Wednesday, August 29, 2007


Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Bent Creek Trails ... in Google Maps ... in our blog

This past summer as part of our GIS 121 - Georeferencing and Mapping class, I had my students georeference a map of Bent Creek and then heads-up digitize the trails. I won't deny this class exercise was somewhat self-serving and selfish as I wanted some digital data of one of my favorite places to mountain-bike and trail run but it was a great learning exercise for the students as well.

Now that you can embed GoogleMaps in a website or blog, I thought I'd share the data here. I used the KML Companion to create a KML file from the trails in ArcMap and then passed the KML file to GoogleMaps in the URL.

Special thanks to 2 students for their help. Christy Caudill shared her trail data with me from last summer and Josh O'Conner showed me the easiest way to pass the KML to GoogleMaps.

View Larger Map

soooo.... i can't figure out how to imbed the Gmap with my KML on it yet. Hey, today is the first day they've made Gmaps easily embedable so i'll wrestle with it later but for now - here's a screen shot and you can get the KML file here too if you want to see it in GoogleEarth yourself!

See the Bent Creek Trails in Gmaps here!

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Embed Google Maps in your website or blog

New today from Google Maps. You can embed a map in your website or blog just like a YouTube video. Check out this aerial of our campus with our building indicated by the blue icon. Zoom in to see it!

View Larger Map

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Ready, Set ... GO

Fall 2007 semester at AB Tech starts tomorrow morning at 8am. Are you ready? I'm excited and I hope you are. If you are having any problems getting books, getting registered, finding classes, or anything at all ... don't hesitate to call, email or come by and let me help! Let's get a good start to the semester!

Thursday, August 16, 2007

GIS Workshop for Planners

The North Carolina Chapter of the American Planning Association's Summer Planning Institute and Leadership Conference was held August 8-10, 2007, on the campus of Western Carolina University. The conference attracted over 100 attendees from all over NC but mostly the western part of the state. I was there to put on a short GIS workshop for 10 participants. After looking over some basics of GIS and ArcGIS specifically, we jumped into some spatial analysis and looked at a fictious analysis of property damage resulting from a tornado. We also covered several resources for learning GIS as well as an exhaustive search of local and regional GIS data sources.

More on the conference can be see here ==>

And the wiki pages from the GIS workshop can be accessed here ==>

Monday, August 6, 2007

My Calender

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Advanced Smoky Mountains Science Teacher Institute GIS/GPS Workshop

11 high school teachers are participating this week in the Advanced Smoky Mountains Science Teacher Institute that is being held at the Great Smoky Mountains Institute at Tremont. This is a wonderful opportunity for high school teachers to learn about the great diversity of flora and fauna in the Great Smoky Mountain National Park and the threats they face on a daily basis as well as learn about scientific inquiry and how to incorporate more in their classrooms.

The week started with millipedes surveys, identification and workshops on threats to millipede habitat like invasive earth worms introduced in the park. Bruce Snyder from the University of Georgia led this part of the class detailing his work and research in the Smokys with millipedes. The millipedes survey was coupled with a technology session on Global Positioning Systems and how they can be used as a scientific inquiry and data collection tool. This session was led by Mark Ethridge (Tuscola High School), Pete Kennedy (AB Tech) and Haven Hanford (NC DNR) - the 'GIS/GPS Team'. Following the millipedes survey (GPS) and identification, the class began an introductory session in Geographic Information Systems using the free GIS tool from ESRI, ArcExplorer. Students learned basic GIS skills and concepts related to map navigation, layers, attributes, selecting features by querying, tables and data management skills.

Day 2 of the GIS portion of the class, students took their own data collected in the field and integrated it into the GIS. Tables were generated and points were established on the map corresponding with the locations of millipedes surveys. Teachers incorporated this with aerial photographs and topographic maps of the area. The map above shows survey locations shown as graduated symbols. The larger red circles are plots where more millipedes were found and the smaller yellow circles indicate plots were fewer millipedes were found.

The Geospatial Technology Program from AB Tech was happy to be involved with such a wonderful organization as Tremont and a great class! A big thanks go out to Jason Love, Citizen Science Director from Tremont and Susan Sachs, Park Ranger from GSMNP!

To some more info about the GIS/GPS portion of the workshop, check out the wiki here ==>

Also, if you have GoogleEarth, you can view our Millipede survey data here!