Welcome to Minnesota GIS/LIS Consortium Community News Blog. The goal of our Blog is a one-stop site to quickly and easily find GIS news and events that are important to our members. Through the Blog we will share timely, thoughtful, articles that are worth reading, and are searchable and printable. The Blog promotes online collaboration from many authors, providing a voice to MN’s GIS community.
Information about our blog can be found here http://www.mngislis.org/?page=news . This page includes links to past newsletters, as well as information about how to submit an article for consideration in this blog.
Posted By Scott Freburg, Board Chair,
Wednesday, February 8, 2017
As incoming Board Chair, I am very excited for what ALL of us can accomplish in 2017! After two years as your at-large representative and one year as chair-elect, I have witnessed the amazing work accomplished by Consortium Board members, committee members and all of YOU on a weekly basis. As outgoing chair Tami Maddio stated in the previous e-announcement, 2016 was a year to remember. I would like to publicly “Thank” those Board members who are moving on to their “real jobs.” Thank you Heather Albrecht (3 years) and Brandon Tourtelotte (2 years) for your contributions to the Board of Directors, networking events, workshops and our annual conference. You have both made a difference with your ideas and comments. I would also like to acknowledge the contributions of Mark Kotz. He has been a longtime chair of the Awards committee and is stepping down to concentrate on other things. Mark has been instrumental in events and conferences for many years.
We have a number of exciting events lined up for 2017, from networking events like curling to our annual Spring Workshops and finally to our 2017 annual conference at a new location, Bemidji (October 4-6). Your Board of Directors will be working diligently on your behalf and we always welcome comments and suggestions. Volunteering opportunities are available with MN GIS/LIS committees. Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org to get involved.
I think nearly all would agree that 2016 has been a year to remember. 2016 was also an eventful year for the MN GIS/LIS Consortium. The year went quickly but we got a lot accomplished with an excellent group of board members, committee members and the consortium membership. As 2016 Board Chair, I continue to be amazed at the commitment and dedication all of you give to this organization. Thank you to all for the contributions you have made in 2016. I am want to welcome to our newly elected board members Rebecca Foster, Board Chair-Elect, Peter Smith, At-Large Rep, Jared Hovi, Conference Chair and our re-elected board members Tim Loesch, Treasurer and Zeb Thomas, State Government Rep. We have an exciting year ahead as Scott Freburg takes over as 2017 Board Chair and Bemidji as a new site for our annual conference where Jane Mueller will serve as Conference Chair.
This year’s conference brought us record attendance to a familiar place. Ryan Stovern and the 2016 Conference Committee did an excellent job pulling everything together for the big event. Those who attended were offered a wide variety of Workshops and sessions as well as intriguing speakers. We also were able to share GIS with educators on Wednesday at the 2nd Educator workshops. We enjoyed great networking opportunities on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday nights. Other fun activities included the fun run and a tour of a live working Great Lakes research vessel. Thank you to Ryan Stovern and the Conference Committee for an excellent 2016 Conference.
The Board worked on refining and reorganizing the scholarship and education committees officially becoming the Education Committee. Our involvement with K-12 activities has increased over the last several years and 2016 proved to offer even more for K-12 including an expansion of Educator workshops at the fall conference and support for the first ever MN on the Map student online map contest. Thank you to Scott Freburg, Stacey Stark and the Education Committee for the hard work on these efforts in 2016.
Spring workshops were also a great success once again. Thanks to Michelle Trager and the Spring Workshops Committee, 14 workshops were offered with some available in 3 remote locations.
Networking Events included a Curling Event, Spring Workshops event at Republic, and a co-event with University of MN GeoSpatial for GIS Day in November were well attended. Thank you to Zeb Thomas and the Networking Committee for organizing these events.
The MN GIS/LIS Consortium had a busy year. Thank you to all of the dedicated Board members and volunteers who made all of the events and work possible in 2016. Volunteering opportunities are available with MN GIS/LIS committees or events throughout the year. Please contact us at email@example.com if you would like information about volunteer opportunities.
