Geomatics News

We have provided this Geomatics News section to allow our members and corporate sponsors the ability to share any geomatics related news or information with the geospatial community.  This page works much like a typical blog, so others can add comments to any news post, or include the information on their own website using the RSS feed

To expand the content, simply click on the article title, click the blue arrow located after the title or click the Read more link.

To add geomatics related content simply click the 'add post' button below and enter your details in the appropriate boxes that appear. [Note: you must be logged-in to your GANS member account to post information below, so if you do not see a button then you may not be logged-in].


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  • 18 Nov 2021 8:45 AM | Ted MacKinnon (Administrator)

    On GIS Day, Esri Canada President Alex Miller presented Dr. Bob Maher with the Roger F. Tomlinson Lifetime Achievement Award, in recognition of his many achievements in expanding the use of geographic information system (GIS) technology. Dr. Maher established a world-class training program for GIS programmers at the College of Geographic Sciences (COGS) in Nova Scotia, where he was Senior Research Scientist responsible for the Applied Geomatics program. 

    The award recognizes individuals for their outstanding achievement and contribution to the GIS community during their career and was created as a tribute to Dr. Roger F. Tomlinson O.C., a visionary Canadian geographer who conceived and developed GIS and became known as the ‘father of GIS’.

    “Bob has always known that geography is central to understanding our world and he trained hundreds of people to use the lens of geography to understand problems. The intensive training program he created at COGS has helped the college become recognized as the gold standard for teaching of GIS. The program has significantly contributed to Canada’s rich pool of highly qualified GIS professionals,” says Alex Miller, president, Esri Canada.

    “GIS is central to addressing the significant environmental degradation that the world faces today and I am proud to have trained people who are all around the world, using GIS to help address it,” says Dr. Bob Maher.

    Dr. Maher has also taught far beyond Canada’s borders. He has conducted intensive GIS training courses in China, Indonesia and Zimbabwe, all for international aid agencies. At various universities, he also taught Applied Mathematics, Quantitative Methods and Computer Mapping, Biogeography, Scientific Computer Programming and Computer Graphics, in addition to GIS.

    He is also an innovator who has worked as an applied research scientist for over 25 years. In Nova Scotia, Dr. Maher led a team who developed one of the first PC-based GIS digitizing systems. In Alberta, his team developed a PC-based integration of image processing and GIS.

    When Dr. Maher worked as a senior manager in the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources (MNR), he was responsible for all aspects of GIS education and technical and management training at over 60 locations. In consultation with MNR technical staff, he produced a framework for corporate GIS training. He established partnerships with colleges, universities and the private sector. His work at MNR represented one of the most extensive and complex implementations of GIS technology in Canadian government.

    Continue reading .... 



  • 17 May 2021 1:08 PM | Ted MacKinnon (Administrator)

    Multivariate Mapping with ArcGIS, this 2 hour hands on workshop is included with 2021 Canadian Cartographic Association (CCA), Conference registration. Event registration is only $20 ($10 for students). http://candiangeo.info/2021CCA_register 

    The 3 day conference will be a gathering of geospatial practitioners, educators, and researchers from both public and private sectors and the community at large. It is open to anyone with an interest in maps.

    This year registration has been kept low to encourage participation, to help bring together more people, and CCA members can attend for free as part of their membership benefits. 

    Some of the presentations topics include an update on the national Elevation Strategy, mapping the pandemic, creating shaded relief models, flood modeling with LiDAR data, the growth of Fantasy Maps, the challenge of meaningfully putting Indigenous People back onto maps, and the increased use of remote sensing technology in Canada.

    Abstracts for all presentations is provided on the conference website http://candiangeo.info/2021CCA_abstracts

    There will be an online map gallery that will include entries from this year’s student mapping contests, a workshop on multivariate mapping with ArcGIS, the annual general meeting, and much more.

    We hope that you can join us, and we participate in this year’s online conference where we explore LiDAR and other mapping techniques.

    http://candiangeo.info/2021CCA_register


  • 01 Mar 2021 8:21 PM | Sarah Coley (Administrator)

    Meet Samantha Lewis, a graduate student at Saint Mary's University.

