The Magazine of the National Intelligence Community
Services Transformer Michael A. Rodrigue Deputy Director NGA
ArcGIS Extensions O GEOINT for Disasters Open Source Software O Commercial Remote Sensing
February 2013 Volume 11, Issue 1
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GEOSPATIAL INTELLIGENCE FORUM Features
February 2013 Volume 11, Issue 1
Cover / Q&A
Disaster GEOINT Although Hurricane Sandy was the second-most costly storm in U.S. history, costing some 100 lives and more than $50 billion in devastation, industry analysts point out that the superstorm’s damage could have been worse without geospatial technology to assist in disaster response. By Karen Thuermer
17 Michael A. Rodrigue
As the remote sensing industry heads into a promising but challenge-filled future, one of the key players will be a federal agency charged with licensing and monitoring private Earth remote sensing space systems. By Harrison Donnelly
Geospatial developers have created a host of extensions and enhancements to Esri’s ubiquitous ArcGIS software. By Peter Buxbaum
Remote Sensing Regulator
5 Maps Tell the Story
MapStory empowers a global user community to organize their knowledge about the world spatially and temporally, rather than encyclopedically. By Christopher Tucker
Departments 2 Editor’s Perspective 3 Program Notes 4 People 14 Industry Raster 21 Intel Update 27 Resource Center
GIS Power Platform
Industry Interview A.J. Clark
President Thermopylae Sciences and Technology
Deputy Director National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency
Geospatial Intelligence Forum Volume 11, Issue 1 • February 2013
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EDITOR’S PERSPECTIVE It would be hard to dispute the critical importance of the GPS system in the modern military and civilian worlds, but anyone who wanted further proof would need look no further than the burgeoning field of GPS alternatives. A number of initiatives are currently under way to develop new ways to provide the accurate location information on which we have become so dependent. One set of alternatives includes major satellite-based efforts, including Russia’s GLONASS system, the European Union’s Galileo project and several other national programs. Harrison Donnelly Like those systems, the U.S. Air Force-operated GPS program is potenEditor tially vulnerable to a variety of threats, including physical attacks on satellites and jamming or spoofing by easily available equipment. In addition, its weak signal is not always available, especially in mountainous or urban environments. Recognizing the limitations and risks of over-reliance, the military has been pushing for new approaches. For example, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency has an initiative to develop an “all source positioning and navigation” system, which would pull together information from radio beacons, local ground features, the stars and other sources to provide location data. More recently, at least two companies have announced awards from the Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) to investigate cost reduction and augmentation of the current GPS constellation through application of a small satellite approach. AFRL contracted with ITT Exelis and Surrey Satellite Technology US to identify and analyze how small satellites can improve aspects of GPS system performance such as accuracy, coverage and robustness at lower costs. The GPS Navigational Satellite program will also aid users in signal-constrained areas. In addition, the Air Force is working with an Australia-based company called Locata to install the U.S. military’s first ground-based LocataNet positioning system at White Sands Missile Range, N.M. The technology will supply extremely accurate “reference truth” positioning across a vast area of White Sands when GPS is being completely jammed.
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Long-Orbiting Earth-Observation Satellite to End The Landsat 5 satellite will be decommissioned over the coming months, bringing to a close the longest-operating Earth-observing satellite mission in history, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has announced. USGS has brought the aging satellite back from the brink of failure on several occasions, but the recent failure of a gyroscope has left no option but to end the mission. Now in its 29th year of orbiting the planet, Landsat 5 has long outlived its original three-year design life. Developed by NASA and launched in 1984, Landsat 5 has orbited the planet more than 150,000 times while transmitting over 2.5 million images of land surface conditions around the world. “Any major event since 1984 that left a mark on this Earth larger than a football field was likely recorded by Landsat 5, whether it was a hurricane, a tsunami, a wildfire, deforestation or an oil spill,” said USGS Director Marcia McNutt. “We look forward to a long and productive continuation of the Landsat program, but it is unlikely there will ever be
another satellite that matches the outstanding longevity of Landsat 5.” With Landsat 5’s decommissioning, Landsat 7, which was launched in 1999 and has also outlived its five-year design life, will continue to provide information, although an instrument anomaly reduces the amount of data it collects. The next mission, Landsat 8—also called the Landsat Data Continuity Mission (LCDM)—was scheduled for launch by NASA early this year. LDCM carries two instruments, the Operational Land Imager (OLI) built by Ball Aerospace & Technologies Corp., and the Thermal Infrared Sensor (TIRS) built by NASA Goddard. “Both of these instruments have evolutionary advances that make them the most advanced Landsat instruments to date and are designed to improve performance and reliability to improve observations of the global land surface,” said Ken Schwer, LDCM project manager at NASA Goddard. OLI will continue observations in the visible, near infrared and shortwave infrared
CORRECTION The article “Quest for Quality,” which appeared in the November/ December 2012 issue of GIF, referred incorrectly to the motion imagery enterprise solution provided by ITT Exelis. The name of the product is Jagwire.
Air Force Funds GPS Ground Control The Air Force Space Command Space and Missile Center awarded Lockheed Martin a $100 million contract to support the GPS ground control segment. The contract’s period of performance is from January 2013 through June 2019. To help the GPS program achieve its complex mission, Lockheed Martin will provide sustainment for the GPS control segment, which enables Air Force Space Command’s 2nd Space Operations Squadron to perform on-orbit operational control of the GPS satellite constellation. Under the new contract, Lockheed Martin will provide organizational and depot sustainment support, which includes support for command and control ground systems, systems engineering, hardware and communications engineering, space vehicle and ground equipment simulation, software testing and hardware maintenance. Lockheed Martin’s team includes small businesses Arctic Slope Research Corp., ISYS Technologies, Overlook Systems Technologies and Tigua Technology Services, who will perform hardware engineering, software test, technical order management and systems administration functions. Also on the team is the Ogden Air Logistics Center, who will provide depot level software maintenance and test support. www.GIF-kmi.com
portions of the electromagnetic spectrum and include two new spectral bands, one of which is designed to support monitoring of coastal waters and the other to detect previously hard-to-see cirrus clouds that can otherwise unknowingly impact the signal from the Earth surface in the other spectral bands. TIRS will collect data in two thermal bands and will thus be able to measure the temperature of the Earth’s surface, a measurement that’s vital to monitoring water consumption, especially in the arid western United States.
Satellites for the Battlespace The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency has awarded a $1.5 million contract to Raytheon for phase one of the agency’s Space Enabled Effects for Military Engagements (SeeMe) program. During the next nine months, the company will complete the design for small satellites to enhance warfighter situational awareness in the battlespace. The SeeMe program will provide useful on-demand imagery information directly to the warfighter in the field from a low-cost satellite constellation launched on a schedule that conforms to Department of Defense operational tempos. “Leveraging our state-of-the-art missile assembly lines, we can mass-produce these small, lightweight satellites quickly and affordably,” said Tom Bussing, Raytheon Missile Systems’ vice president of Advanced Missile Systems. “As the world’s only producer of exoatmospheric kill vehicles, we are already developing and building hardware to space standards.” For this contract, Raytheon teamed with Sierra Nevada Corp., University of Arizona and SRI International to assist with design work and eventually production. Next year, in phase two of the SeeMe program, the Raytheon team will build six satellites for ground testing.
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Compiled by KMI Media Group staff
NGA Honored for Extraordinary Service Deputy Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter recently presented the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency with a Joint Meritorious Unit Award for the extraordinary contributions made to the warfighter and national defense in 2008-2010. The Joint Meritorious Unit Award is reserved for organizations that provide meritorious service, beyond that which is normally expected, or under extraordinary circumstances that involve national interests. “NGA was a constant source of innovation, aiding our efforts in counterterrorism and counterinsurgency operations using new sensors, technologies and analytic methods,” said Carter. “NGA’s success on the battlefield in all phases of operations prompted many tactical commanders to declare that they would never go to war without NGA.” More than 500 NGA employees joined the Director of National Intelligence James R. Clapper, Deputy Secretary of Defense Ashton Carter and NGA Director Letitia A. Long at the ceremony at NGA headquarters. “Every employee played an important role in NGA’s extraordinary support to the warfighter, the
Department of Defense and our nation,” said Long. “NGA will continue to be totally dedicated to providing the highest quality GEOINT products, information and knowledge to support our many mission sets.”
Compiled by KMI Media Group staff
for GeospatialIntelligence worldwide.
The SI Organization has hired Barry Barlow as chief technology officer. Barlow recently retired from the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency as director for online GEOINT services. He previously served as director of NGA’s Acquisition Directorate, where he was responsible for the development and deployment of the National System
4 | GIF 11.1
Ambassador John Negroponte, former director of national intelligence, has become chairman of the Intelligence and National Security Alliance (INSA) board of directors, replacing Frances Fragos Townsend. In addition, the organization has appointed six new members to the board: DeEtte Gray, president, Intelligence & Security Sector, BAE Systems; Bernard Guerry, senior vice president of operations and general manager of national intelligence, General Dynamics Information
Technology; Deborah Oliver, executive vice president and chief operating officer, SI Organization; Kathy Pherson, chief executive officer, Pherson Associates; Tim Reardon, president, intelligence, Lockheed Martin Information Systems and Global Solutions; and Allan Sonsteby, associate director, Applied Research Laboratory, Pennsylvania State University.
of solutions to help Sotera’s customers meet their mission-related information and technology needs.
Sotera Defense Solutions has appointed Rick White as chief information officer, where he will be responsible both for enhancing the company’s operations and leading the development
TASC has named Rick Howard chief information security officer, where he will lead the development of TASC’s strategic vision, security architecture and technical roadmaps
for information security throughout the company.
Dr. Fran Zenzen
General Dynamics Advanced Information Systems has named Dr. Fran Zenzen director of business development for Imagery Systems. Zenzen was most recently with General Dynamics C4 Systems, where she served as director of ISR strategy.
