Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Week 6/Projections II Student Spotlights

Projections II gave students a guided approach to acquiring and transforming GIS data for a specific purpose. Overall, students did an excellent job with this assignment. A couple of student's work really shinned...
Congratulations to this week's spotlights!

Charlie is new dad to a beautiful daughter and has been using GIS in the field for years.  Charlie has been doing a great job in this course and we are happy to include him as this week’s spotlight.  Way to go Charlie!

What we like:  Layout and design including an informative legend and inset map.  Also, the data sources were spot on!  Charlie’s process summary was informative and easy to follow. 

More: Check out Charlie's Week 6 Blog Post

Georgina Black

Gina lives in California and works with Rigney staring at pictures all day.  She has been in the military on and off since 1993 and done her share of traveling to Japan (where she lived), Kuwait, Iraq, Thailand, Laos and Vietnam.   She has done everything from repairing F-16 aircrafts to archeological excavations.  Gina has been doing a great job in this course and we are excited to have her as our spotlight student.  Way to go Gina!
What we like:  Excellent job using white text against the true color aerial background.  Your scale bar, north arrow, and labels really “pop”.  Size and placement of your legend and dual inset maps are a great addition to the map.

More: Check out Gina's Week 6 Blog Post

About Projections Part II Lab - 

Last week (Projections Part I), students focused on reprojecting data that already had a defined projection system, but not the one needed. For example, they reprojected a county boundary file from UTM coordinates into the State Plane system. But before a dataset can be reprojected, it must have a defined coordinate system and projection. In Projections II,  students were tasked to define the reference systems for data on their own (a common practice).

Students explored two major data warehouses for the State of Florida: Labins.org and FGDL.org. The acquisition of preexisting datasets is a critical step of GIScience projects that is, unfortunately, usually excluded from tutorial based GIS coursework. The ability to find and use what is available is one of the most important skills our GIS students can gain.

After you have located your dataset, you will nearly always find that it is:
A) in a projection or coordinate system different from the one you
are working in, and
B) not in a format that is readily usable.

Choosing which projection and coordinate system to use for a project is something to be decided early on. For most projects, datasets will be acquired from multiple sources, so some of them will almost always need to be reprojected.

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