Dr Mike J Smith

Plymouth University

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Mike Smith

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RSPSoc 2017:
RSPSoc 2017 looked to have a fine set of talks this year hosted by the marvelous people at the Royal School of Mines, Imperial College. Check out the abstracts. SfM had it's only session (naturally!), preceded by a plenary from Mike James (Lancaster). This session also included talks from myself/James O'Connor on our work reviewing camera settings for UAVs and the impact of image quality on SfM photogrammetry. The first set of slides are below and the second set on this page.

posted on: Thu, 07 Sep 2017 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

Evidence Matters
Sense About Science kicked off their Evidence Matters campaign earlier this year and this month held a meeting in parliament to push the importance of policy decisions based upon factual evidence....

posted on: Tue, 29 Nov 2016 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

Studio of Objects at RGS
The Studio of Objects (see all my previous posts on the project), which recorded the interior space of Paolozzi's studio at the Scottish National Gallery, was available for viewing and interaction at the Royal Geographical Society Annual Conference last week in London. I took part in a panel discussion on the arts and sciences (see my personal page for slides and mp3) and then for the rest of the day the latest beta version was available in the main hall. In fact, the installation was so popular that it made a return visit on Friday where delegates had a second bite at the interactive cherry!

posted on: Sat, 03 Sep 2016 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

Food in Vienna
I was away at the European Geosciences Union last week presenting in a number of sessions. EGU has long been in Vienna which is a wonderfully cosmopolitan city with by far one of the best transit systems I have used....

posted on: Fri, 29 Apr 2016 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

AGI Open Source Presentation
Great to be back at the AGI Annual Conference today and speaking about open source and giving a live demo....

posted on: Tue, 24 Nov 2015 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

**EGU 2016** Unmanned Aerial Systems: Platforms, Sensors and Applications in the Geosciences (SS12.18)
EGU 2016 General Assembly Session (search for SS12.18) Conveners: Mike J Smith (Kingston), Mike James (Lancaster), DamiÓ Vericat (Lleida), Saskia Keesstra (Wageningen)...

posted on: Mon, 02 Nov 2015 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

Peer Review (event summary)
I was recently on a panel discussion organised by Sense About Science on peer review specifically targeted at PhD and early career researchers....

posted on: Thu, 11 Jun 2015 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

Credit card for travel?
I'm off to the 6th Argentine Congress on Quaternary Geomorphology (or the rather handy Google Translate version!) shortly so have been prepping various academic and travel things ready for the trip. One thing I stumbled across which might be useful to other (UK) travelers is paying abroad - credit cards are obviously dead handy in this regard but usually charge a foreign transaction fee. Not so the Halifax Clarity Credit Card which is free on foreign transaction and, indeed, free on cash withdrawals. If you pay off your card monthly then this is a great deal.

posted on: Fri, 27 Mar 2015 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

Mount Everest Foundation
Late last year I became a trustee at the Mount Everest Foundation, an charity (and company) dedicated to "provide grants and recognition to assist particularly deserving expeditions for the exploration of, and scientific work in, the mountain regions of the world."...

posted on: Thu, 17 Apr 2014 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

Mapping Workshop - Loughborough 3 Sept 2013
If you haven't clocked it already, I am involved in organising a workshop on the mapping of glacial landforms this September....

posted on: Thu, 15 Aug 2013 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

RGS Children's Lecture
Christmas sees a proliferation of lectures and meetings with, increasingly, many aimed at children (perhaps exemplified by the Royal Society)....

posted on: Sat, 08 Dec 2012 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

Conference: Objective Geomorphological Representation Models
The IAG/AIG WG on Apllied Geomorphological Mapping (, together with the Italian Association of Physical Geography and Geomorphology (AIGEO), the University of Salerno, with the support of National Park Cilento and Vallo di Diano, and Geoparks are organizing an International Workshop on "Objective Geomorphological Representation Models: Breaking through a New Geomorphological Mapping Frontier" on 15-19 October 2012, in the Salerno University Campus, Italy....

