Blog

  • A Retrospective Return on Investment Study for Spatial Data Infrastructure
    A retrospective return on investment study for an spatial data infrastructure (SDI)
  • Geospatial Data Act of 2018 – full text
    The US Geospatial Data Act (GDA) of 2018, as part of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Reauthorization Act (H.R. 302), was signed into law on 5 Oct […]
  • Passage of the Geospatial Data Act
    Reposted from the NSGIC GeoJava News State Geospatial Policy Organization Lauds “Geospatial Data Act” Language Included in FAA Reauthorization Bill By Bronwyn Walls  |  October 3, 2018  |  […]
  • Encouraging Trail Access: Indiana’s New Limited Liability Law
    Communities across the state are working to convert abandoned railway beds to trails as part of the national “rails-to-trails” movement and establishing other bike-walk linear parks and […]
  • Strong Public Support of Marion County Transit Plan
    A map showing where Indianapolis voters voiced their strong support for the Marion County Transit Plan in the 2016 general election.
  • Install QGIS on a Mac in 8-Steps
    **UPDATED FOR QGIS 2.16 – 07 Oct 2016** QGIS is an impressively powerful open source geographic information system (GIS). In 2010, I reviewed QGIS when it had […]
  • Ortelius Map Design Software for MacOS
    Mapdiva was founded in 2008 by Graham P. Cox and Jill Saligoe-Simmel to empower people to design custom maps using extraordinary cartography tools on their Mac. We […]
  • Indy’s Most Needed Pedestrian Walkways
    Walkable cities contribute to people’s overall health, safety, and quality of life. This study prioritizes missing pedestrian walkways to help identify where investment should be focused in Indianapolis.
  • Written History Needs Maps
    Guest post by Pieter S. Burggraaf, 2015 Put it before them briefly so they will read it, clearly so they will appreciate it, picturesquely so they will remember […]
  • Hacking Public Spaces: Florence Street Art
    Edgy or elegant, I always enjoy seeing examples of street art as a form of placemaking. In many areas of the world (e.g., Paris, Berlin, New York) […]
  • IndianaMap Running at 100%
    Indiana Geographic Information Office Hits 100% with Data Sharing Project With a vote of its County Board of Commissioners in early April, Marshall County become the last […]
  • Indianapolis’ Most International Public Schools
    Central Indiana is the epicenter of an explosion of English language learners (ELL). Where I live in Nora, our neighborhood elementary school is one of those hit hardest by […]
  • ESEA Reauthorization – Action Alert
    An important letter from the Association of American Geographers (AAG) regarding authorization of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act (ESEA): [av_hr class=’default’ height=’50’ shadow=’no-shadow’ position=’center’ custom_border=’av-border-thin’ custom_width=’50px’ custom_border_color=” […]
  • Support the Geospatial Data Act
    UPDATE:S.1253 – Geospatial Data Act of 2017https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/senate-bill/1253 ## The Geospatial Data Act of 2015 was introduced in Congress today.  This bipartisan bill will go a long way […]
  • Report Card on the National Spatial Data Infrastructure (NSDI)
    The Coalition of Geospatial Organizations (COGO) announces the release of its Report Card on the U.S. National Spatial Data Infrastructure (NSDI) that depicts the condition and performance of the […]
  • National GIS Inventory
    The GIS Inventory is a system maintained by the National States Geographic Information Council (NSGIC) as a tool for the entire GIS Community. It allows users to quickly search for GIS […]
  • IndianaMap Awarded First Prize at FOSS4G for Open Data
    The IndianaMap was awarded first place at the 2014 FOSS4G, September 11, 2014 Portland, Oregon. The IndianaMap is composed of over 300 laters of open geospatial data. It […]
  • Building a National Data Sharing Infrastructure
    In March, 2014, URISA published the first in what is intended to be a series of occasional GIS Management Institute® discussion papers. “A Distributed Model for Effective […]
  • Natural Earth Data: Worldwide GIS Maps
