ThinkSpatial: Kate McDonald

May 15, 2018 • Categories: Event | ThinkSpatial

On Tuesday, May 15, 2018 The UCSB brown-bag forum on spatial thinking presents The Accidental Digital Humanist: The Bodies and Structures Project and the Challenge of Spatial Humanities Kate McDonald Department of History University of California, Santa Barbara 12:00 p.m. Tuesday, May 15, 2018 | 3512 Phelps Hall (map) Flyer Abstract: Kate McDonald is excited to share a digital spatial history project, Bodies and Structures: Deep-Mapping the Spaces of Japanese History, which she is currently developing with her colleague David Ambaras (History, NC State). Bodies and Structures is a platform for researching and teaching the spatial histories of Japan, its empire, and the larger worlds of which they were a part. It begins from the premise that space and place are fundamental to humanistic inquiry. It unfolds into a method of writing spatial histories that reveal the multiple topologies of historical experience rather than a chronology of spatial thought or territorial transformation. The talk will introduce the site and the intellectual stakes of the project. In particular, she will focus on two themes: (a) how she started with a plan to write a new kind of spatial history and ended up knee-deep in the digital humanities; and (b) why, after two years into the project, she argues that the spatial humanities need a digital platform like Bodies and Structures. There will be time to explore and discuss the site — please bring your laptop in addition to your lunch! Bio: Kate McDonald is Assistant Professor of Modern Japanese History at the University of California, Santa Barbara. She is the author of Placing Empire: Travel and the Social Imagination in Imperial Japan (University of California Press, 2017) and co-director of the Bodies and Structures: Deep-Mapping the Spaces of Japanese History project. — The objectives of the ThinkSpatial brown-bag presentations are to exchange ideas about spatial perspectives in research and teaching, to broaden communication and cooperation across disciplines among faculty and graduate students, and to encourage the sharing of tools and concepts. Please contact Werner Kuhn (kuhn@ucsb.edu) to review and schedule possible discussion topics or presentations that share your disciplinary interest in spatial thinking. Follow spatial@ucsb on Facebook | Twitter | Google+ | Google...

ThinkSpatial: Timothy Devries

Mar 6, 2018 • Categories: Event | ThinkSpatial

On Tuesday, March 6, 2018 The UCSB brown-bag forum on spatial thinking presents Assimilating Spatial Data into a Global Ocean Model Timothy Devries Department of Geography University of California, Santa Barbara 12:00 p.m. Tuesday, March 6, 2018 | 3512 Phelps Hall (map) Flyer Abstract: The circulation of the ocean plays a major role in controlling Earth’s climate, but most global ocean circulation models have significant errors and biases, making their predictions suspect. This talk presents a way to correct these biases by assimilating large spatial datasets of oceanographic observations into a global ocean circulation model. I will discuss what observations can be used to correct model biases, how these are assimilated into the model, and give some examples of how the data-assimilated model can be applied to simulate ocean processes. Bio: Timothy received his PhD at UC Irvine in Earth System Science in 2010, and completed his postdoctoral training at UCLA. Since 2014, he has been an Assistant Professor in the Geography Department at UCSB. His research interests include the ocean’s role in the global carbon cycle, the cycling of nutrients and trace metals in the ocean, and ocean heat uptake. His research tools include numerical models, data assimilation, probabilistic models, and machine learning. — The objectives of the ThinkSpatial brown-bag presentations are to exchange ideas about spatial perspectives in research and teaching, to broaden communication and cooperation across disciplines among faculty and graduate students, and to encourage the sharing of tools and concepts. Please contact Werner Kuhn (kuhn@ucsb.edu) to review and schedule possible discussion topics or presentations that share your disciplinary interest in spatial thinking. Follow spatial@ucsb on Facebook | Twitter | Google+ | Google...