posted on: Fri, 11 May 2012 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

Travel with SAS......
As a follow-up to that last post, we are pretty well served for flights to Stockholm with Gatwick, Heathrow and Stansted all flying out....

posted on: Wed, 15 Feb 2012 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

Swedish PhD Defence
Just got back from a PhD defence at the Stockholm University in Sweden. Never having assessed a PhD outside the UK this was interesting as a process, as well as seeing some new research....

posted on: Tue, 14 Feb 2012 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

University of Ulster Visit
I'm visiting the University of Ulster tomorrow, so took the opportunity to fly up from Southampton to Belfast. The last time I flew to Belfast was by EasyJet from Luton which is pretty standard fare. So imagine my surprise when I boarded the FlyBe aircraft and noticed these blade shaped things spinning around on the outside. Spooky.

posted on: Thu, 15 Sep 2011 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

RSPSoc 2011
I'm currently attending RSPSoc2011 which is again producing a wide variety of topics all centred around remote sensing....

posted on: Wed, 14 Sep 2011 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

Imagining the future of the journal - RGS Discussion Panel
I was invited on to a discussion panel entitled "Imagining the future of the journal" at the RGS-IBG Annual Conference last week (very brief coverage in THES)....

posted on: Mon, 05 Sep 2011 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

Using Kindles in HE
I gave a talk yesterday about using Kindles in HE and, in particular, using them for marking, reading research papers and briefly pondering about their student use. This really comes out of my initial reactions to using the Kindle and further experience. Slides are linked below if they are of interest.

posted on: Wed, 11 May 2011 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

AGI'10: Open Source GIS
I gave a talk at the AGI this year on Open Source GIS. I've now placed the slides online as there were loads of URLs in them. The talk is by no means comprehensive in terms of open source geospatial software, but I gave a broad-brush approach providing examples of software from a wide range of domains we often use in the geospatial world. One extra element (as I'm a proponent of portable apps) is that, where possible, I've given links to portable (USB) versions of the apps. Hopefully this will prove useful to people.

posted on: Mon, 08 Nov 2010 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

Photogrammetric Week
Photogrammetric Week has a long and enviable record as a high profile, quality, conference. In fact, amazingly for a "conference", it held its 100th Anniversary last year. And whilst it obviously focuses upon photogrammetry, there are many talks devoted to related topics (LiDAR, IfSAR etc). And, somewhat like RSPSoc Annual Conference they publish a set of extended abstracts which are really very useful. If you've missed these then the entire back catalogue is available. This is a fantastic resource and, being open access, means they are index by Google as well. RSPSoc need to take a leaf out of PW's book and do the same, otherwise they will languish on a dusty shelf.

posted on: Sat, 11 Sep 2010 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

Camp Stansted
I left for RSPSoc 2010 yesterday. Flights from Stansted, Heathrow and Gatwick all go in to Cork, but I reckoned that Stansted was easiest and caught the airport bus up late last night....

posted on: Wed, 01 Sep 2010 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

OS Trumped
Just returned from a pleasant day at the RGS-IBG annual conference. An event well worth attending as its mellow and covers a range of subjects. However it is largely colonised by human geographers, a strange breed. Thats not for want of the RGS trying to get physical geographers involved... Time will tell. Anyway the OS are one the of the primary (platinum?!) sponsors of the RGS (along with Land Rover and Rolex from memory). So the map of the venue, and how to get to it, prominantly displayed on the back cover of the abstracts naturally used Open Street Map data. Nice one!

posted on: Fri, 29 Aug 2008 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

1st year field trip to Swansea
I've just got back from our first year geography field trip to the Gower Peninsula. Designated the first Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty in 1949, development is limited and so it is relatively unspoilt and quite wild....

posted on: Sat, 05 Apr 2008 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