Red Wing, Minnesota, November 2, 2016 – Goodhue County GIS and Environmental Health Departments were notified on November 1, 2016 that their application for the ‘Esri and Leica Smart Communities Innovation Challenge: Mobile Government Edition’ grant had been selected. Goodhue County is one of ten recipients nationwide. The goal of this program is to foster transformational approaches to improving the productivity and efficiency of mobile field workers in all government disciplines in federal, state, regional, county, and municipal governments. Award recipients are required to validate the value of combining geographic information systems (GIS) and global positioning system (GPS) technologies for data collection, optimizing workloads, and providing real time information that supports field mobility. Project awards include hardware, software, and training.
The Goodhue County Environmental Permitting and Tracking Suite project will allow Environmental Health to geographically locate and display wells and septic systems quickly and accurately while sharing this data with appropriate agencies. Final goals include creating a well and septic permitting program that allows data and inspections to be conducted in the field with any device with wireless network capabilities, the collection of data that can be geographically analyzed for compliance and effective placement of new systems, and field use of Leica hardware and software to collect accurate positions of well and septic systems. A customized web mapping application will be made available for public viewing.
The County Surveyor and GIS Office work closely together to provide many services. The mission of the GIS office is to develop, implement, and maintain a GIS database for the county departments, local government agencies, private companies, and the general public.
GeoFest is an annual K-12 event sponsored by the Minnesota Alliance for Geographic Education (MAGE) and Macalester College. This year it was held on the Macalester campus on Saturday, October 29. It included a full day of sessions and training for K-12 teachers, specifically in the Social Studies realm. This years session schedule had 27 sessions with twelve of them including a GIS component! GIS topics in these sessions included Story maps, Collector app, Survey123, Crowd-sourced maps, Snap2map app, MN on the Map Student GIS Contest for 2017 and teaching tips for using GIS in the classroom.
MNGIS/LIS has been present as a vendor for several years, providing GIS information about the Consortium and how to get involved with GIS. Scott Freburg represented the GIS/LIS Consortium at this year’s vendor booth and spoke to 30-35 teachers about GIS, including a sign-up sheet with 18 teacher emails for further information.
It was an outstanding day! If you are interested in being a K-12 mentor please go to http://www.geomentors.net/ or contact Scott Freburg. Below are some pictures from GeoFest and of a Bloomington teacher and his 2016 Minnesota on the Map contest winners. GIS/LIS Consortium provided funding for t-shirts. Thank you!
The Hennepin County GIS User Group met at the Maple Grove Lions Pavilion on August 31st for the group’s annual picnic. This year’s picnic was sponsored by the MN GIS/LIS Consortium.
The event went off without a hitch. We had great weather and food cooked by City of Maple Grove Staff. Throughout the two hour event there were conversations between many from the public and private sectors and the it proved to be a good networking event. There were many people that said it was so nice out and they were having such good conversation that they didn’t want to leave.
There were 21 people in total attendance. Attendee organizations included: Hennepin County, City of Maple Grove, City of Eden Prairie, City of Golden Valley, City of Rogers, Houston Engineering, Pictometry, and Frontier Precision.
If you'd like to be added to the groups mailing list to hear about or present at future meetings, contact Doug Gawtry, firstname.lastname@example.org.
On May 5 and 6 Minnesota Power hosted the 2016 Esri Generation and Transmission User Group which had 26 attendees from 9 utilities/organizations. The day and half event featured 22 presentations on a variety of topics related to how generation and transmission companies are using GIS to solve work challenges. During lunch on the 5th Gerry Sjerven gave a short overview of the GIS/LIS Consortium and some of the events that happen during the year.
The Legislative Coordinating Commission (LCC) serves as the umbrella organization for legislative commissions, joint agencies, and other boards for the Legislature. One responsibility of the LCC is to maintain a web site that shows the public how revenues from the Legacy Amendment and the Environment and Natural Resource Trust Fund are spent. LCC staff work with 25 or so agencies that receive $300 million annually through the Legacy amendment to show citizens where the money goes. The web site is at http://www.legacy.leg.mn/. The interactive map for the website that lets Minnesotans find projects near where they live, or want to explore can be found at this link: http://www.legacy.leg.mn/map.html.
