FOSS4G 2011

Look, I’m a realist when it comes to software and philosophy.  Use what gets your work done faster, more efficiently and without killing the penguins down in Antarctica.  I can’t even remember if open source software is “free as in beer” or “free as in I’m a cheap bastard”.  But what I do know is that if you aren’t familiar with all the tools available to you, there is a chance you maybe be doing things inefficiently and probably incorrectly.

That’s why I think this year, a great opportunity for everyone in North America 1 to make time to visit Denver for FOSS4G 2011 next month.  Since FOSS4G was last in our neck of the woods in 2007, the geospatial world has changed a ton.  So many new projects are available and more mature than ever before.  The choice that we all have today is greater than ever before and FOSS4G 2011 will give us all a chance to see what’s new and how we can use these projects in our workflows. 3 days in Denver will give you the information you’ll need to succeed in this space as it rapidly changes. Siting back and letting the world move forward without you is a recipe for obsolescence.

A quick look at the schedule shows that there are tons of great sessions to be involved with and for those who haven’t been exposed to open source projects before, there is a great Introduction to Geospatial Open Source that will help you get a better handle on your options.  I’ll be there all week and so will most of the big geo-personalitites in our space.  They all realize that this is an opportunity that only comes around once ever 5 years (yes it’s been that long since we’ve had one in North America) and you can’t afford to miss out.

New Google Earth Imagery – April 19

Just in time for Where 2.0, Google has pushed out some fresh imagery! Thanks to GEB reader ‘Munden’ for pointing it out. I’m not able to dig into it too much right now while I’m at the conference, so the extent of it is unknown. Dig in and see what you can find.


As is usually the case, you can use Google Maps to determine for sure whether or not a specific area is fresh. This new imagery isn’t in Google Maps yet, so you can compare Earth vs. Maps to see what’s new; the fresh imagery is already in Google Earth, but the old imagery is still in Google Maps. If you compare the two side-by-side and they’re not identical, that means that you’ve found a freshly updated area in Google Earth!

[UPDATED – 19-April, 9:54pm EST]

  • Germany: Various areas — thanks ‘sladys’
  • Japan: Ishinomaki — thanks ‘Munden’
  • United States: Arizona (Phoenix, Tucson), Kansas (Wichita), Massachusetts (Cape Cod), New Mexico (Albuquerque) and Texas (Amarillo, Austin) — thanks ‘ChrisK’, ‘ChrisZ’, ‘GT’ and ‘Jonahrf’

If you find any other updated areas, please leave a comment and let us know!

Chrome Web Store International Support: Developer Preview

When we recently announced the availability of the Chrome Web Store to Chrome users in the US, we mentioned that we were hard at work making the store available globally. Today we’re excited to announce a preview release of the upload flow for several international markets as a step towards that goal.
Starting today, when you upload an app via the developer dashboard, you’ll have the option of selecting from the following sixteen countries to list your app: Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, India, Italy, Japan, Mexico, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Spain, United Kingdom and the United States. If you are using Chrome Web Store Payments to charge for your app, you will also be able to set the app price for each country although if you’re not based in the United States you will not be able to complete your merchant account sign up just yet (this will be enabled soon).
Note that these apps will not yet be published to countries outside the United States. This will happen when the Chrome Web Store opens to consumers in these countries later this year. We are releasing this developer preview ahead of the consumer release so you have enough time to prepare your apps for international users.
We hope you can use this release to get familiar with the app upload process and take time to localize your app listing to make it accessible to more people. If you have additional questions, please take a look at our FAQ or join our developer discussion group.