Meeting Date: 
Thursday, December 22, 2011 - 18:00
Richardson 313
Description/Additional Information: 

Topic:  Tad Larson to talk on "iOS and Anroid app development in the open-source Appcelerator environment"

Associated Files: 
Online Notes: 

Spatial Data Management Group Meeting, Thursday, December 22nd @ 10:00, Richardson 313

Attendees: Dave, Francis, Heather, Keith, Marc, Matt, Patti, Tad, Terralyn, Theresa

Treats: Theresa

Notes: Dave

Facilitator: Terralyn


Topic:  Tad Larson to talk on "iOS and Anroid app development in the open-source Appcelerator environment"

EPA oversees the National Wetland Condition Assessment, along with State, Tribal, and Federal partners.  To help make the data collection and transmission consistent across all partners (as well as inexpensive), they wanted to shift from paper to electronic data collection.  Since many people have smart phones and/or tablet computers, they wanted to utilize this technology.  Tad is working on developing a data collection app (akin to a database form) on both iOS and Android platforms.  He is using the open-source Titanium Appcelerator, which uses JavaScript and has both iOS and Android emulators.  It uses SQLite, a self-contained, serverless, zero-configuration, transactional SQL database engine, to manage the data collection.  When a record is submitted by the user, the app searches for all data with the unique SiteID/Visit# identifier, gathers it via SQLite, and exports it to XML and sends it via the web to HomeBase.


ForestSAT 2012 in Corvallis, September 11-14, 2012; http://www.forestsat2012.com/

Corvallis Open Source GIS group meeting in Corvallis, happened on December 7, 6:30 p.m., Alsea Geospatial

Silvilaser (forestry lidar), Vancouver, BC, September 16-19, 2012; http://silvilaser2012.com/

ESRI Developer Summit – March 26-29, 2012, Palm Springs.  OSU has two free passes.  To fulfill our obligations as an ESRI Development Center, we need to have a student present at one of the ESRI conferences (User Conference, Developer Summit, Education Conference) within the first three years.  This still needs to happen.  Could it be a poster?  We’re not sure.

ESRI User Conference –  July 23-27, 2012, San Diego; Charles Convis, ESRI Conservation Program manager, says, “the current signs seem to point to the 2012 conference focus to be conservation planning, so it might be a good one for conservationists to catch.”


Theresa has a bunch of DOQs on CD in her office; what should she do with them?  People hardly use them anymore since aerial imagery is largely available online.  She’ll put them in a box and store them in the vault.

Digital DOQs and other satellite imagery are available at Earth Explorer: http://earthexplorer.usgs.gov/  Much of it is free.

USGS has historical topographic maps available in GeoPDF format.  http://nationalmap.gov/historical/

Regular USGS topographic maps are being converted to a new electronic format.  Called US Topo, they are also in GeoPDF format, and contain an orthoimagery background and multiple layers that can be turned on and off (Projection and Grids, Geographic Names, Structures, Boundaries, Transportation, Hydrography, and Contours).   http://nationalmap.gov/ustopo/index.html

Keith suggested adding information about available data to the Data tab on the SDMG web site.


Terralyn reported that ArcGIS 10 Server is up and running after a Microsoft update.  Mercator has version 10 on it.  It is open to the world and not an IMS anymore.  Meridian is a version 9.3 production server.

One can use VMware to set up a virtual machine to install the ArcGIS version that is not on one’s main machine (if you want to run both 9.3 and 10).  Some in the College of Forestry are doing this.

There was a discussion about the slowness of ArcGIS 10, even on fast computers.  Patti got a new computer with Windows 7 and 16 GB RAM, but 10 can still be sort of slow over the network.  She has found that setting user space mapping to map directly to the IP address of the server works better.  Keith said he has found that the connection works faster when mapping directly to the server names (rather than T: names).  Terralyn cautioned against this, though, since the connections may break if the IT folks have to move data to a different server.


Theresa is planning to lead a two-hour “What's new in ArcGIS 10” session on February 9.  Jerry asked her if she would lead one because there had been some requests from the Forestry community.  There was some discussion about involving Patti or Keith in the ArcPy part of the training.  (Someone commented that ArcPy can be frustrating because it crashes and doesn’t indicate why, along with some other annoying backward changes.  This led to more complaints about the slowness and poor functionality of ArcGIS 10, although some stuck up for the improved Search functions and the Results tab.)

Round Table:

Theresa – Forest Service is talking about possibly moving from the Data Center model to the “Cloud”.  A lot of people are moving into FSL right now, including Siuslaw N.F. employees, NRIS folks, and others from the regional group.  She will send an email to the new folks inviting them to join the SDMG.

Patti – North Pacific LCC (Landscape Conservation Cooperative) is funding NetMap (http://netmaptools.org/, LeeBenda and Dan Miller) to finish their data-rich stream layers for the entire LCC (California to Alaska, west side of the Cascades).  She has been using NetMap a lot recently; it has good stream and valley characteristics, tributary junction information, LLID routes, etc.

Dave – Used Cygwin and C code scripts to combine climate SIG data from UW for study watersheds.  New experience working with C code.  Others mentioned that UBC has weather data for Canada and SE Alaska, and that Ron B. has Python scripts that pull these data together – they get the points that match the cells and then run the numbers.

Keith – Trying to get a Drupal plug-in for metadata.  Hopes to get it set up on the SDMG web site.

Francis – Went to the Open Source GIS meeting (as did Marc).  Rob (?) presented on QGIS.  The group is trying to think of projects to do in the Corvallis area.  There were about 12-15 people at the meeting, including city and county GIS folks, Denis White, Bernhard Jenny, and others.  The next meeting will be PostGIS-focused.

Marc – Some folks are testing an “optimal” GIS computer at EPA.  It has Win7 and a solid state hard drive.  They are testing geoprocessing, ArcPy, NumPy, SyFy(?).  They have been finding that a best practice is to work local, the network is slow.  They are trying to pay attention to the types of tasks that are particularly slow so they can identify those.

Tad – Trying to get low-slope values for streams, below 0.1%, in an automated way, but is having trouble.  Are there any better streams than NHD Plus?  Yes, came the response, try NHD High Resolution (1:24k).

Miscellaneous – Patti said that Extract Multi Values to Points (from multiple rasters) doesn’t work well.  Matt indicated that he wrote a C++ tool in GDAL called “Footprint” that extracts little chunks of data from multiple rasters, so that might help.

Next Meeting: 

Speaker: Bernhard Jenny, OSU Geosciences

Date: January 26, 2012

Room: Richardson 313

Treats: Matt

Notes: Patti

Facilitator: Keith