    My education and background: 

    I’m currently a graduate student at Saint Mary’s University in the Master of Science in Applied Science program under the supervision of Dr. Danika van Proosdij. My research involves the use of Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS) to measure and monitor the geomorphic evolution of a salt marsh restoration site on the Bay of Fundy, Nova Scotia. My past education includes a Bachelor of Science (majoring in Earth and Environmental Science, minoring in Biology) from the University of British Columbia Okanagan, and an Advanced Diploma in Geographic Sciences (remote sensing specialization) from the NSCC Centre of Geographic Sciences (COGS) in Lawrencetown, NS. After graduating from COGS I started working as a research assistant at the Applied Geomatics Research Group, and was able to broaden my geomatics and remote sensing skillset, including gaining experience with RPAS operations. This directly led me to Dr. van Proosdij’s research lab at Saint Mary’s University and their graduate program, where I could merge my two interests, environmental sciences and geomatics. 

    What interests me about geomatics:  

    My favorite aspect of geomatics is that it requires a lot of problem solving. Every problem is like a puzzle, and there are many different ways to solve every puzzle. I spend a lot of time trying to figure out which solution is the most efficient for each task I’m working on. I also love that the possibilities for using geomatics to solve problems are endless. Geomatics can be applied to so many different situations, and new uses for technologies like RPAS are being developed every day. It’s a very quickly advancing field, and it’s exciting to be involved in that advancement. 

    How I decided on a career in geomatics: 

    My introduction to geomatics was not deliberate. I had a friend who suggested taking the “Intro to GIS” course at UBCO during my undergraduate degree, and I signed up for the class without knowing what GIS was. The class sparked an interest for me that sent me to COGS in Nova Scotia, where I ended up learning about remote sensing, and deciding it was the right path for me. While I’m not sure exactly what I’ll be doing after graduating, I’m positive it will involve remote sensing and GIS. 

    My career goals: 

    Since starting my graduate studies (co-op stream), I’ve been managing the RPAS operations for CB Wetlands and Environmental Specialists, an environmental consultant company that often partners with SMU on costal restoration projects. An ideal career for me would involve this sort of work, as well as the managing of field operations and GIS analyses. 

    My ideal employer: 

    My ideal employer would be a company thatsupports a strong learning environment and encourages employees to pursue their interests and incorporate new techniques into their work. I also want to work for a company that does a lot of fieldwork, as I thrive in an outdoor environment. 

    Advice for other students: 

    Broaden your skillset as much as possible while you are in school. You never know what skills will end up being helpful once you’re in the workforce. Having knowledge of varying subjects will also allow you to approach problems from many different directions and give you new ways to problem solve. 

  • 01 Mar 2021 4:11 PM | Sarah Coley (Administrator)

    Connect with Jaclyn on LinkedIn here.

    In this Q&A, Jaclyn Chezenko discusses where her work in the geomatics field.


    Q: Can you tell us a bit about yourself?

    My name is Jaclyn Chezenko and I’m a GIS Systems Administrator at Halifax Water. I graduated with a degree in Geography from Saint Mary’s University in 2004, and an Advanced Diploma in GIS from the Centre of Geographic Sciences (COGS) in 2006.

    After graduating from COGS, I travelled with friends to Calgary, Alberta to work for a company that provided oil and gas field services called Wolf Survey & Mapping. There I started out as a GPS Rover collecting data in the mountains of Alberta and BC, and the plains of Saskatchewan, travelling by helicopter almost daily. After a few months I began working within the company as a GIS Mapper and performed data processing tasks and provided mapping products to the different groups on the job site such as surveyors, drillers, line crew, and project managers. After one year of gaining valuable work and life experience in Alberta, I decided to move back home to Nova Scotia. A month later I was offered an Engineering Information Technician position at Halifax Water.

    I have currently been with Halifax Water for almost 14 years. After working as an EIT for 7 years in the GIS Updating Group doing spatial and forms-based entry and updates on our assets in GIS and AutoCAD, I moved into the GIS Technical Group as a GIS Analyst. As a GIS Analyst I got more involved with database work, scripting, and analysis. Once our GIS moved fully in-house, I became the GIS Systems Administrator and for the past 2 years have been responsible for administering Halifax Water’s GIS environments which includes GIS servers, software, databases, and applications. 

     

    Q: What made you choose a career in the geomatics sector? 