Notified by the Cartography and Geographic Information Society, http://www.cartogis.org/awards/winners2015.php, Chris Cantey, Senior IT Specialist, and Lee Meilleur, Technology Services Manager, were recognized for having the best interactive map for 2015.
The Minnesota GIS/LIS Consortium is honored to have been selected for a Governor’s Geospatial Commendation Award for 2015, presented at this year’s Consortium conference. The awards recognize organizations that have “gone the extra mile” to deliver products and services resulting in a more responsive government, promoting public access to information and reflecting the benefits of working in a collaborative environment that encourages similar efforts in the future.
The Consortium is being recognized for 25 years of dedication to its mission to develop and support the GIS professional in Minnesota for the benefit of our state and its citizens. A collaborative, volunteer-based organization, the Consortium has supported the community through the multiple opportunities it offers related to GIS education and networking events. Most prominently, it organizes an annual conference that brings together geospatial professionals from all sectors. It also provides technical workshops each spring and fall, networking events, scholarships for college students, event grants and lifetime achievement and leadership awards, and sponsors training events for the K-12 system. The award recognizes the efforts of the hundreds of volunteers that have made the Consortium successful as well as all who have realized the great value of the Consortium’s mission during the past 25 years.
Registration for the MN GIS/LIS Consortium Spring Workshops is open. Register for a variety of hands on and lecture style workshops in Minneapolis, OR attend from a remote location in Duluth, Mankato, Moorhead or Winona. There are 12 workshops to choose from, including two python classes to advance your skills and a full day workshop on the basics of LiDAR. Four of the workshops will be broadcast from Minneapolis to the remote locations via iTV: ArcGIS Pro, Parcel Fabric, Geocoding, and ArcGIS Server. Workshops are $90 each per half day workshop and $180 for the full day workshop. Sign up today!
Did you know the DNR is currently undertaking a program to locate Minnesota’s springs, thanks to funding by the Environment and Natural Resources Trust Fund? Interested citizens who know of springs in their neighborhood can send the DNR information on those springs, particularly their exact location (via GPS or verbal description). This will assist the DNR in a new inventory of this valuable and unique resource. To learn more about springs, or to share the location of a spring near you, visit the DNR web page on Springs and Karst in Minnesota.
Hubbard County has released a new web map that displays historical plat maps. The “Public Land Survey (PLS) & Section Corners” web map can be viewed here and is linked from their maps page.
In this new map, users can select the General Land Office (GLO) plats map service as a backdrop (at certain large scales) and can click on a township feature to get the georeferenced PDF of the plat map for that area. At scales where PLS corners are displayed, those points can also be clicked to view more information about the corner. For some corners, the “Certificate of Location” is viewable as a PDF. An excellent one-page help sheet shows the site’s features at a glance.
The digital GLO plat maps were created by a project that MnGeo coordinated in partnership with the Secretary of State’s Office, MnDOT, the Minnesota Historical Society, and the MN Association of County Surveyors. The map service was created by Foth consultants. The data and the map service are documented in the Minnesota Geospatial Commons in this record.
On March 30th, 2015, the University of Minnesota will be hosting a talk by Carl Steinitz, who will be speaking on the topic of GIS and design methodology applied to regional planning and development issues. More information is available on the University of Minnesota page about the lecture.
The dozens of lakes and streams on the Lac du Flambeau Indian Reservation in northern Wisconsin form a complex network of aquatic assets that members of the tribe’s natural resources department work diligently to protect. One way of safeguarding the tribe’s water resources is to identify catchment basins that feed rainwater into the system. By ensuring that identified basins are adequately covered in vegetation, which filters pollutants found in runoff, the tribe can help protect the overall health of its watersheds.
The task is made easier through the use of geographic information system (GIS) technology...
For anyone interested in learning more about Minnesota’s LiDAR elevation data, the Minnesota LiDAR Research and Education Committee will be hosting their second webinar in the free MN LIDAR Webinar Series on Tues. Dec. 9th.
Presenter: Michael Falkowski, Department of Forest Resources, University of Minnesota Title: LiDAR Application in Forest Inventory and Assessment