ThinkSpatial: Pyry Kettunen

Feb 10, 2018 • Categories: Event | ThinkSpatial | Visitors

On Tuesday, February 20, 2018 The UCSB brown-bag forum on spatial thinking presents How to Strengthen Technological Support for Wayfinding and Spatial Communication with Context-Dependent Landmarks and Geo-Pictures Pyry Kettunen Senior Research Scientist Department of GeoInformatics and Cartography Finnish Geospatial Research Institute 12:00 p.m. Tuesday, February 20, 2018 | 3512 Phelps Hall (map) Flyer Abstract: Wayfinding is the core intellectual component of everyday human navigation, which we often find challenging and in which we often make mistakes largely due to inaccurate spatial communication—particularly in unfamiliar environments. Wayfinding typically depends heavily on landmarks, that is, prominent features of the physical environment utilized as points of reference in geospatial thinking. In real use, utilized landmark sets can vary importantly between conditions and the individuals navigating, thus making interpersonal exchange about navigation arduous and even misleading. Still, such exchange plays a central role for the success of collaborative wayfinding efforts in everyday situations, such as a spontaneous gathering in a city, or even in lifesaving group tasks, such as search for a missing person. In this ThinkSpatial talk, I will present a short general history of spatial cognition research with regards to wayfinding, as well as present results from our empirical in situ landmark studies in nature that show the dependence of utilized landmark sets on summer/winter, and day/night conditions. I will discuss the acquisition of landmark, route, and configuration types of spatial knowledge from geospatial pictures that commonly serve as our initial exposures and wayfinding aids in unfamiliar environments. I will conclude with my suggestions for future work to enhance personal navigation technology with context‐dependent landmark‐based wayfinding guidance in collaborative settings, and my project at the spatial@ucsb. Bio: Pyry Kettunen is visiting the Center for Spatial Studies as a Fulbright Junior Scholar Feb-Jul 2018 for a research project on collaborative geospatial thinking. He is a Senior Research Scientist in the Department of Geoinformatics and Cartography at the Finnish Geospatial Research Institute (FGI) that is part of the National Land Survey of Finland (NLS‐FI). He received his M.Sc. (Tech.) in Geoinformatics from Helsinki University of Technology in 2008 and D.Sc. (Tech.) in Geoinformatics from Aalto University School of Engineering in 2014. His studies included an exchange year at the EPFL, Lausanne, Switzerland, and four months as a visiting grant researcher at the LMC lab of the Université Paris Descartes. Kettunen’s research has concentrated on human spatial cognition of landmarks and wayfinding as well as on development and usability of varied kinds of cartographic applications. His current research interests include interpersonal spatial cognition, cartographic animation, and web maps. His personal interests are in endurance sports in nature, choir or group singing when possible, and arts in general. — The objectives of the ThinkSpatial...

ThinkSpatial: Edzer Pebesma

Feb 6, 2018 • Categories: Event | ThinkSpatial

On Tuesday, February 6, 2018 The UCSB brown-bag forum on spatial thinking presents How can Units of Measurement Improve Spatial Data Science? Edzer Pebesma Department of Geography University of California, Santa Barbara 12:00 p.m. Tuesday, February 6, 2018 | 3512 Phelps Hall (map) Flyer Abstract: Units of measurement are a well‐understood system for describing part of the reference of quantities. They help, for instance, in figuring out whether we can meaningfully compare or add two quantities, or what the unit of measurement of a product of quantities is. In this talk I will explore whether they can help spatial analysis: Can we automatically decide, based on the unit of measurement, whether a value associated with polygon or grid cell is spatially extensive, or intensive? Should the “unitless” unit be extended to handle incompatibility between weight ratios (g/g), counts of persons, and counts of wildfires? I will illustrate this with recent implementation work in the R packages udunits, units, and sf; see also https://doi.org/10.1016/j.csi.2017.10.002 Bio: Edzer Pebesma is professor in Geoinformatics at the University of Muenster, Germany. He is associate editor of Spatial Statistics and one of the editors in chief of the Journal of Statistical Software. He is an active developer of R spatial packages, and one of the authors of Applied Spatial Data Analysis with R, 2nd edition. — The objectives of the ThinkSpatial brown-bag presentations are to exchange ideas about spatial perspectives in research and teaching, to broaden communication and cooperation across disciplines among faculty and graduate students, and to encourage the sharing of tools and concepts. Please contact Werner Kuhn (kuhn@ucsb.edu) to review and schedule possible discussion topics or presentations that share your disciplinary interest in spatial thinking. Follow spatial@ucsb on Facebook | Twitter | Google+ | Google...