    I always loved Geography, so I was excited to first take some geography courses at SMU as electives, and then I switched my major to Geography in my second year. I was not familiar with GIS, but some courses were being offered through the Geography program which I took and really enjoyed. In one of those GIS classes, an instructor from COGS came to speak to us about the GIS course being offered at NSCC-COGS, and it sounded very interesting to me. I was excited to live and attend college in the beautiful valley where I enjoyed visiting while growing up in Nova Scotia. I loved the idea that GIS could be used in almost any workplace, and I was excited to start my career to see all of the different ways.


    Q: As a woman, did you recognize the barriers you faced in getting your career started? How would you describe them?

    I’ve been fortunate and have not had to face any barriers as a woman in the GIS industry. In my GIS program at COGS, about half of my classmates were women and at Halifax Water we have more women than men in the GIS group. There are actually 4 women out of 6 people in my smaller GIS Technical Group. The work I did in the seismic industry in Alberta was definitely more male dominated, but I always felt valued and well respected.

     

    Q: How did you manage to overcome the major challenges in your career and end up where you are today?

    Being able to secure a job right out of COGS gave me the ability to gain GIS work experience, which helped me in securing my job at Halifax Water. Now in my present role, staying current with GIS technology has been the major challenge. We are unable to always upgrade to the latest platforms and with so many projects on the go in our numerous environments, it’s difficult to schedule major changes that won’t affect a lot of users. As we wait, newer versions are released. While waiting to upgrade software and application versions, it has been helpful and important to stay up to date on what is new and changing within the latest technologies, and to continue planning how our future GIS will look. It can be challenging but also rewarding.

      

    Q: Do you think the geomatics sector needs to change to be more inclusive? How?

    In my personal experience, the geomatics sector has been very inclusive. I’ve had female GIS professors, classmates, coworkers, and I also work with a lot of external female GIS colleagues and consultants from different companies. I feel fortunate that the geomatics sector is inclusive, because I know that a lot of other sectors are not.

     

    Q: What advice would you give to women and girls who are facing gender barriers in their careers?

    Just to speak up and enjoy working in your field of education. With continuous learning and experience comes more confidence. Every job and role is different, and it can take time to feel comfortable which is okay. Never stop asking questions.

     

    Q: What advice would you give to anyone facing challenges in their geospatial occupation, or entering the geospatial sector?

    The GIS community is always growing, and more people are moving around. Just because you meet all of the requirements for a position, does not mean that a lot of others won’t as well. It can be discouraging, but my advice would be to continue applying for everything you can while always expanding your learning opportunities. Take courses through Esri, watch webinars, read articles, network within the GIS community, and always keep your resume up to date.

     

    Q: In your experience, what can you say about the progress that has been made in the geomatics sector, and where it will go in the future?

    In my experience, every time I attend a GIS conference or training, I meet new people from companies that I did not even know had GIS departments. It really seems to be expanding across different industries and is becoming a central part of organizations. When I worked in Alberta, most employers had heard of COGS and recognized it as a strong school that produced a lot of skilled graduates who were ready and willing to learn and work. The future continues to look promising for geomatics and for women in GIS.

  • 10 Nov 2020 10:22 AM | Sarah Coley (Administrator)

    The GANS “Student Highlight” article series recognizes budding geomatics professionals and allows them the opportunity to showcase their work, their skills and their career aspirations to the greater geospatial community of Nova Scotia and Atlantic Canada. In this newsletter we are sharing the journeys of our two new Student Representatives on the GANS Board of Directors.

    Meet Wenjie Xu, a Masters of Science student at Dalhousie University.


    My education and background:

    Currently I am enrolled in the Master of Science at Dalhousie University (Dal). The beautiful main campus is located in the heart of Halifax, a city with extraordinary landscape and rich history. Its agricultural campus is located in the valley of Salmon River in the Truro, once a critical station town for Trans-Canada Via railway.

    I am studying and working under the supervision of the director of Organic Agricultural Centre of Canada (OACC). At the same time, Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (Kentville) provided technical supports and critical database to support our research on assessing the landscape heterogeneity between organic and conventional quarter sections in Saskatchewan. Pairwise comparison between organic and conventional management was set up to better quantify the differences. Mapping landscape structures, geoprocessing and data conversion are important steps to digitize landscape structures and landscape into a computable format. More than 20 landscape metrics were calculated in this study to fully explain the level of landscape heterogeneity.

