2/7/2012 11:22 AM
Last Thursday was our monthly Executive Committee meeting. The EC is comprised of representatives from Novato (Heidi), San Rafael (Bill V), Larkspur (Hamid), Mill Valley (Jill), Sausalito (Todd), MMWD (Gavin), and the County (Laurie). As with all EC meetings, minutes are published on marinmap.org by pulling down the "Public Records" menu and selecting "Agendas, Minutes and Reports." Thursday's minutes will be coming soon (thanks again, Laurie!), but the January and prior minutes are posted. I won't recreate them in this blog, but here are a few notable items:
- I have been in contact with the CPUC and PG&E, opening a dialog for sharing mapping data. Member agencies would greatly benefit by having PG&E's utility data included in marinmap's growing dataset. Although PG&E has exemptions from the Public Records Act, there is interest in making their mapping data available to the public. Meanwhile, it may be possible to access this data if only for public agencies' benefit for first response and agency project planning. PG&E has expressed an interest in discussing this important issue.
- We are working on overhauling our website and are looking for comments from techies and nontechies. Send comments to our hopefully thick skinned IT manager Fred, at email@example.com
. We have a wide audience between citizens, nontechnical public officials, design professionals, and those ultracool technosavvies, so it's not easy to create a site that works for everyone. We need to hear from the entire range, so don't feel you need to know anything to comment.
- Marinmap is planning on becoming the place to go for road excavation moratorium information. All cities and counties restrict planned capital project exavations into recently asphalt overlaid streets, typically for five years. Marinmap is hoping to compile a master list of all streets in the county that are under dig restrictions, along with the road's effective date. Each public agency keeps a list, although it is in various formats (i.e. a GIS program, a spreadsheet, a document file, a post-it note, or the Town Engineer's head). By combining those sources into a layer on marinmap.org, the public as well as utility companies will know where and when dig restrictions apply. Jill of Mill Valley asked the public works directors to share their information, and we will be preparing a process.
- There's a cool new tool you should check out. From the Home Page, go to the "Map Viewer" (login is not required, so this is available to everyone), and above the map, you'll see a "Toolbox" button. Pull it down and select "Markup." With the markup tool, you can draw and write all over a map selection. Once you're done marking it up, go back to the navigation menu and the "print" button reappears, and you can either print it or turn it into a pdf file. This means you can customize and annotate maps for presentations, comments etc. You can draw points, lines, boxes, circles etc and then write notes all over it. Try using it next time you're either asked or answering a map question. Kudos to MMWD's Gavin for inspiring this great new feature.
- We're working on a mobile app for Marinmap. It's in beta now but won't it be cool to have marinmap layers available on your smartphone? One more example of your workspace following you around like a trained pet. We used to think of pagers as electronic tethers, but our phones are much more...tethersome. The good news is that your office is everywhere. The bad news is that your office is everywhere.
Also, I know it's only February, but not too soon to remind members that budget time is coming. I'm sending this reminder early because Marinmap waived the annual fee last fiscal year, a one time thing due to previously unaccounted fund balances. Marinmap gave it all back to the members in the form of a fee waiver for fiscal year 10/11.
Finally, I've been asked how to subscribe to my blog, so we've added some instructions above the blog for how to do it. Essentially, you use RSS (Really Simple Syndication), and it's available wherever you see the little orange and white icon. Follow the instructions and the blog will be delivered to your MS Outlook or web page whenver it's updated. If you're having trouble, write me at firstname.lastname@example.org
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Bye for now!