I’d like to formally welcome you all to the first W3G
Hashtags for the Twitterers in the audience
This is not a conference
Conferences are fairly formal affairs with invited speaks and strict agendas
Unconferences are far more relaxed
You participate and slap your talk title on a post-it note on “The Wall”
Even the talk titles are more relaxed
An (un)conference is a half way house between a conference and an (un)conference … invited guest speakers to get you thinking and unconference sessions as well
Geo is a wide topic … from maps and cartography
… through LBS and LBMS
… and not forgetting GIS as well
The first of the 3 W’s of Geo is the where; what we’ve been doing for centuries, mapping the globe. Whilst it’s a sweeping generalisation, we’ve pretty much done this, albeit to a varying degree of accuracy, coverage and granularity. We’ve mapped the globe, now it’s time to do something with all of this data. The opportunity now is much less about what shall we map and much more about what can we create from this data, how can we use this data, what restrictions are placed upon this data and how can this data make a difference?
The second of the 3 W’s of Geo is the when, the gnarly problem of temporality which just won’t go away. The when shows up in two ways. Firstly there’s the fact that places and geography change over time; how we map a place today doesn’t show how the place was 100 years ago and neither can we expect the geography of a place to be static 100 years hence. As we update our geographic data sets and throw away the old, supposedly obsolete, historical versions, we’re throwing away a rich set of temporality in the process.Secondly there’s the problem of places which only exist at certain times of the year. Take Burning Man and Glastonbury; for most of the year these places are a salt flat in a desert and a farmer’s field but at a certain time they become places in their own right.
The third of the 3 W’s of Geo is the what; or to put it another way, that a reference to a place is intrinsically bound to its granularity. References to London from outside of the United Kingdom are frequently aimed at the non specific London bounded by the M25 orbital motorway. Zoom in and London becomes Greater London, and then the London Boroughs and finally the City of London and neighbouring City of Westminster.
W3G is free to attend
But it costs money to put on … we need to recognise the contribution that our sponsors have made
But W3G also costs time to put on
And wouldn’t have happened without the help of Rollo Home
As well as sterling support from Chris Holcroft and Claire Huppertz of the AGI
There’s even Geo Buzzword Bingo for you to play
It’s not time for me to stop and hand over to the first speaker. Enjoy the day