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About Me

Nitin Gadia. Ames, Iowa, USA

I'm interested in everything, geospatial only one of them - mostly because of how it can display everything... geospatially.

My Geospatial Desires

To put it broadly, I want to help create something where one can create and represent polygons, like how openstreetmap (OSM, [1]) can edit line features, like roads.

Basically, I'm envisioning a separate site where someone can add polygons such as historical nations, and then be able to animate them. I should be able to type in, say, "1900" and see the way the world was then. I can then edit a map, changing and adding polygons, and their colors and metadata. I should also be able to view areas by, say, population density and other statistics.

My work, examples

I want to help create an open historical map of the world. Check out the work I've done so far (scroll down to Geographic Information Systems) [2]

Also, check this out - a historical map of Europe from the last 1000 years. Over 10,000 border changes [3]

My Geospatial Story

Years ago, I saw Encarta's Virtual atlas, the first time I saw a computer map of the whole world that I could explore. As I would explore visual statistics, my mind would race about how much you could display. I thought of how great it would be if you could, say, type in a year, and see the way the world was at the time, and animate it to see how the borders changed. Then came Google Earth, which eventually had an animation function. I saw someone describe seeing google earth to the first time they saw an internet browser - a wealth of possibility. Not long ago I saw a TED video where someone showed the openstreetmap effort following the earthquake in Haiti [4]. Again, I got excited, and started to dabble in the project. I made a basic animation for historical maps using ArcGIS, which could be exported to Google Earth. As of now, I am trying to see how to make this happen to its fullest extent. I am in the exploration phase - seeing what projects there are, and how I can be a part of them, or make a new one if necessary, combining the elements of others.