Category Archives: visualization

Very-High-Definition Landscape Visualization

My photographer friend, Grant, creates art pieces that reveal both the abstract patterns inherent landscapes and  the man-made patterns we impose over them. His newest works involve the aesthetic selection and careful composition of satellite earth imagery into photos, each containing a quarter-billion pixels. These very-high-definition images make exquisitely detailed pictures when printed onto 4’x 6′ canvases, but how to experience them on a standard display screen? Continue reading

Wildland Fire: Location Visualization As Communications Tool

Free and low-cost geographic visualization systems can be powerful communications tools when understanding terrain is vital. Nineteen wildland firefighters died in the Yarnell Hill tragedy this summer.  This video report makes extensive use of geographic visualization to explain what is known — and what will never be known — about what happened that day. Watch it: Continue reading

Testing the iPad GPS in Nevada

I headed to the Red Rock Canyon area outside of Las Vegas in 2011 to test a $3 GPS app (MotionX GPS HD) on my iPad2. This model iPad has true GPS circuitry that accesses the global positioning system of satellites. It is not dependent on WiFi or data connectivity to determine its location, although it uses them where available to complement the GPS data. Not all tablets and smartphones have this. Many use other geo-location techniques such as cell tower triangulation, but these should not be called ‘GPS’.

Here are the illustrated results of a hiking test and a driving test, followed by my bottom-line assessment. Continue reading