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Sustainable World Conference in Geneva: Collaborating for a better world

The GIS for a Sustainable World conference in Geneva, Switzerland is an opportunity to develop long-term and collaborative relationships with global organizations interested in corporate sustainability and the sustainable development goals (SDGs). As a proud a sponsor of this Esri and UNOSAT event, we had the chance to share some of our GIS work that is making an impact on global sustainability efforts. This year’s conference theme focused on applying GIS to people, planet, prosperity, and peace, and how intelligent maps and apps can accelerate efforts to implement the SDGs.

GIS for a Sustainable World

Sustainable Business Panel Session

The Sustainable Business panel session provided an opportunity for participants to hear from experts in specific thematic areas and discuss issues pertaining to their use of GIS. During this session, Michael Lippmann presented our work with the World Business Council for Sustainable Development (WBCSD) funded India Water Tool. This tool helps users understand their water risks and plan interventions for water management in India. Other presenters in the panel included Tijs Lips from Bunge, Adam Romo from ISEAL Alliance, and Michael Marus from the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC).

Interactive Breakout Sessions

In addition to hearing about sustainability challenges and successes from the many global organizations in attendance, Blue Raster Program Manager Phil Satlof had the opportunity to participate in a World Health Organization (WHO) sponsored Map-a-Thon. The “Map-A-Thon for Good” event gave participants a chance to learn important workflows for data validation, all while creating an open data set to share with the humanitarian community and beyond.Activity at the GIS for a Sustainable World ConferenceWe also participated in the interactive field GIS mobile data collection exercise. In this session, attendees got hands-on experience using the latest in Esri field mobility software. The Exploration Team collected data from around the conference venue, then viewed it on the Operations Dashboard.

Additionally, the Blue Raster team visited with clients at the World Health Organization (WHO) and enjoyed the sites around Geneva. Before heading home, the team visited Chamonix and Mont Blanc, the highest summit in the Alps. GIS for a Sustainable World

Blue Raster sightseeing in Geneva

To read more about the conference, visit the information page.

 

Blue Raster Takes on Esri DevSummit 2019

The Blue Raster team had an action-packed week at the Esri Partner Conference (EPC) and Developer Summit in Palm Springs, California. Every year, we look forward to DevSummit as it offers our team the opportunity to collaborate with and learn from other developers about the latest technologies and enhancements available in the ArcGIS platform. DevSummit also allows us to explore the software and solutions that we can apply to our products and projects.

2019 DevSummit group photo

On Thursday, one of our team members, Christian Howard, brought his knowledge to sunny California to present on “Geek Perspectives: Lessons from Developing with Scene Layers in 2019.” Throughout the week, the team attended numerous technical sessions from Esri software experts and fellow developers from the user community.

Here are a few of the technologies that our team is excited about:

• ArcGIS Arcade: There were a few demonstrations that showed how to dynamically update map layers, popups, and symbology on the fly using Arcade’s straightforward, JavaScript-like expressions. It was also interesting seeing a scripting language that can manage geometric and feature data types!
• Virtual Reality: Early in its development, this tool will allow users to visualize spatial data inserted into the real world using a mobile device.
• Hosted Python Notebooks: Allows GIS analysts and data scientists to directly share and execute Python scripts from Portal for ArcGIS. Python script integration has become a crucial part of processing and organizing of spatial data.
• Machine Learning and Deep Learning: These tools will allow analysts to quickly and accurately explore data patterns and locate objects in remotely sensed imagery.
• 3D from 2D: We continue to see various sessions dedicated to 3D, including the ability to visualize scientific data using z values from attributes.

Our team closed out the conference week by participating as the Raster’s Nine in the dodgeball tournament followed by the Esri party that evening. The team also enjoyed a wonderful day of team bonding by the pool with a Blue Raster picnic full of food and fun.

Catch more of our favorite moments from the week below. See you next year at DevSummit 2020!DevSummit Collage

We are hiring! Visit https://blueraster.jobs/ today and join our team.

Explore the Indoors with ArcGIS

In July 2018, Esri announced a new product called ArcGIS Indoors. Expected to be available for widespread use this year, ArcGIS Indoors provides 3D maps, data, and location information for indoor spaces. With indoor maps, building operators can more efficiently coordinate resources with their facilities and explore their data to operate more competitively.

