October 21, 2013

Give us your could win a bunch of data on a hard drive or a GPS!

VCGI has posted its biennial customer survey and hopes that you will take a few minutes to provide your opinions and ideas so that we can improve. In addition, participants can choose to be entered into a drawing to win a hand-held GPS receiver or an external drive full of VT Imagery Data (winners choice)! The survey will be open through the end of October.

Click here to share your thoughts with us.

October 11, 2013

We had some great presentations and discussion at the VT Open Data Summit on October 8 in Montpelier! See Hilary Niles' article about it at

Follow-up: VCGI will be pursuing some of the ideas discussed at the end of the afternoon. We will work on creating a discussion forum and crafting a state agency/hacker matchmaking hackathon in the near future.

Presentations and talking points from presenters are posted here:

August 30, 2013

plus who won the prizes!

VCGI asked constituents to provide feedback about their priorities for the future VCGI Data Warehouse through a 100 point exercise. They were given 100 points to distribute among the various user requirements in order to indicate which were of greatest importance. The results of that survey can be viewed here: Data Warehouse Survey Results

The top ten user requirements based on average scores:

  • As a User, I want "authoritative" datasets to be discoverable and clearly identified.
  • As a User, I want access to aerial photos (eg: VT orthos) with no downloading required (ie: as a web service).
  • As a User, I want a robust and easy-to-use search engine to help me find the geospatial data, web services, and web/mobile/desktop applications.
  • As a User, I want access to historical aerial photos.
  • As a User, I want a browser-based Data Warehouse solution that does not require a browser plug-in.
  • As a User, I want to download aerial photos (eg: VT orthos) so I can use them on my computer.
  • As a User, I want access to VT GIS data layers with no downloading required (ie: as a web service).
  • As a User, I want to download VT GIS data layers in ESRI shapefile format.
  • As a User, I want access to imagery organized by year (whether for download or web service).
  • As a User, I want all data that I find to be available for download (not just a link to an external website).

The two randomly chosen winners were Jonathan Frishtick of GIS/GPS Mapping and Michael Batcher of Bennington County Regional Commission! Thanks to everyone for taking the time to complete the survey.

The EGC Data Warehouse Re-Design Working Group is currently working on evaluating options for how to implement a new data warehouse while meeting as many of the identified priority user requirements as possible! More info to come.

August 27, 2013

An innovative summer camp encourages kids to get creative with technology...

Young Hacks Academy was an exciting day camp for 10-12 year olds to explore programming basics and create interactive stories.

Young Hacks Agents developed collaborative problem-solving skills through daily missions in front of and away from a computer. By weeks end, graduates of Young Hacks Agent Training had sharpened their powers of creativity and communication, while making some new friends along the way.

As teams of three, students walked around Colchester High School in search of 6 Young Hacks Academy "geocache" containers. Inside each container was a riddle that related to the location of the next container on the list of waypoints. The kids had a blast using their tracking devices as a compass.

Here are some pictures of the kids using VCGI's GPS units (available for free loan to towns, nonprofits, and schools/camps!):


August 14, 2013

 Great tips from a CT expert!

Michael Howser, Digital Scholarship & Data Curation Team Leader, Digital Repository Program Coordinator, and Connecticut State Data Center Director of the University of Connecticut presented guidelines and tips related to digitizing older aerial imagery and making it available to the public. Check out his slide show as well as the recording of the webinar at the links below.