GES2050 - Digital Earth - Schedule

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Fall 2015

Aug. 24 - Introductions, The Digital Earth Idea, Setting the Stage for Digital Earth


Topics:

1) Student and instructor introductions
2) The Digital Earth idea
3) Course objectives and logistics
4) Course overview: To provide an introduction to key geographic / spatial information technologies in exciting ways
5) Computing and Windows basics: File Explorer, directory structures, file and folder naming conventions, copy/paste, the utility of NotePad, the 'snipping' tool, more...
6) Finish PART ONE of Exercise One before leaving class today

Before class next week:
Make as much progress as possible on Exercise One (your GES2050 website)


Aug. 31 - Evolution of Digital Earth Concept, Brief History of GIS


Topics:

1) Evolutioin of the Digital Earth idea
2) A brief history of geospatial technologies
3) Finish all of Exercise One before leaving class today.
4) Anonymous pre-course assessment quiz


Sept. 14 - Cartographic Basics - LAB ONE


Topics:

1) Cartographic basics: map scale, datums, projections, coordinate systems
2) USGS GNIS

Before 5:00 pm Date

Finish Lab One: Asking Questions of Maps - Interacting with the 'This Dynamic Planet' Map


Sept. 21 - Goals of Map Use, Data Models (R/V), Virtual Globes, Google Earth - LAB TWO

Topics:
1) Goals of map use (cartography cubed)
2) Data models - raster and vector
3) Virtual Globes (VG) / Web Map Services (WMS),
4) GE demos: Machu Picchu, Peru; Seattle, WA 3D buildings / street view; Grand Canyon, AZ; weather layers

Before class next week:
Read the following two documents:

  1. Congressional Research Service Report, Jan., 2010 - Geospatial Information and Geographic Information Systems (GIS): Current Issues and Future Challenges (PDF)
  2. Butler, D. 2006. The Web-Wide World, Nature, Vol 439

Before 5:00 pm Date
Finish Lab Two: Documenting the Variety of Cultural / Physical Geography in El Paso County, Colorado Using the VG Google Earth


Sept. 28 - Common Geospatial Data and Imagery (and where to get it), SkylineGlobe - LAB THREE


Topics:
1) Discuss readings
2) Common geospatial data file types (e.g., DOQ, DRG, DLG, DEM, TIN, GeoPDF, SHP, TIGER SHP, KML, plus GOES and Landsat)
3) Online Govt. and commercial data delivery portals (e.g., Geocomm.com, US Census Bureau, NationalAtlas.gov, National Map Seamless Server, Center for LIDAR Information Coordination and Knowledge (CLICK), Landsat Global Information Viewer (GLOVIS), NOAA Satellite and Information Service)

Before 5:00 pm Date
Finish Lab Three: Estimating the Extent of Urban Sprawl on Long Island, NY, and Other Exciting Geographic Explorations Using the Virtual Globe SkylineGlobe


Oct. 5 - Global Positioning Systems (GPS) Theory


Topics:
1) Primary and secondary data
2) GPS theory
3) Practice with GPS receivers (to prepare for next week's GPS data collection)
> collect ONE waypoint at fire hydrant near main entrance (nw corner) of parking garage, write lat. / long. on the board
4) Review Excel spreadsheet (to prepare for next week's GPS data entry process)


Date - Global Positioning Systems (GPS) In Practice - LAB FOUR, PART I - data collection / data entry

Topics:
1) Group field work: Collect waypoints across campus (using a large scale (e.g., 'zoomed in') GE image of the UCCS campus as a guide, students collect / average waypoints using Garmin ETREX GPS receivers
2) Group data entry into database:

NOTE: The two documents used in class today (data_collect.docx and gps_to_gis.xls) are in Brandon's faculty outbox here: ges2050\lab4docs

Before this Friday @ 5:00 pm:
Email Brandon your group's Excel file for review FROM YOUR UCCS email account - MAKE SURE all group members are included (CCed) on the email, using their UCCS email account.


Date - Test One (covering material presented Date - Date)


Date - Global Positioning Systems' (GPS) Integration with GIS; GIS in Theory and Practice - LAB FOUR, PART II - GPS in GIS


Topics:
1) Demo - ArcMap interface, important components, common tasks
2) Georectification (what you are doing in Lab Four)
3) Lab Four

Before 5:00 pm Date
Finish Lab Four: GPS and GIS - Using Control Points Collected in the Field to Georeference a .jpg of the UCCS Campus


Date - Geographic Visualization (Geovisualization) - LAB FIVE


Topics:
1) Geovisualization theory
2) Geovisualization practice:
> Case study: lightning climatology of Colorado
3) Lab Five

Before 5:00 pm Date
Finish Lab Five: Geovisualization and Pattern Discovery - Draping Geology and Cultural Features over Topography


Date - Remote Sensing (RS) - LAB SIX


Topics:

1) Image compression
2) Remote sensing basics -- electromagnetic radiation (EMR) and the electromagnetic spectrum, platforms, geostationary vs. polar-orbiting satellites, four resolutions, active/passive RS, applications
3) RS in archaeology - an example using Landsat (a short NOVA video)
4) Lab Six

Before 5:00 pm Date
Finish Lab Six: Remote Sensing - IDRISI: Using Landsat Imagery and NDVI to Distinguish Vegetation near Pueblo, Colorado


Date- Geomorphometry / Digital Terrain Modeling; Spatial Analysis - LAB SEVEN


Topics:
1) The role of scale in measurement
2) Techniques for measuring the complexity of lines and surfaces in digital environments
3) Tips for Lab Seven: Glacial features, volume of 1/2 a cylinder
4) Lab Seven

Before 5:00 pm Date
Finish Lab Seven: Digital Terrain Modeling and Geomorphometry using Peter Guth's MicroDEM


Date - FIELD TRIP TO NATIONAL CENTER FOR ATMOSPHERIC RESEARCH (NCAR), BOULDER, CO - 3 HR. VISIT RUNS FROM 1:00 - 3:30 pm. DETAILS PROVIDED IN CLASS.


Date - Neighborhood Operations, Data Interpolation - LAB EIGHT

Topics:
1) Spatial data interpolation: a few methods
2) Roving windows (neighborhood operations)
3) Lab Eight

Before 5:00 pm Date
Finish Lab Eight: Spatial Analysis and DEMs - Mountain Geography: Investigating Colorado Fourteeners Pixel by Pixel


Date - TED Talks, ArcGIS.com, and Exam Two review


Topics:
1) TED Talks GIS-related videos:

2) In class group exercise: Test Two review


Date - Test Two - Time

Schedule may change. Changes announced in class and posted here.