Maps Tell the Story Open source software is playing a key role in the innovative MapStory.org movement. By Christopher Tucker After thin-line implementation last year, MapStory.org is poised at the start of 2013 to go big, enabling anyone on Earth to participate. MapStory, as a complement to the Wikipedia online encyclopedia, is a new dimension to the global data commons that empowers a global user community to organize their knowledge about the world spatially and temporally, rather than encyclopedically. Perhaps more importantly, MapStory is an infrastructure for enabling “MapStorytelling” as a means of communicating important issues to a global audience. The goal is to enable any student, teacher, practitioner, researcher or decision-maker to tap the power of this new mode of conveying one’s stories, arrayed across geography as they unfold over time. MapStory will become the convening point where MapStorytellers of all kinds come to publish their expressions and to critique each others’ MapStories, leading to a consistently accumulating and improving global body of knowledge about global dynamics, worldwide, over the course of history. The MapStory Foundation was established as a 501c3 educational nonprofit organization in order to enable more effective research into sociocultural dynamics worldwide, Christopher Tucker better our citizens’ education about the peoples of the world, reduce social conflict, and improve global security. However, we believe that as MapStory evolves it will become a platform that enables much more. When Jimmy Wales and Larry Sanger founded Wikipedia in 2001, they simply installed a wiki and began authoring encyclopedia-style articles. Once they established some basic conventions for content contributors to follow, and sufficiently primed the pump, Wikipedia became the home for millions of encyclopedia articles that have enhanced our shared understanding of the world. Yet, over this period of explosive growth, the wiki platform continued to evolve under the development leadership of the MediaWiki community, which developed a wide range of new features. When we established MapStory in 2011, we installed a GeoNode, another open source collaboration platform (www.geonode.org), which is designed to let you share your descriptions of the world spatially and temporally, instead of www.GIF-kmi.com
GIF 11.1 | 5
encyclopedically. However, our vision for MapStorytelling, and the requisite crowdsourcing of StoryLayers, required significant enhancements. Over the course of 2012, we invested heavily in the development of new features that enhance the temporal, social and narrative features of the GeoNode. Start-up investment in the open source software platform that drives MapStory.org was provided by the Engineering Research and Development Center and the Army Geospatial Center of the Army Corps of Engineers, an organization with a longstanding tradition of promoting early-stage technological advances in geospatial technology and access to geographic knowledge. This sponsorship has enabled the MapStory Foundation to extend the open source GeoNode platform with further temporal, social and narrative features that empower users with more sophisticated means of crowdsourcing spatio-temporal data, and capabilities for expressing their own narratives based in space and time.
Open Source Software MapStory would not be possible without open source geospatial software. The OpenGeo team behind the GeoNode is absolutely world class and has been invaluable. We were not limited by what closed source software happened to be able to do given the latest version release. We were able to engage OpenGeo on our vision and dovetail our development goals with those of the larger, global community of OpenGeo/GeoNode developers and sponsors. As such, we were able to leverage our considerable investment against millions of dollars of others’ investments. Why everyone doesn’t lash their enterprise geospatial development efforts to the OpenGeo stack and its high-leverage business model is simply beyond me, but I suspect that soon they will. OpenGeo provides a world-class spatial database in PostGIS that is massively scalable and highly performant. The OpenGeo stack is driven by the most Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC)-compliant web services tier, called GeoServer, with boatloads of functionality that scales massively in the cloud. In addition, there is great flexibility in user interaction design with the OpenLayers 6 | GIF 11.1
and GeoExt frameworks within the OpenGeo stack. The GeoNode leverages all of these components, integrated with the Django content management framework, to provide service as a social platform. It sets the standard for “Web 2.0 meets web mapping.” These are not just open source components. Each of them is a platform for continual innovation. The MapStory investment in this stack has been focused on further enabling it to support the temporal, social and narrative features that MapStorytelling demands. The stack already supported temporal encoding, but it was not optimized to discover, access and visualize data in terms of “change over time.” While the stack (particularly GeoNode) offered user-centric social features, MapStory, as a crowdsourcing platform, required that every user be aware of every action that might be taking place on the platform related to anything they might care about. The OpenGeo stack, however, had no concept of “geospatial narratives.” Frankly, no mapping platform prior to MapStory ever had such a concept. Like most mapping platforms, OpenGeo was driven by the concepts of layers and maps comprising multiple layers, not all of which were necessarily served from the same server. MapStory did something simple but powerful. We extended these concepts to StoryLayers and MapStories. StoryLayers are sequenced map layers that portray data of the same kind over time. MapStories are made up of one or more StoryLayers, layered and styled in a particular way, and matched by annotations that superimpose a particular narrative about what was going on in this data. In the end, telling a MapStory is all about applying meaning atop the multidimensional data that unequivocally demonstrates change over time—spatio-temporally. OpenGeo was and is open source software, and it was our ability to change it that empowered us to make this powerful enhancement. MapStory has embraced OGC web services in every possible way. The entire platform is OGC-compliant. We could have built an entirely closed system, simply focusing on the functionality provided within the Web GUI. However, our goal ultimately is to enable all knowledge about the world, since
the beginning of time, about every conceivable subject to be crowd-sourced, spatially and temporally, into the global data commons. Once this is done, it would be a crime to have this data stuck there forever. The data should be accessible as standard web services for any application to touch—at least any OGC-compliant application run by a registered MapStory user. This is why we embraced OGC web services. We are not entirely sure how it will all play out, but right now, it seems that it would be fundamentally unfair and unjust to have all of this data unavailable to applications around the world. MapStory is fundamentally committed to open data. This is only possible if all of the data is accessible to identified/registered users through international standard web services. We at the MapStory Foundation look forward to struggling with this issue for many years to come.
National Security Lessons Perhaps there are a few lessons to be learned from the national security community. First, as many have said before, all actionable intelligence exists in space and time. But intelligence is merely one input into our larger sense-making process, whereby we organize heterogeneous observations from every available source in an effort to achieve understanding. It is entirely unclear how one might achieve such understanding without ordering and analyzing these observations spatially and temporally. But even an accumulation of such well-ordered facts and observations goes only so far. It is storytelling that we use to animate these observations, each of us creating narratives that we can use to challenge each other’s assumptions. If understanding should be elevated to a principle of war, as Lieutenant General Michael T. Flynn has advocated, then MapStorytelling in its fullest realization seems to be an essential component of that process. Second, from a technology standpoint, MapStorytelling is not something you do with a particular commercial technology, as is GIS. It is a communal activity where a global community comes together to refine its collective understanding of our ever-changing www.GIF-kmi.com
world. Thus our embrace of open source geospatial software, which we can shape and reshape as the global MapStory community requires. The national security community should learn the same lesson, and embrace open source geospatial software to the greatest extent possible. Take your fate into your own hands and shape the future of your community—shape your enterprise capabilities by leveraging open source geospatial technologies, sponsoring and even participating in the development of the core technologies that drive the national security enterprise. Third, the national security community should finally accept that everything on Earth happens somewhere at sometime. Not just GEOINT. If we have learned anything from MapStory, it is that everything—and I mean everything—exists in space and time, and that the only way to bridge disciplinary and professional boundaries is by forging a
common understanding on the anvil of space and time. As such, the national security community should publish all of its data via OGCcompliant web services, encoding time for every observation in ISO8601 time encoding. The MapStory platform is solid, and every dollar is being spent on new functionality. I have been in this industry for a long time, and the kinds of functionality that we at the MapStory Foundation are pushing are impressive to say the least. After we roll out the ability to upload sequenced historical imagery, we will match that with the ability for every user to digitize feature data change. More importantly, the platform will support distributed versioned editing, like Wikipedia, on every feature within the MapStory global data commons. We are also pushing forward features on a variety of fronts. We are making moves to enable MapStorytelling in 4-D and on
mobile platforms, and are working to enable MapStorytellers to harness the power of analytical web processing and longitudinal geostatistics. We are looking to empower all users with advanced MapStorytelling features. We aren’t entirely sure what our finite development resources can achieve this year. But we do know that we will do our best to leverage MapStory resources against all of the other resources being invested in OpenGeo/ GeoNode development to advance the MapStory vision as fast as possible. MapStory will go big in 2013. O Christopher Tucker is chairman and chief executive officer of the MapStory Foundation. For more information, contact GIF Editor Harrison Donnelly at harrisond@kmimediagroup. com or search our online archives for related stories at www.gif-kmi.com.
“INTELLIGENCE IS vital to National Security.” James Green, Jr. | Intelligence and National Security Relationships Spanning an impressive 38-year career with the Central Intelligence Agency and the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, James Green is a respected leader and mentor. Having served as an intelligence officer, branch chief, senior recruiter and project manager, James knows about American Military University’s academic reputation. That’s why he joined AMU.
