2006 September 15

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Editor's Introduction

This week I report on Autodesk's launch of Topobase 2007. If you are a current user of Topobase or a prospective user of Topobase 2007 I would especially appreciate your comments and your ideas for follow-up stories. I also bring you a few other tidbits and my usual news from press releases.


Autodesk Launches Topobase 2007

This week Autodesk launched Topobase 2007, an infrastructure design and management solution built on Autodesk Map 3D and Autodesk MapGuide Enterprise software by c-Plan, a European company that Autodesk chose as a partner in 1996 and acquired in June 2005. This is a reversal of Autodesk's typical process of developing products in the United States and then syndicating them to other geographic areas. C-Plan has a customer install base of about 500 mostly local governments and cantons in Switzerland, Germany, and other parts of Central Europe, that are already running on the Autodesk Map platform.

According to an Autodesk press release, Topobase 2007 is a better way for teams to "share spatial information across departments" by "integrating islands of CAD, asset, GIS, and customer information from both paper and electronic sources into a centralized infrastructure spatial information database." It is "designed to integrate with existing business systems without the need for expensive proprietary tools or middleware" and can "leverage infrastructure project data from design and construction phases through ongoing infrastructure management." Of course, Autodesk claims that the product will improve its users' productivity, efficiency, and profits.

Topobase Display Models

Read more …


This week, at the GIS in the Rockies conference in Denver, Colorado, the Geospatial Information & Technology Association (GITA) and the Association of American Geographers (AAG) launched GIWIS (pronounced gee-whiz), or the Geospatial Industry Workforce Information System, in pilot form. Billed as "the nation's first and only geospatial workforce information network," GIWIS' website will highlight jobs in the geospatial industry.

These are all the people who spoke about the impact of GIWIS just before the unveiling of the website. From left: Bob Samborski, Executive Director, GITA; Steve Hick, Director of GIS, University of Denver; Jeanette Alberg, U.S. Sen. Wayne Allard's staff; Erin Minks, U.S. Sen. Ken Salazar's staff; Jon Gottsegen, GIS Coordinator, State of Colorado; and Pete Gomez, Director, Information Requirements, Xcel Energy.

Read more …

Briefly Noted: Geographic Illiteracy

The 2006 National Geographic-Roper Survey of Geographic Literacy has confirmed, once again, that most young adults between the ages of 18 and 24 in the United States have a very limited understanding of the world.

Read more …

Letter to the Editor

My initial exposure to GIS was in the mid-1980s. At that time the state agency for which I worked was developing a GIS. I work in a state with a two-zone Lambert Conformal State Plane Coordinate System. When I asked how the GIS was going to deal with the two zones, I was told that they planned to use South Zone for the whole state. I pointed out that this would result in unacceptable distortions of length and areas in the North Zone and suggested that they use latitude and longitude. I was told that it was too late to make such a radical change in the programming and it wasn't that big an issue. The bottom line is, the plan for the GIS was developed without input from land surveyors or anyone with an understanding of accuracy or precision.

Read more …

Department of Corrections

Ajay Lavakare is now RMSI's Chairman, not its CEO as I reported last week.

News Briefs

Please note: I have culled the following news items from press releases and have not independently verified them.


    1. MainPower of New Zealand, Origin Energy of Australia, Blacktown City Council in Australia, and the City of Tshwane, South Africa have awarded contracts to Tensing USA to implement GIS-related products from its line of mobility solutions. Read more …

    2. Softelec, partnering with HP, will present version 2 of its VPmap Series software line for raster processing and vectorization at the INTERGEO fair on October 10-12 in Munich, Germany. Read more …

    3. Swova is working with Clark County, Ohio to provide GIS and CAMA integration services. Read more …

    4. Southern Company, one of the largest generators of electricity in the United States, has joined Bentley's Enterprise License Subscription (ELS) program. Read more …

    5. Home Depot Canada, a division of the world's largest home improvement retailer, has implemented DMTI Spatial's digital map data services to optimize and standardize its home delivery services. Read more …

    6. The GPS correction data that has been available for free to users in the Colorado Front Range for the past eight years just got a lot more accurate. Read more …


    1. Teydo BV, a provider of location technology, has made substantive improvements to its LocationXS Web service—a mapping solution for Teydo's Partners servicing the Location Based Services (LBS) market. Read more …

    2. MWH Soft, a provider of environmental and water resources applications software, has released InfoWater Leak Detection Manager (LDM), a geocentric modeling solution for detecting underground water system leakage. Read more …

    3. Leica Geosystems Geospatial Imaging has released Leica Photogrammetry Suite (LPS) 9.1. Read more …


    1. The third "Earth from Space—the Most Effective Solutions" biannual international conference will be held in Moscow, Russia, 2007 December 4-6. Read more …

    2. Bentley's next annual user conference (called BE, for "Bentley Empowered") will take place April 29 to May 3 at the Convention Center in Los Angeles, California.

    3. John H. Sununu, former Chief of Staff to President George H. Bush and former Governor of New Hampshire, will be the keynote speaker at Pictometry's FutureView 2006 User Conference, scheduled to take place October 29 to November 1 in Orlando, Florida. Read more …

  4. OTHER

    1. DM Solutions Group has launched DMSG Premiere, the first commercial support service dedicated to open source Web mapping technologies. Read more …

    2. DeCarta (formerly Telcontar), a location-based services (LBS) platform provider, is donating a year's worth ($250,000 ARV) of licenses for its Drill Down Server (DDS) platform or its Hosted Web Services initiative to the grand prize winner and each of the three category winners of the NAVTEQ Global LBS Challenge in The Americas. Read more …

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Matteo Luccio, Editor
GIS Monitor

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