    What interests me about geomatics:

    The powerful geographic information systems is the part of geomatics that allures me the most. It integrates many types of data. It analyzes spatial location and organizes layers of information into visualizations using maps and 3D scenes. ​With this unique capability, GIS reveals deeper insights into data, such as patterns, relationships, and situations—helping users make smarter decisions.  

    With its extensive functions, GIS can be used to create maps to better display the spatial relationship; it can evaluate the suitability and capability, estimate and predict, interpret and understand, lend new perspective into decision-making, etc. Hundreds of thousands of organizations in virtually every field are using GIS to make maps that communicate, perform analysis, share information, and solve complex problems around the world. This is changing the way the world works.

    How I decided on a career in Geomatics:

    While I was working as a research assistant during my undergraduate studies, my team and I focused on investigating the spatial distribution of soil heavy metal elements. By using spatial interpolation, we predicted and created maps of spatial distribution of those soil heavy metal elements. It was the powerful GIS and the thematic maps that got me thinking about the application of spatial analysis in environmental studies. As I further studied landscape ecology, spatial factors are one major factor that one cannot avoid in all ecological and environmental studies. Combining them into studies can address the real world problems.

    My career goals:

    I will pursue my career as a GIS spatial analyst, providing solid geoprocessing skills to solve real world problems. In addition, I would like to work as a volunteer to spread the importance of spatial analysis in all different studies and research directions.

    My ideal employer:

    I want to work for a company that considers not only the profits but also the benefits of the environment and sustainable development in society and is always open for new ideas.

    Advice for other students:

    Geomatics is a broad subject, but also a very practical tool for other studies’ directions. As a student not originally from a geomatics major but from other subjects, I recommend that other students who see geomatics as a tool is to take it seriously and try to understand the rationale behind each geoprocessing skill. That will help you comprehend each step and pick up the new skills very quickly.

    Benefits of volunteering with GANS Board of Directors:

    By attending or even organizing events in GANS, students can meet many professionals during all these processes. GANS would also be an ideal place for students to get to know industries, understand what happened outside campus is sometimes more important, and get themselves better prepared for their career.


  • 10 Nov 2020 10:11 AM | Sarah Coley (Administrator)

    The GANS “Student Highlight” article series recognizes budding geomatics professionals and allows them the opportunity to showcase their work, their skills and their career aspirations to the greater geospatial community of Nova Scotia and Atlantic Canada. In this newsletter we are sharing the journeys of our two new Student Representatives on the GANS Board of Directors.

    Meet Sabrina Hiefer, an engineer seeking a new career path in geomatics. Sabrina is currently a student at COGS.


    My education and background:

    Currently, I am a student at the Centre of Geographic Sciences (COGS) in the Marine Geomatics program. The program requires either a BEng or BSc for admittance (some alternative routes can be taken within, with consent of the college), so they begin the classes with a bang! We currently have seven courses, which include GPS, Geodesy, Python, GIS, CAD, Hydrography, and of course a lovely field component to apply all of our knowledge. The goal of many students, including myself, is to go into rotational offshore as hydrographic surveyors. In such, we are currently working on numerous projects, ranging from how to read and measure charts, how to give directions at sea, using a GPS along with surveying equipment to gather pertinent geolocation information, and of course numerous items on how to present all of this data.

     

    What interests me about geomatics:

    The first few weeks were quite the blur and seemed like nothing would ever come together, but surely and slowly the pieces began to fall into place. I’m now gaining a full picture of what geomatics allows us to do and how we can apply it within the workforce. I enjoy the mixture of multiple elements blending together for a common outcome such as chart reading, gathering GPS data to produce high precision coordinates, and creating data-filled maps.

     

    How I decided on a career in geomatics:

    Due to covid altering my entire industry for the foreseeable future, I found myself back at the grind of late nights and abnormal eating schedules. I previously completed a Bachelor of Applied Science at Acadia University (’14) and a Bachelor of Engineering at Dalhousie University (’17), and slowly progressed into private industry, working contracts across the country. Having worked rotational jobs on land as a project manager, I fell in love with the lifestyle it presents. My dive buddy works rotational offshore, and with my industry still changed due to covid, hers continued forward. So I investigated my options and felt marine geomatics would be a great fit.

