GIS Tech News (#33)20 Mar, 2007 By: Kenneth Wong
|Autodesk Plants Inner-City Tree-Tracking Technology in San Francisco
The old oak tree across the street from your house, the knurly juniper outside your window and the tall cypresses along the great highway are all part of the urban forest, the natural foliages to offset the concrete jungle. Perhaps some of them are personal landmarks, the shades under which you used to play as a child. But they don't usually appear on a map. You might be able to zoom into your neighborhood, courtesy of Google Maps, and pinpoint the little fluffy circle in the satellite photo as the red maple in your driveway, but that's about it. If you live in San Francisco, however, you can now do a whole lot more, thanks to the San Francisco Urban Forest Map, built on Autodesk MapGuide.The San Francisco Tree Map
On March 10, a sunny Saturday, San Francisco mayor Gavin Newsom commemorated Arbor Day by planting a tree at an intersection set aside to mark the occasion. Within minutes, the same tree appeared as a little purple dot in the city's Urban Forest Map, an interactive, online map. For the instantaneous update, the mayor would have to thank Charlie Crocker, a senior product manager at Autodesk Geospatial Solutions. He's the one who logged the mayor's horticultural effort at the site with a GPS unit and a laptop.
The San Francisco Urban Forest Map lets ordinary citizens explore the trees in their city by neighborhood, address and species, among others. Once they've identified a specific tree, or asset, they can use the Ctrl+Click function on the item to obtain more information: maintenance cycle, height, soil type and so on. They also have the option to add a tree that's not yet in the database, a feature that's calculated to encourage community involvement. Read more>>
By James L. Sipes
As the world becomes more georeferenced and GIS integrates with our day-to-day lives, the number of potential GIS users wanting to learn more about geospatial technologies also increases. Learning about GIS can be a daunting task because the technology is very complicated, changes constantly and has almost infinite potential uses. Fortunately, interested individuals have many opportunities to learn about GIS and geospatial information. The key is finding the approach that works best for you. Read more>>
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