Friday, December 26, 2008

CNN features stunning pictures from NASA

NASA imagery of Earth is featured this week on - "NASA captures stunning pictures of Earth"

The gallery featured in the article is a just small sample of the hundreds of images available. In 2008 the NASA Earth Observatory captured many stunning images of the Earth - including innovative images from the International Space Station showing city lights from space.

In this series space station astronauts used a tracking system to cancel orbital motion and obtain sharp images of cities at night from space for the first time.

The nighttime photograph of Tokyo, Japan, above was taken by International Space Station astronaut Dan Tani on February 5, 2008. The heart of the city is brightest, with ribbons of lights radiating outward from the center along streets and railways. The lights of Tokyo are a cooler blue-green color than many other world cities. The color results from the use of mercury vapor lighting as opposed to sodium vapor lighting, which produces an orange-yellow light.

- Jeff

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Gaia users now have ‘one-click’ access to US Framework WFS

We're pleased to announce a new Gaia Extender that integrates our user-friendly geospatial browser with Framework WFS of the US Spatial Data Infrastructure (SDI) - offering one-click access to transportation, political boundaries and hydrography content for the nation.

One-click access to Framework WFS was a key goal of Gaia development and the Extenders API provided the backbone to implement this capability in minutes. Gaia Extenders like this one are a testament to the open approach we’re taking at The Carbon Project.

Gaia is built with CarbonTools. It was developed as part of the NSDI Cooperative Agreement Program (CAP) in collaboration with the North Carolina Department of Environment and Natural Resources (NC DENR), the US EPA and other visionary organizations. Gaia 3.2 provides a robust and open API that lets programmers develop Gaia Extenders with or without a CarbonTools PRO license. Gaia Extenders are light, easy to deploy bits of code that can alter Gaia’s functionality.

Gaia is free at Source code is fully open-source to CarbonTools customers and available under a per developer license that has no limits, royalties, restrictions or fees on deploying applications - ever.

The USGS Framework SDI One-Click Extender will be available next week as a free download. The Framework WFS is powered by CubeWerx WFS.

- Jeff

Friday, December 12, 2008

Air traffic worldwide in 72 seconds

The Zurich School of Applied Sciences has built a video simulation displaying the flight paths of commercial flights worldwide - the video is 72 seconds long and takes place over 24 hours. It was posted September 2008 on YouTube - and received almost 600,000 views!

- Jeff

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

On the surge in OGC SDI...

Adena from All Points Blog had some questions about our recent announcement and writes -

"Last week The Carbon Project put out a press release titled Carbon Project Announces New Gaia Support Package in Response to OGC SDI Surge. I wondered about such a surge (a term which alas relates in my mind to events in Iraq not geospatial technology). I asked Jeff Harrison, president and CEO, about the nature of the surge and the reasons for it."

I replied that the worldwide surge of activity in developing SDI based on OGC standards is especially pronounced in North America, Europe, Asia and Australia. The surge is being caused by three factors -

- The maturity of OGC SDI standards, many of these have become ISO standards and are now widely accepted

- Implementation of the technologies in standards-based commercial software has reached a critical mass in the last 18 months - making it possible to do"real work" instead of testing and piloting

- The public sectors embracing OGC SDI 1.0 interoperability and placing these requirements into procurements

Cameron Shorter hit on another factor causing the surge in OGC SDI -

"Huge quantities of data are now being put online."

- Jeff

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Europe tracks pirates from space...and more

The planned Musis (Multinational Space-based Imaging System) satellite is designed to replace the present Helios 2 military observation satellite depicted above

EUbusiness reports, "The small grey building near Madrid has morphed into something from a futuristic film, with intelligence analysts inside feverishly tracking the faraway movements of pirates and rebels. The European Union Satellite Centre for intelligence at the Torrejon military base is wrapping up its busiest year, and its capabilities are set to expand."

This activity comes on the heels of an important decision outlined in Defense News where Poland "joined the six EU countries that have given informal backing for a planned launch of the French Musis optical spy satellite. France won the support of Belgium, Germany, Greece, Italy, Netherlands and Spain for the collaborative space program."

The planned Musis (Multinational Space-based Imaging System) satellite network is designed to replace the present Helios 2 military observation satellite around 2015.

This activity is all part of an international environment where there is no longer a single monopoly on data source. Instead there are variety of data sources from Europe, the Americas, India, the Middle East and Asia.

- Jeff

Thursday, December 04, 2008

New Gaia support package in response to OGC SDI surge

The Carbon Project is pleased to announce an expanded level of service now available to developers and users alike. The Gaia Support Package enables customers to engage Carbon Project engineering staff to address specific extensions, changes and enhancements to its Gaia and CarbonTools products.

This new support package is in response to a worldwide surge of activity in developing Spatial Data Infrastructure (SDI) based on Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) standards. To help its growing user community address new and specific needs, The Carbon Project is providing a direct channel to the developers behind its products.

We are experiencing a significant increase in the number of opportunities around the world that utilize OGC standards. We realize our customers require specific enhancements to our popular geospatial products. To help Gaia and CarbonTools users succeed in a highly competitive market, we are adopting an open-door approach that allows access to our product developers.”

The Carbon Project’s Gaia geospatial viewer is built using the CarbonTools PRO toolkit and is fully open-source to CarbonTools PRO customers. Developed as part of the National Spatial Data Infrastructure (NSDI) Cooperative Agreement Program (CAP) Gaia 3.2 provides a robust and open API that allows programmers to develop Gaia Extenders with or without a CarbonTools PRO license. The Gaia Extenders are light, easy to deploy and can alter Gaia’s functionality.

“Gaia Extenders are a testament to the open-approach we’re taking at The Carbon Project,” says Nuke Goldstein, our CTO. “We are busy developing a slew of Extenders that provide new enhancements to Gaia, such as Secure SDI, Emergency Mapping Symbology, US National Grid, spatio-temporal enhancements through AIXM, and much more in response to the surge of activity in OGC SDI. The new Gaia Support Package will allow us to quickly address additional customer needs in 2009.”

The new Gaia Support Package is now available on a limited first come first served basis. Gaia is freely available at

CarbonTools PRO with Gaia source code is available under a per developer license that has no limits, royalties, restrictions or fees on deploying applications - ever.

For more information please contact

- Jeff

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Mumbai Attackers had GPS Units, Satellite Maps

"Gunmen Used Technology as A Tactical Tool "

By Emily Wax
Washington Post Foreign Service
Wednesday, December 3, 2008

"NEW DELHI, Dec. 2 -- The heavily armed attackers who set out for Mumbai by sea last week navigated with Global Positioning System equipment, according to Indian investigators and police. They carried BlackBerrys, CDs holding high-resolution satellite images like those used for Google Earth maps, and multiple cellphones with switchable SIM cards that would be hard to track. They spoke by satellite telephone. And as television channels broadcast live coverage of the young men carrying out the terrorist attack, TV sets were turned on in the hotel rooms occupied by the gunmen, eyewitnesses recalled."

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

EPA WFS - TNM 2.0 in Action

We've been testing the EPA WFS with Gaia 3.2 and it works great. This example shows EPA WFS working with USGS NSDI WMS, Urban Areas WMS, Wake County WMS and FGDC Emergency Mapping Symbology - a great example of TNM 2.0 in action.