Avskyr du havet og lukten av råtten fisk? Blir du utrygg når du tenker på flo og fjære? Liker du deg i høyden? Liker du mygg og myr? Liker du geografi og skandinaviske rekorder? Da er denne artikkelen for deg!

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Hvor er midtpunktet i Skandinavia? Dette er et spørsmål som dukket opp i familien for en del år siden. Min bror har en hytte i Rendalen og mente at hytta måtte ligge ganske nær Skandinavias midtpunkt? Rett eller galt? Familiens geograf tok saken.

Siden jeg kan litt om geografiske informasjonssystemer (GIS) og analyser var det ikke så vanskelig å finne ut av det. Den metoden jeg valgte er bare en av mange mulige. I denne artikkelen forteller litt om hvordan jeg løste oppgaven.

For de som ser etter et turmål kan Skandinavias midtpunkt være et fint et. Jeg kan allerede…


Wilderness areas are fewer and more fragmented. Can we find wilderness using algorithms? Will it be enough to understand wilderness?

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Wilderness zones (figure by author)

Trying to explain what wilderness is is not easy. Some use religion, others philosophy, politics, science or computers. In this story I will try to give my own account on how it is possible to work with wilderness as an abstract concept and also as something which allows itself to be processed using complex algorithms.

In my own country, Norway, this understanding has over the years led to a categorization of wilderness area classes based on distance to encroachments. Roads, railways, windmills, towers, and more represent encroachments to the wilderness. What has some distance to them will pass as wilderness.


Understanding the world by generalising it using grid cells. From details to knowledge.

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Grid cells are excellent for generalising information. This story is about geocoding, generalisations and the availability of spatial datasets which can be used to present spatially referenced data with geographical information systems. It concludes with pointing at the excellent Zenodo website where processed files can be distributed.

Geocoding

Geocoding is a way of using a combination of text and numbers to uniquely represents a geographic entity. It could be a location or an object. This is embedded in our language through our use of place names.

Most of us live in a named street in a numbered house. Abbey road 5…


The article gives detail on how to the Litchi app and DJI drones can be used to plan wildlife surveys.

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Image from the test-survey

A wildlife biologist is doing a survey where she need to establish a set of images from a bigger area. With the right methods one can make statistical assumptions about the total number of wildlife within the area. Doing it with drones does pose several challenges. In this article I will describe how the software Litchi together with a DJI Mavic Pro drone can be used/tweaked to set up a simple survey.

This particular survey is based on taking pictures along a transect (line). By counting the number of animals in the images, knowing the area covered by each picture…


Det er tidlig vår i den botaniske hagen. Jeg må samle de fem siste plantene til herbariet mitt for å få godkjent biologikurset. Jeg går rundt omkring på leting etter…


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I found a new garden in my digital neighbourhood. It has many names, digital ecosystem, data4sustainability — some call it the fourth wave of environmentalism. It is a vast garden — patches are greening. From where I am standing I can see some nice bushes. Here and there young trees are stretching to the skies. I cannot possibly wander through it all. I like what I see. As a geographer I would like to rise above the landscape and peer down. Try to find a pattern and draw a map. It will have to wait. …


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Researchers, environmental managers, ecologists, researchers — we are all looking for a better perspective. Fieldwork, remote sensing and systemic understanding lets us piece together knowledge which in turn can be used to prioritize human interaction with our environment. All this knowledge represents generalizations. The paradox of generalisations is that they are some times needed for us to see our world in a manageable way. The less we see, the better some of our decissions will be.

A sensitivity atlas is a generalization. The sensitivity atlas method does not represent a method which is usually associated under laws, regulations or international…


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We humans are good at remembering places. With a little help from a map we are able to find back to places we visited decades ago. What if you could authenticate yourself without remembering passwords consisting of meaningless stream of characters?

We already have several biometrically based authentications methods. Fingerprints, iris scans, facial recognition, hand geometry and what have you. More are probably more to come. The jury is out on several of the methods. I will leave this to the experts.

Being a geographer my favourite authentication method will rely on spatially referenced secrets buried deep inside my mind…


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Tanzanian Hon. Minister January Makamba presenting at the FOSS4G conference in Dar es Salaam 2018 (Photo: Ragnvald Larsen)

Open Source software as part of development cooperation is not a matter of principle. Choosing software in development cooperation projects is about finding good software tools to help do the job. My suggestion in this text is that Open Source software in the long run will come out as the better alternative. I will try to explain why.

The last 16 years I have worked on development cooperation with many partner countries. The work has been on contributing to the sound management of spatial environmental data. I have also contributed to geoprocessing of data to new products. Doing this I…

Ragnvald Larsen

Geographer working with GIS, data management and development cooperation. My opinions are my own. https://www.linkedin.com/in/ragnvald/

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