Web Exclusive! May 2003 New and Notable

Safe Software Inc. released an enhanced version of its Feature Manipulation Engine (FME) Geographic Data Files (GDF) reader to support TeleAtlas MultiNet 3.2 GDF (ASCII) sequential datasets. Currently, FME supports the reading and writing of many GDF variants, including GDF 3.0, Tele Atlas and NavTech. In addition, FME includes a viewer that allows users to view and query GDF files. (Safe Software, Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada)

Definiens Imaging released eCognition elements. The stand-alone software offers multisource data fusion, unparalleled multi-resolution segmentation, sample-based fuzzy classification, multiple export options and more. eCognition elements can combine different types of imagery with geographic data (e.g., GIS data, digital elevation models) and use them all in one classification project. A variety of imagery types can be ingested into eCognition elements for classification, e.g., satellite and aerial panchromatic, color composite, multiband and radar imagery. Several image formats are supported. Classification results can be exported in raster or vector format. (Definiens Imaging, Munich, Germany)

Kanotech released CivicCenter 2003. CivicCenter (comprised of Properties, Water, Sewers, Signs and Emergency Support modules) is a Geographic Information System (GIS) software solution specifically designed for local government. CivicCenter can be used stand-alone or as a data distribution application for data captured and maintained in other software like ESRI’s desktop products. This new release provides support for sewer valve mapping and data; support for water booster stations, water supply wells and water storage tanks mapping and data; full functionality using multiple database formats; and complete compatibility with Autodesk Map 6. (Kanotech, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada)

DeLorme introduced XMap 4.0, a suite of professional GIS software and data products. XMap 4.0, an extension of DeLorme’s robust and expanding XMap data fusion engine, provides professional users with easy-to-use, affordable import/export tools with a variety of data and imagery sets. XMap 4.0’s Netlink Tab facilitates the selection and purchase of DeLorme Aerial Data Packets—a blend of USGS DOQQs, 7.5-minute topo quads (DRGs), Digital Elevation Models (DEMs) and DeLorme’s 10-meter resolution satellite data (SAT10)—via electronic software download (ESD), on CD-ROM or USB hard drive. XMap 4.0 also includes a tab manager that allows administrators to match the application’s user interface to their organizations’ requirements. New with XMap 4.0, users can easily import shape files and lay map objects over vector maps, DOQQs, DRGs and other DeLorme datasets. The XData tab facilitates the geo-coding and importing of the user’s existing address database and assists the user in linking document and object files to a Mapbase. Multiple coordinate systems are supported including Lat/Lon, State Plane, UTM and MGRS. XMap 4.0 provides 3D map viewing and side-by-side split-screen viewing with a complete set of analysis tools for easy map creation and map layer arrangement. XMap 4.0 has a customizable user interface. (Delorme, Yarmouth, Maine)

Tele Atlas launched Tele Atlas True Time Maps, offering a navigation map database directly linked with nationwide dynamic content to deliver real-time route calculations and enable dynamic rerouting. The product includes real-time traffic incident, speed, weather impact and scheduled events content, and will be expanded to include predictive modeling. Tele Atlas True Time Maps product is available as a total package containing all dynamic content or as individual components. Tele Atlas True Time Maps product allows customers to provide dynamic traveler information linked to specific road segments, enhancing route display and route calculation. Navigation systems, telematics applications, wireless PDAs and location-enabled phones will be able to deliver real-time travel and weather situations users could encounter along their routes, as well as identify alternative travel routes that could be taken to avoid delays. (Tele Atlas, Menlo Park, Calif.)

ESRI Business Information Solutions (ESRI BIS) released CommunityInfo data products. This data provides an accurate picture of the people who live, work, and spend in communities. It is tailored specifically for industries served by ESRI and includes CommunityInfo for Economic Development, CommunityInfo for Homeland Security, CommunityInfo for Health and Human Services, CommunityInfo for Insurance, CommunityInfo for Financial Services, CommunityInfo for Retail, CommunityInfo for Restaurants, CommunityInfo for Census 2000. The CommunityInfo data contains key demographic variables divided into three groups: CommunityInfoPeople, CommunityInfoWorkplace, and CommunityInfoSpending. The CommunityInfoPeople data includes current and five-year projections based on standard demographic variables such as household income distribution, age by income and net worth. CommunityInfoWorkplace provides business information by business type, size and the number of workers for each company in every U.S. neighborhood. CommunityInfoSpending identifies the total dollars and the average household dollar spending potential for selected financial products and services by neighborhood. A buying index that relates the neighborhood spending potential to the U.S. average is also included in this package. (ESRI, Redlands, Calif.)