     

    My career goals:

    My short term career goals are to enter into rotational offshore work and my long term career goals are to gain more knowledge and potentially go into a project manager role again, as this is what I have been doing for a few years now.

     

    My ideal employer:

    Having worked multiple contracts across Canada, the most important element for me is a mutual respect. An acknowledgement that I will do my best possible work, while they treat me with professional respect and offer a regular challenge for me to further improve my skill sets.

     

    Advice for other students:

    There’s no need to rush everywhere you’re going. As cliché as it may sound, enjoy the journey there. Take the chance to smell the roses and grab a beer, as you’ll look back at these moments more often than the all nighters to meet school deadlines. Having said this, if you opt to go into the Marine Geomatics program at COGS, be prepared for anywhere from 50 to 75 hour weeks, filled with an endless amount of tasks. On the bright side, it makes the wine taste that much sweeter when you finish!

     

    Benefits of volunteering with GANS Board of Directors:

    Being completely new to the geomatics realm, GANS expands my knowledge of the potential applications of my education. I entered the Marine Geomatics with a goal to complete rotational offshore, but my career paths are not limited to just that application. The board has a wide range of professionals, and each one has their own unique path that they’re more than willing to discuss!


    https://www.linkedin.com/in/sabrina-hiefer/

     

    Although my head is often in the books, I love being outdoors. In my ‘spare’ time, I’ve managed to still go out scuba diving and plenty of hiking. I’m very eager to re-enter the workforce at full tilt, and get back into the field. I do also love hearing about people’s paths, so feel free to connect!

  • 29 Jul 2020 9:24 PM | Anonymous

    Upcoming Geomatics Events

    Check our Events Page regularly for updates!

    If you'd like to share an event that isn't already included in our list, let us know by emailing [email protected].


    GANS Geo-Talks 

    Join us on Zoom every 2nd Thursday afternoon for a short presentation and Q&A session with individuals representing a variety of geomatics perspectives!

    Would you like to speak? Fill out a Speaker Registration Form and we will be in touch!


    We're on YouTube!

    All Geo-Talks are uploaded to our YouTube Channel for later viewing:
     

    Go to our YouTube Channel

    GANS AGM 

    We are pleased to announce the new date for our AGM on September 17. This year will be a little bit different, as we are going to be hosting the event as a Zoom webinar. The Zoom meeting information will be posted to our Events Page, and more details, including guest speakers, will be announced shortly.
     


    Board Nominations:

    We are accepting nominations for board positions, and the new board for 2020-21 will be decided at the AGM event.

    Email your nominations to [email protected]!


    GANS Award Nominations:

    This special recognition is awarded to an individual or an organization for making a significant mark in the geomatics sector. Every year, one recipient will be presented with the honour during our Annual General Meeting (AGM) which takes place each spring.

    The deadline for award nominations is August 31. 



    Become a GANS Sponsor

    When you become a GANS Sponsor you are not only benefiting your own organization, but you are also helping the Nova Scotia geospatial community. Go to our Sponsors page to learn more about how you can become a sponsor and what your benefits as a sponsor will be!


    Article Feature:

    Sponsor Spotlight:
    Applied Geomatics Research Group (AGRG)


    "The pandemic has slowed the progress of AGRG’s research, especially in the area of conducting fieldwork, although the light at the end of the tunnel is now visible and they are beginning to start some field activities. Dr. Tim Webster, who leads the group, is pleased that they did not have to lay anyone off during this time as they all worked from home. Some changes at AGRG include Nathan Crowell who has moved to the Research Specialist position to help guide the group and Dedipya Kodavati takes on the role of Research Associate and joins Kevin McGuigan in that role. Dedipya or “Dee” is a graduate from the Marine Geomatics program at COGS and will lead our multibeam research as well has expertise in laser scanning, processing and is learning hydrodynamic modelling."

    Read more about AGRG and their recent and upcoming projects here


    Article Feature:

    Women in Geomatics Spotlight: Erica Corbett


    Like many sectors, geomatics has historically been male-dominated. Women first started making their mark in the land surveying industry in the early 1990; and according to the Point of Beginning, Alice Fletcher was the first recorded woman land surveyor in 1886. The geospatial industry has certainly come a long way since then in terms of gender equality, but there is still lots of room for improvement. In this article series, we highlight the journeys of today's women who have pursued careers in geomatics.

