Lab 6

For my lab I chose a data set that describes Douglas County in Colorado. Because I’m from Colorado and have skied in this county many times I thought it would contain interesting elevation data for our maps and visualizations. The Datum used for these graphics is the NorthAmerican1983 and the spatial reference is GCS_N and the extent information is as follows: 

  • Top- 40.000
  • Left -106.001
  • Right -104.998
  • Bottom 38.99
Bret Johnson
Geography 7 Lab Write Up
 
            A map’s projection serves the same function as a building’s foundation in the sense that if the foundation is fractured the rest of the structure will be condemned. Likewise, if careful attention is not given to understanding why and how a projection is particularly used, significant patterns in data will be misinterpreted or ignored. Working with projections in ArcGIS was helpful in understanding how our “real” or visible world is translated into a “geographical” representation and how natural precision in accuracy can erode. Ultimately GIS  can only be an effective system of storing information depends on the quality of primary information and the accuracy and precision of its interpreter
            The imperative to understanding how certain projections change data and geographical representations we were asked to map the distance between two ‘static’ points- Washington D.C. and Kabul across three categories of projections. I used two equal area projections, equidistance projections, and conformal projections to investigate changes in reported distance from two points. Distances were relatively similar to one another across most projections (~8,000mi) however, two projections created outlying data points. The Cylinder Equidistance Projection is not only visually more compact that the other projections, it also produced a distance value of 5,056mi. The Mercator Conformal Projection visually skews the area of continents such as Antarctica and values the distance between Washington D.C. and Kabul at 10,000mi.
            Potential pitfall of the process would be to use an unfitting geospatial projection of a certain dataset and conversely by misinterpretation of map’s and their methods of projection. Great care must be taken in matching data with their correct projections as the consequences would be far reaching and crippling. Defense and communication networks cannot be constructed or sustained built on misrepresentations of the world in which we live.
 On a more positive note, ArcGIS allows us to manipulate and understand data in innovative ways that decrease the amount of error in accurately designing maps. This means that more than ever, individuals are consuming and increasing their geospatial consciousness and finding more ways to map their personal and professional lives. As civil society becomes more and more map literate and dependent, its geographical understanding of the surrounding world will inevitably increase. With collective issues moving to the forefront of our individual, state, and federal lexicon it will be tools such as GIS that will be employed to to navigate the pressing questions of “what to do, and where?” This question would be hard to answer without an accurate and standardized ways compare two points location and therefore distance on the globe.

Bret Johnson

Geography 7 Lab Write Up

 

            A map’s projection serves the same function as a building’s foundation in the sense that if the foundation is fractured the rest of the structure will be condemned. Likewise, if careful attention is not given to understanding why and how a projection is particularly used, significant patterns in data will be misinterpreted or ignored. Working with projections in ArcGIS was helpful in understanding how our “real” or visible world is translated into a “geographical” representation and how natural precision in accuracy can erode. Ultimately GIS  can only be an effective system of storing information depends on the quality of primary information and the accuracy and precision of its interpreter

            The imperative to understanding how certain projections change data and geographical representations we were asked to map the distance between two ‘static’ points- Washington D.C. and Kabul across three categories of projections. I used two equal area projections, equidistance projections, and conformal projections to investigate changes in reported distance from two points. Distances were relatively similar to one another across most projections (~8,000mi) however, two projections created outlying data points. The Cylinder Equidistance Projection is not only visually more compact that the other projections, it also produced a distance value of 5,056mi. The Mercator Conformal Projection visually skews the area of continents such as Antarctica and values the distance between Washington D.C. and Kabul at 10,000mi.

            Potential pitfall of the process would be to use an unfitting geospatial projection of a certain dataset and conversely by misinterpretation of map’s and their methods of projection. Great care must be taken in matching data with their correct projections as the consequences would be far reaching and crippling. Defense and communication networks cannot be constructed or sustained built on misrepresentations of the world in which we live.

 On a more positive note, ArcGIS allows us to manipulate and understand data in innovative ways that decrease the amount of error in accurately designing maps. This means that more than ever, individuals are consuming and increasing their geospatial consciousness and finding more ways to map their personal and professional lives. As civil society becomes more and more map literate and dependent, its geographical understanding of the surrounding world will inevitably increase. With collective issues moving to the forefront of our individual, state, and federal lexicon it will be tools such as GIS that will be employed to to navigate the pressing questions of “what to do, and where?” This question would be hard to answer without an accurate and standardized ways compare two points location and therefore distance on the globe.

