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UW to Host GIS Day Events Nov. 18


November 11, 2009 — The Wyoming Geographic Information Science Center (WyGISC) at the University of Wyoming will commemorate GIS Day (Nov. 18) with an open house, two presentations and a panel discussion.

Held each year on the Wednesday of National Geographic Society's Geography Awareness Week, GIS Day is a global event to make people aware of geographic information system (GIS) technology and the important contributions it makes in the fields of science, technology, information, and the humanities.

The UW event will open at noon in Room 316 of the Agriculture Building with a presentation by WyGISC Director Jeff Hamerlinck, titled "All Things GIS: An Introduction to Geospatial Data and Technology." An open house and various demonstrations at WyGISC follows from 1-3 p.m. Food and drinks will be served.

A second presentation, also in AG 316, titled "Discovering Geospatial Resources at the University of Wyoming" will be from 2:10-3 p.m. The event concludes at 3:30 p.m. with a panel discussion on careers in GIS and remote sensing in Room 219 of the Classroom Building.

"GIS, remote sensing and associated ‘location-based services' like online route finding and global positioning systems continue to grow throughout the world as important applications of information technology supporting science, education, commerce, and governmental services" Hamerlinck says. "For this year's GIS Day events, we're emphasizing outreach to students with opportunities to learn more about the wide variety of ways that geospatial technologies may be applied, as well as career opportunities in the GIS field."

A GIS is a computer-based mapping tool that takes information from a database about a location, such as streets, buildings, water features and terrain, and turns it into visual layers. The ability to see geographic features on a map gives users a better understanding of a particular location, enabling planners, analysts and others to make informed decisions about their communities.

GIS is used daily to solve problems related to the environment, health care, land use, business efficiency, education and public safety. The technology also allows people to download maps from the Internet for directions and helps farmers grow crops with fewer chemicals.

WyGISC is an interdisciplinary research institute focused on research and development, education, and outreach associated with geospatial information representation, access, visualization, analysis and modeling. For more information, go to the WyGISC Web site at www.uwyo.edu/wygisc.

Posted on Wednesday, November 11, 2009

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