ThinkSpatial: Vena Chu

Jan 30, 2018 • Categories: Event | ThinkSpatial

On Tuesday, January 30, 2018 The UCSB brown-bag forum on spatial thinking presents Hydrologic Dynamics of the Greenland Ice Sheet Vena W. Chu Department of Geography University of California, Santa Barbara 12:00 p.m. Tuesday, January 30, 2018 | 3512 Phelps Hall (map) Flyer Abstract: The current need for forecasting Greenland Ice Sheet contributions to global sea level rise is complicated by the lack of understanding of ice sheet hydrology. The proportion of meltwater contributing to sea level rise, as well as the pathways transporting meltwater from snow to sea are not well understood. This presentation examines components of the Greenland hydrologic system using geospatial technologies and field measurements to understand the spatial and temporal dynamics of meltwater runoff. I will highlight recent work on supraglacial rivers and moulins that explores how well current models represent when, where, and how much water leaves the ice sheet. Bio: Vena W. Chu is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Geography at UCSB. She received the Ph.D. degree in Geography from UCLA, where she also earned her M.A. (Geography) and B.A. (Geography and Economics). She was also a University of California President’s Postdoctoral Fellow at the UC Berkeley Department of Geography. — The objectives of the ThinkSpatial brown-bag presentations are to exchange ideas about spatial perspectives in research and teaching, to broaden communication and cooperation across disciplines among faculty and graduate students, and to encourage the sharing of tools and concepts. Please contact Werner Kuhn (kuhn@ucsb.edu) to review and schedule possible discussion topics or presentations that share your disciplinary interest in spatial thinking. Follow spatial@ucsb on Facebook | Twitter | Google+ | Google...

ThinkSpatial: Alexander Franks

On Tuesday, November 21, 2017 The UCSB brown-bag forum on spatial thinking presents “From Pixels to Points: Using Tracking Data to Measure Performance in Professional Sports” Alexander Franks Department of Statistics University of California, Santa Barbara 12:00 p.m. Tuesday, November 21, 2017 | 3512 Phelps Hall (map) Flyer Abstract: New optical tracking technologies are increasingly used to gather high resolution spatial and time series data in professional sports. In the National Basketball Association (NBA), the technology is used to record the positions of the players and the ball at 25 frames/second, yielding hundreds of millions of observations per season. In this talk, I will describe a series of spatio-temporal models for quantifying the game of basketball. By blending Bayesian hierarchical models with geography inspired mapping tools, we will shed light on previously unidentified aspects of play. Specifically, we develop models to describe spatial variation of defensive ability, the value of decision-making and propose a model for clustering player trajectories. Importantly, efficient inference requires models that pool information both between players and across space. Although we apply these methods to professional basketball data, we emphasize the applicability of our methods to a wide range of domains. Bio: Alex Franks is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Statistics and Applied Probability. His research interests include covariance estimation, multivariate analysis and high dimensional data, errors-in-variables models, missing data, and spatio-temporal methods. His primary focus is on applications in computational and systems biology. He is also a member of XY Research (xyresearch.com), a group that conducts research in sports statistics with a focus on playertracking data. — The objectives of the ThinkSpatial brown-bag presentations are to exchange ideas about spatial perspectives in research and teaching, to broaden communication and cooperation across disciplines among faculty and graduate students, and to encourage the sharing of tools and concepts. Please contact Werner Kuhn (kuhn@ucsb.edu) to review and schedule possible discussion topics or presentations that share your disciplinary interest in spatial thinking. Follow spatial@ucsb on Facebook | Twitter | Google+ | Google...