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Geotec / CCA Conference Day 1

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Geotec opens with bagpiper leading in the important folks. I don’t think I’ll be needing any coffee now. Matt Ball, of Geoplace, is the first to speak and quotes Roger Tomlinson days. A few housekeeping items follow – buses will be available to get to the gala dinner in Hull – but wil we be able to watch game 7 of the Stanley Cup finals tonight?

Pierre Lemieux, MP for Glengarry-Prescott-Russell, gets up to say a few words. Looks like he’s filling in for the absent Minister of Natural Resources Canada. I don’t know French but I do know that his isn’t too good. He talks a bit about the Atlas of Canada, and says a little bit about how wonderful it is. 7.5 million user sessions this year – expected to increase to 10.5 million by the end of the year.

Ian Wilson, of Library and Archives Canada, gets up to speak. He’s coming out with a book to be launched tomorrow at Geotec called Terra Nostra (which I am getting a review copy, thanks to the foresight of my wife when she was attending BookExpo in Toronto last week). More words about the Atlas of Canada, this time the old versions starting in 1906. He retells a humourous anecdote that reflects the optimsm of the time. He came across a map of Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan from 1902 which set out planned suburb plans for the growing town. These were named the Bronx, Manhattan and Brooklyn. These suburbs, apparently, are still good farmland. And then Ian gives Pierre a special copy of the book. Smiles all around.

Next up is Elizabeth Wong from Canada Post. What’s the connection of Canada Post and the geospatial world? A new stamp, of course. How about showing an example Elizabeth? Okay – there is. Looks nice. More presentations to Pierre. More smiles all around.

Ambient Findability
Opening Keynote
Peter Morville

Peter begins with a definition of information architecture abd how most people who are designing information architecture are not information architects. The information search process is usually iterative – queries evolve and are refined as the process goes along. Useability includes: useful, desirable, accessible, credible, findable and valuable. The Internet version of “location, location, location” is showing up in the top ten of a Google search. High rankings in the results listing of a Google search also increases users trust in the displayed links. “A wealth of information creates a poverty of attention.” (Herbert Simon) In an age where we can select our sources and coose our news, how is this going to affect our decision-making? Objects such as wheelchairs are being tracked. People can track their kids. Is this something we want to get into? The Internet will turn everyone into a librarian. (podzinger.com, semapedia.com

Mashups – now he is talking about geospatial ideas for the first time.

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