Learn More at www.amuonline.com/geospatial
Art & Humanities | Business | Education | Management | Public Service & Health | Science & Technology | Security & Global Studies
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NOAA office plays key role in overseeing private remote sensing space systems. As the remote sensing industry heads into a promising but challenge-filled future, one of the key players will be a federal agency charged with licensing and monitoring private Earth remote sensing space systems. The Commercial Remote Sensing Regulatory Affairs (CRSRA) office is located within the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) National Environmental Satellite, Data, and Information Service (NESDIS). CRSRA consists of a commercial remote sensing licensing activity as well as an office that oversees commercial remote sensing compliance and monitoring. CRSRA also handles committee management for the NOAA Advisory Committee on Commercial Remote Sensing (ACCRES). The mission of the CRSRA is “to regulate the operation of private Earth remote sensing space systems, subject to the jurisdiction or control of the United States, while preserving essential national security interests, foreign policy and international obligations,” according to Tahara Dawkins, CRSRA director. This is mandated by the National and Commercial Space Programs Act of 2010 (previously the Land Remote Sensing Policy Act of 1992) and carried out under applicable regulations, Dawkins explained. 8 | GIF 11.1
By Harrison Donnelly GIF Editor
The office has played an important role The law bars those under U.S. jurisin development of the industry by offering diction from operating any private remote regulatory clarity and consistency, accordsensing space system without a license, and ing to Keith Masback, president of the U.S. authorizes the secretary of commerce to Geospatial Intelligence Foundation and a license private sector parties to operate prirecently appointed member of vate remote sensing space ACCRS. systems. Licenses can be “The commercial compogranted only after a deternent of remote sensing has mination that applicants will been growing over time. It comply with the law and U.S. was important to make sure international obligations and that U.S. laws, regulations national security concerns. and policies were consistent “We always face the as this capability developed, challenge of conducting and that there was an underregulatory oversight while stood, clearly articulated preserving essential national Tahara Dawkins licensing regime that would security interests, foreign polprovide access for corporate icy and international obligaentities that were interested in pursuing this tions,” Dawkins said. capability—a roadmap for how they would “Our office is composed of two priget from idea to capability on orbit, while mary functions: licensing and compliance. staying within the regulatory guidelines. Licensing provides the mechanism so that That is an important piece of the puzzle for any person subject to the jurisdiction and/ U.S. companies pursuing the opportunity to or control of the United States may operput commercial remote sensing capabilities ate a private remote sensing space system on orbit,” Masback said. pursuant to the regulations. Compliance is charged to monitor operations and, when necessary, take corrective actions to ensure Policy Issues compliance with U.S. law, regulations, and the terms and conditions of the NOAA issued Another task of the office is to enforce license,” she continued. the Kyl-Bingaman amendment, a 1997 www.GIF-kmi.com
provision that allows licensing for collection or dissemination of satellite imagery of Israel only if the imagery is no more detailed or precise than the satellite imagery of that nation that is available from commercial sources. In order to make that determination, officials have to find the level of detail or precision of satellite imagery of Israel available from commercial sources. The CRSRA also has been involved with the proposed merger of the two major U.S.based satellite imagery and geospatial analysis companies, GeoEye and DigitalGlobe. “We have been working with both companies separately to ensure that, in the event of a merger, proper documentation is in place to allow the ensuing merged company to operate all of its CRS systems within the requirements of the law and our regulations,” Dawkins said. Another emerging challenge for the office is the proliferation of operators of the small satellites known as CubeSats, especially U.S. universities, and making sure those operators are aware of their obligations under the law.
CubeSats are tiny satellites that are 1 liter in volume and weigh less than 3 pounds. Based on a standard developed for academic research in 1999, the first CubeSat was launched in 2003, and currently there are more than 75 on orbit. “In the spring of 2010, we identified the need to make the CubeSat operator community aware of their responsibilities under the law,” Dawkins said. “We attended the August 2010 CubeSat Workshop in Logan, Utah, and briefed our program. We also provided informational brochures to the attendees. Based on feedback obtained from the workshop attendees, we also developed an initial contact form, which has been distributed via websites and used by the community with great success.” Since then, NOAA has licensed eight small/CubeSats and identified nine more entities to be licensed in the next few months. Asked about the future of the U.S.based remote sensing industry, Dawkins offered this perspective: “On the regulatory side of things, as more foreign
entities launch commercial satellites, it will become increasingly challenging for the U.S. commercial remote sensing data providers to maintain the competitive advantages we have today. The Department of Commerce is committed to identifying changes, such as the possible reduction of resolution restrictions, to help U.S. commercial data providers maintain their competitive advantage and retain market leadership while continuing to take into account U.S. national security concerns.” “In addition to the transparency, the most important thing has been that there is an office that has the expertise and relationships spanning the different parts of government that it needs to pull together and cooperate with, to be able to get things done,” Masback said. “There is efficacy in what it does for both U.S. industry and the nation.” O For more information, contact GIF Editor Harrison Donnelly at harrisond@kmimediagroup. com or search our online archives for related stories at www.gif-kmi.com.
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Geospatial technology played a critical role in guiding the response to Hurricane Sandy. By Karen Thuermer GIF Correspondent our satellite collection to monitor and focus on those The day before Hurricane Sandy’s center was foreareas of greatest need,” remarked Stephen Wood, cast to make landfall in New Jersey, the radar on the vice president of DigitalGlobe’s Analysis Center. “For Tropical Rainfall Measuring Mission (TRMM) satelour customers, the FirstLook service provided rapid lite observed the hurricane’s center. While Sandy was email and RSS notifications of the event activation a marginal category 1 hurricane with a modest eyeand delivered crisis imagery via our DigitalGlobe wall on the afternoon of Sunday, October 28, TRMM Cloud Services.” observed that properties of the eyewall indicated eviDigitalGlobe’s Analysis Center began closely mondence of remarkable vigor. itoring Sandy’s development and predicted storm Most hurricanes only have well-formed and comtrack several days before the historic storm reached pact eyewalls at category 3 strength or higher. Sandy the United States. was barely a category 1 hurricane. “The team activated our FirstLook crisis event Although Sandy was sneaking up the East Coast service on October 28, 2012, at 12 p.m., nearly a day too far out at sea for land-based radars to provide before Hurricane Sandy made landfall near Atlantic definitive observations of the rain regions inside of City, N.J.,” reported Wood. “By activating early and the hurricane’s clouds, the radar on the TRMM satelfocusing on areas where we expected the most siglite was able to provide vital missing information durnificant storm damage, we were able to catalyze our ing its overflight of Hurricane Sandy. company’s ability to collect and disseminate rapidly The TRMM satellite showed that Sandy’s superboth pre- and post-event satellite imagery.” sized rainband, which extended to the west and north In addition, the FirstLook service provided broad of the center, contained vigorous storm cells. Analysis area monitoring and frequent revisiting of the that resulted from the creation of these images by storm-affected areas to help the government, rescue Owen Kelly of NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center workers and decision-makers better understand and determined that the rainband would lash the coast manage their response to the damage. well before the hurricane’s center “More specifically, for the U.S. govmade landfall. ernment, DigitalGlobe provided fast Even further west, at the upper web-based access of pre-event imagleft corner of the image, one could see ery hours after our event activation, two small storm cells. These storm and post-event imagery no more than cells were the southern-most tip of 12 hours after collection, and in some the independent weather system that cases as little as two-and-a-half hours,” was coming across the United States Wood said. and that was expected to merge and To optimize the integration of imagpossibly reinvigorate the remnants of ery into customer workflow, the service Hurricane Sandy after Sandy made Stephen Wood enabled federal officials to choose from landfall. a suite of plug-ins designed for easy Hurricane Sandy was the secondintegration into GIS software and customer geospamost costly storm in U.S. history, costing some 100 tial solutions. For Sandy, more than 300,000 square lives and more than $50 billion in devastation. But kilometers of crisis-response imagery was collected industry analysts point out that the superstorm’s damfrom October 31-November 28, including daily from age could have been worse without geospatial technolOctober 31-November 6. ogy to assist in disaster response. Within hours after the storm moved on shore, for example, DigitalGlobe’s constellation of imaging satEmergency Messaging ellites (QuickBird, WorldView-1 and WorldView-2) collected more than 26,000 square kilometers of Just as the storm began to flood the streets imagery throughout the hardest-hit areas of the of lower Manhattan, many New Yorkers began to northeastern United States, including New York City, receive an unexpected message: a text alert on their Long Island, and much of the New Jersey coastline. mobile phones that strongly urged them to seek “DigitalGlobe’s analysts continually assessed the shelter. The service came via Google Public Alerts, impact of the storm—using news feeds, ground phoGoogle’s new platform for disseminating emergency tos, customer-provided requirements and our own messages such as evacuation notices for hurricanes, first-phase imagery analysis—to shift dynamically and everyday alerts such as storm warnings. www.GIF-kmi.com
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the ground of the affected area,” described Russ Johnson, director Powered largely by government data, Google makes available of national security for Esri. “As soon as possible—hopefully, within relevant weather, public safety and earthquake alerts from the 12 to 24 hours—we create another map that incorporates operaNational Weather Service, the U.S. Geological Survey, and AMBER tional data such as the parameters of incidents we know about.” alerts when smartphone users search on Google Search, Google Esri then incorporates that data to make the map more intelliMaps, and when they activate Google Now on Android devices. gent—one that can articulate road networks and live streaming of Google Public Alerts is a project of the Google Crisis Response team, weather patterns as imagery is available. In addition, the company which is supported by Google.org. engages with local officials and customers in the affected area. Late in the afternoon on Friday, November 2, 2012, Ben In the case of Hurricane Sandy, Esri was able to provide inforHolland, a GeoEye employee embedded in the New Jersey Fusion mation as to where there were gas stations that had their own genCenter (NJFC), reached out to GeoEye Analytics for support in the erators and so were able to provide gasoline. “This was important wake of Superstorm Sandy. in telling people where they could get fuel,” Johnson said. “GIS can “After discussing requirements with Ben, we determined that play an important role unlike other technologies.” the most immediate need was a set of basic maps to assist emergency crews in navigating areas most affected by the storm,” commented James Anderson, GeoEye’s deputy director of managed Information Analysis services. Many emergency response crews had become quite reliant on Another source of valuable technology for reacting to the crimobile electronic devices, so the lack of wireless connectivity had sis was ITT Exelis VIS, which provides off-the-shelf and custom essentially left them blind. geospatial solutions and products designed to analyze and extract Understanding the criticality of the situation information from different data types, including in New Jersey, several analysts from GeoEye volunmultispectral and hyperspectral imagery, radar, teered to work on Saturday to create a set of basic LiDAR and elevation data. navigation charts. Maps were created that combined “The uses for this type of technology in disasimagery, roads and relevant infrastructure data perter planning are infinite,” explained Patrick Collins, taining to such locations as schools, shelters, gas Exelis VIS solution engineer. “Our tools foster more stations, fire/rescue, police and churches. informed decision-making when preparing disasThe analysts quickly established a gridded system ter plans, tracking disaster progress, allocating to deconflict workflow between multiple analysts and resources, executing disaster plans, and doing postserve as a reference for the different map sheets. disaster analysis.” “The map sheets delivered do not represent the Information from remotely sensed data can be James Anderson typical project output for our analysts,” Anderson incorporated into every stage of disaster response, recalled. “It was a back-to-basics approach that conhe noted. “We work closely with other businesses sidered only what the first responders” on the ground to provide solutions to the government to assist really needed to perform in their life-saving missions. in disaster planning, analyzing imagery to betEach map sheet, built using Esri’s ArcGIS and ter understand ground conditions, where to stage exported to PDF, was designed to print onto an resources and evacuations, and so on,” Collins 8.5x11 sheet at a scale of 1:5200 to provide sufficient added. fidelity while keeping the number of sheets to a manDuring Sandy, for example, Exelis VIS softageable number. ware was used to analyze and view image data from Among its many features, ArcGIS provides a weather satellites to better understand the direction system for emergency/disaster management that and intensity of the storm as well as provide data supports all facets of the mission, including preduring and after the disaster. Patrick Collins paredness, mitigation, response and recovery. ENVI Radar Analysis capabilities allowed weather All totaled, the team produced 122 pages of maps researchers to use radar data to model and visualize to cover the three focus areas identified by Holland and the NJFC. the inner workings of the hurricane. That data was the result of “The analysts did a remarkable job of quickly laying out the images of Sandy created by NASA’s Kelly using the TRMM data. scope of the requirement, assigning responsibilities, and executTRMM is the first and only satellite space that carries a radar that ing on the task,” Anderson commented. “The team had never built can measure the detailed 3-D structure of regions of rain and ice a product quite like this, but their mastery of the required tools and precipitation that hide inside of storm clouds. datasets enabled them to accomplish the task in a timely manner.” That ability was particularly important, he explained, because The entire project, from start to finish, took the six analysts Hurricane Sandy was moving up the East Coast too far out at sea approximately eight hours. for land-based radars to provide definitive observations of the rain When situations get more complex, such as in the case of regions inside of the hurricane’s clouds. “The radar on the TRMM Hurricane Sandy, Esri puts together a map quickly that provides satellite provided this missing information during its overflight of the best possible estimation of an affected area where a disaster is Hurricane Sandy,” he said. occurring. Hence, NOAA was able to better understand the sustained “We import social media of all types, such as that from YouTube power of the storm and predict the intensity for disaster warnings and Twitter, mapping of those tweets and information from where and evacuations. “It is unusual to see such a large eye wall in such it is originating to get an early stage picture told by the people on a low-category storm,” Collins said. 12 | GIF 11.1
Post-Sandy, Exelis VIS software was able to assess the storm’s damage and provide future planning analysis. “We were able to identify areas of damage for non-damaged areas, changes in terrain due to erosion, and identify flooded areas versus non-flooded areas,” he said. “We also track progress on reconstruction efforts, and validate pre-disaster models and plans by quantifying the effects of the disaster in relations to predictions. This helps to create future disaster plans.”
