GITA News Hub
Dec. 27, 2011

The little-known geospatial agency that helped kill Bin Laden
The Atlantic
From May 10, 2011: President Barack Obama's first brush with the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency was ignominious. Out for lunch in May 2009, at a Five Guys burger franchise in Washington, the new president started to shake the hands of other customers, TV cameras in tow. Then he turned to men with government ID badges. "So what do you do?" the president asked.More

Twin Cities GECCo workshop achieves several milestones
From Nov. 1, 2011: The Geospatially Enabling Community Collaboration — or GECCo — workshop series continued with the eighth event in the series last week in Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minn. The Twin Cities GECCo was attended by more than 90 local and regional geospatial professionals, including 14 executives from government, utility and private sector organizations.

"Several major operational improvements were built into the Twin Cities GECCo," according to Bob Samborski, GITA's Executive Director. "The local GECCo team really set the bar high for future events." For the first time, executives from local government, utility and private sector organizations were invited to attend an Executive Summary Session on the afternoon of the second day. This was an opportunity to articulate the group's findings, needs and concerns directly to people in important management positions who can make things happen. Following the briefing, nearly all the executives spoke to the group, offering words of encouragement and support for improving collaboration in the Twin Cities area. They will be kept up to date as the follow-on work of the Twin Cities GECCo stakeholders continues.

SharedGeo, a Twin Cities non-profit that co-sponsored the GECCo, recorded the presentations and will be posting them to the public side of Twin Cities GECCo site along with all support materials from the event. Additional information is available immediately from SharedGeo Executive Director Steve Swazee's blog. More

GIS: Geotags replacing ZIP codes, census tracts for analyses
Government Technology
From June 7, 2011: Every year, federal and state government agencies collect, analyze and publish an enormous amount of data — directly and through grants to universities and foundations. Researchers and policymakers often segment this data by geographic area to compare regions, analyze trends and draw conclusions. One challenge to effectively grouping data by geography is finding the right level of granularity suited to answering particular questions. More

To solve LightSquared issue, Javad calls for end to P-code encryption
GPS World
From July 19, 2011: To solve the LightSquared versus GPS controversy, Javad Ashjaee, president and CEO of JAVAD GNSS, has appealed directly to President Barack Obama to discontinue the encryption of P-code, the restricted military GPS signal. His comments came in the context of the LightSquared/GPS interference imbroglio, as part of his solution to the conflict over spectrum. "This policy is not helping national security. It is hurting both precision users and the broadband project."More

Fun with maps: 7 peculiar US borders
The Awl
From July 5, 2011: Is Colorado a perfect rectangle? The borders are defined by strict latitude and longitude lines, so by all accounts it should be; but thanks to a surveyor error back in 1879, it isn't. The kink in the western side of America's Otherwise Squariest Landmass is just one example of the kind of cartographic aberrations that have made for oddball borders in today's United States. More

Hundreds of geospatial e-books now available for free
Spatial Source
From June 21, 2011: The National Academies Press — the U.S. publisher for the National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, Institute of Medicine and National Research Council — is offering all of its books free in PDF format. The books cover a range of science topics, but of particular interest are the hundreds of geospatial books. More

GITA reassessing annual conference
Directions Magazine
From April 26, 2011: Directions Magazine spoke with Bob Samborski, president of the Geospatial Information and Technology Association, regarding some reports that have been surfacing about the status of the Geospatial Solutions Conference that took place recently in Grapevine, Texas. More

John Deere: Massive LightSquared interference with no solution in sight
GPS World
From June 7, 2011: Deere & Company, a major provider of precision agriculture equipment and services, notified the Federal Communications Commission of substantial interference with its GPS receivers by the LightSquared signal. Deere receivers registered impact of and interference by the LightSquared signal as far away as 22 miles from a transmitter. More

NTIA highlights just how bad LightSquared interference is
DSL Reports
From July 12, 2011: Late last month, LightSquared finally filed its revised testing report with the FCC, which unsurprisingly confirmed that its planned LTE network would significantly interfere with GPS signals. LightSquared recently proposed an alternate solution that would utilize a 10 MHz swath of L-band spectrum in the lower portion of the company's spectrum assets, instead of the chunk of 10 MHz spectrum they had planned to use — but showed significant GPS issues. More

Google Maps: 5 reasons Apple, others shouldn't try to compete
ZD Net
From May 31, 2011: At the TechCrunch Disrupt conference in New York, Google V.P. of Location and Local Services Marissa Mayer fielded some questions about the widespread popularity of its mapping app, specifically what might happen if Apple rolled out its own map app and booted Google Maps in favor of its own product on iPhones and iPod Touches. More