Tuesday, June 24, 2008

GeoHub IDs and Master Servers

For GeoHubs participating as communities on the TITAN Network, we issue each organization both a license file and also a GeoHub ID.

A Master Server (like the one at the core of the TITAN Network) manages all GeoHub ID's. A GeoHub ID is like a username/password that a GeoHub must use in order to "sign on" to a Master Server. The Master Server will reject any GeoHub that tries to sign on without a valid set of credentials.

The installation script for the Master Server includes 2 GeoHub IDs, so a customer who is setting up their own Master Server doesn’t need us to create their first two GeoHub IDs. (they'll still need to get license files from us though)

A customer is either going to do one of two things:

  1. Set up the GeoHub on their own, private Master Server: in which case the above applies and they don’t need us to generate their first two GeoHub IDs
  2. Set up the GeoHub on the TITAN Network Master Server: in which case they are pointing their GeoHub at our live network (erdasTITAN.com) and an official GeoHub ID must be created and issued by us.

In the second method where a GeoHub is set up on the TITAN Network, we (ERDAS) makes an entry in the erdasTITAN.com Master Server each time.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Emergency Management Solution: Rapid, Scalable, Collaborative, Interactive, Interoperable, Dynamic...the list goes on

The very first sale of ERDAS TITAN was to NVision Solutions, a data provider in Bay St. Louis that faced firsthand the aftermath of Katrina. They really get TITAN and its broad utility in emergency management and response. Here’s why:

Disaster participants need ready access to real time data appropriate for situational awareness and managing a response. Communication and collaboration with other disaster participants is crucial to achieving situational awareness. Key decision-makers need a means to understand a common operational picture via reliable, up-to-date information. Data must be searchable, accessible and viewable across a broad spectrum of disaster workers using a broad array of applications. Data creators need to publish geoproducts with permissions from the field for direct and rapid delivery and not be hassled by format translations. Organizations need data ownership control of licensed data assets. Participants also need access to current content as well as tie into historic and pre-disaster data and content already made available via various data management and delivery solutions.

TITAN is utilized in a disaster to rapidly enable multitudes of stakeholders to dynamically publish and consume geospatial data and location-based content in one online, collaborative network. Users consume data from a variety of public and private sources and into a variety of virtual globe, internet and rich client applications. Data creators are empowered to publish and share data with permissions in field offices or directly from their laptops in the field. TITAN also provides a virtual globe experience where users can create a ‘MyWorld’ with location-based content and geodata and, with the click of a button, share that MyWorld with permissions to other users on the Network. Data is delivered via geospatial web services, ensuring protection of digital ownership rights.

That’s a lot of utility for emergency management and response in this data sharing application.

More details:

  • TITAN is a scalable, dynamic, rapidly deployable, online, real-time data sharing solution, supporting data publishing and delivery into many geospatial applications.
  • TITAN enables “real time” shared viewing of a common operating picture vital to effective communication during an emergency response.
  • Users can create and share a ‘MyWorld’, a geographically enabled space to upload data, set permissions, and share content with other network users. This ‘geospatial presentation space’ means sharing crucial geospatial data, notations, images and other location-based content in a collaborative, interactive 3D space and with thousands of users across the globe. This feature plus instant messenger chat enables real time, effective communication and collaboration amongst disaster participants within a common operational picture.
  • Using TITAN authors of data become servers of data, publishing geoproducts immediately with permissions and from the field.
  • Data publishing is facilitated while digital ownership rights are protected. TITAN enables ingestion of data in various file formats and delivers data via different means including geospatial web services (e.g. WMS), which means that only a portrayal of the data is distributed and the data owner still has full control over the actual dataset.
  • Data consumers are enabled to rapidly consume data from unlimited public and private sources, directly into a variety of applications including Google Earth, Microsoft Virtual Earth, ERDAS IMAGINE, ArcMap, ArcGIS Explorer, MapInfo, GeoMedia, AutoCad and more.
  • TITAN is interoperable and can be used in conjunction with static, centralized data stores and solutions, but does not need to rely only on static, centralized data stores!
  • A TITAN GeoHub enables internal and external permission-based data distribution for disaster management. With a GeoHub, stakeholders can rapidly be enabled to participate in publishing and consuming data. A GeoHub is ideal for implementation at a local government operations center or state EOC, yet flexible and sturdy enough to be set up and configured quickly and run from a field office.
  • The TITAN solution is a scalable solution and provides support for large numbers of users over a broad geography.
  • Users can connect via a cell phone, air card and laptop to the ERDAS TITAN Network (this has been proven repeatedly by our customer NVision Solutions)

