Paths at the Vrije Universiteit

Worn paths at the VU

Worn paths at the VU

A nice view from the 12th floor of the VU main building clearly shows the paths students and others take at the campus of the Vrije Universiteit. The bright paths contrast strongly with the dirty grey stones around it.

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At last: 3D geo-visualisation and interaction

At last! We are finally involved in a project where 3D visualization and analysis plays a major role. Since I started at Geodan in 2000 we have been looking for 3D possibilities. But it’s just so difficult to do anything useful with 3D in The Netherlands. We played around with the ARToolkit some years ago, we looked into Virtools (does it still exist?) and we used Bing Maps 3D for some impressive demo’s for the NYPD and CTU. But we never managed to do something really useful. Until now! And since both Microsoft ESP and Bing 3D are discontinued we don’t need to use Microsoft tools for it. We can use the fantastic OpenSceneGraph library now. I am really looking forward to create a great interactive visualisation tool supporting OGC standards like WMS and tiled services (hopefully using osgEarth), but also processing services.

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WK2010: huldiging in Google Maps

Aangezien ik de route van de mogelijke vaartocht a.s. dinsdag alleen als PDF en als text kon vinden en ik benieuwd was om welke woonboten het nou ging heb ik er maar even een KML van gemaakt: http://bit.ly/blKhjO.

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Photos on a brand new SD card?!

Last Friday I finally got my new phone from Geodan, a Sony Ericsson Xperia. Although not the best phone it can run a great application, CacheMapper, developed by my colleagues Paul den Dulk (famous for the OSS library BruTile) and Harmen Smit. Every serious GeoCacher with a Windows Mobile phone should have it.

In order to install CacheMapper I needed a Micro SD card. Unfortunately it was not supplied with the phone so I had to buy one. Luckily my colleague Steven Ottens needed to go to the RAF anyway so he bought me a “SanDisk microSDHC Card”.

RAF is a well known a company with a very good reputation selling quality equipment for quality prices. So you would expect a brand new, quality SD card.

The SD card was supplied in a seamingly new package. But to my surprise the SD card already contained almost 150 photos.  Photos on a brand new SD card?!

According to the metadata they were shot with an Olympus FE360, X875 or C570. The people on the photos are Dutch, that’s for sure. They eat Venz Hagelslag during their winter holidays in Swiss and wear buttons with “De Nachtspelen“.  It suggests the people are from Amsterdam or surrounding region.

How did this SD card with photos end up in the shop, in a brand new looking casing? Did the camera break down and did they resell the SD card as brand new? Or is it a special action of RAF: buy a SD card and get a life for free!

Some random photos:

Gezellig in de sneeuw

Gezellig in de sneeuw

 

Gezellig aan het paasontbijt

Gezellig aan het paasontbijt

Gezellig op het terras

Gezellig op het terras

Gezellig in de sneeuw

Gezellig in de sneeuw

Gezellig op een feestje

Gezellig op een feestje

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Boost.Geometry

As the Generic Geometry Library has been accepted into Boost, the library is renamed to Boost.Geometry.

More and more projects seems to notice it. It is e.g. used in the Openstreetmap mapping program Merkaartor and the interest is definitly increasing now it is part of the most widely used C++ library. A bright future awaits Boost.Geometry in the opensource software landscape.

Merkaartor screenshot

Merkaartor screenshot

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GGL accepted as Boost Library

The Generic Geometry Library (http://geometrylibrary.geodan.nl/) has been accepted into Boost. Boost is the well-known and widely used collection of C++ libraries (http://www.boost.org) extending the functionality of C++.

GGL

GGL

The Generic Geometry Library provides a generic implementation of geometry algorithms. It has been developed by Barend Gehrels (Geodan) and Bruno Lalande.

GGL is used among others by Geodan Mapper. A very easy to use application to visualise geographically related information.

Geodan Mapper Map

Geodan Mapper Map

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Surface @ State of the Map 2009

The 3rd international OpenStreetMap conference, State of the Map 2009, was held in Amsterdam. Geodan was present with a Microsoft Surface running Eagle, an innovative application for Disaster Management. At the State of the Map conference it showed its capabilities using OpenStreetMap data of course.

 

According to my present colleagues  it was a huge success. Also the tweets of attendees show their enthousiasm for the Eagle application on the Surface:

http://twitter.com/StevenFeldman/status/2568929955geodan demo using microsoft surface must be the coolest thing I have seen at #sotm09 I want one now. Giant giant iPhone please please

http://twitter.com/bmichel/statuses/2568742941
Stinkingly (based on Microsoft Surface) cool implementation of a touch screen map by Geodan! www.geodan.nl Live demo at #sotm09

http://twitter.com/phicoh/statuses/2568929146
Cool demo of a disaster management system called “Eagle” using Microsoft Surface.

http://twitter.com/pmbatty/statuses/2568773483
Another cool video at #sotm09, Geodan using the Microsoft Surface table http://tinyurl.com/na6nqp

http://twitter.com/ctalaba/statuses/2568741054
Geodan’s Eagle – OSM + Microsoft Surface used for Disaster Management systems http://bit.ly/18ENNq

http://twitter.com/jokru/statuses/2566331064
Microsoft surface with #openstreetmap maps on it, awesome! #sotm09

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Dijkstra’s algorithm in C#

The Dijkstra’s algorithm is of course one of the most well-known and implemented algorithms in GIS. And although I’ve used it and knew in general how it works, I never actually implemented it. Until yesterday evening. After struggling all day with my mail client I had to do something to relax a bit. So I just implemented the Dijkstra’s Algorithm in C#. I’m quite satisified with it. It seems robust and memory friendly. Now I just have to create a network based on OSM data. And to add turntables.

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Samsung mobile phone with projector

Samsung recently launched the  i7410 phone with build-in mini projector capable of projecting images more than a meter in diameter. The thing I need now is some kind of touch recognition so you can project a globe and control it with your hands.

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Impressive: OSS BruTile on the Surface

One of my colleagues, Paul den Dulk, has created an impressive open source library for tiling called BruTile. BruTile allows among others for effects similar to DeepZoom and SeaDragon. On his blog he explains very well how to use the library.

While the BruTile project itself is impressive by itself, it is even more impressive to see the application Paul developed based on BruTile for the Microsoft Surface in a relatively short time. Different information sources are combined with a gesture driven application to demonstrate the awesome power of BruTile on the Surface. The video shows just some of the capabilities of this remarkable and valuable open source project.


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