Spatial Tech Lunch: Susan Meerdink

Mar 14, 2017 • Categories: Event | Spatial Tech Lunch

On Wednesday, March 22, from 12:00–1:00 pm please join us for the next Spatial Technology Lunch in Phelps Hall room 3512. This semi-regular series, hosted by spatial@ucsb, aims to promote discussion and interaction within the university’s spatial technology community. Please RSVP to Kitty Currier (kcurrier@spatial.ucsb.edu) by Tuesday, March 21. Pizza and drinks will be provided.   Classifying California plant species throughout the drought using airborne hyperspectral imagery Susan Meerdink Abstract: Accurate knowledge of plant species seasonal and inter-annual distributions are required for many research and management agendas that track ecosystem health. Airborne imaging spectroscopy data have been successfully used to map species, but often only in a single season due to data availability. During California’s severe drought, NASA’s Hyperspectral Infrared Imager (HyspIRI) preparatory airborne campaign flew a visible near infrared/shortwave infrared (VSWIR) imaging spectrometer and a thermal infrared (TIR) multi-spectral imager providing the opportunity to improve species discrimination over a broader temporal range. Imagery was acquired in the spring, summer, and fall of 2013–2014 spanning from Santa Barbara to Bakersfield, CA. Overall classification was fairly uniform between seasons with accuracies ranging from 84–93%. However, individual species classification varied much more between dates with accuracies ranging from 10–78%. These results show that while overall image classification across seasons is accurate, classification performance may not be sufficient for applications that focus on a specific species of interest. This research contributes to efforts aimed at monitoring ecosystems across large spatial and temporal scales and ultimately supports many research agendas that are tracking ecosystem health and changes. Susan Meerdink is a Ph.D. Candidate in the UCSB Visualization & Image Processing for Environmental Research (VIPER) lab. She studies the ability to map plant species across seasons in the dynamic and diverse Southern California Mediterranean ecosystem. She uses various technologies to study plant health across environmental gradients and physiology’s effect on optical properties of plant species. Her research leverages a number of tools including novel quantitative methods, land surface temperature, and spectroscopy in the optical and thermal...

Spatial Tech Lunch: Beth Anderson

May 19, 2016 • Categories: Event | Spatial Tech Lunch

Please join us for our upcoming Spatial Technology Lunch   Down the rabbit hole: New methods and tools for visualizing scientific information   Beth Anderson CEO Arkitek Scientific Thursday, May 19, 2016; 12:00 p.m.; 3512 Phelps Hall (map) Includes lunch, requires RSVP by morning of Wednesday May 18   Abstract. Beth Anderson of Arkitek Scientific explores how 3D animation can be used to visually illuminate complex science for both scientific communities and laymen alike. How science is being done is changing, as both groups are increasingly called upon to understand very complicated phenomena: to further the field of knowledge, for health decisions, for STEM requirements and in political election cycles. How best to bridge the divide between disciplines, as well as between scientists and the public? Animations and simulations can provide mental grappling hooks for people seeking to learn about difficult subjects. They can open the door to greater interest and understanding because they are engaging, visually stunning and stimulate the viewer’s curiosity. New technologies like VR and MR will also be...

Spatial Tech Lunch: Alex Boone

Mar 29, 2016 • Categories: Event | Spatial Tech Lunch

Please join us for our upcoming Spatial Technology Lunch   Navigation in Virtual Environments: Measuring Strategy and Efficiency   Alex Boone Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences University of California, Santa Barbara Tuesday, March 29, 2016; 12:00 p.m.; 3512 Phelps Hall (map) Includes lunch, requires RSVP   Abstract. Over the past few decades, virtual environments have gained popularity as a methodology to study spatial navigation. In these studies, participants learn an environment and then navigate between learned locations. Our work seeks to establish the connection between measures of navigation strategy and navigation efficiency in virtual environments. We also seek to establish the relation between efficiency measures and often-used self-report spatial ability measures. We have developed measures of strategy and efficiency but we are currently interested in discussing the ways in which GIScience might be applied to these data to develop richer...