    In this Q&A session, Erica Corbett of Esri Canada discusses where her interest in geomatics stems from, how it got her to where she is today, and the challenges and rewards that she experienced along her way.

    Read the Q&A here


    Article Feature:

    Student Highlight: Rafael Del Bello


    The GANS “Student Highlight” article series recognizes budding geomatics professionals and allows them the opportunity to showcase their work, their skills and their career aspirations to the greater geospatial community of Nova Scotia and Atlantic Canada. In each quarterly newsletter, we will share the journey of one of our student members, how they became interested in geomatics, and what their professional goals are for the future.

    This quarter’s feature is Rafael Del Bello, a postgraduate student of the Advanced Diploma in Geographic Information Systems and Remote Sensing at COGS.

    Learn more about Rafael here


    Job Opportunities

    Looking for work? Check out our Jobs Page for the latest in GIS job opportunities in Atlantic Canada. 


    Geographic Education Posters

    Did you go to high school in Nova Scotia and are now working in the geomatics sector? We want you to be part of our educational posters! 

    Find out more on our Geographic Education and Geospatial Related Careers page.



    As always, thank you to our dedicated sponsors for your continuous generosity and support!

  • 25 Jul 2020 11:56 AM | Anonymous

    Contributed by Tim Webster, Ph.D. and Research Scientist at AGRG.


    "An update from the NSCC’s Applied Geomatics Research Group

    The pandemic has slowed the progress of AGRG’s research, especially in the area of conducting fieldwork, although the light at the end of the tunnel is now visible and they are beginning to start some field activities. Dr. Tim Webster, who leads the group, is pleased that they did not have to lay anyone off during this time as they all worked from home. Some changes at AGRG include Nathan Crowell who has moved to the Research Specialist position to help guide the group and Dedipya Kodavati takes on the role of Research Associate and joins Kevin McGuigan in that role. Dedipya or “Dee” is a graduate from the Marine Geomatics program at COGS and will lead our multibeam research as well has expertise in laser scanning, processing and is learning hydrodynamic modelling.



    Figure 1 Nathan Crowell and Dedipya Kodavati using the Optech Polaris laser scanner to scan the coastline post Hurricane Dorian this spring.


    Last year AGRG finished a project through GeoNova for NS Department of Municipal Affairs on how Topo-bathymetric lidar can be used for flood mapping. As part of that study they deployed water level gauges and captured the Hurricane Dorian event both along the coast and up the River John to east and west branch. The report demonstrated how these new lidar data can enhance hydrodynamic (HD) modelling of storm surge events along the coast as well in fluvial and estuarine environments. They flew their Leica Chiroptera 4X topo-bathy lidar sensor at the end of Oct. and captured the River John floodplain and the river channel itself. These data were used for river cross-sections that are the input to 1-D hydrodynamic flood models. The data also proved to be very useful at mapping the pools and shows great potential for mapping fish habitat and fish passage routes. Some other ongoing projects of note include a SSHC (Social Science and Humanities Research Council) project with the Mi’kmaq group Kwilmu’kw Maw-klusuaqn Negotiation Office (KMKO) with Dr. Heather MacLeod-Leslie where we used the topo-bathy lidar to survey a section of the Bras d’Or Lakes to look for submerged archaeological sites. Others included using satellite, aerial imagery and drones to assess the ice conditions for potential aquaculture for CMAR. A project supported through the Atlantic Fisheries Funds used their Chriptera 4X system to construct a seamless elevation model for Pomquet Harbor and build a HD model to determine the best locations to collect oyster seed and place oyster farms in partnership with the Paq’tnkek First Nation. They are also working with the folks at the Whale Sanctuary Project to gather biophysical oceanographic data for the potential site on the eastern shore. We are just beginning a project with the NS Salmon Association to use thermal imagery from drones to map cold water springs in rivers and evaluate the GeoNova and other topographic lidar data for calculating stream metrics (longitudinal profile, slope etc.). We are busy with some laser scanning projects including using a new lidar puck system from Ouster where we are investigating the use of SLAM (Simultaneous Location and Mapping) technology with NS Power. We plan to scan part of the COGS addition to demonstrate how this technology can support BIM (Building Information Modelling) and utilize augmented and virtual reality. The plan is to use a combination of the Optech Polaris laser scanner and the Matterport system which utilizes Structure from Light technology to capture the 3-D environment at different stages of the construction. We will do scans once the plumbing and electrical are roughed in and again after the drywall is in place and one last set once the rooms are finished and painted.