UCLID Software released a new extension for ESRI ArcGIS. Swipe it! provides fast data entry of attributes, especially when the source document is a scanned image. Swipe It! uses UCLID’s patented technology as an alternative to tedious data entry. Swipe It! provides automated data entry for users with scanned documents. In the time it takes to highlight text on a scan, that text is added to the attribute table. Beta testers found that Swipe It! cuts data entry time almost in half. As more organizations work with scanned images, Swipe It! helps them use the scans to populate attribute tables. Utility drawings, legal descriptions and well data are just a few examples of the types of documents that can be used with Swipe It! And because Swipe It! reads text at any angle, it can also work with attributes found on maps. Swipe It! is an extension to ArcMap and works with ESRI ArcView, ArcEditor and ArcInfo. (UCLID Software, Madison, Wis.)

Laser-Scan and Snowflake Software launched a product package to enable the effective exploitation of GML data. This offer brings together Radius Topology and GO Loader in a single package, with one easy-to-use interface. The combination offers up to 5,000 pounds off the usual price of the products sold separately. GO Loader provides a simple and efficient way to load any GML 2-compliant data format (eg OS MasterMap) into the Oracle9i database. Radius Topology, a dynamic topology management layer stored in Oracle9i, acts as a "data guardian", controlling the quality of the data as it enters the database. GO Loader has been designed and proven to integrate with Radius Topology; together they provide a uniquely powerful means of managing spatial data within Oracle. (Laser-Scan, Cambridge, United Kingdom)

Spicer Corporation released ViewCafe 3.1, featuring significant enhancements to Far East font display and markup features. New features in ViewCafe 3.1 include enhanced Far East font support that provides precise font resolution in documents. Markups such as text, annotations, and hotlinks can be added in Far East fonts. File names can also contain Far East characters. The advanced Layer window now displays the entire document structure rather than just the CAD layers. All layers (base layers, legacy markups and CAD layers) can now be revealed or hidden. ViewCafe symbols can now contain integrator-defined, server-controlled dynamic text such as user name or date. The integrator can place any string into the text markup. ViewCaf?dds enhancements to HPGL/2 and office documents such as PDF, Microsoft Word, Excel, and PowerPoint. Thumbnails are now stored on the server to improve subsequent display times. Status bar messages, which previously appeared as part of the browser window, now appear inside the ViewCaf?pplet or application providing the user with a convenient and more prominent method for receiving status updates. (Spicer, Kitchener, Ontario, Canada)

DeLorme Publishing purchased two airborne sensors from Leica Geosystems, the Leica ADS40 Airborne Digital Sensor and Leica ALS40 Airborne Laser Scanner. The two systems will give DeLorme the ability to simultaneously capture high-quality images and digital elevation data using a unique combination of high-resolution digital imagery and LIDAR. The complete airborne platform, named TopoBird, includes a specially equipped twin-engine turboprop aircraft that will house the Leica ALS40 and ADS40. TopoBird’s 3D multispectral data will be collected as DeLorme conducts flyovers of 10 percent of the surface area (70 percent of the population) of the United States and will be used to augment the data in its consumer and professional products such as Street Atlas USA 2003, Topo USA 4.0, as well as the new XMap 4.0 professional software and data suite. (DeLorme, Yarmouth, Maine) (Leica Geosystems, Atlanta, Ga.)

ESRI released ArcGIS Tracking Analyst. The new ArcGIS 8.3 extension enables users to visualize and analyze temporal data by defining events including time, location and attribute information. ArcGIS Tracking Analyst can display data types, including points, lines, polygons and tracks for historical data analysis. Users can record, play back, and conduct temporal analysis including data clock charting and temporal offset. Monitoring and analysis actions, such as highlight, suppress and filter, and user-defined applications, such as Visual Basic (VB) scripts, are available, and existing temporal data can be set with future time windows (for mission planning) or past time windows (for historical data). ArcGIS Tracking Analyst can be combined with other ArcGIS extensions to create powerful applications for transportation, emergency response, military, and other industries. Tracking Analyst offers monitoring solutions and analysis capability in ArcGIS; displays common data types temporally including points, lines, polygons, and tracks; handles recording, playback, and temporal analysis including data clock charting and temporal offset; performs monitoring and analysis actions: highlight, suppress, and filter as well as user-defined VB scripts; shows aging of events for a specific event track (by color, size, shape, or time window); provides new temporal data model to support both simple and complex temporal events; and supports military symbology via ArcGIS Military Analyst extension. (ESRI, Redlands, Calif.)

