GEOG 588
Planning GIS for Emergency Management

Emerging Theme: New Methods for Interaction with Location


This week, I’d like you to take a look at a couple of very exciting technology demonstrations that I think are relevant to GIS in Emergency Management. Both of these demonstrations show the cutting edge of what is possible with computers, and I think it’s quite reasonable to expect that in the next 5 years or so these things will become quite common in consumer and professional systems.

The first video I’d like you to check out is about ambient location and geofencing. Geofencing is a method by which you can trigger interactions to occur based on your physical location. The examples here are not around emergency management topics, but I'm thinking you'll have some interesting ideas that come to mind when you see how this works. This talk is from the O'Reilly Where 2012 conference.

The second tech demo I want you to check out is by Sergey Brin from Google. I hesitated in showing you this example, because it's really just an extended advertisement, done in a sort-of breathlessly optimistic fashion for Google Glass. But, I do think it's worth checking out - the examples are really mundane, but we should try to envision how this kind of technology will aid (or not aid!) emergency management personnel by making geospatial information accessible in the field.

Finally, now that you've seen the setup from the perspective of Google, take a look at a recent pilot project to use Glass in an emergency response situation. It's a bit campy and promotional, but you'll see how maps play a role in a few different spots. Bonus points if you can correctly identify in which country this is taking place. :)

Deliverables for this week's emerging theme:

  1. Post a comment on the Canvas discussion page that describes how you envision one or more of these technologies integrating into a GIS system for Emergency Management. Or, perhaps you don't think we should consider them for emergency situations. That could be a valid position to take as well.
  2. Then, I'd like you to offer additional insight, critique, a counter-example, or something else constructive in response to one of your colleagues' posts.
  3. Brownie points for linking to other technology demos, pictures, blog posts, etc., that you've found to enrich your posts so that we may all benefit.

NOTE: Respond to this assignment in the Lesson 1 Emerging Theme Discussion Forum in Canvas.