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News from the National Geospatial Advisory Committee
National Geospatial Advisory Committee
The National Geospatial Advisory Committee is a 28-member Federal Advisory Committee established to provide advice and recommendations related to management of federal and national geospatial programs; the development of the National Spatial Data Infrastructure; and the implementation of Office of Management and Budget Circular A-16 and Executive Order 12906. The NGAC reviews and comments upon geospatial policy and management issues and provides a forum to convey views representative of non-federal stakeholders in the geospatial community. The NGAC is sponsored by the Department of the Interior and reports to the Chair of the Federal Geographic Data Committee.

GITA is well-represented on the NGAC with the current president, Talbot Brooks, and two past GITA presidents — Dave DiSera and Robert Austin — currently serving on the committee. Dr. Austin also serves at the 2013 Chair of the NGAC. The primary focus of the NGAC for 2013 is support for the development of a strategic vision for the FGDC. Due to the sequester, the committee's April meeting was converted to a four-hour teleconference instead of an in-person meeting. The session focused largely on background and the need for a refreshed vision and plan for the National Spatial Data Infrastructure.

In addition, the NGAC is providing on-going advice and comment concerning upgrades to the Geospatial Platform (www.geoplatform.gov) and revisions to Circular A-16. Following the successful launch of Landsat 8 on Feb. 11, NGAC's Landsat Advisory Group is actively engaged in future mission planning and discussions of data access. The next meeting of the NGAC is scheduled for June 11-12, and GITA members are welcomed to submit ideas and comments to President@gita.org.
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Join GITA's FREE webinar on Social Media by Location on Tuesday, April 30
GITA
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.
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Women storm CalGIS
Directions Magazine
By Adena Schutzberg: I learned from a tweet from @URISA that all three keynotes at CalGIS, last week's URISA California GIS Conference, were by women. They included:
  • Opening Keynote Address - Estella "Este" M. Geraghty, MD, MS, MPH, FACP, GISP, Assistant Professor of Clinical Internal Medicine, University of California Davis
  • Awards Breakfast & Keynote Address - Maggi Glasscoe, Geophysicist in the Solid Earth Group at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology
  • Closing Plenary Address - Gretchen Peterson, GISP, Principal Consultant, PetersonGIS, Fort Collins, CO

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US agencies seek comments on future uses of NDGPS
Inside GNSS
The U.S. Department of Transportation's Research and Innovative Technology Administration, in partnership with the U.S. Coast Guard, is seeking public comments on the current and future user needs for the Nationwide Differential Global Positioning System.

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NGA, geospatial community plan a clear picture of major disasters
GCN
A major disaster, such as the 2010 earthquake in Haiti, typically draws help from a diverse array of international players, including emergency response crews, military units, non-governmental organizations, relief workers, physicians and a host of others who need an accurate view of the situation — what infrastructure has been damaged and what's still working.

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15 programming skills most coveted by employers
ReadWrite
More than ever, companies need coders. And while tech firms do the bulk of the hiring, the demand for programmers spans industries and only seems to be growing. From writing basic HTML to building complex logic into mobile applications, the ability to smartly craft lines of code continues to be one of the most in-demand — and often, well-paying — skill sets one can have.

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Indoor positional accuracy for E911
Directions Magazine
AudioBrief In March, the Communications Security, Reliability and Interoperability Council III delivered the Indoor Location Test Bed Report to the FCC. It describes the current state of indoor location determination in different geographies using three different technologies. Where do we stand?
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World's smartest thermostat raises its utility IQ
Smart Grid News
By Jesse Berst: In the first phase of its life, Nest Labs used its thermostat's learning capabilities to adapt to customer preferences. Now the company is using it to help utilities as well. I have been saying for years that it will be much easier to make devices smart about energy than people smart about energy. I applaud Nest's first steps towards utility partnerships. I hope they will prod Nest and its competitors to do even more.
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USGS Science Data Challenge winners
AnyGeo blog
Recently, the USGS invited developers, information scientists, biologists/ecologists and scientific data visualization specialists to create applications for selected USGS datasets, presenting them in innovative and informative new ways. The winner for Best Overall App is "TaxaViewer" by the rOpenSci group based out of California.
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Esri releases results of LGA Benchmark Study
Spatial Source
One of the highlights of SSSC 2013 last week was the release of the results of Esri's 2013 LGA Benchmark Study, in the form of the "2013 GIS in Local Government Benchmark Study: Preliminary Report." The preliminary report is the culmination of a collaborative effort between Australia's councils, SSSI and Esri Australia. This report, which contains the study findings, was compiled by an independent research agency.
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How does geospatial technology help lessen the footprint of humans on Earth?
Sensors & Systems
Today is the 43rd Earth Day, providing an important touchpoint of our planet's health. The widespread and non-partisan embrace of the very first fight against environmental pollution has been sustained and has become a yearly global gathering where individuals become educated to decrease their impact on the Earth, and where we all are called to action to protect our planet.
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GIS enhances safety, efficiency at Dow Corning's Midland plant
The American Surveyor
While the concept of using GIS to accurately identify and map physical assets is widely accepted in cities, towns and municipalities throughout the country, that approach has not yet found the same level of broad acceptance within private industry. Perhaps because of a misplaced perception that it is far too costly or complex an undertaking, corporations have been less eager to employ this GPS-based approach to asset management.
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Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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