How does it work?

ArcGIS Indoors places people and objects inside buildings such as corporate facilities, event venues, education campuses, and more. The indoor mapping system uses a building’s floor plans, indoor sensor networks, and other data streams to build a comprehensive map of any indoor space. It is designed to work seamlessly with other parts of the ArcGIS platform, Powered by ArcGIS Enterprise and Portal, ArcGIS Indoors can be accessed and used for visualization and analysis with other Esri applications.

Examples of ArcGIS Indoors

Indoor Map of Campus

Workshop to Explore the Indoors

Project Manager Christina Phang and GIS Analyst Danny Cassiday had the opportunity to work with ArcGIS Indoors at a hands-on workshop by Esri in Redlands, CA. They learned about converting BIM and CAD into ArcGIS Indoors Information Models and extracting site plans from Aerial imagery to create complete site scale maps. In addition, they completed a technical deep dive into creating and generating routable indoor networks, as well as publishing web and mobile apps. The rest of the team are excited to see what Christina and Danny have learned!

Redlands collage

Get Started Today!

Let us help you deploy ArcGIS Indoors. Our team can assist with curating and preparing data for ArcGIS Indoors, authoring maps and scenes for ArcGIS Indoors Web and Mobile Apps, and configuration and deployment of Indoors Apps. We also provide custom solutions to extend ArcGIS Indoors, integrate it with third party systems, and customize the UI/UX (branding, colors, icons, images).

Learn more about how ArcGIS Indoors services and solutions can work for you.

 

 

Esri FedGIS 2019

The Blue Raster team took part in the annual Esri FedGIS conference in Washington, DC. The conference is an opportunity for government professionals to discuss best practices, participate in hands-on workshops, and connect with subject matter experts from across the country. The conference also features thought leaders from several organizations giving presentations on their uses of  location intelligence. We had the opportunity to meet and talk with Esri staff and attendees. In addition, our team members attended sessions and met with colleagues and clients.

2019 FedGIS collage

2019 Partner of the Year Award

Partner of the Year Award photo

Blue Raster is proud and excited to be recognized as the 2019 Partner of the Year. This award is presented as part of the Esri Federal Small Business Specialty (FSBS) program. It recognizes small-business partners who have demonstrated their “commitment to helping federal institutions become more effective and resilient through location intelligence”. The award presentation at FedGIS featured our work with the NASA Transboundary Water Management Data Explorer. This project visualizes hydrologic data including international coverage for precipitation, atmospheric flow, soil moisture, population, and land cover. We look forward to continuing to connect with US Federal Government customers and other small business and providing new and creative Esri solutions.

 

Make Meaningful Policy Maps For Your Community

As one of the largest collections of spatial data in the world, the Living Atlas website by Esri houses a tremendous amount of content. Over the past few years, Esri has increased their focus on incorporating maps for data-driven policy. But with over 7,000 datasets on the site, their policy map content was getting lost in the shuffle. When Esri came to Blue Raster, they wanted to broaden the reach of their policy content through a focused website.

Esri Policy Maps

User Research

Esri tasked our design team to ensure the new website within the Living Atlas helped users break through these questions:

  1. “If our state or community makes a policy change, where are the areas we would make the change first?”

2. “We want to use maps and analysis to inform our decisions, but where do we start?”

3. “Is there information about the community already? What webmaps, applications, and story maps already exist?

User Experience

Our team reviewed more than 200 policy maps within the Living Atlas to inform the website’s layout and user interface. After defining the hierarchy and topics of interest, we designed a workflow that tapped into existing Esri code logic to use `category` tags to bucket the maps. This enabled rapid development, where the project went from design to deployment within two weeks. The end result was a site that allows users to explore maps on topics like “Social Equity and Health,” and then save and share their map collection with peers. For example, check out this collection of policy maps for Baltimore, Maryland.

Wireframes to Visual Design

Connecting users to resources explaining how to get started with using maps for policy making was also important. We worked with Esri to identify the types of resources that would maximize a user’s experience. The result was a sub-page on the site containing in-depth trainings, actionable tips, and inspiring stories to equip users to tackle today’s community challenges.

Explore this free, Policy Mapping resource today!

Video of Esri Policy Maps


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