I’m on my way to Washington, D.C. for the GEOINT 2015 Symposium. I’m looking forward to spending time with customers and GEOINT’ers, along with the rest of the Quantum team. If you’re at the event, drop by Quantum booth #8058 to learn about the latest techniques in geospatial data management. I’m especially excited to attend GEOINT this year because I’ve been selected to give a Lightning Talk at the GEOINT Foreword Pre-Symposium. I will have 5 short minutes to tell a technology story and keep the audience engaged. No pressure. The title of my talk is: “Connecting Dots In Today’s World—Crayons Not Included.” Why focus on “connecting dots?" Well, the goal in GEOINT today is the same as ever: to derive useful intelligence from data. And while innovation is everywhere—in small sats, in 4K video, in sensors, in mobile, and in the analytics and data viz software that enables discovery—all this innovation is creating a ton of data that needs to be managed, analyzed, and connected. So it makes sense to talk about the challenges people face connecting all of these dots. And the bigger challenge they face recognizing which patterns of connected dots are meaningful.
Working with our federal customers and sales team to solve complex storage challenges, it’s become clear to me that government agencies are under pressure to modernize their storage infrastructure. No more silos. No more stovepipes. Yes to collaboration. Agencies face a bevy of challenges: massive data growth, shrinking budgets, increased user expectations—as well as technology advances in sensors, analytics, mobile, and cloud—all of which stress traditional IT. To modernize storage infrastructure (and to do it effectively) involves a spectrum of different tools and techniques: e.g. converging backup & archive—consolidating data centers—taking advantage of new cloud technologies—and mixing tiers of flash, disk, object, cloud, and tape to enable collaboration, within budget, at scale.
Today’s warfighters and explorers continue to depend on this critical information in ways the early explorers could not have dreamed. This week at the GEOINT 2013* conference companies are showing off the latest in 3D mapping, satellite imagery and remote sensing, and drones to capture full-motion video. However, without the tools to capture rich data, process it, preserve it, and collaborate with it, we would not get the full value from these sophisticated geospatial technologies. This week at GEOINT 2013* we’re having a lot of conversations about the proliferation of vital data, and Quantum’s role in a range of mission workflows to foster collaboration. The talk on the show floor at GEOINT 2013* revolves around how the geospatial community can share expertise to address a challenge that has plagued cartography from day one: How to get an accurate map in the hands of the users that have the critical need in a timely way.
Data stewardship has always mattered. We humans have been recording valuable data for thousands of years—all we have to do is look at the Lascaux cave paintings in southwestern France for images that are believed to be over 17,000 years old. And sometimes, we have even invested in beautiful monuments to store our data repositories and to symbolize the knowledge within. Observing, capturing, and preserving information about this planet are behaviors that seem to be wired into our DNA. The Radcliffe Camera at the Bodleian Library at Oxford is one such beautiful monument to data stewardship. This image of the Bodleian—which I discovered through Fodor’s 20 Most Stunning Libraries—makes me stop and marvel, not only at the curves of the dome and the lines of the columns, but at the determination of the architects and builders who spent over 100 years constructing this beauty, to store and protect a wealth of knowledge for centuries to come.