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Comments

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US Weather System and Satellite Network Hacked

Lord Satri weather models actually impacted (76 comments)

Not true, not "just websites" were impacted. I work for a non-US national meteorological center. Those recent hacks meant for us that important satellite data that was usually provided by the NOAA suddenly stopped being accessible, having real impacts on weather forecasting quality. It took a few days to find alternatives. We learned and are in the process of making certain that such a situation does not happen once again. In other words, for some major 'foreign' weather forecasting operations, the impacts were real and important, not overblown as you state.

Unrelated, Slashdot's commenting system sucks in mobile devices... We can't quote or even see the original comments while replying... And the comment box doesn't resize while replying, we can't even review our own replies! Lots of room for improvement...

about a month ago
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Slashdot Asks: How Will You Replace Google Reader?

Lord Satri Re:Happy with NewsBlur (335 comments)

+1 .. NewsBlur works greatly for me too. And it's open source so at least I'm not worried about perenity.

about a year and a half ago
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Drupal's Creator Aims For World Domination

Lord Satri Drupal vs WordPress (192 comments)

What Dries say in this article:

"The "sweet spot" for Drupal is larger sites rather than smaller ones. "I think when people think big websites, they usually think Drupal, and when they think small blogs or limited small websites in complexity then they think WordPress," Buytaert said.

"At Acquia we never compete with WordPress. We don't see them ever. I'm sure the smaller Drupal shops run into them, but in the enterprise we never run into WordPress."

"I think with small sites I'm not willing to give up on them but I think we just need to say we're more about big sites and less about small sites, but then the small sites are still very useful to get people into the community," Buytaert said."

I would have liked to know that before... I moved from Slashcode to Drupal years ago on the advice of a few. While I can appreciate how Drupal is flexible and powerful, now I understand that what I really needed, as a non-expert and for my small website, was just WordPress. But too late, won't do another painful migration anytime soon...

What annoys me most with Drupal: no straightforward way to update major versions (e.g. from 6.x to 7.x), especially since a lot of user-contributed modules doesn't exist in the new version or require a lot of work to do so. The admin interface is pretty bad. The user community is much much smaller than WordPress (thinking of mature/maintained user-contributed modules here). Etc.

about 2 years ago
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Slashdot Anniversary: Montréal, QC, CA

Lord Satri Re:has it really been that long? (14 comments)

Hey! That's my book! :-) I still run Slashgeo... but its engine is Drupal now, since Slashcode died long ago...

I'm not available on the 24th.... maybe I'll find a way to make it to l'Amère à boire, but in any case, enjoy the party! :-)

Alex

more than 2 years ago
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Google Maps Introduces 8-Bit Quest Maps

Lord Satri Battle monsters? (123 comments)

Anyone found out how to battle monsters? Is this just part of the joke or is there a way to actually do it? :-)

The official Google Lat Long blog: "Get detailed directions to avoid dangerous paths, and battle your way through a world of powerful monsters and mystic treasures."

more than 2 years ago
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How Google Is Remapping Public Transportation

Lord Satri Re:GTFS Realtime != Realtime (187 comments)

From the article: "To enable all that, Google introduced a new standard in 2011 called GTFS-realtime. It builds on GTFS, but is a different animal, since it includes new feed types for trip updates, service alerts, and vehicle positions, as well as provisions for constantly refreshing this data throughout the day."

So the article does state that it's also for vehicle positions. I haven't checked if the article is right or not though.

more than 2 years ago
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Canadian Gov't Considers Plan To Block Public Domain

Lord Satri And tell your friends via Fb, G+ or anything else (169 comments)

The only thing I'd add to your entry, is asking our fellow canadians to tell their friends, family, everyone in fact, to send such an email by spreading the word on Facebook, Google+, Twitter, or any other means you have. Hey, we're in a connected world now, let's show them that we're able to use those connections for a meaning!

more than 2 years ago
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Google Improves Android Translator To Battle Siri

Lord Satri Siri and translation (185 comments)

Siri doesn't do translations, it's more of an advanced voice recognition tool. Am I wrong? This would mean that at the moment, Apple's Siri and Google Translation would have two different strengths; Siri: usable natural language voice recognition (at least that's how they sell it) and Google Tranlation, well, multi-language translations.

more than 3 years ago
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Apple Pulls VLC Media Player From AppStore

Lord Satri GPL vs Apple's license (754 comments)

I tend to believe it is easier for Apple to change their license and allow GPL software in the app store than having VLC move away from the GPL.

more than 3 years ago
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Apple's Game Center Shares Your Real Name

Lord Satri What's the problem? It's actually useful! (182 comments)

I invite friends, and my friends know my name. I don't see the problem at all.

