City Focus, developed within the MYGEOSS project, which has received funding from the EU H2020 research and innovation programme; and The Paths of Regina – Crossborder paths linked to Via Regina, funded by the Interreg Italy-Switzerland Co-operation Programme 2007- 2013.

GEOlab is active in many other fields. Over the last couple of years a number of humanitarian mapathons were organized by the GEOlab staff thanks to the links with HOT, e.g. for the OSM GeoWeek 2015 and 2016 and after the earthquakes in Nepal and Ecuador. A very special and successful mapathon with more than 200 ,10-year old children was held in March 2016, see this post on HOT’s blog. (see Fig 3 and 4)

childrens_mapathon

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Fig 3 – Kids Map Swaziland for Malaria Elimination

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Fig 4 – Kids Map Swaziland for Malaria Elimination

Members of the GEOlab team have recently founded PoliMappers, the first European chapter of the YouthMappers students’ network having the purpose of building a young generation of mappers through open source and open data (OpenStreetMap). GEOlab organized a number of activities for the last MeetMeTonight, a national event where all Italian universities opened their activities to the public. Also, members of GEOlab have participated as speakers to local TED events, see e.g. this speech of Prof. Brovelli at TEDxLakeComo 2015 and this one of Dr. Minghini at TEDxYouth@LakeComo in 2012.

Since the first edition in 2013, GEOlab is among the organizers of the popular NASA World Wind Europa Challenge, which looks for urban management solutions developed using World Wind‘s open source technology and serving the EU INSPIRE Directive. GEOlab has also organized a number of conferences in the field of GIS and open source geospatial software: the First Meeting of the Italian GRASS users in 2000, the WebMGS 2010 – 1st International Workshop on Pervasive Web Mapping in 2010, Geoprocessing and Services, and the FOSS4G Europe 2015. Finally, since 2016 a new MSc Degree in Geoinformatics Engineering (fully taught in English and welcoming students from all over the world) has been established at Politecnico di Milano, where GEOlab staff is primarily involved in teaching.

On behalf of the GeoForAll community, we thank Maria, Marco and all colleagues from the GEOlab and for their contributions to the GeoForAll initiative and look forward to working and building more collaborations with all interested on this education mission.

Best wishes,

Suchith Anand

Happy OpenDataDay 2017

Dear colleagues,

Wishing you all Happy OpenDataDay 2017

Open Data Day [1] is an annual celebration of open data all over the world. For the seventh time in history, groups from around the world will create local events on the day where they will use open data in their communities. It is an opportunity to show the benefits of open data and encourage the adoption of open data policies in government, business and civil society. Details at http://opendataday.org/

opendataday

Weather data is critical for agriculture. I  thank  our GeoForAll colleagues in The European Centre for Medium-Range Weather Forecasts (ECMWF)[2] at Reading who are running the #OpenDataHack @ECMWF – Beyond weather: explore creative uses of open data ECMWF this weekend.

I have good memories of my visit last year for the first hackathon on a Global Flood Awareness System (GloFAS) [3] they organised .

glofas

Fig – participants at first hackathon on a Global Flood Awareness System (GloFAS) @ECMEF in 2016

Happy OpenDataDay 2017 to all…

Best wishes,

Suchith

[1] http://opendataday.org/
[2] http://www.ecmwf.int/
[3] http://opensourcegeospatial.icaci.org/2016/02/flood-awareness-education-platform/

GeoAmbassador– Dr Tuong-Thuy Vu

Dear colleagues,

It is my great pleasure to introduce our excellent colleague Dr Tuong-Thuy Vu as our GeoAmbassador. Dr Tuong-Thuy Vu is an Associate Professor of the School of Environmental and Geographical Sciences, University of Nottingham, Malaysia campus (UNMC). He is also the Asia chair of GeoForAll.

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A geospatial scientist by training and research, Dr Vu has over 15-years research and teaching experiences across Eurasia. He obtained his Master and PhD from Asian Institute of Technology in 2000 and 2003,  respectively, and started exploring open-source tools at the early stage. After his PhD,  he worked as a research scientist at Earthquake Disaster Mitigation Research Center, Kobe, Japan (2003-2006) before joined Chiba University as a postdoctoral researcher in 2006-2007. In both places, he focused on the employment of geospatial technologies in disaster mitigation and management. He then joined GEO Grid team of National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), Japan to further expand the research onto high-performance computing platform. In 2008, he went back to university to develop his academic career at Geoinformatics division, Royal Institute of Technology, Sweden. In early 2011, he took the position at University of Nottingham, Malaysia campus and assisted the establishment of the School of Geography and new MSc programmes at Malaysia campus.