    If you’ve ever tried to find good, authoritative sources of free, public domain small-scale world map data you know it can be a daunting task. But not […]
  • Geospatial Revolution: Episode 4
    Learn more about the Geospatial Revolution Project from Penn State Public Broadcasting. [av_video src=’https://youtu.be/9F7z9LLYxf8′ format=’16-9′ width=’16’ height=’9′ av_uid=’av-a2zvf’]
  • Geospatial Revolution: Episode 3
    Learn more about the Geospatial Revolution Project from Penn State Public Broadcasting. [av_video src=’https://youtu.be/OePOK6nzcaY’ format=’16-9′ width=’16’ height=’9′ av_uid=’av-7y9ix’]
  • Geospatial Revolution: Episode 2
    Learn more about the Geospatial Revolution Project from Penn State Public Broadcasting. [av_video src=’https://youtu.be/GXS0bsR0e7w’ format=’16-9′ width=’16’ height=’9′ av_uid=’av-70w4v’]
  • Maps In Modern Web Design: Showcase and Examples from Smashing Magazine
    In a world where digital mapping is exploding, Zach Dunn offers an excellent review of different types of web maps and their various purposes. His article, Maps In […]
  • 7 Billion and Counting
    Population is a complicated topic. There will soon be seven billion people on the planet. By 2045 global population is projected to reach nine billion. Can the […]
  • Archive of Artistic Shaded Relief Online
    If you love older maps for their uniquely hand-crafted style, you are really going to love this new resource – Shaded Relief Archive. Through the advancements of […]
  • The Geographic Inequalities of Broadband in Indiana
    Indiana is participating in the National Broadband Program as a multi-year, multi-agency effort to map areas in the state that are currently served by the state’s 170+ […]
  • Imaging + Imagining the City: Perspectives on Indianapolis
    Planning a future with green spaces that enrich lives, energy-friendly transportation networks for accessing work and play, and renovated structures with safe sidewalks and gardens is the […]
  • Geospatial Revolution: Episode One
    Learn more about the Geospatial Revolution Project from Penn State Public Broadcasting. [av_video src=’https://youtu.be/poMGRbfgp38′ format=’16-9′ width=’16’ height=’9′ av_uid=’av-6yokk’]
  • What is a Geographic Information System (GIS)?
    Remember those multi-layered images of the human body from middle school science class, showing the body’s skeletal system, nervous system and so on? GIS is similar. It […]
  • Quantum GIS (qGIS) for the Mac
    [av_notification title=’UPDATE:’ color=’orange’ border=’dashed’ custom_bg=’#444444′ custom_font=’#ffffff’ size=’large’ icon_select=’no’ icon=’ue800′ font=’entypo-fontello’ av_uid=’av-k5esc’] As of QGIS v. 1.5 (2010) the stand-alone ‘all in one’ bundle for Mac OS X […]
  • OpenStreetMap – Project Haiti
    We all followed the crisis that unfolded following the 2010 Haiti earthquake, many of us chose to donate money, a few were flown out and deployed as […]
  • Transparency Infographic: Does Commuting By Car Make You Fat?
    GOOD/Transparency provides a graphical exploration of the data that surrounds us. This infographic  depicts a “map” charting walking, biking, driving, and use of public transportation correlated with state […]
  • Where High-Speed Rail Works Best
    Geography is about examining spatial variables and relationships, often to weed out answers to complex problems. America 2050‘s latest report, “Where High Speed Rail Works Best” (pdf) is […]
  • Hand Drawn Map Association: Oodles of Love for the Hand Drawn Map
    An all-time favorite site of mine is the Hand Drawn Map Association. As I dole out love for the hand drawn map, I’d be remiss not to […]
  • Kotkin on America in 2050
    On May 18, 2010, geographer Joel Kotkin was interviewed on the Charlie Rose Show, discussing his new book The Next Hundred Million: America in 2050 (The Penguin Press). […]
  • Bing Augmented-Reality Maps Demo
    Stunning. Microsoft exceeds expectations with their Bing Map augmented reality demo at TED2010 by Blaise Aguera y Arcas. [av_video src=’https://youtu.be/5F_nHEx8DUY’ format=’16-9′ width=’16’ height=’9′ av_uid=’av-arida’] Available at TED.com
  • Is IT Suffocating GIS?
