Tuesday, April 21, 2020

As I Was Saying Before I Was So Rudely Interrupted...

Well, here we are five years and roughly seven months since this blog last saw a post. Trust me, I wasn't on vacation. Nope, it was endless hours of slogging to rescue the Geospatial Information & Technology Association (GITA) from demise after the full-time staff lost their jobs in the economic downturn following the Great Recession of 2008. As the nation's largest GIS association focused on the safety and security of the nation's infrastructure, GITA was an association worth saving. So myself and handful of others rolled up our sleeves and went to work on changing a 32-year old bricks-and-mortar institution with full-time staff into a virtual organization run by volunteers. Thankfully, in late 2018, GITA was finally able to move on to professional association management, and after a respite for me, I'm finally able to return to the keyboard.  

And what a time to come back to the keyboard. I'm a Rip Van Winkle character waking up in the middle of a pandemic. Lots to be said. And, I'll do exactly that in the weeks ahead. 

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Geospatial Lessons Learned from Disasters Webinar - October 6, 11:15 AM CDT

As part of the Department of Interior's monthly webinar series, I will be presenting this coming Monday. Here are the details for this no cost event:
  • Webinar Title: Hurricanes, Floods, Fires and other Disasters: Geospatial Lessons from the Front Lines
  • Date: Monday, October 6, 2014
  • Time: 11:15 AM - 12:15 PM CDT (To Livestream this event, please join 5-10 minutes early to avoid technical difficulties.)
  • Cost: Free 
  • Full details to include connection information: Click here

Comment: To my readers I regret the current disruption in the publication schedule for this blog.  A death in family has been a life changing event which has precluded a daily note.  I now expect EPC Updates to return to its normal schedule on Monday, October 13th.  Thank you for understanding.

    Monday, September 15, 2014

    EPC Updates Off-LIne This Week

    EPC Updates will remain off-line the week of September 22nd due to unanticipated personal circumstances.

    Wednesday, September 10, 2014

    Fire Hydrants to the Rescue

    Realizing the lowly fire hydrant is one of the few things that can survive a disaster intact, the University of Missouri Extension has come up with a plan to leverage that circumstance for response purposes. Read below:

    (University of Missouri Extension, August 27, 2014)

    Taking the story above one step further, a firefighter in Florida has an idea about how to maximize the value of such efforts:

    (USNG Florida)

    Comment: Got Grid?

    Tuesday, September 9, 2014

    American Public Unplugged From Indoor Cell Phone Tracking Reality

    If there was ever proof positive there is a disconnect between the public's belief's about what cell phone tracking technology can do, and reality, the latest survey by the Find Me 911 Coalition is it. 66% of survey respondents errantly believe a cell phone when used inside a building can provide location information sufficiently accurate to bring an emergency response to the correct address. According to Jamie Barnett, Director of the Find Me 911 Coalition and former Chief of the FCC’s Public Safety and Homeland Security Bureau, “Unfortunately, the carriers have chosen cheaper, less-effective location technologies, and people are dying because emergency responders can’t find them."  Details below:

    (GPS World, 26 August 2014)

    Comment: With each passing year, more and more Americans have unplugged their hard wired phone and have come to rely on a cell phone as their only phone, thereby increasing the significance of this reality gap over time. Kudos to the Find Me 911 Coalition for its efforts to bring this issue into the public's attention.

    Monday, September 8, 2014

    Blimps Over Baltimore

    We've been tuned into this story for the past couple of years. Now, what were once conceptual discussions about using lighter-than-air craft to protect the nation's capital and surrounding East Coast cities, has become approaching reality. Later this year two JLENS (Joint Land Attack Cruise Missile Defense Elevated Netted Sensor System) aerostats will be sent aloft from the U.S. Army's Aberdeen Proving Grounds, Maryland, and privacy watchdogs are not happy.

    (Washington Post, September 3, 2014)

    Comment: The privacy issue has bubbled to the top as predicted, and my opinion about that circumstance remains unchanged.  See: 

    (EPC Updates, July 29, 2013)

    Photo credit: U.S. Army