    Figure 2 AGRG scanning team (left to right) Jesse Siegal, Dedipya Kodavati, and Nathan Crowell standing in front of the new COGS addition.


    Paul Illsley and Bill Livingstone retired from the group this past spring where they were heading up some of the UAV research AGRG does. Bill was able to have a day showing Nathan and Thomas Allen how the DJI Matrice 600 operates with the Velodyne lidar and Headwall hyperspectral sensor. We are anxious to put this equipment to use and are interested in any research project ideas the community may have."



    Learn more about AGRG here


    Connect with Tim with the following contact information:

    Tim Webster, Ph.D.

    Research Scientist, Applied Geomatics Research Group (AGRG)

    Centre of Geographic Sciences (COGS), Nova Scotia Community College

     

    Chair, Nova Scotia Branch, Canadian Institute of Geomatics

    Adjunct professor, Acadia University &  Dalhousie University, Dept. of Earth and Environmental Sciences

     

    Phone: 902-825-5475 Cell: 902-825-7433 Fax: 902-825-5479

    e-mail: [email protected] 

    Website: http://agrg.cogs.nscc.ca/


  • 07 Jul 2020 9:24 AM | Ted MacKinnon (Administrator)

    GeoIgnite: Leadership in Times of Disruption

    Join us virtually this year for Canada’s National Geospatial Leadership: GeoIgnite conference on July 22nd to 24th, 2020! Our Hashtag is: “#geoignite2020”

    This event will showcase Canadian geospatial community and leaders of Canada’s location technology sector. Join us for talks, live Q&A and panels. 

    GeoIgnite is a unique opportunity for geospatial community in Canada and abroad to learn, share and engage with one another at our virtual conference.

    Announcement: GeoIgnite 2020 | GoGeomaticsThis year’s theme Leadership in Times of Disruption is bringing together government and industry for innovative programming and updates on our sector.

     We will be featuring a keynote from the Centre of Mapping and Earth Observation Director General, Eric Loubier.  The conference will feature talks from Natural Resources Canada, Agriculture Canada, Statistics Canada and the Department of Fisheries and Oceans.

    Our 2020 gold sponsor is Maxar, and we are also honoured to be welcoming our silver sponsoring presenting partners Quantum Spatial Canada and Deploy Solutions. 

    Visit our updated website to register. Choose your unique sessions, user presentations, and networking opportunities to get the most out of your experience.

    COVID-19 will not stop the Canadian Geospatial sector moving forward together!  Show your support by participating online.

    We thank all our volunteers, presenters, exhibitors, and sponsors whose support has made this event possible.

  • 12 Jun 2020 5:41 PM | Anonymous

     


    Connect with Erica on LinkedIn here

    In this Q&A, Erica Corbett of Esri Canada discusses where her interest in geomatics stems from, how it got her to where she is today, and the challenges and rewards that she experienced along her way:


    Q: Can you tell us a bit about yourself?

    A: My name is Erica Corbett and I’m an instructor at Esri Canada. My career path in GIS all started back in my days at uni, in one of my favourite places on this earth: Newfoundland. I took Geography as a Science at Memorial University (MUN). In between having fun on George Street, I was lucky to take various field courses that allowed me to travel around the province and study the beautiful physical and cultural geography of Newfoundland. Rocky coastlines, fjords, glaciers, and mountains in the west, and rolling hills, icebergs, Irish pubs and whale-spotting in the East. I even got to walk along the Earth’s mantle while hiking the Tablelands in Gros Morne National Park.

    It was in one of these Physical Geography classes that I was introduced to the world of GIS. To be honest, I didn’t really like it at first. But once I learned what the software (ArcMap at the time) could do with the data I collected out in the field, I was intrigued.