Actually, when I tried Game Center some time ago, the fact that I did not know who was "Weird Username Here" who accepted my invitation was kind of awkward. As much as usernames are cool, I also want to know which username is associated to which friend.

This change sounds like a improvement to me.

about 4 years ago
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Google Earth Adds 3-D Trees

Lord Satri Elsewhere in virtual globes... (95 comments)

Okay, that's a bit off-topic, but not that much when we discuss virtual globes and the likes. Here's a dismissed submission last week that I think worthy of sharing: "It's a dream come true. After MapQuest and Yahoo actively supporting the Wikipedia-like map initiative OpenStreetMap.org. Microsoft announced that they hired OpenStreetMap's founder Steve Coast for their Bing Maps team. But there's more, they committed providing orthorectified aerial imagery and more to the project. From the official announcement: "Continuously innovating and improving our map data is a top priority and a massive undertaking at Bing. That's why we're excited to announce a new initiative to work with the OpenStreetMap project, a community of more than 320,000 people who have built high quality maps for every country on earth. Microsoft is providing access to our Bing Aerial Imagery for use in the OpenStreetMap project, and we have hired industry veteran Steve Coast to lead this effort. [...] As a first step in this engagement, we plan to enable access to Bing's global orthorectified aerial imagery, as a backdrop of OSM editors. Also, Microsoft is working on new tools to better enable contributions to OSM." Microsoft already added the OpenStreetMap layer to Bing Maps last August."

Clearly, this means to me that open data has won that round and that Tele Atlas and NAVTEQ are in deeper trouble today than a few months ago.

Now to go back to Google, at the moment, but it could change anytime, they're going on a different road away from OpenStreetMap with their Google Map Maker.

about 4 years ago
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Can an Open Source Map Project Make Money?

Lord Satri They already make money out of OSM (304 comments)

There are plenty of commercial uses of OSM already, and some are making quite enough money out of it. One that I personally use is offmaps.com, but that's obviously barely the tip of the iceberg.

But the question is whether OSM can make money out of it or not. Considering CloudMade are paying 40 employees, I guess they *do* can make money out of it, by "providing APIs for web sites, applications, and devices to use the rendered map data." (source is Wikipedia, probably the CloudMade website would provide more details.)

OSM is an example of success: open geospatial data and business profit.

more than 4 years ago
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Towards an Open Geolocation Database

Lord Satri OpenAddresses.org, OpenAerialMap.org, OpenTopograp (74 comments)

I agree. In addition to OpenStreetMap and Geonames, a few other ones poped up in the geospatial community. OpenAddresses.org - with already 11+ addresses stored while it was launched less than a month ago, OpenAerialMap.org - which "rebooted" late last year, and OpenTopography.org too. There's other similar projects out there - the point being: there are several good starting points.

Also interesting is this OpenStreetMap VS Google MapMaker wrap-up - licensing terms being, once again, an information sharing showstopper.

more than 3 years ago

Submissions

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Unmanaged Comments Sections are Harmful to Readers and Publications

Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  about 6 months ago

Lord Satri (609291) writes "The title of the article might not apply to Slashdot thanks to its moderation system, but the Close your comments; Build a community article argues that allowing unmanaged comments are harmful to both readers and publishers. From the article:

"Last year, Popular Science decided to close comments, citing studies that blamed them for the spread of misinformation. TechCrunch has changed platforms several times, to Livefyre, and back to Facebook comments. [...] It’s a Petri dish that grows trolls and frightens away those who actually want to contribute. At worst, an unmoderated comments section can contain threats and personal attacks, invalid criticisms and spam. [...] Moderation goes to great lengths to fix these problems. A moderator can ban dangerous trolls, protecting equitable commenters and increasing reply rates and time-on-site between those readers. [...] So, why did you want comments in the first place? Many organizations cite “engagement,” but what they actually mean is “action.” They want to motivate their readers to do something, whether that action is clicking a share button, emailing a tip, or contributing some form of user generated content.