DMTI Spatial released CanMap Streetfiles V7.0 and CanMap RouteLogistics V7.0. This latest release of CanMap Streetfiles contains over 115,000 kilometers of new addressed street segments as well as an additional 86,000 kilometers of new named street segments. The total number of road network kilometers captured in CanMap now stands over a staggering 1,400,000 representing the most comprehensive Canadian street map data available. CanMap RouteLogistics V7.0 uses DMTI Spatial’s CanMap Streetfiles as its foundation and is designed for customers where superior routing attribution is critical. This latest release focuses on new routing attributes in addition to detailed Transportation Route Restrictions (TRR) for trucks. Also included in CanMap RouteLogistics is CanMap Rail V1.2, which has over 500 new rail stops. (DMTI Spatial, Markham, Ontario, Canada)

Lizardtech Software offered a Windows CE software development kit (SDK) for creating Pocket PC viewers for MrSID files. Part of Lizardtech's GeoExpress family of products, the SDK allows GIS developers to create applications that enable customers to view large graphical images on Pocket PC devices on wireless networks. The MrSID Windows CE SDK is a specialized update to the MrSID SDK. With MrSID file formats available on Pocket PC devices, users in the field can pan and zoom through accurate and large images to more effectively interpret or acquire location data or overlay GPS data on maps, with near real time panning and zooming. With the WinCE SDK, the GIS industry can create GIS applications that can: obtain real time information over the Internet, offer Pocket PC users location-based services, or provide graphical information on a wireless handheld. MrSID files encode image files to many times smaller than the original, with no loss of accuracy or data. With the SDK, GIS vendors can easily add MrSID file viewing capability on the Pocket PC so that a 60MB image becomes 3MB image, with no visual loss of data. (Lisardtech Software, Seattle, Wash.)

IntelData Inc. and PlanGraphics Inc. launched NIMA-wide the latest version of the web-enabled Graphical GeoSearch tool for the Voyager Integrated Library System. The enhanced version provides users with access to map and chart data on the NIMA’s internal secret network and provides features for accelerated performance across low bandwidth connections and a revolutionary user-messaging facility. The Graphical GeoSearch Application provides web-based geographical search methods for various mapping, charting, geodetics and intelligence-related products. With version 2.1, developers at PlanGraphics have incorporated a function that allows users to register to be automatically advised by email if any of their regions of geographic interest have been updated or modified in the library database system. The user can then choose to request a new data set of the updated maps and charts located in their specific area of interests or to re-query the database using different metadata parameters. (IntelData, Frankfort, Ky.) (PlanGraphics, Reston, Va.)

Alpha Software Inc. announced Alpha Five/Qlinker, which allows users to easily and quickly move data back and forth between QuickBooks 2003 Products – including QuickBooks Pro Edition 2003, QuickBooks Premier Edition 2003 and QuickBooks Enterprise Solutions 2.0 and the Five Star Rated Alpha Five database software.As a result of being able to easily move data back and forth between the two programs, users and companies benefit by being able to: build highly customized reports based on QuickBooks accounting data using Alpha Five's powerful and flexible visual report writer; incorporate data from QuickBooks, and use Alpha Five's E-mail merge capabilities to send out highly personalized invoices and reports in PDF and HTML format; use Alpha Five to design fully customized data entry screens, including enhanced error checking, lookups and validation, then transfer this "clean" data to the appropriate files in QuickBooks; use the robust analytical and statistical tools offered by Alpha Five to "mine" data from QuickBooks and generate greater insight into one's company's business, thereby increasing profitability and competitiveness; analyze and reformat QuickBooks accounting data for use by other users in a company; quickly and easily build robust and highly customized Alpha Five database applications based on QuickBooks data; use Alpha Five's sophisticated multi-file personalized letter and email merge features to increase sales, improve customer server, and streamline purchasing; eliminate double entry of data into information and accounting systems; and track additional data about clients, prospects, vendors, etc. (Alpha Software, Burlington, Mass.)