The First Rule of Fight Club...

Who knew that ESRI was so hip? From James Fee’s blog:

Note: If you post any specific 9.4 Beta information (such as quoting forums posts on the Beta forums), expect ESRI to personally contact you. They appear to be monitoring this blog post. You’ve been warned.

Palanterra X3

James Fee has a nice rant on mapping interfaces today, but the part the piqued my interest was embedded in the screen shot of the National Map. It said “The National Map Viewer BETA: Powered by Palanterra X3”

Interesting! Who or what is this Palanterra X3 who have managed to get a top-of-the-fold “Powered by” on a major USGS site? Oddly, the Google is unusually terse about this topic. Looks like it’s an NGA project, and yet it’s “Palanterra (TM)”. Intra-governmental entrepreneurship at its finest, a carefully imagined brand name that appears only in meeting agendas and powerpoints.

FOSS4G hearts SoTM

A quiet bit of byplay is going on in the world of extreme geogeekery, as the State of the Map conference, the annual gathering of the OpenStreetMap community, decides where to host their 2010 event. The twist for this year is that an intrepid member of their spanish community has suggested hosting the event in Barcelona, to align with the FOSS4G 2010 event (either right before or right after). The OSM community decides on their site in early December – I’ll add my non-binding “ooooooooh, I hopehopehopehopehope they choose Barcelona!”

State of PostGIS

I gave a 30 minute talk about the past present and future of PostGIS at FOSS4G two weeks ago, and thanks to the efforts of the folks at FOSSLC it’s now online as a video.

Geography and MapServer

Can you use the new PostGIS GEOGRAPHY type with MapServer? Yes! Just make sure your LAYER declares a geographic projection (e.g. "init=epsg:4326", or "proj=lonlat") so the correct coordinates are passed in. For simple DATA definitions(e.g. DATA "thegeog from thetable"), that’s all you have to do. I haven’t tested out more complex DATA statements yet, but I am pretty sure they should work fine.