""

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Apple's Lossless Audio Codec (ALAC) Now Open Sourc

Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  more than 3 years ago

Lord Satri writes "MacOSForge announced that Apple's Lossless Audio Codec (ALAC) is now available open source under the Apache license: "The Apple Lossless Audio Codec (ALAC) is an audio codec developed by Apple and supported on iPhone, iPad, most iPods, Mac and iTunes. ALAC is a data compression method which reduces the size of audio files with no loss of information. A decoded ALAC stream is bit-for-bit identical to the original uncompressed audio file. The Apple Lossless Audio Codec project contains the sources for the ALAC encoder and decoder. Also included is an example command line utility, called alacconvert, to read and write audio data to/from Core Audio Format (CAF) and WAVE files. A description of a 'magic cookie' for use with files based on the ISO base media file format (e.g. MP4 and M4A) is included as well.""
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Microsoft Launches Streetside, Updates Bing Maps

Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  about 5 years ago

Lord Satri writes "Microsoft's Bing Maps (formerly known as Virtual Earth) got a major upgrade today. Amongst the new features: Streetside, enhanced Bird’s Eye view, Photosynth integration and more. Microsoft's Streetside is similar in concept to Google StreetView. From the official blog: "[Regarding Streetside:] Ground level photographs fully stitched allowing full continuous immersion into the street level landscape [...] Street labels hovering within the images showing you road names (so you don’t get lost) [...] [Regarding Bird's Eye view:] Our investments in photogrammetric processing are being leveraged for a new mode in the urban areas where we’ve captured high resolution photography and stereo data to create models of the respective cities. [Regarding Photosynth:] Photosynth is now natively integrated into Bing Maps. This means you can zip down from space down into someone’s housenot kidding." There's also a 27-minutes video showing the features, specifically focusing on Streetside."
Link to Original Source
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The Google Satellite to Be Launched This Week

Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Lord Satri writes "Don't believe the CNET headline, it's not really a Google Satellite that we'll see in orbit this week, but almost! Google signed an exclusivity deal with GeoEye regarding GeoEye-1, the most advanced high resolution civil remote sensing satellite to date. This can be annoying to normal high-resolution remote sensing data users since Google already has an exclusivity deal with DigitalGlobe, the other major civil satellite imagery provider. From the CNET article: "Under the deal, Google is the exclusive online mapping site that may use the imagery, said Mark Brender, vice president of corporate communications and marketing. Google uses satellite imagery in its Google Maps and Google Earth product. And as a little icing on the cake, Google's logo is on the side of the rocket set to launch the 4,300-pound satellite in six days from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. Terms of the deal weren't disclosed. GeoEye-1 will orbit 423 miles above Earth, but it will be able to gather imagery with details the size of 41 centimeters, Brender said. Google, though, is permitted to use data only with a resolution of 50cm because of the terms of GeoEye's license with the U.S. government.""
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FireEagle - Yahoo's Service for Geo Information

Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Lord Satri writes "TechCrunch, Wired, and I'm sure many others are talking about Yahoo's new FireEagle service which is in alpha release now. TechCrunch describes the service, "FireEagle, which is built entirely on Ruby on Rails, was originally inspired by Yahoos ZoneTag research product. It is a platform for controlling peoples location information. Tell it (directly or via a third party application built on FireEagles APIs) where you are (give it specific lat/long, or a city name, or a zip code, etc.) and it will note your location. Alternatively, users with GPS phones (or other GPS device) could set it to periodically update FireEagle with geo information." Wired touches on something I'm sure we'll hear a lot about services that know your location, the "creepy" factor, "As with most developments in the geo-location realm, FireEagle offers some really cool possibilities I have no doubt that web developers will leap at the chance to offer seamless integration of geodata but it also looks a little bit creepy. Do we really want everyone to know exactly where we are all the time? Of course, if you consider that your mobile service provider already has that information, perhaps concern over making it public is a moot point." I see plenty of "cool possibilities" to having a single warehouse and API for that kind of data, so I'll be trying to get myself in the alpha-testing along with many others I'm sure."
Link to Original Source
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Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Lord Satri writes "This week, Microsoft announced their new Live Maps, in addition to supporting Firefox on Windows for 3D, now supports the GeoRSS standard. They join Google which recently announced the support of GeoRSS and KML mapping in their Google Maps API. In short, GeoRSS is a standard supported by the Open Geospatial Consortium that incorporates geolocation in an interoperable manner to RSS feeds. The applications are numerous. With Yahoo!'s support of GeoRSS, all the major players are in and the future looks bright for this emerging standard. As for KML, Google Earth's file format, this new Google Maps integration is not unrelated to the recent announcement of internet-wide KML search capabilities within Google Earth. From the GeoRSS website: "This site describes a number of ways to encode location in RSS feeds. As RSS becomes more and more prevalent as a way to publish and share information, it becomes increasingly important that location is described in an interoperable manner so that applications can request, aggregate, share and map geographically tagged feeds. To avoid the fragmentation of language that has occurred in RSS and other Web information encoding efforts, we have created this site to promote a relatively small number of encodings that meet the needs of a wide range of communities. By building these encodings on a common information model, we hope to promote interoperability and "upwards-compatibility" across encodings.""
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Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Lord Satri writes "When my father sent me a short french-written article about this, I though it was wrong, but Infoworld offers a short article about a new GPS chip which uses two satellite navigation services and will operate in indoor environments. From the article: "The u-blox 5 chip, which Switzerland's U-blox plans to unveil at the 3GSM World Congress event in Barcelona next month, uses two global navigation satellite services: GPS, which was developed by the U.S. Department of Defense, and Europe's Galileo, the vendor said Wednesday. The technology has a tracking sensitivity of -160 dBm, which enables indoor coverage. The abbreviation dBm represents the power ratio in decibels (dB) with respect to 1 milliwatt (mW). With a power consumption of less than 50 mW, the u-blox 5 chip allows GPS-enabled mobile phones and other wireless devices to operate in difficult indoor environments, such as shopping malls and train stations." This and the upcoming much cheaper and better performance option for mobile phones and other hand-held devices will help location-based services to reach mass market."
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Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Lord Satri writes "Google announced today's release of Pro and Free versions of SketchUp 6, with very interesting features. The Photo Match feature feels like a preemptive strike against Microsoft's Photosynth. From this AECNews article: "In sharing the news of SketchUp 6 with AECnews in a pre-release briefing, Google SketchUp Product Manager John Bacus emphasized the "virtuous circle" that Google sees between Google Earth, Google 3D Warehouse, and Google SketchUp. One additional tool required for this virtuous circle becomes available tomorrow, a "Collections" feature in 3D Warehouse, where "groups of like-minded people can come together on projects like modeling cities," said Bacus. "If you turn on the 3D Warehouse layer in the latest release of Google Earth, you can see that many cities have a fair number of buildings in them already. A large community of SketchUp users are already making and creating and posting to the 3D Warehouse; the best will go to Google Earth." Collections will make this process even easier, Bacus added.""
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Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  more than 8 years ago

Lord Satri writes "An important Microsoft announcement, Virtual Earth 3D has launched. See also numerous screenshots and a Google Earth comparison from Spatially Adjusted. Read the Google Earth Blog on why he thinks it's not a treat to Google. Here's the CNET article and Microsoft's official press release (via The Map Room). Read more here from the development side or see the CBS reportage on Virtual Earth 3D. My main gripe: Windows and Internet Explorer 6/7 only. From the official press release: "When people visit Live Search, type a query into the search box and click the "Maps" tab, they get their search results in a map context that offers the option to explore the area using two-dimensional views (aerial and bird's-eye) or three dimensional models with Virtual Earth 3D. This new technology compiles photographic images of cities and terrain to generate textured, photorealistic 3-D models with engineering level accuracy.""
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Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Lord Satri writes "National Geographics runs a story on GeoRSS named disaster prediction, social networking boosted by geo-data feeds. From the article: "Singh, a staff member at the nonprofit Open Geospatial Consortium, says that the GeoRSS service will extend the capability to create such location-based tagsa concept known as georeferencingto anyone with an Internet connection. [...] "GeoRSS, by providing an easy and easily agreed-to data format, would enable greater sharing of crucial information on the ground," he said. Now it is up to software companies to incorporate the standard into their products. Already industry giants Microsoft and Yahoo! have taken an interest, Singh says." Version 1 of the GeoRSS specifications was release last month. Here's a GeoPlace article on GeoRSS from Raj Singh."
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Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  more than 8 years ago

