GeoRabble Perth #22 |It’s A Wrap!

Perth ‘rabblers kicked off the first GeoRabble of 2019 in style, with one of the biggest turnouts we’ve had in a long long time.

MC’d by the ever talented Damian Shepherd, who helped keep our speakers (and audience!) in check.

The evening started off with Ben Jones on ‘Cartography for the Colour Blind’. Colourblindness affects about 1 in 12 men and 1 in 200 women; a statistic was was represented within our own audience that night. Maps as a fundamentally visual tool rely critically on colour & shapes to communicate information. Ben talked us through some useful methods and tools to assist in selecting colouring schemes that help make reading maps inclusive and accessible to colour-reading abilities. His key tips were to spend time experimenting with palettes & textures (through use of tools such as colour brewer2 & kuler) and then to test your selections with emulators such as Colour Oracle or Visolve.

GeoRabble Perth - Ben Jones talking on cartography & colourblindness
GeoRabble Perth – Ben Jones talking on cartography & colourblindness

Next up we had Sarah James speaking on ‘Convergence of Industry 4.0, Smart Cities & Spatial’.

Industry 4.0 refers to latest wave of ‘industrial revolution’, where digital networks form a vast array of networks of cyber-physical systems (connected assets, customers and supply chains). Location intelligence plays a key part in this – and is the ‘golden thread’ – particularly in the context of ‘smart cities’,  digital twins, BIM & virtual/augmented reality systems.

Perth GeoRabble - Sarah James speaking on Industry 4.0, Convergence and Spatial
Perth GeoRabble – Sarah James speaking on Industry 4.0, Convergence and Spatial

Following on we had John Bryant speak about his journey in organising the first Oceania FOSS4G in Melbourne last year, and on building open geospatial community in the regions.  Through collaborative efforts and shared vision with people met through other channels (Slack/user groups/mailing lists etc) a team of passionate individuals pulled together an amazing conference with keynote speakers, 45 presentations & 14 lightening talks, 14 workshops, a community day & social events. An incredible 250+ attendees from 14 countries attended. And not only that, but the community succeeded in raising enough money through Good Mojo crowdfunding campaign to enable 6 people to attend through the Travel Grant Program.

Perth GeoRabble - John Bryant speaking on FOSS4G Oceani
Perth GeoRabble – John Bryant speaking on FOSS4G Oceania

Up next, with the title to steal the night, we had Cameron McArtney talking on ‘Making GIS accessible for a generation that searches for ‘Google’ in Google to get to Google’. An inspiring talk on the technological challenges of making digital maps for those in our community who are not of the ‘Google generation’. The choice of visualisation and interaction technique (‘scroll’/’flick’ etc) is just as key as the mapping itself to make spatial data accessible and insightful.

Perth GeoRabble - Cameron McArtney on making mapping accessible
Perth GeoRabble – Cameron McArtney on making mapping accessible for a generation that searches for ‘Google’ in Google to get to Google.

Lastly we had Dr Liz Dillimore on making WA the destination for data science, with the new WA Data Science Innovation Hub. The vision is to enable the development of data science capability and make WA a self-growing data science community with data science organisations that flourish; ultimately leading to job creation and economic growth (echoing Sarah’s Industry 4.0 predictions). And no, this does not take form of hackathons to solve any tech problem, but strategic partnerships, investment and collaboration between industry, academia and data science organisations.

Thank you to all our speakers for investing their time and to all the geospatial community who could come along for the event, and of course, last but not least to our generous sponsors Talis, without whom this event would not have taken place.

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Let us know if you’ve got a question you’d like the wisdom of GeoRabble to answer via perth@georabble.org or #georabbleper.

And stay tuned for news about our 23rd GeoRabble Perth – coming later this year around July.

In the meantime, if you’d like to get involved in GeoRabble organising, or would like to speak or sponsor, drop us a line through perth@georabble.org, or through twitter @georabble or #georabbleper.