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Jun 20 2011

A Few Good Reads (6/20/11)

This week: Missouri River flood pictures & video, Powell’s very relevant map of the West, renewed heated GIS software competition, and capitalizing on government’s investment in LiDAR.

The Great Missouri River Flood of 2011 (by Larry Geiger): These are over 100 amazing oblique aerials of the flooding along the Missouri River between Gavin’s Point Dam (South Dakota) and Hamburg, Iowa.

At Full Flow, Mighty Missouri Puts on Show (CBS St. Louis)

Upstream at Garrison Dam in North Dakota, up to 300 people a day are showing up to see water coursing over the spillway and shooting out of regulating tunnels, said Linda Phelps, natural resources manager at the dam. An estimated 2,000 to 3,000 people visited last weekend, she said.

Powell’s map of the West (by Matthew Frank)

Powell saw that water management would be the central issue of government throughout the arid lands where growing crops required irrigation.  He saw the drainage district as the only way to organize “a homogeneous body of people, a people having one common interest”.

Are we returning to a time of heated GIS software competition? (by Matt Ball)

The recently announced Google Earth Builder combines processing and storage capacity to host and serve geospatial data. Esri has announced the coming ability to host cached map and feature services via the cloud as well, making a significant and ongoing investment on aggregating geospatial data and computing capacity for use on the cloud.

Capitalizing on Local Government’s Investment in LiDAR (by Jarlath O’Neil-Dunne at LiDAR News)

In my work using LiDAR data sourced from local government to map land cover in urbanized areas, I find that even in major cities with well-established GIS departments, the point cloud has never been looked at and the term “LiDAR” is typically taken to mean a high-resolution bare earth Digital Elevation Model (DEM).

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