Lord Satri writes "Last week at the FOSS4G2006, the Free and Open Source Software for Geoinformatics conference, after one year of work, the GeoRSS specifications version 1.0 have been released. From the GeoRSS website: "This site describes a number of ways to encode location in RSS feeds. As RSS becomes more and more prevalent as a way to publish and share information, it becomes increasingly important that location is described in an interoperable manner so that applications can request, aggregate, share and map geographically tagged feeds." The GeoRSS was adopted earlier this year by the Open Geospatial Consortium. GeoRSS opens a wealth of new possibilities, especially in regards to the 'sensor web' building around us. More reading about GeoRSS in this excellent summary article and the presentation made at the Where 2.0 conference. GeoRSS also supports Time tags and thus can be tied to the new time tracking capabilities of Google Earth (Free version)."
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Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  more than 8 years ago

Lord Satri writes "Following September 8th major satellite/photo imagery update for Google Maps and Google Earth, Google Earth v4.0.2080 has been released today. It is no small update. Here's yesterday press release about major content update for Google Earth. From this ZDNet article: "Google Earth will include before and after satellite images of environmentally endangered locations originally published by the U.N. Environment Program as a coffee-table book." and from the Ogle Earth blog: "New stuff in the "Featured content" folder in the Layers sidebar. Some of it's been there for a while, but brand new is a layer by the United Nations Environmental Program (UNEP), a layer by the US National Park service, and expanded global content by the Discovery Channel." The Google Earth Blog tells us about the addition of 3D buildings in cities all over Japan. Here's another ZDNet article where we learn the time tracking tool in Google Earth Pro will now be available in Google Earth Free (and GE Plus, of course!). From the article: "The feature in which a slider is used to scroll through time [...] now features a simplified interface. [...] showing how scientists, who had tracked the movements of a whale shark using GPS, had then mapped the creature's path using the application. Business uses could include fleet tracking or mapping the movements of transport infrastructure according to Google. Jones also described how the new version would enable users to track all of the geostationary satellites orbiting the earth." Remember, you can't use Google Earth Free at work. Doing a 'check for update' will not work, you must get it from the GE website."
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Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  more than 8 years ago

Lord Satri writes "Here's the press release about today's major content update for Google Earth. The Google Earth Blog tells us about the addition of 3D buildings in cities all over Japan. From this ZDNet article: "Google Earth will include before and after satellite images of environmentally endangered locations originally published by the U.N. Environment Program as a coffee-table book." and from the Ogle Earth blog: "New stuff in the "Featured content" folder in the Layers sidebar. Some of it's been there for a while, but brand new is a layer by the United Nations Environmental Program (UNEP), a layer by the US National Park service, and expanded global content by the Discovery Channel." The same time, another ZDNet article tells us time tracking is now included in Google Earth 'Free' (yes, there is multiple version of Google Earth). From the article: "The feature in which a slider is used to scroll through time [...] now features a simplified interface. [...] showing how scientists, who had tracked the movements of a whale shark using GPS, had then mapped the creature's path using the application. Business uses could include fleet tracking or mapping the movements of transport infrastructure according to Google. Jones also described how the new version would enable users to track all of the geostationary satellites orbiting the earth.""
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Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  more than 8 years ago

Lord Satri writes "Is there any open professional networking website or tool available? I was introduced to professional networking two weeks ago and found the system very interesting with one main caveat, it's a commercial tool. It might be free, but if you want advanced features, you must open your wallet. Money is not really the issue, but the fear of being locked-in is. I don't need a new job, but the website in question (name withheld for neutrality purposes) offers several interesting ways to look at my professional network. It allows me to browse my professional contacts by location, by job types, by qualifications, etc. I can search up to three levels away from me (contacts of contacts of contacts). I can learn more about who did what and who knows who. Is there such an open service? Search engines haven't provided any pertinent answers. Alternate question: which are your preferred professional networking tools? How do you, the self-employed, are keeping track of your network and use it to find contracts?"
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Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  more than 8 years ago