In a disaster, GeoEye satellites are capable of re-imaging any area on the globe every day and a half. “One caveat is that earth-observing electro-optical satellites cannot peer through the clouds,” Anderson added. “That’s one reason that low-res weather satellites are so effective capturing images of the scale of hurricanes from above before an event.” Hurricanes are unique among natural disasters because they typically are followed by very clear skies within a day or two, revealing with stark clarity the scope of devastation, especially when compared to any archived high-resolution imagery of the same location. “Current imagery, combined with infrastructure and social-media data, can help focus relief efforts into the most affected areas,” he said.
Following the storm, Fugro was contacted to provide Light Detection and Ranging (LiDAR) mapping services over the entire 200-kilometer stretch of the Connecticut coastline. Fugro mobilized within 24 hours, acquiring the data during mean low tide windows Beneficial Clouds and optimal weather conditions over the next several days. Initial data products were delivered within 48 hours of comIndustry observers see one key element in the future of geospapletion of acquisition, reported Dave White, vice president, Fugro tial disaster response in cloud computing technology. Mapping Services. “The final hydro-flattened bare earth digital ele“Cloud computing now allows for disaster planning and vation model, with a 12.5-centimeter vertical accuracy, was delivered response teams to access data and analysis from remote locations in mid-December.” via web-based clients, or even mobile apps,” said Collins. “The The data will be used to visually evaluate, denote and quantify ability to push data and information into the field quickly ultihurricane damage areas. Analysis of the data will quantify degree mately results in monetary savings and a more successful disasof damage as heavy, moderate and light, allow for change detection ter response.” studies, and support remediation. Exelis VIS is in the process of developing the ENVI Services Recent history has demonstrated that fast and reliable access Engine, which brings the power of ENVI processing into the cloud. to accurate and detailed geospatial information is fundamental to Another next step for disaster planning is technology evolving successful disaster rescue and recovery operations, White noted. from the scientific back office, where it is used by highly trained Airborne remote sensing technologies are ideally suited to assist in personnel, to the consumer level, where everyone can touch and crisis response, he continued, because they are able to rapidly capuse it. Here smartphones already play a major role. ture details about the nature and severity of a crisis over very large “When one is able to access map data automatically, this is areas and provide essential information used to assist emergency data coming from the cloud,” Johnson said. “In some cases, people management personnel in making critical decisions. may not have IT staff capable of managing systems. They can proFugro typically provides both LiDAR and/or cure the software as a service out of the cloud. They orthoimagery over the requested disaster area. “We can connect to the software, have a secure area in also provide thermal mapping for detecting fire lines the cloud, and actually use that software through and gauging fire intensity and coverage; LiDAR data the cloud.” collection for volumetric studies and detailed modelGoing forward, Johnson predicts that disaster ing of terrain and structures; and hyperspectral mapplanning will be less about technology and more ping for detecting oil spills and chemical plumes,” about organizational behavior and culture. “It will White said. “Aerial data can be used to augment satbe about sharing and being able to provide a situellite and other data products, in areas where higher ational awareness across jurisdictional boundaries resolution and accuracy are necessary.” into various organizations so everyone can see the Together, GIS systems and remote sensing prodsame thing the same way,” he said. Dave White ucts, from both aerial and satellite systems, combined Wood maintains that in the near future, the geoto provide first responders with a robust network of spatial analysis and insight derived from imagery data that supplies knowledge that may previously have been unavailwill become more important than just the pixels themselves. able in disaster situations. For example, in just the past two years, DigitalGlobe’s FirstLook For example, one of the most powerful elements of GIS is the crisis team has kept busy monitoring and helping customers ability to handle and model topography. “This makes it possible to respond to more than 180 natural disasters, manmade crises, politunderstand where we are the most vulnerable,” Johnson said. ical instabilities and human interest events, he pointed out. In the case of the wildfires in the Southwest, GIS technology is “The insight and added value provided by a partner ‘in the sky’ able to show, for example, vegetation that is the most flammable on can make an important difference in evacuation planning, disasslopes greater than 30 degrees within one mile of population centers. ter response, recovery and rebuilding in regions worldwide,” Wood “The ability of GIS to provide planning and analysis makes for a very said. O powerful analytic framework,” he said. Anderson adds that high-resolution commercial satellite imagery For more information, contact GIF Editor Harrison Donnelly at email@example.com or search our online archives assists with measuring the extent and level of damage in the wake of for related stories at www.gif-kmi.com. a storm like Sandy or the 2011 earthquake that hit Japan. www.GIF-kmi.com
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INDUSTRY RASTER Editor Suite Makes GIS More Accessible
Comprehensive Solution Connects All Geospatial Genres
ThinkGeo has launched its new Map Suite GIS Editor application, designed for GIS professionals who need an easy way to create, visualize, edit and analyze spatial data. The GIS Editor makes GIS more accessible to a broader range of users with varying degrees of experience, and does so at a lower cost than competing products. It allows users to create and edit maps using a wide variety of spatial data in industry-standard formats, making it a valuable tool in an increasing number of industries and market segments. The centerpieces of the application are the familiar ribbon bar, the ability to create multiple maps inside of one project, and the unique Style Builder which makes crafting professional-looking maps easier than ever. The GIS Editor’s intuitive user interface provides quick access to a wide variety of tools without burdening the user with cryptic menus or stacks of mosaic-like toolbars. The result is that GIS users of nearly any skill or experience level can find their way around the GIS Editor with ease.