ArcGIS is intimidating initially but it is user friendly for the amount of capability the program possess and will continue to gain prominence as an unrivaled tool in promoting sustainable development and bolstering the increasing relevance of social sciences in a globalizing world. With the rise of the internet and simultaneous global communication, an undeniable desire has arisen that compels both individuals and states to want to locate and understand their position or place within the whole so that they can make it “better” or as economists bill it: efficient.
ArcGIS is a modern triumph of information storage but it merely represents the fruition of an idea much more ancient and relatively just as intriguing today as it when- as the scope of the world widens through increased simultaneity a tool must ultimately be developed to make the storage, representation, and exportation of this information both powerful and accessible two very challenging ideals humans have longed to see implemented. Technology such as ArcGIS, in my opinion, has enabled the complex supply of the modern world order one that fuels global trends in the economy due to the advantage of acquiring economies of scale and understanding and employing its resources, information, and value and redistributing much of the real value back to the core. ArcGIS information, if manipulated, skewed, or even poorly managed, acquired and presented could produce devastating and maybe unintended feedbacks effects both in the short and long term for many individuals and their new millennium societies.
This information is so powerful and influential globally it is now available by ESRI in six different languages still at the high price of approximately $1,500 for a single use license. As stated in class, Arc GIS is only a tool and a tool must be properly and justly wielded by its users. As more and more nations begin to use and employ their own geography more efficiently and sustainably we can only hope that an increasingly conscious and more organically democratic society could be forged. Ultimately Arc GIS is a program created as a tool that actively works to solve problems with the risk that it may produce or skew them at the same time.
Perhaps Alfred Korzybski, an American philosopher, put it best- “The map is not the territory.” He means to caution people against the false permanence of information stored in maps- that it is a mere representation of the world that has passed through a complex process of human spatial analysis- reflecting either its promise or shortcoming. We must treat geospatial data as a delicate layer of our world and seek to build its awareness in order to increase accessibility and ensure that we leave a planned and coordinated Earth to future generations. 

ArcGIS is intimidating initially but it is user friendly for the amount of capability the program possess and will continue to gain prominence as an unrivaled tool in promoting sustainable development and bolstering the increasing relevance of social sciences in a globalizing world. With the rise of the internet and simultaneous global communication, an undeniable desire has arisen that compels both individuals and states to want to locate and understand their position or place within the whole so that they can make it “better” or as economists bill it: efficient.

ArcGIS is a modern triumph of information storage but it merely represents the fruition of an idea much more ancient and relatively just as intriguing today as it when- as the scope of the world widens through increased simultaneity a tool must ultimately be developed to make the storage, representation, and exportation of this information both powerful and accessible two very challenging ideals humans have longed to see implemented. Technology such as ArcGIS, in my opinion, has enabled the complex supply of the modern world order one that fuels global trends in the economy due to the advantage of acquiring economies of scale and understanding and employing its resources, information, and value and redistributing much of the real value back to the core. ArcGIS information, if manipulated, skewed, or even poorly managed, acquired and presented could produce devastating and maybe unintended feedbacks effects both in the short and long term for many individuals and their new millennium societies.

This information is so powerful and influential globally it is now available by ESRI in six different languages still at the high price of approximately $1,500 for a single use license. As stated in class, Arc GIS is only a tool and a tool must be properly and justly wielded by its users. As more and more nations begin to use and employ their own geography more efficiently and sustainably we can only hope that an increasingly conscious and more organically democratic society could be forged. Ultimately Arc GIS is a program created as a tool that actively works to solve problems with the risk that it may produce or skew them at the same time.

Perhaps Alfred Korzybski, an American philosopher, put it best- “The map is not the territory.” He means to caution people against the false permanence of information stored in maps- that it is a mere representation of the world that has passed through a complex process of human spatial analysis- reflecting either its promise or shortcoming. We must treat geospatial data as a delicate layer of our world and seek to build its awareness in order to increase accessibility and ensure that we leave a planned and coordinated Earth to future generations. 

oh, the places you’ll go

Because I love to travel I wanted to make a map system that would track where I have been and let me visually plan future trips. Integrating media on the map will provide an easy way for me to share the structure and timeline of a particular trip in reference to others.Places I have lived in are indicated by a green placeholder. Places I have traveled to are indicated with a red pin. Places I have cruised to are indicated by a yellow pin. Ski markers indicate mountains I have ridden. A flag denotes a picture has been dropped at this location and a projector indicates there is a film for the location. In terms of transportation methods, boats are symbolized by small yellow lines where busses are blue, trains red, ferries orange, and cars green. places i would like to visit are marked in a blue pin.

UCLA on 7 Minute Topographic Map

UCLA on 7 Minute Topographic Map