GIS in the Rockies is pleased to offer pre-conference workshops related to important topics in the GIS industry on Tuesday, September 18, 2018. There are a limited number of openings for each workshop, so please sign up for a workshop during the registration process. If you have already registered for the conference, you can modify your existing registration to add a workshop.

Introduction to Landsat Data Collections

Time: 1:00 pm – 4:30 pm
Instructor: Ramesh Sivanpillai, University of Wyoming
Cost: $25 [NOTE: we will donate the fees to ASPRS-RMR (50%) and GISITR Student Scholarships (50%) ]
Location: Room 1

Landsat series of satellites ( provide invaluable Earth Observation data for monitoring and mapping natural and man-made resources.  These data are available to users from the US Geological Survey (USGS) at no-cost since 2008.   Starting in 2016, USGS started organizing Landsat data in a tiered collection structure based on data quality and level of processing.  Users interested in time-series analyses will be able to evaluate and select Landsat images base on this tiered structure.  This lecture and demonstration-style workshop will introduce remote sensing concepts and characteristics of Landsat data and products such as vegetation indices, burn severity products etc.  Participants will also learn on how to search and download these data and products from USGS archives.  Upon successful completion participants will receive a completion certificate.

Intended Audience: GIS practitioners and others familiar with spatial (raster and vector) data.
Tech requirements: Participants must provide their own laptops.

Presenter Bio: Ramesh Sivanpillai is a research scientist at University of Wyoming. He has more than 29 years of experience in working with remotely sensed and related geospatial data in the US and abroad. He manages the WyomingView program ( at UW, whose primary goal is to promote remote sensing science and applications through education and applied research.

Learning Objectives: At the end of this workshop, students will be familiar with the following topics: raster data characteristics (spatial, spectral, temporal and radiometric) – unique characteristics of Landsat data – derived products (vegetation indices) – terminology of Landsat data archive – searching USGS data archives.

Working with SQL Spatial in PostGIS with QGIS Visualization

Time: 8:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
Instructor:Matthew Baker and Dave Murray (Denver Public Schools)
Cost: $125
Location: Room 1

This workshop will give an overview of a PostgreSQL database hosted in the Amazon cloud, how to write basic queries against non-spatial relational data using DataGrip, then introducing the PostGIS spatial data and functions to spatially enable data and queries. From there, the basics of creating and managing data using SQL, and how to visualize the results using QGIS. Topics and workflows include counts, grouping, and filter operations, basic geometry operations and coordinate system transformations, exporting results to a spreadsheet, calculating area, spatial intersects, point-in-polygon, geometry transformations with lines and centroids, creating tables of results, accessing and styling PostGIS layers in QGIS, and creating static map images.

Intended Audience: Users of QGIS looking to integrate PostGIS into their workflows; ArcGIS users looking to learn about spatially-enabled relational databases; Database analysts looking to learn about spatial data.
Tech requirements:Basic understanding of spatial data and database concepts. Participants must provide their own laptops (Windows, Mac, or Linux) with Java 8 installed.

Presenter Bio: Matthew manages the spatial data infrastructure for Denver Public Schools under the Department of Planning and Analysis. Working as a mini-urban planning firm, the team supports the analysis used by the District to plan for new schools and boundary changes, analyzing demographic changes, mapping, analysis, reporting, data maintenance and delivery to the enterprise.

Learning Objectives: Users will have a clear understanding of the use of the various parts of the PostGIS/QGIS system, and how the two interact with one another through the use of SQL and the relational database.