Intergraph has officially launched Intergraph Geospatial 2013, a united portfolio that enables users to complete projects on time and on budget while maintaining the highest level of fidelity in supporting customer workflows. Intergraph Geospatial 2013 is the first and only comprehensive solution that connects all geospatial genres, integrating photogrammetry, remote sensing and GIS into a streamlined system. Users can exploit the wealth of information contained in multi-source content, share it rapidly and securely, and deliver it on-demand as reliable and actionable information. Intergraph Geospatial 2013 portfolio of products includes:
System Collects GIS Field Data Through Geotagged Photos GeoSpatial Experts has released its new GeoJot+ field data collection system. The new subscriptionbased solution is built on GeoSpatial Experts’ popular GPS-Photo Link and GeoJot products. With the mobile data collection app and office components, the new system provides functionality, from field data collection to final reports, for less than $1 per user per day. The idea is both simple and powerful— GIS field data collection through geotagged photos. GeoJot+ allows users to collect geotagged photos and capture descriptive attribute information for each photo. Organizations then map the results in ArcGIS or Google Earth, import the data into a backend database or create reports showing the photo, the location on a map and the attribute information. An Administrator’s Dashboard enables viewing and tracking of app usage as well as the ability to add and revoke app licenses. Stephanie Giard; firstname.lastname@example.org
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• • •
GeoMedia 2013: GIS management package. This release makes it easier for users to leverage the depth of GIS via an updated, intuitive interface, the ability to dynamically place labels and dramatic performance improvements. ERDAS Imagine 2013: Remote sensing analysis and spatial modeling package that allows users to visualize their results in 2-D, 3-D and on cartographic-quality map compositions. In this release, users can integrate point cloud datasets into their workflows and perform dynamic analysis with a new spatial modeling environment. ImageStation 2013: Offering for production photogrammetry. This release includes new capabilities for dense terrain extraction from digital aerial frame imagery using the Semi-Global Matching approach, new opportunities for distributable processing, and increased support for ingesting terrain data. LPS 2013: Project photogrammetry offering. LPS users will now experience more streamlined workflows for the production of orthorectified images, stereo imagery, 3-D models and terrain datasets with integration into the ERDAS Imagine ribbon interface. ERDAS Apollo 2013: Geospatial data management, analysis and delivery solution. This release features a new web client and the ability to quickly clip, zip and ship LAS-formatted point cloud data. GeoMedia Smart Client 2013: Enables all users to seamlessly integrate geographic information into configurable workflows for vertical market applications. This release provides support for connected and disconnected field editing with the ability for users to make updates with waning or non-existent Internet connectivity. GeoMedia WebMap: Fully scalable server solution for building and deploying highperformance web services and websites. This release includes a harmonized enterprise administration console, customizable thin client and increased performance for overall data serving. Geospatial Portal: Integrated web client for building websites and web applications. Geospatial SDI: Solution for providers that need to manage and serve secure or licensed information using standards-based web services conforming to SDI standards and practices. This release ensures that users work within up-to-date standards; all web services meet OGC and INSPIRE specifications. Stephanie Deemer; email@example.com
Justice Department Clears Satellite Imagery Merger DigitalGlobe and GeoEye have received antitrust clearance from the U.S. Department of Justice in connection with their pending combination. The boards of directors of the two companies last summer approved a definitive merger agreement under which the companies will combine. Completion of the transaction is subject to satisfaction of other customary closing conditions, including obtaining regulatory approval from the Federal Communications Commission and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. The transaction was expected to close by the end of January. Robert Keosheyan; firstname.lastname@example.org www.GIF-kmi.com
Compiled by KMI Media Group staff
Upgrades Ordered for Eagle Vision Mobile Ground Stations DigitalGlobe has agreed to provide upgrades to multiple Air Force Eagle Vision mobile ground stations. This new capability will enable the delivery of the highest-quality imagery directly to warfighters and first responders in the fastest way possible. Upon completion, the ground stations will be capable of tasking DigitalGlobe’s WorldView constellation of earth imaging satellites and rapidly downloading imagery from the satellites at maximum resolution, including DigitalGlobe’s exclusive 8-band multi-spectral imagery. In most cases, this capability will make it possible to task, download and deliver new, up-to-date imagery
to end-users within minutes of collection. Eagle Vision is a family of deployable commercial remote sensing satellite downlink and imagery processing stations. The Air Force is working with the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency to leverage NGA’s EnhancedView service level agreement for obtaining the imagery. DigitalGlobe will deploy the upgrades with partners MDA and Orbit Logic starting in early 2013, with the first terminal expected to be operational by the middle of the year. In a related development, Orbit Logic has announced that it will deliver collection planning
software for the Eagle Vision mobile ground stations, after receiving initial task orders from MDA for two licenses of its collection planning software. The software will be configured by Orbit Logic to support imagery collection planning for DigitalGlobe’s WorldView-1 and WorldView-2 high resolution commercial imaging satellites and will be integrated by MDA engineers into systems being delivered to the Air Force early in 2013. Additional software license purchases are expected for the remaining Eagle Vision ground stations after the initial two deployments. Robert Keosheyan; email@example.com
NGA Orders Activity-Based Intelligence Solution
Missile Range to Install Ground-Based Positioning System The Air Force has signed a contract with Locata Corp. to install the U.S. military’s first ground-based LocataNet positioning system at White Sands Missile Range, N.M. The Air Force will field Locata’s new technology, which will supply them with extremely accurate “reference truth” positioning across a vast area of White Sands when GPS is being completely jammed. Under this new contract Locata will provide Locata receivers and LocataLite transmitters to blanket 2,500 square miles of the range.
The National GeospatialIntelligence Agency has awarded a $60 million multi-year contract to BAE Systems to provide activitybased intelligence (ABI) systems, tools and support for mission priorities. The award is a task order under the NGA’s Total Application Services for Enterprise Requirements program. BAE Systems’ ABI solution employs advanced software analysis tools integrated with COTS computing infrastructure to automate the ingestion, storage and processing of large volumes of intelligence data across multiple sources. This solution enables intelligence analysts to better identify adversarial activity patterns, and helps them achieve a greater understanding of the relationships between individuals, their activities and their transactions. BAE Systems’ ABI streamlines processes to enhance analyst productivity, rapidly turning data into actionable intelligence. The contract focuses on the delivery of an ABI production system, including engineering, system integration and application sustainment. BAE Systems’ partners include Esri, Harris, HumanGEO, Intelligent Software Solutions, Lightspeed Technologies, Pixia, Radiant Blue Technologies and Signal Innovations Group. Charles Ratzer; firstname.lastname@example.org
Weather Platform Closes Gap Between Regional, Local Imagery ITT Exelis has developed a capability, known as the Helios platform, that enables traffic and other cameras to function as weather sensors, providing more accurate, real-time environmental intelligence for better decision-making and response. The system provides hyper-local weather intelligence to close the gap between broad regional and street-view imagery. The Helios platform integrates networks of surveillance cameras already in use to watch traffic, facility security and railroad assets for weather monitoring. It aggregates disparate images into a single source
and uses algorithms and image processing to reveal actionable realtime environmental intelligence. Hyper-local weather data provided to national and local agencies, utility companies, transportation services and first responders can help in the decision-making process, company executives noted. Users can identify an area of interest for monitoring and select vantage points based on location, direction of view or National Weather Service warnings. Kristin Jones; email@example.com
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Improving Acquisition and Solidifying the IT Organization
Michael A. Rodrigue Deputy Director National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency
Michael A. Rodrigue was appointed to the Defense Intelligence Senior Executive Service in 2000 and to the position of deputy director of the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency in June 2012. As deputy director, he formulates policy, manages agency resources and leads operational activities to accomplish NGA’s mission. NGA is both a combat support agency and a member of the national intelligence community. Located in over 200 places around the world, the men and women of NGA provide timely, relevant and accurate target-based geospatial intelligence to military forces and to senior U.S. national security policy makers. Rodrigue previously led the Leader Development Strategic Initiative for NGA. He also served as director, NGA Vision Integration Team (VIT), supporting the agency’s director in facilitating the coordination, integration and synchronization of activities realizing the NGA Vision and Strategic Initiatives. Prior to the VIT, he served as director, New Campus East Program Management Office (NCE PMO). The NCE PMO coordinated and integrated the combined effort of four government and 14 commercial partners in planning and executing the delivery of facilities, infrastructure and security as well as the deployment of NGA personnel and functions to their new home in Springfield, Va. Rodrigue has held a variety of assignments in NGA and its predecessors. He served as the business executive in the Analysis and Production Directorate, director of the Office of Asia-Pacific Analysis, and director of the Production Support Office, and was deputy director of the Advanced Concepts Office in the Imagery Intelligence Directorate of the National Reconnaissance Office. Other assignments include leadership positions in the National Imagery and Mapping Agency’s Acquisition Directorate, Customer Support Office, Central Imagery Tasking Office, and Office of Geospatial Information. He also served in Defense Mapping Agency’s (DMA) Technology Directorate and Comptroller Office. www.GIF-kmi.com
Before entering federal service, Rodrigue spent 20 years in the Army, holding various leadership assignments in Korea, Hawaii and the U.S., including joint assignments in the U.S. Pacific Command and DMA. He was an assistant professor in computer science and topographic research at the U.S. Military Academy. He served as DMA’s representative to U.S. Central Command Forward in Desert Storm. Rodrigue received a bachelor’s degree in nuclear engineering from West Point in 1972, and a master’s degree in mechanical engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology in 1980. Q: Now that you have been NGA deputy director for several months, how would you describe your role within the agency? What would you say your priorities are, and what keeps you awake at night? A: Broadly speaking, my job is to help NGA Director Letitia Long lead the organization in transforming the way GEOINT services are provided. I have four main priorities. The first is leadership. We are in a tumultuous time that includes a lot of uncertainties. We moved the workforce to a new location a year ago, and we continue GIF 11.1 | 17
to work through the growing pains and opportunities that are inherent in that kind of change. We’ve set our strategic objectives and we are seeing significant progress. We don’t know yet exactly how a postwar contraction, or the continuing financial crisis, will affect us specifically. We know there will be change, and we know we will have hard decisions to make. All of that requires a significant commitment to leadership. We have to keep our workforce informed, and we also have to keep them engaged. That only happens if we have candid conversation at every level, with good opportunities for feedback and input. That is a key objective of our Leadership Initiative, and we have made a lot of progress. But continued improvement remains a key goal. I also am focused on improving our acquisition program. We know our acquisition process has its own obstacles, and we want to make it better. We need the input of the people we do business with, our industry partners, to help us with this effort. A third priority is solidifying our IT organization, which was reorganized just before I assumed this role to help better align their support to the operational mission. There has been considerable change for us moving to an open architecture and virtual applications. We are now applying the lessons we learned to establish a community desktop environment, with the Defense Intelligence Agency as a partner. We will join the rest of the community in moving to cloud computing. There are significant challenges for the IT leadership, both internal and external. Finally—and this gets back to what I said about leadership—sequestration and the budget as a whole are significant priorities for me. We don’t yet know exactly what sequestration would mean for us, but we know that we are certainly facing a shrinking resource pool. We have to focus on mission capability and determine what we will be able to continue to do in a more constrained environment. So far, we have been able to make improvements that increased our efficiency, and we have been able to absorb cuts without affecting mission capability. Going forward, we expect to have to take a hard look at what we will be able to continue to do, what we have to reduce and what we will have to stop doing. Our customers are not asking for less support—the need for GEOINT continues to increase, and it is increasingly the foundation on which the overall operational intelligence picture is built. It is more important than ever that we implement the right tools, and advance our tradecraft, to enable our workforce to most effectively and efficiently employ its talents. We must also continue to improve integration and efficiency within the intelligence community as a whole. Q: Speaking of the intelligence community as a whole, how would you define your role with respect to the IC? A: Within the intelligence community, we have been working for a long time to integrate and coordinate the efforts with the different organizations. Eliminating duplication and sharing data and analysis are clearly important in today’s fiscally constrained environment: With fewer resources we can’t afford to have multiple agencies doing the same thing. Even more important, though, efficiently dividing the mission between the partners allows each to do what it does best, and to do fewer tasks 18 | GIF 11.1
