MAPPS, the association of private mapping, photogrammetry and geospatial firms, will host its Winter Meeting January 21-25, 2007 at the Naples Grande Resort in Naples, Florida. Registration for the conference is now open via the MAPPS web site,

RESTON, VA - MAPPS (, the association of private mapping, photogrammetry and geospatial firms, will host its Winter Meeting January 21-25, 2007 at the Naples Grande Resort in Naples, Florida. Registration for the conference is now open via the MAPPS web site,

 "MAPPS meetings are known for their unique programs that feature an outstanding schedule of current and emerging topics affecting private geospatial firms, including those on new markets, policy and legal issues impacting firms, technology, and business practices," said John Palatiello, MAPPS Executive Director. "Our meetings also feature an opportunity to network with the top leaders of the profession''s leading firms, a chance to fulfill continuing education hours with quality learning sessions, an unparalleled chance to learn the latest news and information in the market and the profession, and an enjoyable spouse program and social activities that provides a relaxed atmosphere for geospatial firm principals, owners, partners and senior executives to meet with their peers and potential teaming partners in a beautiful beachfront resort venue."

 "Each year, literally millions of dollars in business is transacted among and between MAPPS member firms, and these relationships grow out of the MAPPS meetings," Palatiello added.

 The following is a synopsis of some of the sessions to be presented at theMAPPS 2007 Winter Meeting-

Oblique Aerial Imagery: An Emerging Market?  - Conventional vertical imagery for photogrammetric mapping has been a mainstay of the profession for decades. While cameras, sensors, plotters and software have evolved, the vertical photograph has been a constant. Now, new applications for oblique imagery that is accurately geo-referenced provide an opportunity for accurate measurement. In this session, leaders of cutting edge firms engaged in this arena discuss the technology, applications, the market, and legal issues.

Geospatial in Florida: Everglades, Hurricanes & More- The beautiful beaches and unique wildlife of Florida continue to draw waves of new residents; it is estimated that 1,000 people move into the state every day. To balance this growth with environmental and emerging response demands, geospatial technologies are being used creatively to strike a delicate balance between development and conservation in Florida''s irreplaceable natural systems. Geospatial professionals from leading state agencies will share innovative highlights of ongoing projects ranging from hurricane response to the massive Everglades restoration.

Is Geospatial an Industry or Profession?- "Does it matter what the community is called? What are the implications for how the community is classified? This session will feature a "debate" that will answer these questions, explore the pro''s and con''s of both designations, and enhance the entire community''s understanding of various points of view on the issue.

Legislative Update & Licensing Report- The laws of supply and demand are not the only ones private geospatial firms live by. Congress and the state legislatures consider laws that affect the community, as a well as many markets. One of the bodies of law particularly impacting geospatial professionals is licensing. This session will feature updates on all legislative and political trends, including but not limited to licensing. Learn what Congress and the state legislatures are doing and get an update on state licensing of photogrammetrists and other geospatial practitioners.

MAPPS Salary Survey Results- Every three years, MAPPS conducts a Salary and Non-Cash Benefits Survey of service firms in the membership. The only targeted compensation report in the geospatial services community, it provides a comprehensive overview of the major salary data and benefit programs for eight pay levels for positions from entry level technician through middle management. The survey results can be used by government agencies to develop their in-house estimates for contract negotiations, for firms'' to benchmark their structure in comparison to others of their size, in their region and nationwide, and it has become the recognized standard in the community. The results of the 2006 survey will be unveiled by Marvin Miller (Aero-Metric, Inc.) and Dave Hart (Continental Mapping Consultants) on salaries and employee benefits such as paid time off; health, vision and dental coverage; life insurance; short and long term disability plans; bonus programs; savings plans and much more.

Belts, Suspenders, Girdles & Garters, Oh My! - Are you being pinched by contract requirements for contractor, performance and/or surety bonds, retainage clauses, liquidated damages and other onerous requirements? Do your clients understand the protection that errors and omissions insurance provides? Are you looking for a better way to educate clients about professional liability and the appropriate mechanisms for structuring a service contract? Richard B. Garber, Vice President A/E/C Risk Management Services at Victor O. Schinnerer & Company, Inc., one of the largest and most experienced underwriting managers of professional liability and specialty insurance programs in the world, will help provide the tools you need to negotiate appropriate contract terms and conditions.

Geospatial One Stop for Atheists, Agnostics & True Believers- Studies indicate that roughly 80 percent of all government information has a geographic component. Geospatial One-Stop (GOS), a Presidential initiative, is intended to provide Federal and state agencies with a single point of access to map-related data enabling the sharing of existing data to maximize geospatial investments to leverage resources and reduce redundancies. The Office of Management and Budget (OMB), states that, the GOS portal, "will accelerate the development and implementation of the National Spatial Data Infrastructure (NSDI) and includes state, local and tribal governments along with the private sector and academia as participants." As a result of MAPPS'' efforts, GOS can also include private data.

So, how''s GOS going? Is the portal living up to expectations? Is it being used by government and citizens alike? How successful has the government been in getting private data providers, including MAPPS member firms, to supply data so that it may fulfill its promise? What''s the GOS business plan and what is the return on investment (ROI) for private firms to incur the time of expense of putting its data archive metadata in the GOS portal? Has the development of private sector initiatives such as Google Earth, Yahoo Maps and Microsoft Virtual Earth made GOS obsolete, or is the government changing its approach to GOS in response to these private initiatives? The GOS "marketplace" feature, on which government agencies are to post their data requirements, should be a bonanza for private firms; but is it living up to its potential? Rob Dollison of the GOS Team at USGS will tell what''s really happening at GOS and whether it provides an opportunity for private firms.

Going Global: A Look at the Global Geospatial Market - Member companies that already operate internationally will describe current trends in different regions. What applications are well-established? What work is done by government agencies and what is outsourced? What technologies are in use and what are in early adoption? This session in Naples is envisioned as the first in a series on the international theme. Future sessions will cover lessons learned by member firms and perspectives from international aid agencies.

Are You Using the Right Airborne Platform for These New Sensors?- As the pulse rate and intensity of a LiDAR laser changes, are you also considering upgrading your aircraft platform in addition to your LiDAR sensor? Which aircraft will best meet your needs when buying a new digital camera? What are the technical considerations that need to be considered? A panel of experts that have struggled with these questions when making a multi-million dollar sensor investment will present their analysis and their results.

MAPPS is a national, nonprofit trade and professional association of more than 160 private sector firms. Based in the Washington, DC suburb of Reston, VA, its members are engaged in GIS; photogrammetry; satellite and airborne remote sensing; value-added conversion and integration services; hydrographic surveying and charting; and other mapping and geospatial activities. Membership is open to all private geospatial firms. Member firms are those in the U.S. engaged in services and data related to geospatial processing and production, while associate members include hardware, software and product firms that support those engaged in geospatial processing and production, as well as non-U.S. entities. For conference registration and membership information, visit the association''s website

Source: MAPPS.