Dr Mike J Smith

Plymouth University

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Mike Smith

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Wolfram Alpha
Wolfram's Alpha has made quite a big splash on the search engine scene and looks likely to redefine the whole search business....

posted on: Tue, 19 May 2009 | path: /computing | permanent link to this entry

GPS Failure?
Tidbits are reporting on the potential for a degradation in GPS accuracy over the next 2 years. The basis for the article is a recent Government Accountability Office report on the US Air Force satellite replacement program for GPS which is behind schedule and over budget (nothing new there then for the military!). However a risk analysis is highlighting the likelihood for the constellation to drop below 24 satellites potentially reducing accuracy. And, if over runs continue, the risk of a failure of the system. Not much to do but watch and wait, but clearly it's a highlighted risk.

posted on: Mon, 18 May 2009 | path: /remote_sensing | permanent link to this entry

OS Reviews Free Data Model
Charles Arthur has an interesting article over at the Free Our Data campaign, briefly summarising an invitee only presentation by the OS Chairman outlining their new "hybrid" strategy. Charles focuses upon the claims that the OS has reviewed the free data model, finding it non-viable. Quite rightly, Charles notes that this forms an important document within the debate on free data and should be made generally available. Assuming, of course, that it does exist in any formal sense. Well worth reading and pondering on.

posted on: Fri, 15 May 2009 | path: /GIS | permanent link to this entry

Kiva: try some philanthropy
I recently came across Kiva, "the world's first person-to-person micro-lending website." Kiva is a charity that links with microfinance institutions on the ground in developing countries to enable targeted lending to individuals, helping them improve their life, often through small business development....

posted on: Wed, 13 May 2009 | path: | permanent link to this entry

IKONOS Data licensed by ESA
Interesting news over at Mundogeo announcing the licensing of IKONOS imagery by ESA. The interesting aspect is, to quote the article: "Ikonos as a Third Party Mission is available to Esa and Esa-approved projects for scientific research, applications development, or research and development in preparation for operational use in future, the so-called Category-1 use." Which means that an ESA approved project can have access to IKONOS imagery. Potentially a very useful source of data.

posted on: Wed, 06 May 2009 | path: /remote_sensing | permanent link to this entry

What's your DOI?
I would hope everyone in academic knows what a DOI (or digital object identifier) is. And to quote Wikipedia, it's a "permanent digital identifier given to an object."...

posted on: Mon, 04 May 2009 | path: /publications | permanent link to this entry

Ciao Bella, Bloomsbury
I had a very pleasant meal at Ciao Bella, a wonderful "little" Italian restaurant in the heart of Bloomsbury and at the north end of Lamb Conduit Street. We went early evening when it was relatively quiet, but apparently it gets packed out and needs to be booked in advance. The food was excellent and, amazingly, you can get a two course meal for 2 for under 30 (without drinks). Highly recommended.

posted on: Fri, 01 May 2009 | path: /fun | permanent link to this entry