with a greater degree of depth and breadth. We improve not only the cost of intelligence, but also the quality and speed, when we work efficiently. That means that we have to coordinate across all the organizations, at all levels within the organizations. That’s a good thing. But it also can lead to recommendations and plans of action for one problem that inadvertently conflict with others proposed for another problem. One of my responsibilities is to work with the deputy directors at the other agencies to identify and resolve those kinds of issues. Similarly, with multiple coordination points between the agencies, it is possible for NGA’s overall position on an issue or problem set to become unclear to our partners. De-conflicting and clarifying the agency-level position is another key responsibility for me. Q: You have had a distinguished career both in the Army and with NGA and its predecessors. What are some of the most important experiences during those years that have shaped your approach to your current position? A: The lessons learned over 20 years in the Army provided a great foundation for everything I have done in the years since. In particular, though, that background helps me understand the needs of combatant commanders and the warfighters they lead—key customers for NGA in its role as a combat support agency. Another experience that helps me tremendously is the time I spent at the National Reconnaissance Office [NRO]. The missions of the NRO and NGA are inextricably linked, and it is extremely helpful to have a good understanding of such a close partner. I also learned a great deal from leading the project to consolidate the majority of NGA’s East Coast operations at the NGA Campus East. That consolidation, mandated by the 2005 Base Realignment and Closure Act, required working with four government agencies and 14 contractors, and consolidated a workforce that had been distributed across six locations. As important as that challenge was, the priority was to execute that consolidation while continuing to execute our mission—our customers’ needs for GEOINT didn’t change. Every part of our consolidation process, including building the campus itself, was based on that requirement. The whole project was a learning experience, but most important, it taught me how to bring people together. We could not have accomplished the move without our mission suffering if everyone hadn’t worked together toward that common goal. It solidified for me the already high regard I had for NGA’s workforce and their determination to succeed. Q: That is a great segue: Now that NGA has been in its new location for a little over a year, what benefits have you seen? Is the nation better served by this facility? A: Without a doubt, the mission is enabled to better serve. An obvious benefit is that people in the East are together in one place. We don’t lose time driving around the Beltway for meetings, everyone has the same computer and phone systems, it is much easier for people to coordinate and collaborate. Those are the obvious improvements. www.GIF-kmi.com
When we moved to NCE, we installed a thin-client IT infrastructure, with the majority of the programs and applications located on shared servers rather than individual desktop computers. The IT architecture we delivered is being expanded to the West and is the basis for the community desktop program. We have retired a considerable number of legacy systems that people considered critical, but found that there were new ways to get the job done better and cheaper. And there have been some unexpected benefits. That infrastructure has a much lower power requirement, which has resulted in real savings in energy costs. We also have seen less obvious improvements. For example, the legacy agencies that were pulled together to create the National Imagery and Mapping Agency, which later became NGA, each had very good education programs. Those were pulled together into the National Geospatial-Intelligence College at Fort Belvoir, Va. Unfortunately, it was nearly impossible to use practicing GEOINT professionals as adjunct faculty, since teaching a one-hour class ended up taking more than half a day away from the mission because of travel time. With the majority of our people—and the college—under one roof, we can take advantage of the expertise of far more people. Q: Director of National Intelligence James Clapper has said that GEOINT is the basis for truly integrated intelligence. Can you talk a little bit about what that means? And how does NGA’s role different from the other players in the field, such as the U.S. Geological Survey, the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration, and commercial imagery providers? A: GEOINT helps improve integration of the all disciplines of intelligence. It enables us to see spatial relationships, which lends context to the overall intelligence picture. Similarly, NGA brings context to the universe of geospatial data and provides the intelligence overlay that makes it useful to the national security enterprise. In a nutshell, NGA is the foundation where information and analysis unite.
USGS, NOAA, commercial imagery providers and a great many others, all collect a wide range of geospatial data, and they do it very well. NGA aggregates that information, and connects the dots between the data using our own analysis and information from other intelligence sources to provide a comprehensive GEOINT picture. NGA then makes that complete GEOINT picture, as well as its component parts, available to all customers: policy and decision makers, warfighters, and first responders in times of crisis and natural disaster. And one of our strategic objectives is to continue to do this better—in fact, by July 100 percent of our highest priority content will be service-enabled, meaning it will be online, on demand for our customers. The unique contribution from NGA is the analysis our people derive from the data. From improving the precision of earth measurements, to developing patterns of behavior of intelligence targets, to creating critical methods of interpretation of the data, our people are our competitive edge as we seek relevancy in the future. Q: With the reduction of forward-deployed forces and the expected drawdown of combat support requirements, what lessons learned from more than 10 years of wartime support will NGA apply to future operations? A: Getting solutions to the field fast is key to successful wartime support. We have found ways to make our acquisitions processes more agile to support that rapid fielding requirement, and that agility also will provide benefits in a peacetime environment. In addition, we’ve honed our ability to prioritize and identify what truly matters most. As we navigate the current budget environment, that will help us differentiate mission-critical requirements from those that perhaps can be done by another partner. We also learned the importance of integrating GEOINT professionals into the operations we’re supporting. Having GEOINT specialists deployed with the warfighters downrange enabled us to better understand and anticipate needs, and allowed us to
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help them better define requirements. We have applied that concept in support in other situations to similar success; it is now standard operating procedure for us. Q: How NGA support Hurricane Sandy disaster relief operations? What made NGA’s support unique, and what would you do differently next time? A: NGA’s support to Hurricane Sandy illustrates the impact of service-enabled content. But it started in the summer of 2011, with changes we were making to enable our data to first responders. In August, NGA was called upon to support relief efforts following Hurricane Irene. We responded quickly, and deployed a great many people to the field to help first responders in the field in a variety of ways. We used our available tools and information to help support damage assessments and prioritization of recovery efforts, among other things. Our efforts were appreciated, but we learned a lot about what GEOINT we needed to deliver to whom and what better methods could be. By the time Hurricane Isaac hit in August 2012, more of our tools were available online. We still sent a significant NGA response cell, but this time, their role was primarily to assist first responders in using the still-unfamiliar—and not easily accessible—technology and tools.
20 | GIF 11.1
With Hurricane Sandy two months later, our support was refined yet again. Because of ongoing partnership efforts, many of our tools and applications were well-known to first responders. Further, we had fixed many of the access issues by creating temporary logins for non-IC and non-military users who do not traditionally use our systems. As a result, we deployed far fewer people to the field to provide handson assistance with the tools, because users were able to use the tools and get the information they needed on their own. Instead, we were able to focus our efforts on the problems that specifically required NGA skill sets and deeper-level analysis. As we move forward and make our content available online and on demand, and ensure it is easily discoverable, that balance will continue to shift. In addition, NGA was able to provide access to critical content and imagery not typically available to state and local authorities. We still have access issues to resolve, and we are continuing to work on those. We also do not currently have the authority to share GEOINT directly with state and local responders without going through the Federal Emergency Management Agency; we’re working with those partners to try to streamline the processes further and eliminate the potential for a delay in getting GEOINT to the users who need it. O
By George Meyers
With a new congressional year just starting, there is much to be done. We are still waiting on funding for fiscal year 2013, and operating under a continuing resolution until March 27. This, with the debt ceiling and threat of sequestration, is making business and government hesitant to spend money or start programs. The appropriations bills are stalled and there is a real chance of operating under a continuing resolution for the entire fiscal year. At the close of the 112th Congress, there were over 40 pending intelligence-related bills on the calendar—none of which were passed. In the two years of the 112th Congress, 12,299 bills were introduced, of which 304 were passed by the House and 82 passed by the Senate. All told, 241 measures
were signed into law, with 45 still on the president’s desk as of early January 2013. Immigration reform and gun control will take up most of lawmakers’ time the first part of the year. In spite of the turmoil caused by the budget debates and the lack of “progress,” I still expect intelligence to be a central part of future discussions on defense and the security of the U.S. The major intelligence bills introduced last year will be picked up again by this Congress. Intelligence will remain one of the bright spots in the federal budget. As we decrease our physical presence around the globe, intelligence becomes more important. The need for knowledge is increasing, and people who can help provide that knowledge will be in high demand. O
*Bill # Sponsor STATUS Signed into law. H.J.Res.117 Rep. Harold Rogers (R-Ky.)
Summary Continuing Appropriations Act Continues fiscal year 2013 spending through March 27, 2013.
Rep. Buck McKeon (R-Calif.)
Signed into law.
House National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2013 Authorizes appropriations for fiscal year 2013 for military activities of the Department of Defense and to prescribe military personnel strengths.
Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Mich.)
Passed the House and referred to Senate.
Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act Adds provisions to protect intelligence and information sharing from cyberthreats and allow the intelligence community to share cyberthreat intelligence with the private sector.
Rep. Candice Miller (R-Mich.)
Passed the House and referred to Senate.
Securing Maritime Activities through Risk-based Targeting for Port Security Act Authorizes, enhances and reforms certain port security programs through increased efficiency and risk-based coordination within the Department of Homeland Security.
Rep. Jeff Duncan (R-S.C.)
Referred to House Requires investigations into and a report on the September 11-13, 2012, attacks on the Committee on U.S. missions in Libya, Egypt, and Yemen, and for other purposes. Intelligence.
Rep. Jackie Speier (D-Calif.)
Passed House and referred Senate Committee on Homeland Security.
Mass Transit Intelligence Prioritization Act Amends the Homeland Security Act of 2002 to direct the Secretary of Homeland Security to prioritize the assignment of officers and analysts to certain state and urban area fusion centers to enhance the security of mass transit systems.
Sen. Joseph Lieberman (I-Conn.)
Referred to the Committee of Homeland Security.
Department of Homeland Security Authorization Act of 2012 Authorizes certain programs of the Department of Homeland Security, and for other purposes.
Rep. Francisco Canseco (R-Texas)
Passed House and referred to Senate Committee on the Judiciary.
Border Security Information Improvement Act of 2012 Provides for a joint report to Congress on the ability to track, investigate and quantify cross-border violence along the Southwest border and provide recommendations to Congress on how to accurately track, investigate and quantify cross-border violence.