Advanced OpenStreetMap

Time: 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm
Instructors: Mike Thompson (Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team)
Fee: $25
Location: Room 3

This is an enhanced and updated version of the workshop of the same title from the 2016 GISITR. OpenStreetMap (OSM) is the collaborative project to create a free editable map of the world. Among many other uses, OSM is being used to support humanitarian missions around the World.  Many GIS professionals, academics and students have been introduced to OSM through humanitarian mapathons where an easy to use, in-browser editor called iD is usually used.  During this workshop participants will discover through hands on exercises how to access the power of the more advanced JOSM (Java OpenStreetMap) editor. Participants will explore JOSM’s building tool, extrude mode, way accuracy mode, support for topology, validation function, search function, filtering, and support for OSM “relations.” Participants will first gain an understanding of the unique and flexible OSM data structure that has allowed the project to evolve over its 13-year existence to cover not only its namesake streets, but points of interest, buildings, land cover, land use, trails, aeronautical features, maritime features and 100’s of other types of map features.   Understanding of the OSM data structure will enable the participant to quickly grasp the concepts of JOSM. The knowledge attained will enable more efficient contributions to OSM and enable them to make more effective use of OSM data in their professional / academic careers.

Intended Audience:GIS professionals, academics and students who wish to learn more about OpenStreetMap
Tech requirements: Participants must provide their own laptops (Windows, Mac, or Linux) with Java 8 installed.

Presenter Bio: Mike Thompson has been involved with OpenStreetMap (OSM) since 2009, during which time he has added or edited tens of thousands of OSM map features as a volunteer.  These map features range from hiking trails in Colorado, to yurts (locally called “gers”) in Mongolia.  Mike has hosted humanitarian “mapathons” at many locations in Northern Colorado and Southern Wyoming including at Colorado State University, the University of Northern Colorado, Front Range Community College, and the University of Wyoming.  Earlier this year Mike was formally elected as a voting member of the Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team (HOT). Mike has a degree in Computer Science from Baldwin Wallace University, and has be employed in the geospatial industry since 2000. Mike is currently with CACI in Fort Collins where he does geospatial research and development.

Learning Objectives: After participating in this workshop attendees will be able to: Compare the OpenStreetMap data structure to the structure of traditional GIS data Efficiently edit OpenStreetMap data to support humanitarian projects  Effectively validate the work of other OpenStreetMap editors Modify the topological relationships between OpenStreetMap geometry elements Obtain and translate OSM data to a GIS format

Introduction to Developing Mapping Apps with JavaScript

Time: 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Instructors: Andy Gup
Fee: $25  – [NOTE: we will donate the fees to GIS Colorado]
Location: Room 2

This is a great opportunity to expand or kickstart your geospatial coding skills. Learn how to convert simple datasets into web-enabled services, and then integrate the services into custom mapping applications built with the ArcGIS API for JavaScript. We’ll also explore basic concepts of application architecture, you’ll get hands-on debugging experience, which is a critical skillset for all developers, and discuss ways of getting help from the community.

Intended Audience: GIS users or students who are looking to expand their coding knowledge.

Tech requirements: Laptop with the latest version of Chrome desktop browser and sign up for a free ArcGIS Developers account.

Presenter Bio: Andy Gup is a technical product manager for the ArcGIS API for JavaScript. I’ve been involved with web mapping APIs since their inception.

Learning Objectives: You’ll learn the basics of converting data into web-enabled services and building cool web mapping applications that use them.

Hands-On: Building Effective Web Apps using ArcGIS

Time:8:30am – 11:30am
Instructors: David Vaillancourt
Fee: $25  – [NOTE: we will donate the fees to GIS Colorado]
Location:Room 2

It can be a challenge keeping up with the options for creating web applications using ArcGIS.  During this hands-on workshop, we’ll create and deploy beautifully stunning web mapping apps using the operations dashboard and the web app builder.

Intended Audience: Learn how to configure apps using the Web App Builder and the Operations Dashboard

Tech requirements:Basic understanding of ArcGIS online recommended, but not required. A bonus would be to have an idea of a project you want to work on during the exercise. Laptops are required for exercises.

Going Paperless with Survey123 for Data Collection and Inspections

Time: 8:00am – 12:00am
Instructors: Karissa Giles, Frontier Precision
Fee: Free
Location: Room 3

Survey123 is a form centric data collection software for real-time or offline data collection that is incorporated with the ArcGIS Online or Enterprise platform. This will be a hands-on learning experience for creating a mobile deployable survey through Survey123 Web Designer and Connect. We will cover the XLSForm basics to design and automate the survey to create a data driven form.