Lord Satri writes "Sensors are getting everywhere and numerous. Very numerous. Standards comes to the rescue before the mess takes over. The Open Geospatial Consortium, a non-profit, international and voluntary consensus standards organization that is leading the development of standards for geospatial and location based services, just released four new sensor-related specifications. Faily recently, Microsoft released its SenseWeb project and its SensorMap. From the SenseWeb site: "SenseWeb is a research portal that lets users visualize and query real-time data using a geographical interface such as Windows Live Local and allows data owners to easily publish their live data using a web service interface." The Geospatial Semantic Web Blog chimes in: "An important part of the SenseWeb portal design is the modeling of physical sensors, describing different classes of sensors and their respective properties. Interestingly, SenseWeb defines this model using the Web Ontology Language OWL." It's worthed to open SensorMap and zoom in to experience the interface. You may also read this GeoPlace article GML and WFS enabled SensorNet. From the article: "The use of WFS in wide-area sensor webs is a natural extension of GML, which can express a wide range of geographic information types, including conventional geographic features as well as coverages and observations. The ability to handle such data is a strength of WFS, because it minimizes the number of different interfaces and components in the sensor network.""

Journals

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Microsoft Supporting OpenStreetMap.org

Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  about 4 years ago

It's a dream come true. After MapQuest and Yahoo actively supporting the Wikipedia-like map initiative OpenStreetMap.org. Microsoft announced that they hired OpenStreetMap's founder Steve Coast for their Bing Maps team. But there's more, they committed providing orthorectified aerial imagery and more to the project. From the official announcement: "Continuously innovating and improving our map data is a top priority and a massive undertaking at Bing. Thatâ(TM)s why weâ(TM)re excited to announce a new initiative to work with the OpenStreetMap project, a community of more than 320,000 people who have built high quality maps for every country on earth. Microsoft is providing access to our Bing Aerial Imagery for use in the OpenStreetMap project, and we have hired industry veteran Steve Coast to lead this effort. [...] As a first step in this engagement, we plan to enable access to Bing's global orthorectified aerial imagery, as a backdrop of OSM editors. Also, Microsoft is working on new tools to better enable contributions to OSM." Microsoft already added the OpenStreetMap layer to Bing Maps last August.

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Slashcode is dead, long live Slashcode?

Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  more than 5 years ago

The good news is Slashdot is still an interesting site to me, continues to evolve and is in active development. But the good news about Slashdot do not apply to Slashcode, Slashdot's open source engine. I'm the main manager of a small Slashcode-based website. Despite my enthusiasm, the truth is Slashcode is dead. It has been dead for quite some time and I wonder if it can be resurrected. How can Slashcode be dead? There is no community behind it anymore. There has been no official release since 2002, granted you can and should use the CVS tags, but it has not been updated with anything recent such as the AJAX code used on Slashdot for the last few years.

Rebuilding the community? Maybe, but enthusiasts quickly hit a wall. Slashcode's own main page is not up to date, there's a lot of missing information and my previous efforts at helping updating it got no answers from the site admins. How can you build a community when there's no way to learn who's in the boat with you? Ah! The mailing lists, of course! There are two main Slashcode mailing lists. On the Slashcode-general list, there was only 8 threads in 2008, 3 so far for 2009. For the Slashcode-development, it's worse: 2 posts since May 2007, both from our small team. You can ask questions, but you never know if someone will answer the phone.

A few years ago our small team developed a plugin that adds webmaps to stories and GeoRSS to the feed but failed to get much feedback from anyone. We're far from the community and the development workforce than, to name just one, the one behind Drupal, which has its own conference and 2000 developer accounts. Slashdot's responsibility? None directly, Slashcode is open source software, they rightfully have no obligation to contribute to a community.

Slashcode still has some attracting features and an excellent auto-moderation system. So, what's Slashcode future? I'm interested in the insights you have to share. I fear my own Slashsite will die out of technological obsolescence and that other Slashsites have no future. A Slashcode community won't spring out of the digital blue overnight, but it all has to start somewhere. Is it too late to try to build a vibrant Slashcode community?

