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Saving more, duplicating less: GAO gets specific with agencies
Government Executive
In the third of a series of reports on agency waste, the Government Accountability Office identified 31 new areas of overlap and potential for greater efficiency, ranging from duplicative geospatial maps to multiple offices monitoring inspections of catfish. "Collectively, these reports show that, if the actions are implemented, the government could potentially save tens of billions of dollars annually," GAO said.
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Preliminary program and keynote speakers announced for 2013 FOSS4G-NA Conference
GITA
The Free and Open Source Software for Geospatial–North America (FOSS4G-NA) Program Committee is excited to announce the preliminary program and keynote speakers for the 2013 FOSS4G-NA Conference, set for May 22-24 at the Marriott City Center in Minneapolis, Minn.

FOSS4G brings together public and private-sector stakeholders, innovators and developers who are at the forefront of free and open source software for geospatial applications. The FOSS4G-NA 2013 Conference program is designed to not only take a deep technical dive, but also cover useful examples and compelling business cases of how to effectively apply FOSS4G to help solve some of the world's most pressing problems and business needs. Highlights of the event include the following keynote speakers:
  • Eric Gundersen, CEO at MapBox
  • Bibiana McHugh, IT Manager of GIS and Location-Based Service, Portland TriMet
  • Erek Dyskant, Sr. Analytics Engineer at the Democratic National Committee
  • Paul Morin, Director of the NSF- and NASA-funded Polar Geospatial Center at the University of Minnesota
In addition, presentations, panels and lightning talks will cover a wide range of program topics, including:
  • Analysis and Big Data/No SQL
  • Cartography and Visualization
  • JavaScript
  • Programming
  • Spatial Datastores
  • Spatial Server and Platform
  • Case Studies
    • Education
    • Environment, Energy and Health
    • Government (Federal, Local, Military)
    • Mobile
    • Transportation and Utilities
    • And more ...
To learn from these great speakers and to join other geospatial OSS users and supporters from around the country, register for the conference today at the FOSS4G-NA 2013 website.

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10 things GIS users need to know about GitHub
Directions Magazine
GIS users, even those who don't consider themselves programmers, may have heard of a mysterious location on the Web called GitHub. What is it, and what do GIS users need to know about it?

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Judge tosses out smart meter lawsuit
Smart Grid News
Naperville, Ill.'s Smart Meter Awareness Group got some bad news when a district judge dismissed its federal lawsuit against the city for installing smart meters which members have long claimed pose health, safety, security and privacy issues.

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California launches GeoPortal
Directions Magazine
The California Technology Agency has launched the California GeoPortal, an interactive and user-friendly gateway to thousands of geographic data sources around the country.

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Save the date: GITA webinar, April 30, 2 p.m. Eastern
GITA
Social Media by Location, by Phil Harris
The growth in social media is explosive. Services like Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and others are providing unprecedented amounts of publicly available data. The traditional method of monitoring social media is performed via keywords and hashtags. Services like HootSuite, Radian6 and even Twitter Advanced Search provide insights on conversations associated with a specific keyword or hashtag. These resultant data sets from these service are abundant and capture the entire conversation across the world.

It is difficult to isolate relevant, actionable posts amidst the large quantity of data. We call this "noise" in the data set. There are two new powerful trends at work in social media that make location-based social media monitoring by location possible. First, smartphones are replacing feature phones. These smartphones have GPS capabilities. Secondly, the social media providers, such as Twitter, have introduced applications for these smartphones that attach geo-location to the media itself. The result is an increasingly rich social media data set.

Using tools like Geofeedia, emergency responders can filter social media by geography to quickly perform situational awareness, identify "hot spots", obtain real-time insights from groups of users at locations, communicate with people on-site, prioritize resource allocation and more.

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Galileo on its own
Inside GNSS
Europe's new age of satellite navigation has passed a historic milestone — the very first determination of a ground location using the four Galileo satellites currently in orbit together with their ground facilities. This fundamental step confirms the Galileo system works as planned. This first position fix of longitude, latitude, and altitude took place March 12 at the Navigation Laboratory at the European Space Research and Technology Center in Noordwijk, the Netherlands.
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TRENDING ARTICLES
Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.

    California launches GeoPortal to improve access to valuable geographic information (Directions Magazine)
28,000 rivers wiped off the map of China (The Australian)
Women in GIS: 2013 (Directions Magazine)
IGS launches real-time service (GPS World)

Don't be left behind. Click here to see what else you missed.


How about microgrids as a service?
Smart Grid News
At first glance, the press release is simply the merger of two small but highly regarded smart grid firms. But look under the surface and you see at least two important trends. The first is the growing strength of the microgrid trend. Oh sure, mainstreaming is still two or three years away, but many people now believe microgrids will be a large part of our energy future. More importantly, many people are now underway on pilots and small deployments. The second is the idea of microgrid-as-a-service.
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So many bad maps
Directions Magazine
AudioBrief There are lots of bad maps. The USGS is crowd sourcing TNM. Apple fired people over bad maps. OpenStreetMap quality is superior to many — even Bing. How important is map quality? To web users? To mobile users? To the media? To the big issues of the day: national security, energy independence. How much faith do we put in our maps?
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Spreading the inspiration of Earth observation
Sensors & Systems
Research scientists continue to add to our understanding of Earth systems, thanks to the global earth observation capacity. Waleed Abdalati, associate professor of Geography at the University of Colorado, Boulder, director of the Earth Science & Observation Center, a Fellow at the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences, and former NASA Chief Scientist, has a perspective that encompasses the capacity, coming capabilities and ongoing challenges.
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TomTom: Mapping hardware has a future
News24
Despite the growth in smartphones' ability to become all-you-want devices, dedicated location gadgets have a place with a significant number of users, a mapping firm has said. According to TomTom country manager Daan Henderickx, smartphones can be costly to users when using them as navigation devices.
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