We have just sent out our autumn edition of OS Innovation news, which is packed with lots of exciting news for the GeoVation and developer community – including our current GeoVation Challenge, our visit to Appsworld and more about innovation licences. The newsletter is also available online.
Find our more about:
If you would like further editions of the Ordnance Survey Innovation newsletter to be emailed to you, please sign up here
The Malvern Festival of Innovation is a great way to discover what the future holds, to see how others are innovating – and it was the perfect opportunity for us to launch our new GeoVation Challenge: “How can we encourage active lifestyles in Britain ?”which is all about encouraging us all to get active in Britain’s open spaces; Dr Adrian Burden of Key IQ Ltd, one of the festival organisers, said: ‘[GeoVation] only do three per year, so it was significant to have this launch at the festival’.
The festival was started in 2012 by Dr Emma Philpott and Dr Adrian Burden to showcase the town’s rich scientific history and has fast become a forward-thinking exhibition, conference and networking event, spread across three days with an exciting programme of speakers, themed seminar features and exhibitors from sectors including engineering, environment and tourism.
There were some exciting presentations from speakers such as Clive Beale, Director of Educational Development at the Raspberry Pi Foundation, who also donated 100 Raspberry pi starter kits to each student who took part in the Next Gen Innovators workshop. Ian Glover gave an enthusiastic presentation on the Bloodhound Supersonic Car 1K Club, whose team hope to break the land speed record (currently set at 763 mph), and showed exciting film footage of the car in action. Also presenting was our very own Chris Parker, talking to an inspired audience about GeoVation and our new Challenge.
Continue reading 'GeoVation launches New challenge at the Malvern Festival of Innovation'»
The first of our latest series of OS OpenData masterclasses was held last week. Dee Davis, product manager for OS OpenData, explains what happened:
On Thursday 7 November, we hosted the first in our 2013 series of OS OpenData masterclasses in Southampton. The event was fully booked and hosted participants from the public sector, commercial businesses and academia.
Ian Holt, our Developer Programme Manager kicked-off the day with an introduction to the benefits of open data and pointed to the different sources of data, such as data.gov.uk and is it open data? and Viv Alexander, Community Manager followed with an overview of our GeoVation process and announced the latest GeoVation Challenge around active lifestyles .
After the introduction it was straight down to business and working through a series of exercises showing how to use a geographic information system (GIS) to work with our OS OpenData products, alongside other open data such as demographics.
Continue reading 'Open data masterclasses kick off in style in Southampton'»
We are really excited to be launching our 7th GeoVation Challenge today on the theme of ‘How can we encourage active lifestyles in Britain?’
Our physical and mental well-being is greatly influenced by our lifestyle; from our first steps to our last! So, following the success of previous challenges, this time we are calling for innovative ideas that will encourage people to lead active lifestyles in the open; whatever their age.
As with previous GeoVation Challenges we are looking for great ideas which address the problems using geography, technology and good design. Ordnance Survey will be offering a slice of £100,000 to help develop ventures that make best use of our data, including OS OpenData and OS OpenSpace, together with other open data to solve problems.
An All-Party Commission on Physical Activity which launched recently states on their website “The human body was designed to move. But in a very short period of time, we have become dangerously inactive as a population. We are witnessing a physical inactivity epidemic”.
The estimated direct cost of physical inactivity to the NHS across the UK is £1.06 billion. (Start Active, Stay Active)
Continue reading 'Challenging Britain to get active in the open!'»
Our OS OpenData masterclasses are filling up quickly, but we still have some spaces left. So, make sure you book your space at an event near you today.
Our masterclasses will follow the format of previous workshops; combining theory and practical sessions.
The updated workshop material will follow the journey of downloading the data, importing it into open source software and mashing with other open datasets to provide analysis. The session is ideal for those new to working with location data or anyone wishing to brush-up on their skills.