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Microsoft Offering 3D Photo Stitches on the Web

Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  more than 5 years ago

Microsoft announced today the integration of Photosynth with Virtual Earth, enabling free navigation of photos in 3D on the web. The NASA offers an example of the results (Silverlight required). Photosynth has been publicly available since last summer. It somehow competes with Google's Panoramio and even Google StreetView since Photosynth have exploration in Virtual Earth capabilities (even on the iPhone!). You can also make private 'synths' with MicroSoft's GeoSynth. Hotels and travel sites are amongst those expected to use this free 3D photo browsing on the web opportunity from Microsoft. With the release last month of the Google Earth 5.0 Plugin for browsers, the battle is heating up.

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Marking twitter sockpuppets as foes

Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Thanks to SockDisclosure, 14 twitter sockpuppets accounts have been discovered. In my opinion. sockpuppets are a wrong way to use Slashdot. What can I do? Mostly nothing, but I marked all twitter accounts as foes and invite you to do so too. Goal: enhance the quality of the Slashdot discussions I/we happen to read.

Cheers -

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MacOS X vs Ubuntu from a User Standpoint

Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Here's my problem: I use macs at home. Ok I admit it, it's not a really problem because I believe it's the best overall user experience for me. Even if I'm a heavy open source software user (and sporadic contributor) and enthusiast, I still haven't been convinced Ubuntu is ready for me. I don't have a lot of Ubuntu experience despite using Debian at work, but Slashdot users do! I don't want or need a flamewar, I'd like to get your informed feedback. I wrote a short personal assessment of why I stick with Macs instead of switching to Ubuntu right away. Where I am wrong? My short text quickly looks at the software I, and any average user, use on a computer: email (Apple's Mail vs Thunderbird / other), Spotlight vs Beagle, etc. To reassure Ubuntu fans, here's an extract: "I found this interrogation from one of my colleagues, "will MacOSX forever stay more advanced than Ubuntu?". I tend to believe the answer's no and as a consequence, you'll eventually see me use an open source operating system on my primary computer at home. We're not just there yet."

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China's New Secret Naval Base

Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  more than 6 years ago

In not-so-secret arms race news, the Federation of American Scientists details, with recent satellite imagery, the new Chinese secret naval base on Hainan Island. What's interesting is China's new capabilities, such as a demagnetization facility. What's not that much interesting is so many resources spent worldwide for military defense, but hopefully, it's harder and harder to hide such behavior to other governments. From the article: "The SSBN base on Hainan Island will probably be seen as a reaffirmation of China's ambitions to develop a sea-based deterrent. To what extent the Chinese navy will be capable of operating the SSBNs in a way that matters strategically is another question. China's first SSBN, the Xia, was no success and never sailed on a deterrent mission. As a consequence, the Chinese navy has virtually no tactical experience in operating SSBNs at sea. Yet the Jin-class and the demagnetization facility on Hainan Island show they're trying."

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World of Warcraft-like Google Earth MMO Game

Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  more than 6 years ago

What happens when you mix two popular software such as World of Warcraft and Google Earth? You guessed right, a Google Earth MMO game is in beta (screenshots included). Visit this forum to learn more. This is part of the new crop of Google Earth-based games. From the initial announcement: "You pick a race (Warrior, Elf or Mage), then go around the world fighting enemies, earning experience points, increasing your level, buying weapons/spells/potions, etc. Some other features:
- Each major city is guarded by a different boss who must be defeated. Each city you defeat earns a crystal.
- You can team up with other players to take out difficult enemies.
- All gameplay (including battles, shops, messaging, etc) is done completely in Google Earth with no add-on software or web browser calls required.
- The battles are turn-based, similar to the Final Fantasy games, using our GEfootball engine.
- The shopping and messaging use Flash-based forms to handle the data, using code from our GEboards application.
- There are currently 9 cities, 14 different enemies (over 7,000 of them roaming the earth), 12 items, 8 spells and 6 weapons. All of those will likely be increased as we finish testing.
"

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iPhone GPS Add-On with Open Source Software

Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  more than 6 years ago

Recently, Engaget shared rumors of TomTom developing it's own GPS module for the iPhone, while the new Google 'My Location' feature now works with the iPhone. Forget TomTom and Google, here's a third-party GPS add-on for the iPhone and iPod Touch that will start shipping in February at the price of 89$US. The great news: the software used is open source, the bad news: it requires your iPhone/iPod Touch to be 'jailbroken' (maybe this will change with the upcoming SDK?). The description: "The iPhone locoGPS module allows jail broken iPhones to finally have GPS functionality. This module is in development and will be shipping in February. All software is open source and more applications are being written every day. The locoGPS module gives you the ability to explore all the benefits of GPS from a device that is small enough to put on a keychain." Of course, you can wonder if the iPhone really needs a GPS, use OpenStreetMap data instead of Google's, read KML/GeoRSS directly on the iPhone.

