Thursday, March 20, 2008


We have been navigating the red tape in our company to get some software tools we want to be effective. This quote from Milton Friedman kept coming to my mind.

There are four ways in which you can spend money. You can spend your own money on yourself. When you do that, why then you really watch out what you’re doing, and you try to get the most for your money. Then you can spend your own money on somebody else. For example, I buy a birthday present for someone. Well, then I’m not so careful about the content of the present, but I’m very careful about the cost. Then, I can spend somebody else’s money on myself. And if I spend somebody else’s money on myself, then I’m sure going to have a good lunch! Finally, I can spend somebody else’s money on somebody else. And if I spend somebody else’s money on somebody else, I’m not concerned about how much it is, and I’m not concerned about what I get.
Here is a video of Milton Friedman about this. Here is a chart of the quadrants he talks about.

We have been working in quadrant III. Trying to get our company to spend their money on tools we need. We had to convince them that they will get a timely return on their investment.

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

TomTom and Garmin fighting for Tele Atlas

How soon till Google and Microsoft are rumored to be making a bid too? I'd bet there an article (not even just a blog) speculating that by Monday.

Wednesday, August 1, 2007

C'mon Google, seriously?

Mapperz Blog, a must read recently btw, reports on Google new to estimate traffic in their driving directions time estimate. Read the article here. How many layers of estimated data can be piled upon each other before people just start completely ignoring results? Let's see, we have the original street network geometry (1), the individual cells classifications (2), the speeds assigned to the classifications (3), the routing optimization methods (4), and now traffic volume estimates (6). If you roll a dice six times and add the total what do you get? Could be anything from 6 to 36. The answer is 21 then right? It halfway between the two possible extremes. What if I knew the first of the six dice was 5? Then the "answer" is 22.5 and somehow people think my guess is really good? I don't get it. Drivetime data sucks. Get over it people. Two people leaving the same spot at the same time don't even take the same amount of time to travel. You think some software can tell you what travel time will be?

Alright I'm done. I'm going to the beach to relax, apparently I need it...

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

Gizmodo article on Google's Camera Car fleet

Article here. Presumably they're for the Streetview functionality they added to Google Maps recently, but with Google, who knows what they're up to.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

Timoney Group at it again.

I remember being impressed by the way they used Google Earth before. Well now they've impressed again. Check them out making BLM, Oil and Gas Wells, and Federal Lands info available as KML for the Rocky Mountain states here:

What's really impressive about this is the way they take advantage of new KML spec including the Regions functionality to stream out huge amounts of data, from huge databases, at a very good speed. That shows it's possible for datasets that used to be only practical as fusion built layers to be shared as streamed static kml instead.

A discussion of this point is at Ogle Earth.