    In an article “Why Geo Will Embrace The Cloud in 2010” in Direction Magazine, Brian Timoney of the The Timoney Group looks at the emerging cloud computing arena and […]
  • Interactive Map of U.S. Oil Imports Since 1973
    RMI (Rocky Mountain Institute) provides a timeline-based interactive map depicting the U.S.’s historical imports of oil since 1973. Map controls can slide to specific dates and highlight five […]
  • Slate’s Interactive Map of Vanishing Employment Across the Country
    In their Dec. 30, 2009 post, Slate poises the question “When Did Your County’s Jobs Disappear?” with a nicely done interactive map and timeline. Besides painting a […]
  • New Product: Eye-Fi Geo
    Eye-Fi has just released a new product that couldn’t help but catch my eye. The new Eye-Fi Geo is a “smart” SD card that includes wireless JPEG […]
  • Hold World Landmarks in Your Hands with ARSights & Google Earth
    A while back I reported on virtual digital holograms, wondering when they would make their way into the mapping arena. Over the past year ARSights, a project by […]
  • Is Geography the New History?
    When the press starts noticing geography, does that mean it is time for a comeback? In his recent article “Is Geography the New History,” Robert Butler poses […]
  • Atlas of Explorations for the Pacific Railroad: Giving Some Love for the Hand-Drawn Map
    Who doesn’t love the artistry of a hand-drawn map? I’ve been looking at some fine examples lately and wanted to share a few of my personal favorites. […]
  • Allen sits out statewide digital map
    by Ron Shawgo, The Journal Gazette Read the Full Story Here A plan that officials say could save lives and improve economic development, disaster response, transportation, water quality […]
  • Fresh Face for the IndianaMap
    With many partners and large volunteer effort, access to the IndianaMap has historically been a bit disbursed. The new IndianaMap portal helps bring the effort under one […]
  • A Call for an Open Spatial Data Infrastructure
      Today I’m getting on my soapbox. I’ve long been a vocal advocate of open public data in the geospatial arena. The “open” provides us all the […]
  • Communicating Value of GIS to Policy-Makers
    [av_textblock size=” font_color=” color=” av-medium-font-size=” av-small-font-size=” av-mini-font-size=” av_uid=’av-kf1k3x2y’ admin_preview_bg=”] When faced with communicating the value of the IndianaMap and the need for established funding, we didn’t want […]
  • Indiana Statewide Orthophotography Program
    In 2005, Indiana introduced an ambitious Statewide Orthophotography Program provided a “common operating picture” through a seamless, current, accurate photographic base and control network that “ties” all other framework […]
  • Ortelius Map Design Software for Mac: We’ve Launched!
    A big thank-you to all of our testers and reviewers – we’ve made it! Check out our new web site for all the details on Ortelius, including […]
  • Urban Orienteering Comes to Indianapolis
    I’m really looking forward to participating in the Indiana Geographic Information Council’s first fund-raising event – Urban Orienteering in Downtown Indianapolis on August 15th. A couple years ago, TrueNorth […]
  • SDI Return on Investment: The Economic Benefits of the IndianaMap
    From transportation to public safety to economic development, the IndianaMap supports hundreds of local, regional and statewide projects each year. The IndianaMap was used for response and […]
  • Humble Beginnings for Local Data: Parcel Data in the IndianaMap
    National and statewide GIS coordinating bodies have sought for some time to build statewide and nation-wide cadastre, or parcel, frameworks. The Mapping Science Committee – National Research […]
  • Huck Finn Project
    In concert with the 2005 Indiana Orthophotography Project, an education and outreach project was established inviting schools, communities, and youth organizations to create large outdoor artworks to […]
  • Maps Using Virtual Digital Holograms? It’s Only A Matter of Time.