Figure1

Late 2011, he established his OSGeo research lab (OSGeo.UNMC) [1], the first-of-its-kind in Southeast Asia and soon became among the first members of GeoForAll. OSGeo.UNMC aims at promoting open-source philosophy in education and research on geospatial science. The team developed the material to fully deploy OSGeo tools in teaching at postgraduate level, and introducing as an alternative tool for undergraduate students doing their final year project. In teaching and learning, OSGeo.UNMC team promote not only using open-source tools but also instructing a new way of open learning including open-mind, freedom, sharing and collaboration. There is a certain improvement of geospatial knowledge and skills for students when moving to open-source way, especially the confidence to try any available tools to address a specific issue.

Figure2

 

OSGeo.UNMC has been working very closely with Nottingham Geospatial Institute (NGI) team from the beginning. Together, we organised the AgriGIS 2012 (Figure 1), bringing together researchers and practitioners in agriculture and geospatial science. It was the very first public event to broadcast the name of OSGeo.UNMC to the region. In addition to presenting at many public events, convention and conferences to introduce OSGeo and open geospatial science, Dr Vu coordinated the establishment of OSGeo Malaysia chapter (Figure 2). Thuy also leads the team organising a series of training to the public (Figure 3) [2] [3]. In 2017, he is planning to assist the establishment of two new OSGeo labs in Vietnam universities.

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OSGeo.UNMC is developing its strong research activities on geobig data analytics. The team was awarded good national and international funding to work on remote sensing data fusion, change detection, remote sensing image analysis services, crowd-sourced data quality.

In collaboration with its partners, OSGeo.UNMC promotes open geospatial science via collaborative research projects like urban construction management, urban green space, megafauna index mapping, and agricultural management.

Geo for All is a worldwide movement that provides immediate benefit to the world. We aim to create openness in Geo Education for developing creative and open minds in students which is critical for building open innovation and contributes to building up Open Knowledge for the benefit of the whole society and for our future generations. We are proud to honour Thuy as our GeoAmbassodor and we are extremely grateful for his contributions to Geo for All. Thuy is a great ambassador for Open Geospatial Science globally.

I am very grateful for getting this opportunity of introducing some of our amazing colleagues from different parts of our world each month as our GeoAmbassadors and get inspired by their amazing work and contributions for the wider community.

Best wishes,

Suchith Anand

[1] http://www.nottingham.edu.my/EGS/Research/GeospatialScience/OSGEO-lab.aspx

[2] https://blogs.nottingham.edu.my/geography/2016/03/01/gis-information-workshop/

[3] https://blogs.nottingham.edu.my/geography/2016/02/28/ensearch-gis-training-by-osgeo-lab/

 

 

 

 

 

SMARTIES Entrepreneurship competition – NASA Europa Challenge 2017

The RCUK funded SMARt ciTIES is led by Professor Michele Clarke (University of Nottingham) and Dr. Ajith Kaliyath (National Institute of Urban Affairs, India) brings together a consortium of multidisciplinary, international researchers to develop new collaborative solutions to the multi-layered challenges of rapid urbanisation. The expertise needed  involves education and social science, cultural heritage and urban planning, science and engineering, ecology and environmental sciences and information technology.

The network includes leading urban researchers from the UK and India, University of Nottingham, University of Birmingham, University of Southampton, Bishop Grosseteste University College, Loughborough University, Northumbria University, Nottingham Trent University and University of Surrey, Jawaharlal Nehru University, IIT Delhi, IIT Kharagpur, IIT Roorkee, Indian Institute of Population Studies Mumbai, Indira Gandhi Institute of Development Research Mumbai and Institute for Social and Economic Change, Bengaluru.

delhi1

The NASA Europa Challenge is there to inspire innovative ideas for building applications that serve the INSPIRE Directive and use the ESA-NASA open source virtual globe technology, Web World Wind. SMARt ciTIES is pleased to participate in this fifth year of the NASA Europa Challenge, specifically involving UK and India students. You are challenged to build a great application that serves some aspect of the OpenCitySmart design and uses NASA’s open source virtual globe technology, Web World Wind. SMARTIES has been promoting NASA Europa Challenge through our workshops in India [1],[2] .

We are pleased to announce the launch the SMARTIES Entrepreneurship competition through the NASA Europa Challenge 2017. SMARTIES will provide 5000 GBP for awards (£2500 for First Place, £1500 for the Second Place and £1000 for the Third Place). Due to the nature of the funding, the SMARTIES Entrepreneurship awards are specific to all UK and India students who participate in the NASA Europa Challenge 2017. This is a contest where everyone wins just by playing!  Help your city and thereby the cities of the world with capabilities all cities need. We are in this world together, let’s deliver results ‘for the benefit of all’, the NASA motto.

Details at http://eurochallenge.como.polimi.it/ and overview video at https://youtu.be/OQEzJrEDmEI

[1] http://opensourcegeospatial.icaci.org/2016/11/smarties-are-part-of-the-uk-prime-ministers-ministerial-delegation-to-india-for-the-tech-summit-2016/
[2] http://opensourcegeospatial.icaci.org/2016/11/reflections-from-uk-india-joint-network-on-sustainable-cities-and-urbanisation-in-india-city-level-workshop-on-chennai-urban-observatory-9th-10th-nov-2016-chennai-india/