We shall also be working with OS OpenSpace, Ordnance Survey’s free web‑mapping service that allows users to display up-to-date Ordnance Survey mapping in a web page or an online environment. Our workshop for this session will show how to create file formats that can be easily imported into web mapping to pinpoint a list of locations – allowing you to create interactive maps similar to our special Halloween Masterclass/Ghost walk location finder.
Continue reading 'Ordnance Survey Free OS OpenData masterclasses'»
GeoVation winner, Richard Fairhurst, has launched a website aimed at promoting opportunities for business along the Wales Coast Path.
The new website ‘Growing Routes’ was one of five ideas which was selected to receive funding from Ordnance Survey in the 2012 ‘Wales Coast Path’ GeoVation Challenge.
Heat map showing areas with campsites
The initiative has the potential to generate new jobs and business and help bring about economic growth along the Path. Using the online heat map business can identify areas of opportunity for their new ventures. Through aggregating different sources of open data the website identifies numbers and types of business along the Path and includes other important information in decision making, such as access to road networks.
Continue reading 'GeoVation winner growing routes to new business'»
People across Great Britain are being given the opportunity to gain a greater understanding of open data and the tools and techniques to use open datasets, through a series of free masterclasses, hosted by Ordnance Survey and supported by Horizon Digital Economy Research.
This series of masterclasses will follow the format of previous workshops in combining theory and practical sessions.
Continue reading 'Return of Ordnance Survey’s free OS OpenData Masterclasses'»
Ordnance Survey sponsors and judges one of the British Cartographic Society (BCS) awards and this was its maiden year as the OS OpenData Award. The award is made annually and is given to encourage excellence in cartographic design, innovation and exciting use of OS OpenData.
OS OpenData offers a wide range of digital map products that you can freely view or download, for use in both personal and commercial applications.
Entries were considered by a panel of judges from Ordnance Survey and were judged on their original and inventive use of OS OpenData, suitability of the mapping for the declared purpose and the overall cartographic quality and design.
The award trophy was presented by Vanessa Lawrence CB, Director General and Chief Executive of Ordnance Survey, – along with the certificate and prize donated by GeoVation– to the winning entrant, Ashley Clough of Parallel.
District-level base with Lower-layer Super Output Area (LSOA) boundaries © Parallel 2013
Continue reading 'Parallel win award for innovative use of OS OpenData'»
During the summer, Ordnance Survey welcomed a number of interns and one of them, Joseph Braybook, spent his time with our Innovation Labs team. An avid fan of the Minecraft video game, he suggested building a Minecraft world using OS OpenData products. In just two weeks Joe created a Minecraft world representing over 224,000 square kilometers of Great Britain and now Ordnance Survey have made it available so you can download and explore!
Minecraft is a game set in virtual 3D worlds made up of cubes of different materials. Players build shelters, make things from raw materials and fend off a variety of monsters. Minecraft worlds are often computer generated, though dedicated players have also created meticulous recreations of real and imagined environments such as Hogwarts castle.
Snowdonia in Minecraft
To build the world two of Ordnance Survey’s digital map products that are freely available as OS OpenData for anyone to use, have been used to build:
- OS Terrain 50: A three-dimensional model of the bare earth surface known as a Digital Terrain Model (DTM). The product is delivered as a grid with a resolution of 50 metres. We used this product to generate the Minecraft GB terrain.
- OS VectorMap District: A mid-scale contextual or backdrop map product. We used the raster version, extracting surface features – for example water, woodland and roads – based on pixel colours and densities. We used this information to modify the material of individual blocks.
Continue reading 'Creating a Minecraft map of Britain'»
OS OpenData offers a wide range of digital map products which you can freely view or download, for use in both personal and commercial applications. We pride ourselves on the level of detail that our products have, but we also know this can sometimes make them a little daunting to work with, especially if you have never worked with the specialist map software, Geographic Information Software (GIS) needed to manipulate them before.
To help new users of our data, especially those of you innovating with OS OpenData, we have produced a series of videos to help:
- view a simple map of where they live
- view a map for a wider area
- create their own styled map
- show their data with postcodes and boundaries on a map
Continue reading 'Innovating with OS OpenData'»