    I’m looking forward seeing the first mapping application using virtual digital holograms. What is a virtual digital hologram you ask? It is very cool technology that creates […]
  • Visualizing the Grid: Interactive Web Map
    NPR has produced a new interactive map of the U.S. energy grid and power sources. Included are several roll-over maps to see percent energy production by different […]
  • A Future Love Story
    The e-book “Emotional Cartography” was recently mentioned on CartoTalk under interesting links. I thought it worth a quick glance, and got immediately drawn in by this short-story… […]
  • Keep Your Eye on the Geospatial Revolution Project
    Whether you are a lone GIS technician or a large GIS company, education and outreach is an ongoing challenge for everyone in the geospatial industry. The Geospatial […]
  • Ortelius Will Be at AAG: You’re Invited to Learn More
    Does your mapping software inspire creativity? Ortelius is a new breed of mapping software designed to make your mapping easy, fun and beautiful. Come find out how […]
  • Walkscore.com Using Free Zillow Neighborhood Boundary GIS Data
    I’ve been very interested in the news stories I’ve read about neighborhood boundary data and its usefulness. About a year ago Adena Schutzberg, Directions Magazine, wrote about […]
  • IndianaMap Local Participation Halfway There
    Local government participation (i.e., accommodating data sharing policies) in regional, statewide, and nationwide spatial data infrastructures can be more challenging than the technology and standards required to […]
  • Madison’s 100 Mile Food Map
    Kuddo’s to Chick Mappers See http://www.chickmappers.com/100miledietmap/ for a wonderfully deliciously interactive food map. The 100 Mile Food Map The 100 Mile Food Map was inspired by a […]
  • Using Text on Maps: Typography in Cartography
    Typography is the art and methods of arranging type, type design, and modifying type glyphs. In traditional typography, text is composed to create a readable, coherent, and […]
  • Cartography Celebrated – The Year in Maps
    We started off 2008 with a fantastic map exhibit at the Chicago Field Museum “Maps – Finding Our Place in the World.” Ending the year, the Boston […]
  • The Importance of Map Data Interoperability
    Emergency Response Maps After 9/11 and Hurricane Katrina, the lack of coordinated information and interoperable communications had tragic consequences. Citizens around the country demanded that government work together to […]
  • Mapdiva to Make New Mapping Software for the Mac
    I’m pleased to announce the launch of Mapdiva, LLC, a partnership among Graham Cox and Jill Saligoe-Simmel, to develop Ortelius™ – powerful map illustration software for Mac OS […]
  • Role of Sketching in Map Design Layouts
    Hand-drawn sketching plays an important role in the digital arts. The larger a project is, and the more concepts a client will need to see, the more […]
  • Cartographer as Designer – It’s a Process
    Those who design maps for use by others engage in a specialized form of communication.  They create images to represent physical and phenomena in three-dimensional space, but […]
  • Top 10 Sectors Using GIS in Indiana
    This study was conducted to determine how mapping departments within local and state government, education, non-profits and private industry use geographic information systems map data every day. […]
  • ScapeToad Cartogram Software
    [av_image src=’http://drjill.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/01/scapetoad_sidebar.jpeg’ attachment=’1671′ attachment_size=’full’ align=’right’ styling=” hover=” link=” target=” caption=” font_size=” appearance=” overlay_opacity=’0.4′ overlay_color=’#000000′ overlay_text_color=’#ffffff’ animation=’no-animation’ admin_preview_bg=” av_uid=’av-27b6az’][/av_image] ScapeToad is an interesting, free, stand-alone cartogram software for […]
  • The Organic City
      The Organic City is an interesting and successful application of community blogging (using WordPress) and flash-based mapping (Worldkit). Created in 2006 by the combined efforts of […]
  • Chesapeake Bay Watershed Web Maps
    A classical challenge for the cartographer is how to present and clearly communicate large quantities of information to their intended audience. Web mapping has opened new possibilities […]
  • Thematic Mapping Engine
    Thematic Mapping Engine (TME) enables you to visualise global statistics on Google Earth. The primary data source is UNdata. The engine returns a KMZ file that you […]
  • UCL’s Map Tube
    MapTube is a free resource for viewing, sharing, mixing and mashing maps online. Created by UCL’s Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis, users can select any number of […]
  • Lakeshore Nature Preserve (WI)
    Beautiful example of interactivity – clean map interface and intuitive design. This map was created at the UW-Madison Cartography Lab by Rob Roth, Andy Woodruff, Joel Przybylowski […]
  • Flex Projector for Interactive Creation of Map Projections
    Flex Projector is an interesting new program for anyone who has ever been interested in map projections. The program provides a great hands-on interface for understanding more […]
  • GoogleMap Gone Too Far?
    You may have already marveled at GoogleMap’s new “street view” but have you seen it marvel at you?