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Google Launches Collaborative Mapping and Shaded Terrain

Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  about 7 years ago

Google's official Lat Lon Blog announced the addition of shaded terrain to their free Google Maps site. In addition to adding the Terrain button, they've removed the Hybrid button, combining it the Satellite one. A single look at it is enough to convince anyone this is very welcomed even if Yahoo! Maps, Microsoft's Virtual Earth and Ask.com Maps offered something similar for quite some time. Also released this week, Google Maps searches are now providing a thumbnail of the related street view photo, and arguably a major new feature, the My Maps feature somehow becomes Our Maps, allowing to collaborate directly on someone else's My Maps, this has a lot of potential of getting big, and last, you can more easily share KML and KMZ files and GeoRSS feeds through My Maps. From the Our Maps announcement: "Just click the "Collaborate" link and enter the email addresses of the people you want to invite. They'll receive an email invitation with a link to the map. Once they open the map, they should be able to edit it, as long as they are signed into a Google Account that's associated with that email address. You can also open your map to the world so anyone can edit it by selecting the "Allow anyone to edit this map" checkbox." Competition is not sleeping, Microsoft had a recent major release of Virtual Earth in addition to 33.7 Terabytes of new worldwide imagery.

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Major Microsoft Virtual Earth Release

Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Microsoft unveiled their new version of Virtual Earth, and it's major. The Google Earth Blog actually reported this story yesterday. My apologies to the blog's author. Here's the official Virtual Earth blog entry. SharpGIS offers a few interesting screenshots. Ogle Earth also has his own interesting report. Amongst the juicy improvements, there is GeoRSS support, GPS GPX support, and even Google's KML format support (this format in being standardized by the Open Geospatial Consortium, which Microsoft just rejoined), there's Bird's eye view in 3D and even a SketchUp competitor in for 3D modelling. A longer more detailed list can be found here in the Virtual Earth Developer Forum.

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Support for GeoRSS and KML in Google Maps Announced

Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  more than 7 years ago Can you improve something great? Yes. Google Maps just announced the support of GeoRSS and KML mapping in their Google Maps API. In short, GeoRSS is a standard supported by the Open Geospatial Consortium that incorporates geolocation in an interoperable manner to RSS feeds. The applications are numerous. With Yahoo!'s support of GeoRSS, the future looks bright for this emerging standard. As for KML, Google Earth's file format, this new Google Maps integration is not unrelated to the recent announcement of internet-wide KML search capabilities within Google Earth. From the announcement: "To start we now support GeoRSS as a data format for geographic content in Google Maps. We want to enable users to create data in whatever format is most convenient for them, and feel that by supporting both KML and GeoRSS we can enable a wider variety of people and applications to contribute content to Google Maps."

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Does Wiktionary has a Future?

Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  more than 7 years ago

Based on Wikipedia's enormous success, does one can believe Wiktionary is destined for the same treatment? I find it very useful and even contribute sporadicly. I'm trying to find out if my time spent contributing is worthed. The Wiktionary wikipedia article is quite informative and helped me understand Wiktionary's context and competition. This picture shows Wiktionary really took off last year and the curves clearly show traffic is rising significantly. Slashdot has not discussed Wiktionary yet.

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Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  more than 8 years ago

After a lot of discussion, comments and even a poll. SalshGISRS.org has been renamed slashgeo.org

You're in GIS, Remote Sensing or anything related to geospatial technologies? Then this a site for you!

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Lord Satri Lord Satri writes  |  more than 9 years ago

You like slashdot and you're in the GIS - Remote Sensing - Spatial Analysis domain, join us at http://slashgisrs.org . Ad-free non-commercial.

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