Forty Maps that Help Explain the World

NSGIC member Jack Maguire spotted this blog article sponsored by the Washington Post.  It has a very interesting collection of maps that range from a circa 200 AD Political Map to a map showing the range of North Korean missiles.  These maps provide an interesting perspective on our World and the diversity of the people on it.  http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/worldviews/wp/2013/08/12/40-maps-that-explain-the-world/?lines

Government Business Needs for Addresses

NSGIC has begun documenting the hundreds of state, local and federal government business needs for addresses. By drawing attention to the importance of address data, we hope to justify efforts to coordinate address collection, management, and uses across all levels of government. While NSGIC still considers it to be a work-in-progress, this information is being tracked in a publicly available Google doc – Address Business Needs.

Sometimes, the use of an address is as simple as placing a letter or package into the mail system. Other times, a correct address location can save a life. The problem is that government doesn’t do a very good job of tracking addresses. Typically, a local “address authority” assigns an address and then notifies a few other (usually local) agencies about the new address. But no agency is assigned (or assumes) a custodial role of maintaining an authoritative database of addresses (and importantly, their physical location in space) that can be used by others in that local government or at other levels of government.

NSGIC’s initial list of government business needs for addresses includes well over 100 use cases. Our list of state uses is the most complete, with nearly two dozen generic agencies using addresses in at least 67 different ways. Since address assignments typically originate with local governments, each state government needs to coordinate with hundreds of local cities and counties to collect authoritative address data. The US Post Office and US Census Bureau also create and maintain data collection partnerships with local government, but are forbidden by law from sharing their compiled address datasets with other agencies or levels of government.

There are three separate tabs on the Google document to delineate governmental business needs – one tab each for local, state, and federal government. An initial tab provides an overview of the purpose, process, and contents of the document. For each business need listed, we list:

A. The agency/department that uses the address data;
B. The business function name/label within the governmental division;
C. The spatial function that the address data is created/collected to serve (e.g. delivery, district determination, service allocation, etc.); and,
D. A brief description of the business function that the address data supports

The initial response to these lists has been quite positive. Even states that have begun to coordinate addresses have found new agency use cases from other states that help to expand their user base at home.

Comments are welcome and can be added to the Google doc. Individuals or agencies wishing to add to these lists of business needs are invited to contact their State NCGIC Representative or leadership of the NSGIC Address Committee.

How happy is your town?

This interesting maps shows the relative happiness of folks across the country.  How does your community fit in?

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2014/07/30/the-appeal-of-unhappy-cities/

FEMA Technical Mapping Advisory Council (TMAC)

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) announced the membership of the newly created Technical Mapping Advisory Council (TMAC). As directed by Congress, the Council is tasked with developing recommendations for FEMA’s flood mapping program to ensure that flood insurance rate maps reflect the best available science and are based on the best available methodologies for considering the impact of future development on flood risk.

NSGIC’s Florida State Representative is Richard Butgereit, GISP, from the Division of Emergency Management. He was appointed to serve on TMAC in the category of STATE GEOGRAPHIC INFORMATION SYSTEM (GIS) REPRESENTATIVE.  For more information, please follow this link.

DC 911 Mobile Calls

I found this article to be very interesting in detailing the incredible challenges facing our 911 dispatchers.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/the-switch/wp/2014/07/10/calling-911-from-your-cell-phone-in-d-c-good-luck-getting-first-responders-to-find-you/ 

Digital Homestead Records

Heard this story on NPR Radio yesterday afternoon “Digital Homestead Records Reopen A Crucial Chapter Of U.S. History” – http://www.npr.org/2014/07/02/327797193/digital-homestead-records-reopen-a-crucial-chapter-of-u-s-history.

The Homestead Records Project seeks to digitize the over 800,000 Homestead Records from nearly 200 land offices in all 30 Homesteading States. Nebraska records were the first to be digitized, and they are now complete.  Next up is Arizona, followed by Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Ohio, Nevada, and Alaska (in that order), but for now the records for the remaining 29 states are only available in hard copy in the National Archives – http://www.nps.gov/home/historyculture/track-the-progress-of-the-homestead-records-project.htm.

http://www.nps.gov/home/historyculture/homesteadrecords.htm - NE Records are currently available on -  http://www.fold3.com/title_650/homestead_records_ne/, but fold3.com is not a free site.  This could be an interesting historical set of land records to geocode to our state GIS maps when they become available [and if they are free].

Posted for Phil Worrall, Executive Director, Indiana Geographic Information Council, Inc.

Mapping 'Big Data'

This article scratches the surface of what can be done with all the data floating around out there.  How can you put it to work in your state?

http://mashable.com/2013/07/17/big-data-projects/#lead-image:eyJzIjoiZyIsImkiOiJfdGg3dWU3bHByeWIyeTUxcSJ9

How old is your house?

This is a fascinating map that shows the average age of housing units by zip code block.  It paints an incredible picture of demographic patterns across the country through the years.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2014/06/24/map-the-age-of-housing-in-every-zip-code-in-the-u-s/?wpisrc=nl_wnkpm

Friday afternoon considerations

I just saw this disturbing map…thoughts to ponder as you enter into your weekend.  Be safe and encourage those around you to do the same!

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2014/06/27/alcohol-abuse-kills-88000-americans-a-year/?wpisrc=nl_wnkpm

How do you spend your time?

Here is a series of 10 maps that shows how folks across our country spend their time, from how much they read each day to how long they spend ‘grooming’.  It’s pretty interesting!

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2014/06/20/ten-maps-that-show-how-much-time-americans-spend-grooming-eating-thinking-and-praying/?wpisrc=nl_wnkpm