*In 112th Congress www.GIF-kmi.com
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22 | GIF 11.1
Platform Geospatial developers create a host of extensions and enhancements to Esri’s ubiquitous ArcGIS software. By Peter Buxbaum GIF Correspondent
Abounding with functionality for the analysis and visualization of geospatial data, Esri’s ArcGIS is widely viewed as the most common, accepted and robust geographic and geospatial platform in the world today, with only a handful of niche competitors. But the powerful geographic information systems company has not been content to rely on the tools and functions that it could develop in-house. By basing its platform on open standards, Esri issued an invitation to developers at large to creChip Nickolett ate add-ons and extensions to its own platform, and that invitation has been accepted by thousands. Esri has a formal partnership program for those who have developed or are interested in developing enhancements to its platform, but membership is not necessary for developers to work on their own Esri extensions and add-ons. Esri add-ons and extensions fall into three categories. The first involves solutions—such as database connectivity—that are complementary to what Esri offers. The second involves enhancements to existing functions that may be required or desired for the completion of particular tasks and are often developed at the behest of specific customers. The third comes in the form of solutions for particular industries or areas of specialty. Experts say that growth in this last area will be particularly robust in coming years. “Esri software is ubiquitous,” said Mike Money, a product management team member at BAE Systems. “ArcGIS has become a platform, and as such, the military and intelligence communities have almost set Esri as a standard for geospatial interoperability. The lifecycle of creating, storing and disseminating tools and information can be easily managed in the Esri enterprise. Given its ability to answer all things geospatial, it is the perfect tool for inclusion in any GEOINT environment.” “It is the gold standard,” added Chip Nickolett, vice president of sales and service at Actian. “Most of the companies we talk to that use GIS technology use Esri and most companies that are thinking about using it are looking at ArcGIS.” www.GIF-kmi.com
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“In many cases it is difficult to predict where you’re going to “Esri represents one of world’s leaders in geospatial platneed geospatial data, what kind of data you’re going to need, and forms,” said Ryan Heitz, federal program manager at Geographic what format the data will come in,” said Murray. “We work with Information Services Inc. (GISi). “They have products for the Esri and its customers to get them into ArcGIS so that users can server and the desktop. They are expanding their cloud-based do the powerful analysis that ArcGIS is known for.” services, which enable us to create solutions quickly and easily for our clients. Esri has fielded standard application programming interfaces so that we can customize their technology for Data Formats our clients.” “Of all the products out there, ArcGIS is the most complete,” Recent years have seen a proliferation of data formats. In said Don Murray, president of Safe Software. “The software runs order for different branches of the military to talk to each other, on everything from desktop systems to mobile however, they need to get their data into a common devices and it works with any kind of data so that model so that they can build a common operating data can be brought in from other systems and sent picture and make better decisions. back out again.” Safe Software produces a product that allows “We are dependent on Esri as a platform,” said data of many different formats to move in and out Rick Cobb, president and chief executive officer of of ArcGIS. “We support over 300 data formats, TerraGo. “About 80 percent of our customers rely including raster data formats, vector data formats, on ArcGIS and are increasingly also leveraging GML, XML, NATO standards and aeronautical forArcGIS online. Esri is at the center of the geospamats. Esri concentrates on building analytical tial world.” tools and leave the harder special data formats for “We think of ArcGIS as an entire geospatial ecous to look after,” said Murray. Don Murray system,” said Clark Swinehart, manager of defense More than that, the Safe Software product, solutions at Esri. “Its functionality includes everyknown as FME (Feature Manipulation Engine), thing from spatial data creation all the way through allows the updating of this myriad data within analytics, analysis, and map and chart production. ArcGIS in real time. Everything on the entire ecosystem, whether on “The armed services need the most up-to-date a desktop, online, or on a handheld device work data when making decisions on where to deploy,” together.” said Murray. “Time is everything in many situaArcGIS provides an expansive capability, but it tions. You need to know how the environment is is not all things to all people, noted Money. “The changing as it is changing. It doesn’t do any good development environment provided with Esri softto know what happened yesterday. You need to ware gives the user and developer communities know immediately that something has changed in an easy avenue to create and publish tools specifthe environment. You don’t want to be waiting for Rick Cobb ically tailored to end-user requirements,” he said. some overnight job to be processed.” “Integration with Esri products provides a collabLight detection and ranging (LiDAR) data is orative environment to create and distribute intelincreasingly being used for making operational ligence products.” decisions. “LiDAR data is being captured all the Esri has assembled an extensive network of time and you want to get that data into the sysmore than 2,000 business partners who have tem as quickly as possible,” said Murray. “More and become official members of the Esri family. “We more on the battlefield, there are many sensors love it and encourage it,” said Swinehart. “We feel transmitting data to databases. With FME, users that our partners make us better platform procan set up subscription notifications that provide viders. Sometimes these folks have specialized in the ability to send real-time data to users intercertain aspects of the platform. They are aware ested in particular events.” of certain needs among their customers for funcUsers of FME include the National GeospatialClark Swinehart tions that don’t work for them right out of the box. Intelligence Agency and the Army Geospatial A good chunk of the partners build specialized extensions that Center. focus on specific markets such as utilities, oil exploration and law One product that has been designed to work with ArcGIS as enforcement.” well as FME is Ingres, a relational database and analytical and Some Esri customers might use the product as-is, noted reporting engine developed by Actian. Ingres was created to allow Swinehart. “If you need to modify it, you can,” he said. “But at users to analyze spatial and transactional data side by side. least you’re starting with an 80 percent solution instead of start“Our customers have been using Ingres for years for funcing from scratch.” tions like payroll,” said Tyler Mitchell, Actian engineering direcThe fact that ArcGIS is a standards-based product enables outtor. “But another department that collects geospatial data would side developers to easily create add-ons and extensions to aid their use a different system with a different kind of architecture. Our customers. “We use standard programming languages and stanapproach is to tie together more business data and to extract dard interfaces,” said Swinehart. “There is no proprietary secret more business value from that data than ever before. Ingres sauce. Even how we interact over the Internet is put through enables geospatial capabilities in a traditional database system. Open Geospatial Consortium standards.” Given our focus, partnering with ArcGIS was a natural choice.” 24 | GIF 11.1
The latest version includes more than 60 geospatial functions right out of the box. “Ingres lets you store and manipulate data alongside traditional data, and our GIS functions and data types are included out of the box,” said Mitchell. “You can perform spatial analysis, enable web mapping and create maps more easily using leading GIS applications.” Actian’s extensions for ArcGIS enable Ingres customers to make use of Esri functionality stored in Ingres. “We’ve created an extension for ArcGIS that provides read and write support for Ingres,” said Mitchell. “This enables users to use ArcGIS functionality to add connections to Ingres and to create maps using data from Ingres.”
Image Exploitation BAE Systems develops software that merges image exploitation with advanced geospatial tools such as precise mensuration and remote sensing into a single commercial product. The BAE Systems Geospatial eXploitation Products (GXP) business develops and sells COTS software for efficient image exploitation, mapping and data management. “GXP has several software offerings that integrate with ArcGIS,” said Money. “The SOCET GXP Spatially Enabled Exploitation [SEE] module provides direct geodatabase feature data manipulation supporting all geodatabase flavors.” SOCET GXP provides analysts and first responders with interactive feature extraction capabilities to create and fly through 3-D perspective scenes for enhanced situational awareness, route planning and change detection. “SEE leverages the shared environment of ArcGIS, and SOCET for ArcGIS has a proven record of accomplishment providing terrain extraction and image exploitation functionality for a range of mission planning and rehearsal activities,” said Money. The SOCET for ArcGIS module is an extension of ArcMap that integrates the power of the Esri user interface and the SOCET GXP Multiport. “SOCET GXP also leverages the power of ArcGIS Server by providing a connection to image services,” said Money. “Esri image services are added to SOCET GXP as native raster layers providing basic image manipulation and seamless highperformance roam. This trend will continue across the GXP product lines incorporating other key services.” TerraGo fields a suite of tools that allow users to find unstructured data, such as news, blogs, social media and Internet content, and incorporate the geographic aspects of those into ArcGIS tools through which maps and other visualizations can be generated. “Users can reach into ArcGIS to create intelligence products such GeoPDF documents and other portable intelligence products,” said Cobb. TerraGo’s Publisher for ArcGIS allows users to take Esri data and convert it to GeoPDFs. “From this you can create maps and imagery like mapbooks,” said Cobb. “We provide software on mobile devices for remote data capture and better sharing.” By providing extensions to ArcGIS that can be run on mobile devices, TerraGo “has one foot deep in the ArcGIS platform and the other at the edge of the enterprise,” said Cobb. “Users exploit these products for everything from mission execution to intelligence capture to evacuation and search and rescue. In the latest crisis, various elements of the Army, including the Corps of Engineers, make map books for situational www.GIF-kmi.com
awareness to respond to Hurricane Sandy, to locate people, to investigate damaged infrastructure, and to record field-based observations that can then be shared broadly with other people,” he added.
Web Applications Swinehart has noticed that Esri users are increasingly interested in light web applications, as opposed to the heavy desktop variety. “People are doing more in virtual machines as opposed to buying big PCs,” he said. “The web apps don’t do everything a desktop application would, but you don’t need to be a subject matter expert to get some use out of it.” GISi has created several Internet applications for use with ArcGIS. It created a web app for Arlington National Cemetery, for example, that has been placed in kiosks on the grounds of the national shrine to help direct visitors to specific graves. Another such application is now being created for the Reserve Affairs office within the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD). “The application is going to help Reserve Affairs understand the relationships between reserve units and facilities,” said Heitz. “The responsibility of the office is to support all reserve components across DoD. The application will help decision makers understand where units are located in relation to facilities.” The Arlington and OSD apps were developed by customizing the ArcGIS Map Viewer functionality.
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GISi is also working with the Navy GeoReadiness Program, which supports the Navy’s civil engineering contingent. GIS developed a web-based application called GeoReadiness Explorer (GRX). “As an asset management application, the program works with a base map called a common installation picture,” explained Colby Free, manager of Navy projects at GISi. “Facilities managers and project managers are able to build relationships between features on the base map and to visualize planned facilities as they relate to existing structures instead of having to rely on tabular data or other traditional records. The application can also be used to estimate costs for grounds maintenance by measuring the surface areas of lawns and the required sod for a given facility,” Free said, noting that GRX also includes modules that automate space management and energy management. “A lot of this is ad hoc,” Free added. “We put these capabilities out there and users find unique ways of using them in their day-today business.”