Free Our Data @ Kingston
OK, well its not quite the Free Our Data Campaign roadshow, but Charles Arthur, Technology Editor at the Guardian and one of the campaign founders, was speaking at Kingston last week. I would love to say that his talk was excellent, well founded and thoroughly thought provoking, but unfortunately I was ill and my colleague Ken was covering for me. However Charles apparently did stimulate quite a bit of discussion which he mentions here. So yes, we will be able to post the video once its been processed (and I'll be watching it!).

posted on: Mon, 18 Feb 2008 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

IGS British Branch Meeting
I attended the International Glaciological Society's British Branch meeting a couple of weeks ago at the School of Geosciences in Edinburgh....

posted on: Mon, 24 Sep 2007 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

DEMs, castle coffee and dodgy wifi
I've recently returned from a trip to the Geography Department at the University of Durham where I gave two research seminars on some of my close-range remote sensing and DEM visualisation work....

posted on: Sat, 22 Sep 2007 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

In a galaxy far far away....
I was speaking at the Society of Cartographers - 43rd Annual Summer School this week (gentle introduction to spaceborne DEMs) and whilst only there for the day, a thoroughly relaxed and pleasant affair it was too....

posted on: Fri, 07 Sep 2007 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

DMT Meeting and themes
So the reason for going to the US was to attend DMT07 which is principally aimed at geologists and cartographers from state geological surveys, although this year there were representatives from the UK, Czechoslovakia and Japan....

posted on: Thu, 24 May 2007 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

Long live the Car
Well if the Chinese are wedded to their phones, then the Americans are wedded to their cars. I had forgotten just how much space there is in American cities, and Columbia is no different....

posted on: Sun, 20 May 2007 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

Mistaken Identity
I'm actually presenting at Digital Mapping Techniques this week, hence the flight out of Gatwick, via Philadelphia, to Columbia (South Carolina)....

posted on: Sun, 20 May 2007 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

Train Ticket Price Increases
There seems to have been much written on the recent train ticket price increases. Whilst some fares remain protected (to an extent), others do not....

posted on: Sat, 03 Feb 2007 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

Planetary Geosciences, Geological Society
I've just spent a couple of days at the Geological Society in Picadilly at a conference on Planetary Geosciences....

posted on: Thu, 09 Nov 2006 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

China: Shopping Experiences
Had some time to go around a couple of shopping malls today and, again, an interesting experience. Supermarkets are very much like they are here, except with some local differences....

posted on: Fri, 25 Aug 2006 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

Chinese Hosting
So far this week I have found the Chinese to be warm, friendly and very hospitable. They are genuinely interested in talking to you, finding out about western culture and discussing their own....

posted on: Thu, 24 Aug 2006 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

China: First Experiences
I wasn't sure quite what to expect of "China". Stepping off the plane in August you are immediately hit with the heat....

posted on: Sun, 20 Aug 2006 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

Heathrow Security
An interesting experience on a flight to Beijing today. Not having travelled internationally for a while, and with the heightened security after terrorist alerts in London, I wasn't sure what to expect....

posted on: Sat, 19 Aug 2006 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

Free Our Data Public Debate
I attended an RSA public debate on access to data collected by public bodies. This was co-sponsored by The Guardian as part of their Free Our Data campaign....

posted on: Tue, 18 Jul 2006 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

BGRG Annual Conference
I've just returned from an exhausting three days at the British Geomorphological Research Groups Annnual Conference in Loughborough....

posted on: Sun, 02 Jul 2006 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

Ravens Ait - a haven on the Thames?
I had a day at Ravens Ait this week which is located on an island in the Thames between Hampton Court Palace and Kingston upon Thames....

posted on: Sat, 10 Jun 2006 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry

AGI Education Lecture: Professor Dave Unwin
I attended an evening lecture last week organised by the AGI (hosted by UCL) as part of their "education" series....

posted on: Mon, 29 May 2006 | path: /meetings | permanent link to this entry