Events 2018

GIS Day 2018

Visualizing the World: Connecting the disciplines through geospatial technologies and virtual reality

Penn State GIS Day strives to bring together those who are working with GIS, geospatial technologies, remote sensing, maps, and location-based research on campus together to foster greater geospatial awareness on campus, within the community, and beyond. We encourage participation across disciplines to both new and experienced users of geospatial information.

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

Tentative Schedule

Geospatial Technology Demo, Franklin Atrium, Pattee Library 11am-12pm

  • See examples of geospatial applications and projects
  • Electronic posters and/or images of maps and geospatial projects and applications
  • Visit the new virtual reality lab space in Stillwater Commons

Speakers and Lightning Talk Speakers, Foster Auditorium, Paterno Library, 1-4:15pm, Media Site Live

Times of speakers will be updated in the future.

1:00-2:00pm, Christopher Cappelli, Esri,

“The Age of Location: The relevance of locations to individuals, organizations, and society”

Our featured speaker is Christopher Cappelli, a computational geographer and corporate director at Esri, Inc. His passion for helping people and organizations apply geographic concepts and technologies has taken him across six continents in his 28 years with Esri. But Chris has always had a special fondness for Pennsylvania; born and raised in Strafford, he graduated from Penn State University in 1988, and in 1995, he established Esri’s office in Pennsylvania, located in Chesterbrook. In 2004, Chris and his family moved to Redlands, CA so he could lead Esri’s global business development and sales efforts and work closely with CEO Jack Dangermond on a variety of corporate initiatives.

Now, Chris focuses his time building partnerships with other technology companies and working with executives across the government and private sectors to help them understand the value of GIS, mapping, and location analytics in their digital transformation initiatives. Drawing on 30-years of career experience, he guides companies through using ArcGIS to develop analytical models and applications to improve operational processes, site new facilities, optimize supply chains, and support strategic decision making. Chris currently resides in Redlands, CA. When not at work, Chris can usually be found in his garage woodshop or training on his road bike. He moonlights as an amateur astronomer ( and Jeep enthusiast. He embraces the title GeoNerd, and still enjoys writing Python scripts and using ArcGIS Pro, Online, and Insights.

2:00-2:30pm: Lightning Talk Presentations

Anthony Robinson, Department of Geography

Elements of Viral Cartography

Making and sharing maps is easier than ever, and social media platforms make it possible for maps to rapidly attain widespread visibility and engagement. These maps can be considered examples of viral cartography – maps that reach rapid popularity via social media sharing. In this research we evaluate the design and social dissemination characteristics of viral maps, and identify a range of new research challenges to better understand viral mapmaking and leverage its social affordances.

Anthony C. Robinson is an Assistant Professor of Geography and Director of Online Geospatial Education Programs at Penn State. He is also an Assistant Director for the GeoVISTA Center in the Department of Geography. Dr. Robinson is the past-President of the North American Cartographic Information Society (NACIS), and serves as the Chair of the International Cartographic Association (ICA) Commission on Visual Analytics. His research focuses broadly on designing and evaluating geovisualization tools to improve geographic information utility and usability. He has completed research projects in epidemiology, crisis management, national security, and higher education domains. Dr. Robinson has had the opportunity to teach one of Penn State’s Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs) – Maps and the Geospatial Revolution, which has drawn over 125,000 students from 200 countries to date.

Brian Naberezny, PLS, GISP

Modernization of the Pennsylvania State Plane Coordinate System

The North America Datum of 1983 (NAD 83) and the North American Vertical Datum of 1988 (NAVD 88) will be replaced by the National Spatial Reference System (NSRS) in 2022.  This change necessitates changes to the Pennsylvania Coordinate System Law.  This talk will discuss the need to modernize the NSRS and opportunities for modernizing the Pennsylvania State Coordinate System.

Mr. Naberezny is a Lecturer of Surveying in the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department at the Pennsylvania State University.  He also serves as the Geodetic Coordinator for the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania as a liaison between the positioning and mapping community and the National Geodetic Survey.  Brian is a graduate of the Surveying Program at the Pennsylvania State University and received his M.S. in Spatial Information Science and Engineering from the University of Maine.  Mr. Naberezny is a licensed Professional Land Surveyor in the State of Maine and a certified GIS Professional.

Martina Calovi, Postdoctoral Scholar, Geoinforamtic and Earth Observation Laboratory, Department of Geography and Institute for CyberScience

GFS Downscaling Using Personal Weather Stations for Heat Wave Vulnerability

Martina Calovi, Guido Cervone, Luca Delle Monache, Weiming Hu

This research investigates the use of an atmospheric model and private weather stations to generate forecasts of surface temperature with high spatial and temporal resolution in an urban area. The Analog Ensemble (AnEn) method is used to downscale Global Forecasts System (GFS) deterministic forecasts and to generate deterministic forecasts with a higher spatial and temporal resolution than the input forecast. In this work, the ensemble mean is used for the generation of the results.

Martina Calovi is a Postdoctoral Scholar since January 2018 at the Geoinformatics and Earth Observation Laboratory (GEOlab) in the Department of Geography and Institute of CyberScience at the Pennsylvania State University. She is collaborating with the Grozinger Laboratory, in the Department of Entomology and with the U.S. Department of Agriculture at the Pennsylvania State University.  She obtained her Ph.D. in Change and Complexity Management, in December 2017, at Sant’Anna School of Advanced Studies in Pisa, Italy.

2:30-2:45pm: Break

2:45-3:30pm: Lightning Talk Presentations

3:30-4:15pm, AppGeo

“What does a career in GIS look like?: Stories and advice from GIS professionals,” Moderator, Bill Johnson

Reception, Donald W. Hamer Center for Maps and Geospatial Information, Central Pattee Library, 4:15-5:15pm

  • Enjoy light refreshments and networking conversations with attendees.

If you are interested in participating as a speaker or electronic map/poster contributor, contact Tara LaLonde,, GIS Specialist, Donald W. Hamer Center for Maps and Geospatial Information.

In addition, a CANVAS module is available that links to this GIS Day website. Contact Tara LaLonde,, for more information.

Recordings of past sessions are available via Media Site Live:

Session 1: Featured Speakers: Annaka Scheeres (Philadelphia Dept of Public Health), Charlie Fitzpatrick (Esri Education), Lightning talk speakers

Session 2: Featured Speaker: Rachel Weeden (Esri), Lightning Talk speakers

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