Intended Audience: GIS users or individuals interested in turning paper forms into electronic forms.

Tech requirements:Tech Requirements: Laptop with Survey123 Connect installed and an ArcGIS online account. Participants must provide their own laptops.

Presenter Bio: Karissa has an Associates of Arts in Agriculture, which included GIS and GPS course work, from the College of Southern Idaho. She started in the geospatial technology industry in 2012. Karissa is a GPS/GIS Services Specialist at Frontier Precision, which includes creation, management and deployment of maps, apps, geodatabases and training for our GIS professional services as well as support on Trimble, Esri, Juniper and other GPS/GIS hardware and software.


Coordinate Systems and Projections: Grid V. Ground

Time: 8:00am – 12:00am
Instructors: John Hunter, PLS
Fee: $50
Location: Room 4

Why are coordinate systems and projections important for GIS?  Spatially derived, analytics are dependent upon how well the data is projected onto a flat surface.  The amount of distortion in a projection, commonly referred to as Grid V. Ground, is an important consideration that plays a vital role in the accuracy of the GIS and especially spatially derived analytics.

This workshop will take a comprehensive approach starting with geocentric reference frames, geodetic (global) coordinate systems such as Latitude and Longitude, state plane projections, and finally localized ground projections.  This workshop will also cover the role that elevation (altitude) plays in increasing the amount of distortion in a projected coordinate system as well as the impact on the accuracy of spatially derived analytics in a GIS.  The workshop will conclude with a study of the future of State Plane Coordinate Systems and how they will differ from previous definitions.

Intended Audience: Beginner to Advanced GIS User.

Tech requirements: None

Presenter Bio: John Hunter, PLS. Professional Land Surveyor with more than 20 years of public and private sector experience in Surveying and Geomatics disciplines including: Deformation and Monitoring, Boundary and PLSS Retracements, Control Network Design, Localized Coordinate Systems and Projections, and Geodetic Surveys.

John holds a B.S. in Business Management from Colorado State University, he is the Colorado Geomatics Coordinator for NOAA NGS, and a Project Surveyor at Denver Water, which has allowed him to manage surveying and geomatics projects that align with his areas of expertise.

Find the Hidden Asset: GIS / AR Hands on Workshop

Time: 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Instructor: Brian Collison and Paul Hoemke
Cost: Free
Location: Room 4

Many municipalities have open spaces and natural land features with hidden assets. Augmented Reality simplifies the documentation of these assets into data sets. In this workshop we will explore current GIS trends for locating these hard to find assets. It will include practical demonstrations that show how to equip field crews with the technology they need to overcome the limitations of 2D maps in the field.

Intended Audience: GISP, GIS Managers, Field Technicians, Municipal Water or Public Works Technicians.

Tech requirements: Optional – laptops

Presenter Bio: Brian Collison, VP of Sales

Brian Collison is a VP of Sales who helps his clients and prospective business partners fashion solutions that address concerns and fill needs. Brian believes in earning the trust and business of my clients and partnering with them will make them successful.  This has led to measurable results of increased sales through year-over-year growth for existing clients and in new account acquisition. His clients, in turn, have experienced higher profits, leading to long-term relationships that are based on mutual benefit and trust. Brian holds a B.S in Marketing and Accounting from Colorado State University.

Co-Presenter: Paul Hoemke, Director of Operations
Paul Hoemke is Director of Operations, and works with GIS professionals to provide smooth integrations of the Argis Lens with existing processes within organizations. Paul advocates for continuous product improvement through quality testing and the power of swift feedback loops. Paul has guided numerous organizations as they have transitioned into using the Argis Lens, including both public and private enterprise accounts with strict security protocols. Paul is trained for technical leadership, enterprise Software-as-a-Service support, and security and compliance. In addition to his Professional Scrum Master credential, he also holds the Lean IT Kaizen certification, focused on problem-solving and continual improvement.

Learning Objectives: Understand what AR has to offer to improve location of assets in the field. Hands on training for using AR to document in the field assets. Documenting hidden assets within ArcGIS using Collector.



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