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Auto Update 2.0.2 Released

We released a small auto update to the ERDAS TITAN Client last week for the sole purpose of resolving connectivity issues that some users were experiencing...And from reports we've received we're happy to say it did it's job!

The update happened automatically and your TITAN Client version should now be 2.0.2.

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Happy 30th Birthday ERDAS!

ERDAS Inc. celebrated its 30th birthday today with cake, presentations and nearby friends...

Based in Atlanta, Georgia, ERDAS began in 1978 as a small start up on the Georgia Tech campus, and quickly grew to become the industry leader of geospatial imagery and processing software. ERDAS recently rebranded itself and included the tagline the 'Earth to Business Company,' signifying that it now provides a suite of comprehensive, geospatial solutions for transforming geospatial data into useful information.

Nearly 100 folks came from Georgia and beyond to meet and reconnect with geospatial colleagues at ERDAS, and learn about solutions that support the concept of a geospatial business system.

Besides presentations from product management, attendees also heard from our customers themselves:

Ted Macy, President of MapShots spoke about using ERDAS Image Web Server as the solution for delivering vast amounts of imagery for crop management applications.

NVision Solutions (our first GeoHub customer!) has a GeoHub ready for any next disaster on the Gulf Coast (let's hope that doesn't happen). They are also building some really cool applications incorporating TITAN technology.

Here is the schedule from today:

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Do I need a 'Master Server'?

An ERDAS TITAN Master Server is the core registry service for all the GeoHubs and individual users on the ERDAS TITAN Network. The Master Server handles all GeoHub and individual registrations and takes login requests for the entire network. The Master Server also manages all user profile and subscription data, and enables all communication between GeoHubs and individual users for an entire network.

Some organizations require their own isolated, autonomous solar system of GeoHubs and users, with no connection to the ERDAS TITAN Network, so we also sell an ‘ERDAS TITAN Master Server.’ Organizations require their own autonomous network typically for one of two reasons:

1. the customer participates on an isolated network (no internet = they cannot connect to the TITAN Network anyway)

2. the customer has ultra-high security needs/deals with classified data/has regulations about participating in a public network.

Usually these are defense clients.

Friday, June 6, 2008

Being the Admin of a GeoHub is EASY!

How easy is it? Well, just watch the 5 minute video.

It only takes five minutes to show how to be the Admin of a GeoHub??

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Make a MyWorld!

In TITAN, users can amass geospatial data and location-based content in the TITAN Viewer and publish a MyWorld. Other users on the TITAN Network can ‘Switch Worlds’ and interact in your MyWorld.

Switch to see another user's MyWorld!

If you're a TITAN user already, you can access some demo MyWorlds we’ve set up in TITAN: In the TITAN Viewer, select ‘Switch Worlds’and double-click on the user CapeTown. The Viewer will rotate (it looks like a picture cube turning) and then you’ll be inside CapeTown’s MyWorld. Here you can look at data and location-based content being shared by this user. Click on any screenshots in the 'Photo Ribbon' and info dialog boxes will pop up and you’ll be flown to a georeferenced location. Add your own local data and content to the scene. When you’re done, click the button 'Restore MyWorld' to go back to your own MyWorld.

Here are those icons you'll use in the TITAN Viewer:

Switch Worlds

Photo Ribbon

Restore MyWorld

Data you save in your MyWorld is listed in the Geospatial Instant Messenger (GeoIM). Note: In order for others to see any data in your MyWorld, you must give them permission to do so in the GeoIM.

If you’d like to see how to do any of these things I’ve mentioned above, just look over on the right here on this blog, and check out two 5-minute Product Demonstration Videos: 'Create and Share a MyWorld' and 'Publish Local Geospatial Data.'