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#1
gregsd

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Seen a couple of blog posts about the GEMMA project, which was supposedly going live on the 1st March 2011.

The Aim of GEMMA

What does that mean in short? The ability to create a map without knowing anything about mapping. Simple as, for too long creating a map has been too complicated, there is now a vast amount of geographically tagged information available online, yet to map it you still have to have a considerable amount of computer related knowledge. Not any more, and we are not talking standard pin type maps, we will enable complex spatial mapping to be carried out at the click of mouse and a point at a file.




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#2
Charles Syrett

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I haven't bothered to look at the site, but that GEMMA quotation summarizes a point of view that is becoming more and more antiquated. Imagine someone saying that you can now do dentistry without knowing anything about it.....or that to be an architect you just have to have a "considerable amount of computer knowledge", but now we've fixed that, yessir!

Presumably such widespread delusions will have disappeared in a few years, when it becomes more intuitively obvious to most people that human intelligence and creativity, and not machines, are what makes the difference.

Charles Syrett
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Seen a couple of blog posts about the GEMMA project, which was supposedly going live on the 1st March 2011.

The Aim of GEMMA

What does that mean in short? The ability to create a map without knowing anything about mapping. Simple as, for too long creating a map has been too complicated, there is now a vast amount of geographically tagged information available online, yet to map it you still have to have a considerable amount of computer related knowledge. Not any more, and we are not talking standard pin type maps, we will enable complex spatial mapping to be carried out at the click of mouse and a point at a file.



#3
dsl

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I haven't bothered to look at the site, but that GEMMA quotation summarizes a point of view that is becoming more and more antiquated


Definitely agree with you. There are a lot of sites like this now, Google Data Vis API, FortiusOne, etc. Some do it better than others, but by simplifying things they reduce the quality of the map (depending on what the map is needed for). For example, the prevalence of the Mercator projection used for thematic mapping. Wasn't Mercator intended for navigation? Anyway, I did follow the link and noticed it is actually created by the Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis, which might mean an alternative take on the automated mapping situation. I think it could be interesting, especially since it seems to include simulation and modeling.

Cheers,
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#4
David Medeiros

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I haven't bothered to look at the site, but that GEMMA quotation summarizes a point of view that is becoming more and more antiquated. Imagine someone saying that you can now do dentistry without knowing anything about it.....or that to be an architect you just have to have a "considerable amount of computer knowledge", but now we've fixed that, yessir!

Presumably such widespread delusions will have disappeared in a few years, when it becomes more intuitively obvious to most people that human intelligence and creativity, and not machines, are what makes the difference.

Charles Syrett
Map Graphics
http://www.mapgraphics.com

Seen a couple of blog posts about the GEMMA project, which was supposedly going live on the 1st March 2011.

The Aim of GEMMA

What does that mean in short? The ability to create a map without knowing anything about mapping. Simple as, for too long creating a map has been too complicated, there is now a vast amount of geographically tagged information available online, yet to map it you still have to have a considerable amount of computer related knowledge. Not any more, and we are not talking standard pin type maps, we will enable complex spatial mapping to be carried out at the click of mouse and a point at a file.



Agree, the fallacy in their statement is that it is computer knowledge (as opposed to cartographic or geographic knowledge) that is required to make maps and the primary obstacle for layman wanting to work with maps and spatial data. This is true only at the most base level of mapping. A system that is simplified to the extent that little or no knowledge of computers, cartography or geographic analysis is required to operate it will necessarily be very simple and very limited in its scope and capability, IMOO.

GIS Reference and Instruction Specialist, Stanford Geospatial Center.

 

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#5
spg

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While I generally love the work that CASA do, "creating a map without knowing anything about mapping" is only going to work for properly organised and "clean" data...

from the website:
" for any user who wishes to take public sector, crowd-sourced, mobile and related online data with geospatial reference which enables them to display and overlay this information in non-proprietary or freely available mapping services on the web such as Google Maps or Open Street Map "

and, slightly ironically given their avowed purpose, it may be more useful for technically savvy people who can assess their datasources and make adjustments as needed. The interpretation of such an automated map (classification ranges?) may not be optimal either.

#6
CGIS

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Well, I think it's a good thing.

They are using some terms loosely, but I don't think it takes mental gymnastics to see what they're aiming for. They are not focused on cartographic integrity, design and logic. A "map" means something different to different people. This appears to be a data visualization/analysis project that cleans "dirty"inputs into clear outputs, which are presented as maps. Figures. Sketches. Drawings. Representations.

People who are vertically invested in fields like ours don't always take kindly so someone hacking away at the foundation of the trade. Same goes for 3D (The "render button"!), Civil3D (It'll make the plans for you! No more drafting!), etc...

We're (society) becoming a culture of amateurs, and if this project can produce and deliver meaningful information out of "dirty" data, then I think it's a good thing for the large majority of users.

#7
Charles Syrett

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Obviously the only people who will use this will be technically savvy people, and many of them will have some design sense and be genuine map lovers. The objection some of us have is to the silly propaganda about anybody being able to make a map without effort or ability. It's just obnoxious baloney -- harmless perhaps, but obnoxious.

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#8
CGIS

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I think that remains to be seen (their user base). If it does turn out that this will be used primarily by the types you described, then it's beneath CASA to market it in this fashion. Obnoxious, I'll agree.

I'm open to the possibility that they intend to release the project to an amateur/entry level user base, in which case, it seems entirely appropriate that they promote it in the this way.




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