November 2018
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New Maps Plus

With so many JC’s and Uni’s all over SoCal teaching traditional desktop GIS, some might say there has been a flood of graduates in recent years. Good. Our profession needs really good people. Why not look into something a little bit different? The University of Kentucky is offering New Maps Plus, an online digital mapping program centered around programming and web development. BTW, all their tools are open source.

Even if you don’t have the funds to meet their tuition and you have no plans to take these courses right away, you will likely find this promotional video very entertaining.

Summer and Fall 2018 GIS Class Offerings at Santa Monica College

Santa Monica College 



Transfer: CSU  Prerequisite: None.

This course provides a general introduction to Cartography, broadly defined as the art, science, and ethics of map making and map use. The emphases include map scale, map projection, reference and thematic map reading, symbolization and map design. A variety of modern geospatial technologies and tools are covered, including Geographic Information Systems (GIS), Global Positioning System (GPS), Remote Sensing, and web mapping. The course includes both lecture and hands-on application.

Geography 25 is the same course as GIS 25. Students may earn credit for one, but not both.

Course Number: 4038 Time: 5:45 p.m.-8:55 p.m. TTh Location: BUS 250 Instructor: Liu J

Above section 4038 meets for 8 weeks, Jun 19 to Aug 09.

FALL 2018


Transfer: UC, CSU  Prerequisite: None.

GIS are computer-based systems used to collect, store and analyze geographic information. This course will present the concepts of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) science and its applications to spatial data management. Topics include: Identification and acquisition of GIS data; Assessment of vector and raster data, scale, resolution, map projection, coordinate systems, georeferencing and Global Positioning Systems (GPS). Spatial analysis and modeling with GIS will also be presented.

GIS 20 is the same course as Geography 20. Students may receive credit for one, but not both.

Course Number: 4226 Time: 5:30 p.m.-8:35 p.m. TTh Location: BUS 250 Instructor: Liu J

Above section 4226 meets for 8 weeks, Aug 28 to Oct 18.


Transfer: CSU  Prerequisite: Geography 20 or GIS 20.

Formerly same course as CIS 23.

This course emphasizes GIS principles and methodology used in both the private and public sectors. Hands-on applications using both raster and vector data and technology will expose students to more advanced understanding of GIS. Students will learn various methods of data acquisition, including Global Positioning Systems (GPS) as well as the World Wide Web. The add-on modules extend the analytical capabilities of ArcMap and allow input of map features and conversion of feature themes from raster to vector. This course will also provide an introduction to several of ArcMap’s extension including Spatial Analyst and 3D Analyst. Students will complete a Model Builder to be used in siting new solar sites. Spatial Analysis will include slope and aspect maps, neighborhood and zone analysis. The course will present single and multi-layer statistical operations including classification, coordination, and modeling analysis.

GIS 23 is the same course as Geography 23. Students may receive credit for one, but not both.

Course Number: 4227 Time: 5:30 p.m.-8:35 p.m. TTh Location: BUS 250 Instructor: Liu J

Above section 4227 meets for 8 weeks, Oct 23 to Dec 13.


Transfer: CSU  Prerequisite: None.

This course introduces students to the basic concepts of remote sensing, characteristics of remote sensors, and remote sensing applications in academic disciplines and professional industries. Emphases are placed on remote sensing data acquisition; digital image processing and interpretation. The course is designed for students interested in the Earth Observing System, environmental monitoring techniques, and image analysis.

GIS 26 is the same course as Geography 26. Students may earn credit for one, but not both.

Course Number: 2523 Time: 2 p.m.-5:05 p.m. T Location: BUS 250 Instructor: Staff

Summer and Fall 2018 GIS class offerings at Rio Hondo College

Summer and Fall GIS class offerings at Rio Hondo College include Introduction, field data collection, GIS & Python, Crime Mapping, GIS Applications, Cartography and Environmental GIS.  For a full list of class offerings and descriptions you can visit Rio Hondo College GIS page.

Summer classes (8 weeks) start June 18th and Fall starts August 20th.

LA County (RRCC) Looking for Help Locating Vote Centers

This came through Nextdoor – from the LA County RRCC (related to Vote Centers).

In 2020, we’re stepping away from polling places and moving to Vote Centers – providing voters with greater convenience, accessibility and time to vote. We want YOUR help in choosing the locations of these Vote Centers.

