GIS Tech News (#87)

6 Oct, 2009 By: Cadalyst Staff

Guidebook to the Future

ESRI's latest collection of essays explores the application of GIS to an array of challenges, as well as the ongoing evolution of the technology.

By Cyrena Respini-Irwin

Cyrena Respini-Irwin Last July, ESRI — a developer of GIS (geographic information system) software — added Essays on Geography and GIS: Volume 2 to its "Best Practices" series of e-books. The PDF, which can be downloaded from ESRI's website at no charge, compiles a dozen articles from recent issues of the company's ArcNews magazine. If history is any guide, Volume 2 is likely to be popular; ESRI claims that more than 30,000 people viewed the previous volume over the past year.

Unlike many corporate giants, ESRI is determined to promote the use of its products for the common good. Under the leadership of President Jack Dangermond, a staunch standard-bearer for the technology, the company has long championed the use of GIS to mitigate the gamut of problems facing humanity.

Although this mission could be dismissed as merely good marketing, there's more to it than that. Every human struggle — to stop the spread of an epidemic, to save an endangered species, to live in peace with our neighbors — benefits from better comprehension of the problem at hand. As the introduction to Volume 2 states, "By understanding geography and people's relationship to location, we can make informed decisions about the way we live on our planet."

Volume 2 opens with Jack Dangermond's argument for crafting our built environment in accord with the natural environment. AEC professionals will likely find "GIS: Designing Our Future" to be the most intriguing essay of the group: "GeoDesign brings geographic analysis into the design process, where initial design sketches are instantly vetted for suitability against a myriad of database layers describing a variety of physical and social factors for the spatial extent of the project." Read more »
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Cyrena Respini-Irwin is Cadalyst's senior editor.


Q&A Series: Autodesk Subscription, Part 3

This Q&A is part of a series from Cadalyst and Autodesk in which the company answers readers' questions about its software subscription policies. See also the Cadalyst article, "As Software Subscriptions Lapse in Down Economy, Autodesk Clarifies Policies."

View all Q&As in the series.

Question: Do I need to have all my Autodesk licenses on subscription or can I cover a limited number? Read more »


Mark Your Calendar: GIS Events


Webinar: Sharing Your Maps Using ArcGIS Online
October 8, 2009
Various times
This month, ESRI will host a live training seminar to demonstrate how to get started using this new resource. No geographic information system (GIS) or programming skills are required. Read more

2010 ESRI User Group Conference
February 3–4, 2010
Redlands, California
Professionals from California, Hawaii, Nevada, and the Pacific Islands are invited to connect with peers, colleagues, and ESRI contacts at the 2010 ESRI Regional User Group Conference. Read more 

For a complete list of CAD meetings, conferences, training sessions, and more, check out our calendar of events on Are you hosting an event that you would like to include in our calendar? Submit details at least two weeks in advance to


What's New at

Dell’s New Workstation Designed to Offer Affordable 2D/3D CAD Power
Filling a hole in the company’s product line, the Precision T1500 delivers workstation power, professional-level graphics performance, and software certification that CAD users need for reliable performance — all starting at $949. Read more

What's the BIM Deal? Part 3
From users to IT to senior management, everyone in your company has their own expectations about BIM implementation. Communication, training, and planning will increase your chances of success and minimize the number of unhappy campers.
Read more

The Print Factor
AEC firms are facing a variety of challenging market trends — including decentralized printing, widespread use of color, and growing demand for environmentally responsible projects — that can be addressed with a modern wide-format printing system.
Read more


About the Author: Cadalyst Staff

Cadalyst Staff

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