The enthusiasm that ArcGIS partners exhibit for the platform and its provider is reflected in turn by Esri itself. “We encourage folks to become part of the partner network,” said Swinehart. “There are advantages for them to join. We are happy to have them be part of the Esri family.”
ClearTerra, a company that specializes in extracting geospatial information from unstructured data such as documents and emails, offers a software add-on, called LocateXT, that provides functionality to ArcGIS. “The best value from add-ons to ArcGIS comes when you have a company that specializes in a certain area and then applies that specialty to a very powerful platform,” said Jeff Wilson, ClearTerra’s vice president for sales. “The main value we add is the ability to quickly scan through unstructured data such as reports, documents, PDF files, emails, Microsoft Office products, and web content that include geospatial content, and incorporate that into ArcGIS in and multiple open Mobility and the Cloud geospatial standards formats.” ClearTerra has taken a capability to create a work As with many other areas of IT, the future of GIS flow that interacts with ArcGIS to place extracted geomight be summed up with two words: mobility and spatial data onto maps. LocateXT works by analyzing cloud. “Mobile is the future,” said Murray. “Everyone unstructured documents to extract coordinate data is walking around with a pocket computer and everyand place names. It also extracts reference text and one is a sensor. We can use mobile devices to report to document temporal information. LocateXT discovers a system and have data ingested in real time. Hosting coordinates, locations, and other critical information servers in the cloud supports that kind of activity.” within unstructured text by way of a drag-and-drop “We will continue to work closely with ArcGIS to menu and sends the results directly to ArcGIS for integrate mobile capabilities,” said Cobb. “Mobility, further analysis. The underlying documents can be the cloud infrastructure and ArcGIS online are three Jeff Wilson accessed directly from ArcMap by way of automatically big areas for future development.” generated hyperlinks. “Cloud computing, virtual environments and This means, for example, that analysts can quickly plot locations budget constraints are coming together to form a perfect storm with referenced in documents on maps and look for patterns of activities regard to doing more with less,” said Money. “ArcGIS Online promentioned in reports. They can scan though thousands of documents vides organizations with a centralized mechanism to share and disquickly to find references to locations of interest within a given range tribute information, products and tools. GXP product lines continue of another location. LocateXT then uses that data to populate ArcGIS to integrate with Esri technology on the nodes that are relevant to mapping utilities. customers’ goals. The GXP team develops functionality and work“All this can be plugged into ArcGIS on the fly,” said Wilson. flows that satisfy customer-driven requirements and integrates the “ArcGIS provides the capability. We make it easy and easy is always latest technology into commercial software products.” good when you're talking about intelligence and work flows.” GXP future developments will work to leverage server-side Wilson sees more GEOINT activities being pushed to the cloud so resources to create, catalog, analyze, search and disseminate data. that they can be better shared. “You still have to do certain things sit“New system architecture will be the backbone of a software suite ting at a workstation,” he said. “But there has been a huge trend toward designed to share GXP components,” said Money. “GXP solutions pushing big-data analysis to the cloud, but also pulling down data and will work to integrate the best of the cloud technology trend and vircapabilities from the cloud. The real trick is to combine what you do tual resources to power the traditional desktop users of today and locally and leverage what is in the cloud to have best of both worlds.” the thin and mobile clients of the future.” ClearTerra plans to continue developing easy-to-use analytic tools As geospatial data becomes increasingly important to the planwith a geospatial context, said Wilson. “We want to be able to incorning and execution of missions, both within the military and outporate other types of intelligence onto maps. We'll continue to expand side of it, vendors will have to start to thinking differently about our extraction capabilities and develop capabilities to do even more how they approach and present geospatial applications, according to with what we can extract. Free. “Instead of a strong understanding of GIS systems,” he said, “The way we see it,” he added, “is that our software geospatially “you need a strong understanding of your customers’ business lines enables open source analysts and open source enables geospatial anaso you can support what they are doing. lysts.” O “When you do it right, many users won’t even know they are using ArcGIS,” he continued. “It will just be a planning app that has For more information, contact GIF Editor Harrison Donnelly a spatial or location-based aspect to it. The value proposition of GIS at firstname.lastname@example.org or search our online archives will continue to grow, but how applications are presented is going for related stories at www.gif-kmi.com. to change.” 26 | GIF 11.1
The advertisers index is provided as a service to our readers. KMI cannot be held responsible for discrepancies due to last-minute changes or alterations.
GIF RESOURCE CENTER Advertisers Index AMU. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7 www.amuonline.com/geospatial BAE. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . C4 www.baesystems.com/gxp ClearTerra . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25 www.clearterra.com Lockheed Martin IS&GS. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16 www.lockheedmartin.com/mission-on-demand National Space Symposium. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9 www.nationalspacesymposium.org/gi1 TerraGo Technologies. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . C2 www.terragotech.com Tom Tom. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19 www.tomtom.com/licensing
Compiled by KMIâ€ˆMedia Group staff
Calendar March 24-28, 2013 American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing Annual Conference Baltimore, Md. www.asprs.org April 8-10, 2013 Defense Intelligence Worldwide Baltimore, Md. www.ncsi.com April 10-11, 2013 AFCEA Spring Intelligence Symposium Springfield, Va. www.afcea.org April 11-14, 2013 National Space Symposium Colorado Springs, Colo. www.nationalspacesymposium.org
May 13-16, 2013 Geospatial World Forum Rotterdam, Netherlands www.geospatialworldforum.org May 20-24, 2013 GEOINT Community Week Washington, D.C. area http://usgif.org July 8-12, 2013 Esri International User Conference San Diego, Calif. www.esri.com October 13-16, 2013 GEOINT 2013 Symposium Tampa, Fla. http://geoint2013.com
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Geospatial Intelligence Forum
A.J. Clark President Thermopylae Sciences and Technology Q: To start, could you tell readers a bit about Thermopylae Sciences and Technology? A: Thermopylae Sciences and Technology is a small company that’s been around for six years. Our focus is on solving unique problems within the government IT space—ones that the larger companies aren’t focusing on. By solving these problems in distinctive ways, we try to stand out as a company with a special culture akin to our partners such as Google, where they inspire creativity and openness amongst their development teams. Our developers can be as creative and innovative as they’d like. As such, we aim to come up with good ideas, while actually solving real government challenges at the same time. Q: “Smart data” is a growing trend within government IT. What is behind this movement, and where do you see it leading? A: Smart data is an evolution of the “data deluge” that has occurred as a result of more sensors and intelligence collection assets. Today, everyone is accustomed to both creating and consuming more data. We aim to get the right data to the right person at the right time in the right context. The next step is developing applications for analyzing, collaborating and sharing data for making the right decisions. This is a concept called “smart apps.” The apps are “smart” because we deliver them to users based on their context, which we call “context logic.” Some of that logic could be based on the location of the user. Depending on where the user is—on the field or in a garrison— they may need a different set of applications. We spend a lot of time building the framework to manage that context logic in our product Ubiquity. 28 | GIF 11.1
Q: What role do you see for cloud-based geospatial management in the future? A: Cloud-based geospatial management is interesting because much of it started in the intelligence community. The IC is unique because it can’t necessarily use parts of the cloud that exist commercially. Our partner Google has a great capability called Google Map Engine, which is a cloud of geospatial servers that [provides] imagery and processing capabilities. Say I am an insurance adjuster and I want to see which homes in an area had roof damage. I can take that imagery and put it onto a Google Earth globe and annotate the damages. The same applies to the military, which often uses classified imagery. As the IC has built their cloud infrastructure, it focuses on finding data with textual information—finding a possible adversary reported in the marketplace at the same time that a bomb detonated, as an example. Q: Data fusion trends are creating new opportunities with data. How can “leavebehind technologies” help to introduce the government to new ways of using their information while, at the same time, not tying them to entrenched and expensive relationships with contractors? A: Operation Unified Response in Haiti is a great example of where we provided the
operational data from partner nations, non-governmental organizations and U.S. agencies. There were some common rules that applied, which involved the U.S. sharing valuable data and providing the smart apps for users to consume that data. You also have to provide technology that is easy to use and is multi-lingual, resulting in a faster adoption rate. By using commercial cloud solutions, it is easier for partner nations to leverage leave-behind technologies, which often does not involve highly classified data. For example, we use Amazon’s cloud, and instead of building a new cloud infrastructure, we apply the cloud to address the specific problems. It can scale up or down, and there is no shortage of studies showing the cost effectiveness of a cloud infrastructure. There are also ways for us to ensure secure collaboration. For example, many companies use Gmail and Google Apps for running their businesses. The security capabilities are already built in and at a low price. This approach also ties to open-source or free capabilities like Google Earth. So if an organization needs a map to collaborate, why not use a familiar leave-behind technology? There are no hosting costs. In addition, by adding smart applications like iSpatial as a framework on top of an Amazon platform, organizations can leverage many of these open, low or nocost technologies. By investing time into architecting a way to bring these together, organizations can have a low-cost, leavebehind technology that enables them to stay connected and collaborate effectively. The government should identify the gap between open-source and lowcost commercial capabilities and focus their investment on the “glue” that pulls it all together so they own the framework to collaborate with partner nations at little to no cost. O www.GIF-kmi.com
March 2013 Volume 11, Issue 2
Cover and In-Depth Interview with:
Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn Director, Defense Intelligence Agency
Features: Full Motion Video
Standards for image quality will be crucial to improving the intelligence value of full motion video.
IT for the IC
Al Tarasiuk, chief information officer of the intelligence community, is leading the IC Information Technology Enterprise, which will create a single strategic IT platform for the community.
Human Terrain Tools
Developers are creating toolkits and other technology to help geospatial and intelligence analysts better understand the human terrain.
Advances in hyperspectral imaging technology are offering expanded capabilities for military and intelligence users.
Distributed Common Ground System-Army is helping deliver actionable intelligence by adopting first tactical cloud computing deployment.
Bonus Distribution DIA Worldwide Mission Conference Baltimore, Md., April 8-10, 2013
Insertion Order Deadline: February 18, 2013 â€˘ Ad Materials Deadline: February 25, 2013
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Imagery courtesy of DigitalGlobe
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Published on Jan 31, 2013