The key part for the GIS community – Suggest a location for a Vote Center: (go to ‘Suggest a Vote Center’ under Community Engagement).

Modernizing the voting experience is stemmed directly from the California Voter’s Choice Act, which some Counties in CA are already implementing.  View our CA Voter’s Choice Act factsheet for more info:

Take a look at what the future Vote Center model looks like: If you have any questions go to our Contact Us page:   Thank you.


County of San Bernardino

The County of San Bernardino department of Public Works has two GIS Analyst positions open. The first position is a contract GIS Analyst position, the second position is a regular full time GIS Analyst position.

See the links below for the job fliers:

Contract GIS Analyst position:

Full Time GIS Analyst position:

Welcome Steve Steinberg! New LA County GIO!

Re-posting – because it’s important (thanks Michael Carson).

Congratulations to Steve Steinberg on becoming the new Geographic Information Officer (GIO) for the County of Los Angeles. He will be working from the Internal Services Department (ISD); for those of you that want to know.

Before joining the County, Steve was the Principal Scientist and Department Head for Information Management and Analysis at Southern California Coastal Water Research Project (SCCWRP), a public agency for environmental research located in Costa Mesa.

Steve has extensive experience with geospatial analysis technologies including GIS, remote sensing, and image analysis in interdisciplinary applications.  He has a B.S. in Natural Resources, a M.S. in Natural Resources Policy and Management, and a Ph.D. in Forestry (Geospatial Sciences).  He also has co-authored books, such as GIS Research Methods: Incorporating Spatial Perspectives (2015) and GIS for the Social Sciences: Investigating Space and Place (2006).

Oblique satellite imagery from PlanetLabs

Wanted to pass this along:

These are oblique imagery from the satellites from Planet Labs.

There are some potential applications, too, beyond the “wow” factor of the images. Taking stereo images of an object from different angles will allow for the derivation of height. And taking images from many different angles will allow for the construction of a 3D model of a mountain or be used to track urban growth in cities.

There is even enough resolution in the SkySat images for commodity traders to track the volumes of coal at a site, the depth of mines, or even to determine the height of shipping containers to measure the outflow of goods from a port.

Oblique imagery of Zion National Park (one of my favorite places)

Interactive Nuclear Blast Map

A bit creepy, but GIS nonetheless.

Interactive Nuclear Blast Map

Interactive Nuclear Blast Map

Big Data Day LA 2018

This post has been updated. The original, August 18 date has been moved to Saturday, August 11. Per Subash, valid tickets issued with the previous tentative date will still be honored.

Registration for Big Data Day LA is now open.

There has been a rise in the field of Data Science and a host of technologies that surround this field. With over a dozen different knowledge tracks, this event covers a wide range of subjects ranging from material that will challenge hard core data scientists down to introductory material for newbies in this field.

These presentations explain technologies like the IoT, Hadoop, Spark, Redis, Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning, Predictive Analytics, etc. Examples of the use of these emerging technologies in GIS can be found in the FOSS4G 2017 presentations or this short video from Planet (formerly Planet Labs).

When explaining Big Data, I like to use this example. Once upon a time, TV ratings were computed from a handful of Nielsen boxes placed in a given city. Today, every second watched by every PC, phone, or tablet on Netflix is tracked, and new content is created based on predictive analytics.

Date: Saturday, August 11, 2018
Times: 8:00 AM to 7:00 PM
Where: USC Marshall School of Business, Los Angeles
Cost: Free if you register before April 30; $40 if you register in May and June

Notes: This event usually fills very, very fast.

NG9-1-1 and the GIS Workflow – Presented by SoCal URISA (LA)

Topics Covered:

  • Why Next Gen 9-1-1 (NG9-1-1)?
  • Keystakeholders: PSAP, Address, GIS
  • 9-1-1 Technology, Terminology & Standards
  • GIS and Next Generation 9-1-1
  • Getting Your GIS Ready
  • Real-World Examples and Lessons Learned

Los Angeles Workshop:

Wed, February 21, 2018, 10:00 AM – 2:30 PM PST

Los Angeles Fire Department
Metropolitan Fire Communications Center
500 E. Temple Street
Los Angeles, CA 90012
For more information and to register:

4 GISP CEUs are granted to attendees!

Limit of 35 attendees.