  • Festival of Maps at the Chicago Field Museum
    I can’t wait for my next road trip to Chicago (which will definitely be soon). Festival of Maps Chicago opens this weekend and runs all the way […]
  • GIS for the Mac – gvSIG
    Thanks Marcel St-Germain for turning me on to gvSIG v1.1. This relatively new open-source GIS software was reviewed by Adena Schutzberg All Points Blog on October 1, […]
  • Indiana GIO Announcement
    Press Release For Immediate Release October 29, 2007 Press Contact: Mehgan O’Connor 317.234.4589 317.979.0877 Governor Appoints State’s First Geographic Information Officer INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – Chief Information […]
  • My World GIS for the Mac
    UPDATE: My World GIS is no longer being developed and may not work with the latest operating systems. (2007) Earlier this summer I made the switch to […]
  • Proposal for a Quid Pro Quo Model for Geographic Data Exchange
    Quid pro quo (Latin for “something for something” [1]) indicates a more-or-less equal exchange or substitution of goods or services. Long time hindrances to the development of […]
  • Google Mashing Up the Mashups
    Hoping to make it even easier to turn its online maps into collages of local information, Google is introducing tools that will stitch together applications from a […]
  • Decision in MAPPS Lawsuit: Courts Find in Favor of US Government
    MAPPS loses lawsuit… Doug Richardson (Executive Director of the Association of American Geographers) informed the FGDC that a decision has been handed down by the judge presiding […]
  • Yesterday, I Visited Syria… on 360cities
    Use the new web site “360cities” as your virtual travel guide when you plan your next arm chair vacation. 360 is traveling the world capturing 360-degree images […]
  • Guidance From Above: IndianaMap Across Indiana
    Video produced by WFYI documenting the positive impact that the IndianaMap has made to Hoosier lives Across Indiana. [av_video src=’https://youtu.be/oQu7fSWkoUk’ format=’16-9′ width=’16’ height=’9′ av_uid=’av-2tu7tq’] Over the past […]
  • Progress on Indiana’s Water GIS Map Layer
    The National Hydrography Dataset (NHD) high-resolution map layer is complete for Indiana. “This is a great development, but is only the first phase. We now hope to […]
  • My Wonderful World
    How do you get kids involved with geography? Check out My Wonderful World for activities, links, and resources for parents and teachers. Geography Is 10 Cool Things […]
  • Indiana Governor Signs GIS into Law
    I’m back! I had a two month hiatus spent largely on the Indiana legislative session, and boy am I glad it’s over. I have a new-found respect for […]
  • Census Mapping Made Easy
    Social Explorer is a web service designed to help people easily map Census data from 1940 – 2000. The site has a friendly user interface and is […]
  • Loss of Free Data Services
    Access to free web mapping services has many of us hooked – but what does the future have in store? Here is a recent experience with free […]
  • Quote of the day: “Maps can endanger freedom.”
    In a story in the 3/13/07 edition of the Cape Gazette “Positive Growth Alliance: NEMO lacks balance” Mr. Rich Collins, executive director of the Positive Growth Alliance […]
  • Indiana’s GIS Law
    Years in the making, Indiana passes first comprehensive GIS law. It defines data exchange agreements, identifies framework data as essential elements of a statewide base map, emphasizes […]
  • IndianaMap Legislation Making Progress
    Indiana’s 2007 GIS Bill (SB461) is making progress. Yesterday it passed the senate unanimously and has been sent onto the house. Summary: “One map for Indiana. Provides […]
  • Indiana GIS Legislation Introduced
    There is a GIS Bill in the Indiana Legislature this year – SB461. Yesterday was the first hearing in the Senate Economic Development and Technology Committee. It […]
  • Folk Songs for the Five Points
      New York map combines sound, art, and culture resulting in a remarkable cultural museum piece. This is an excellent example of creative cartography – “folksongs for […]
  • Simplify your Shapefiles
    As mapping professionals, we often want more detail – the more accurate the better. But occasionally we need to simplify our maps (specifically our shapefiles) for presentation […]
  • Successful Response Starts with a Map – New Publication NAP
    The Mapping Science Committee of the National Academy has released the following publication. “Successful Response Starts with a Map: Improving Geospatial Support for Disaster Management Committee on […]
  • State Geographic Information Offices Relationship with State Census Data Centers
    There are a number of models across the US of where the state Geographic Information Office is located/affiliated. I was interested in which states have their Geographic […]
  • AccuGlobe 2007 (DDTI) Free GIS Software with WMS Capibilities
    I use a range of different GIS software, both free and commercial. I also try and keep the pulse of free downloadable GIS tools that help me […]
  • Recognizing the Value of Geographic Information for Economic Development
    Last week I presented at the Indiana Economic Development Association’s Indianapolis Winter Conference. The speaker right after me, Dr. Buzz Canup of AngelouEconomics, presented an enlightened view […]