Thursday, October 16, 2014

Complexity Talk Human-Environment Interactions - And Free Maps

I'm on the mailing list for the UAA complexity series.

I realize this is a specialized topic, but I've always found the complexity presentations particularly interesting.  The talks are designed for an interdisciplinary audience.  It's free and Fridays offer free parking on campus. 

Title: Spatially Explicit Modeling of Human-Environment Interactions.
Presented by: Dr. Frank Witmer. UAA. Computer Science and Engineering
When: Friday,  October 17th 2014 11:30-12:45
Where: CPISB 105A 

Abstract: Modeling complex human-environment interactions can take many forms.  Most of the data we use to inform our models has a spatial dimension to it, even if it is not recorded as an attribute in the dataset. This presentation discusses the importance of explicitly incorporating the spatial dimension when modeling human-environment relationships.  Some common modeling approaches using simulation and regression will be discussed before looking at an example from my research modeling climate variability and violence in sub-Saharan Africa.

Note:  The names of buildings at the university are difficult enough, but then when they become acronyms they are almost impossible.   This talk is in CPISB.  I figured the B was for building.   What mnemonic device can I use to remember this? I didn't have to think.  It jumped right out.   See Piss Building.  So I immediately thought of this famous Belgian statue. Mannekin Pis, which should be on top of the building.

Image (and there are many more) from Minube

I looked it up.  Probably this should be on top of the building:  Conoco-Philips Integrated Science Building.   It's back behind the library. 

And  Free Maps

I also got a link to the USGS site which announces:

Nearly Every USGS Topo Map Ever Made. For Free.

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) has been producing detailed topographic maps for more than 125 years. Today they are nearly all digitized and free to download through the USGS Map Store, an incredible treasure trove for both map junkies and casual hikers alike.


  1. Unfortunately, they are just PDF scans of USGS maps, not GIS maps that could work with GPS.

  2. Yes, but you know industry would not allow them to give the GIS maps away free when there's a profit to be made.


Comments will be reviewed, not for content (except ads), but for style. Comments with personal insults, rambling tirades, and significant repetition will be deleted. Ads disguised as comments, unless closely related to the post and of value to readers (my call) will be deleted. Click here to learn to put links in your comment.