    Fast-forward to graduating from MUN, I moved to South Korea to give teaching a go. I taught English and traveled Asia for almost 4 years, and while I was enjoying this career path, I knew I wanted to use my degree and get back into my field. I also knew I loved to teach. So I thought, why don’t I combine the two? While sitting in my little studio apartment in Seoul (metro population: 50 mil), I signed up for the Centre of Geographic Sciences (COGS) in Lawrencetown, Nova Scotia (population: 600). It was perfect, as it’s just a 2 hour drive from where I grew up, in Halifax, Nova Scotia.

    The following summer of 2017, I packed my bags and came back to Canada. I did not realize what was in store for me as I walked in the door at COGS on my first day, where I learned I was enrolled in nine courses in my first semester. This 9 month program is called the Advanced GIS diploma program, and you need a degree in order to register for it. I made lifelong friends, became well-acquainted with the Royal Canadian Legion and the game of Broomball, and learned an incredible amount about GIS in those nine months. The courses were extremely technical and prepared me for the job I have today at Esri Canada.

    Before graduating from COGS, I got a job offer for an Associate GIS Analyst position in Esri Canada’s Vancouver office. During my interview, I was asked what my career goals were and I replied that I wanted to be able to combine my passions for teaching and GIS. I started in July 2018, learned a ton as an Associate, and became an ArcGIS Instructor in November 2019.


    Q: What made you choose a career in the geomatics sector?

    A: Being able to combine my interest for Science with Geography led me to working in Geomatics. I also learned how much GIS is applied as an aid to many different spatial issues around the world, making it a very rewarding sector to be involved in. I enjoy working with the many different people in Canada who are users of Esri software and helping clients apply different solutions to their workflows with Esri technology.


    Q: As a woman, did you recognize the barriers you faced in getting your career started? How would you describe them?

    To be honest, while getting prepared for a career in geomatics at COGS, more than half of my classmates were women. As well, Esri Canada hires roughly 3-5 Associates every year, right out of school. In my year, they hired four women (including myself) and one male. So my experience of getting my career going in the Geomatics sector was actually that it seemed like a female-dominated industry.


    Q: How did you manage to overcome the major challenges in your career and end up where you are today?

    The major challenges in my career mainly involve keeping up with the constant change in technology. The only way to do this is to continuously keep learning. I am constantly in communication with my colleagues and am always finding out about new software that Esri is developing that I need to know the ins and outs of. Not only do I learn from my coworkers, but also from my clients, many of whom are long-time GIS users. I enjoy building good relationships with customers all around Canada and taking the opportunity to teach each other something.


    Q: Do you think the geomatics sector needs to change to be more inclusive? How?

    Although I started off my career in Geomatics surrounded by bad-ass women, as I get deeper in my career, and get to know more and more clients, I realized that this sector wasn’t always so female-dominant. In fact, it was the opposite. I’m now on a team of mostly men and a lot of the clients I work with are males as well. It wasn’t hard to notice that there is little to no female representation in higher positions within the GIS industry after working with so many different organizations. With that being said, I think that my experience alone shows that it’s changing.


    Q: What advice would you give to women and girls who are facing gender barriers in their careers?

    A: Be humble. Never stop learning. Ask questions. Speak your mind. Most importantly, be yourself.


    Q: What advice would you give to anyone facing challenges in their geospatial occupation, or entering the geospatial sector?

    A: If you are just entering the geospatial sector: recognize that you have barely scratched the surface of what you can do with the technology (like me). Even if you aren’t new, there are so many people in the GIS industry that you can learn from. Take every opportunity you get to soak in knowledge. And read. Read documentation, blogs, articles and books. Play around in the software until you understand how something works.

    As for anyone facing non-technical challenges regarding their careers: be vocal. Make it clear to your managers (and yourself) what your goals are and how you plan on getting there.


    Q: In your experience, what can you say about the progress that has been made in the geomatics sector, and where it will go in the future?

    A: Judging from my own experience at COGS, and my recent visit to COGS to recruit new Associates, more women than men will be joining the industry. I have no doubt that many of these talented females will make it far, into upper-management roles. I spoke to quite a few women at COGS while conducting interviews who expressed interest in leadership positions. This comes as no surprise to me. While I’m still new to the industry, I’m excited to see where all these new faces will take us, whether male or female. It’s all about ideas and a willingness to learn.




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