Spatial Tech Lunch: Paul Alessio

Feb 17, 2016 • Categories: Event | Spatial Tech Lunch

Please join us for our upcoming Spatial Technology Lunch   The Impact of Sea-level Rise on Coastal Erosion: Using the 2015–2016 El Niño as a surrogate for 50–100 Years of Expected Sea-Level Rise in Central California Paul Alessio Department of Earth Science University of California, Santa Barbara Wednesday, February 17, 2016; 12:00 p.m.; 3512 Phelps Hall (map) Includes lunch, requires RSVP   Abstract. Sea cliffs and beaches comprise a majority of the open wave-exposed coast of Central California. A major impact of climate change with rising sea levels is coastal erosion of beaches and sea cliffs. Influences of sea level rise will be manifested as changes in erosion rates of beaches and sea cliffs, ecosystem conditions, as well as changes in the fundamental interplays between natural and societal responses. El Niño has raised local sea levels in Central California by as much as 20–30 cm. This rise is equivalent to the projected sea-level rise for the region near the end of the 21st century. The ongoing 2015–2016 El Niño year will be used as a surrogate for future sea-level rise by determining the impact of a 20–30 cm sea-level rise on open beach and coastal cliff ecosystems. This study is being conducted as an integrated study of the impacts of SLR on the Santa Barbara Coastline by the Earth Science, Marine Science, and Geography departments at UCSB. We plan to use a time series of terrestrial LiDAR (light detecting and ranging) scans before, during, and after winter 2015–2016 to assess the potential of natural and modified features to enhance coastal resilience and mitigate the potential impacts of extreme events along the open coast. By analyzing terrestrial LiDAR scans conducted at multiple sites along the Santa Barbara coast, before and after significant storm episodes, we will be able to difference the 3D scans to quantify physical and biological changes as a simple budget (input = output +/- change in storage). We also intend to develop simple models to evaluate the influence of physical and ecological factors on sea cliff, dune, and beaches to sea level rise. Results of this study will be used to engage in community partnerships with government and non-government organizations in developing values clarification and adaptive management options. Adapting to sea level rise requires coastal communities to carefully weigh science and values. Science can predict change and inform solutions to protect coastal ecosystems and resources. Which solutions we choose will reflect our values. Local knowledge and values are key factors in working through specific dilemmas concerning what parts of coastal systems are to be protected from SLR—and...

Spatial Tech Lunch: Kevin Sullivan

May 8, 2015 • Categories: Event | Spatial Tech Lunch

Please join us for the final Spatial Technology Lunch of the quarter on Thursday, May 14 from 12:00 – 1:00 pm in Phelps Hall room 3512. This semi-regular series, hosted by spatial@ucsb, aims to promote discussion and interaction across the university’s spatial technology community. UCSB alumnus Kevin Sullivan will present a talk titled, “Semi-automated Detection and Counting of Gray Whales” (see summary and brief biography of Mr. Sullivan, below). Pizza and drinks will be provided; please RSVP to Kitty Currier by Wednesday, May 13. — Semi-automated Detection and Counting of Gray Whales Kevin Sullivan Toyon Research Corporation Summary: We describe a system that we have developed which detects gray whale blows and uses these blow detections to infer how many whales are migrating along the California coast. The blows are automatically detected using video from three infrared cameras stationed at a NOAA facility at Granite Canyon, CA. The automated system detects most of the blows, but also detects some false alarms which are removed using a tool which displays video segments of putative blows to a human operator who verifies or denies the presence of the blow. All verified blows are presented to automated tracking software which infers how many whales are present based on the detections, the time of year, and whale respiration statistics. We will present a brief description of the system and provide the results of a comparison to a team of trained marine mammal observers supplied by NOAA. Kevin Sullivan obtained an M.S. in Mechanical Engineering in 1985 from the University of California at Santa Barbara. Since then, he has worked at Toyon Research Corporation, a small business located in Goleta, CA, primarily engaged in defense contracting. While at Toyon, Mr. Sullivan has worked on a variety of projects involving signal processing, automated tracking and data fusion, sensor resource management, and sensor platform control. Current efforts include the development of video processing algorithms and software for the detection of gray whales in infrared video and the detection and classification of reef fish in underwater...

Spatial Tech Lunch: Yingjie Hu

Apr 27, 2015 • Categories: Event | Spatial Tech Lunch

Please join us for the next Spatial Technology Lunch on Monday, April 27, from 12:00 – 1:00 pm in Phelps Hall room 3512. This semi-regular series, hosted by spatial@ucsb, aims to promote discussion and interaction within the university’s spatial technology community. Geography PhD candidate Yingjie Hu will present “Extracting and Understanding Urban Areas of Interest Using Geotagged Photos”, a talk and web demonstration. (View abstract [pdf].) Yingjie is a member of the STKO Lab and has held internships at Esri’s Applications Prototype Lab. His research focuses on the semantics of geographic information. Feel free to invite interested friends and colleagues. Pizza and drinks will be served. Please RSVP to Kitty Currier by Friday, April...