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Cageyjames & GeoBabbler
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Cageyjames & GeoBabbler

Author: James Fee

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James Fee and Bill Dollins have been around GIS and Spatial technology for over 50 years combined. Between them they might remember a thing or two about technology and how to use it. This monthly podcast isn't about interviews or buzzwords, but how to apply spatial technology to your workflows.
11 Episodes
It Goes to Eleven

It Goes to Eleven


We took a little time off while James and his wife welcomed their latest bundle of joy into the world. In this episode, we talk a lot about digital twins, smart cities, and 3D GIS. The future of geospatial is connected and streaming and the digital twin segment is leading the way.
James and Bill talk about what they saw at the 2020 Esri Virtual UC in July 2020. Some of the items that caught their eye was ArcGIS Enterprise Kubernetes, GeoPackage Editing, Notebooks, Mobile and IoT.
GIS on MacOS

GIS on MacOS


James and Bill go over how they use GIS on MacOS. From GDAL and QGIS to Safe FME and PostGIS, they cover all the easy ways it is to get started. James also leaves Spatial Networks and is looking for something to do.
We're all in lockdown but Bill and James are still up to things. From Bill playing with PostGIS, Node and Koop to James writing bash scripts so he can save 3 seconds on Git commits, they are working hard. Plus James gives a look into the GeoJSON Ballparks creation process.
Finally Elastic

Finally Elastic


So James and Bill finally talk about Elasticsearch. This introduction on what Elastic is and how they use it is a great start for anyone who wants to start using Elastic for geo queries.
Look, they were bound to do another podcast and this is the one you get. Some Twitter talk considering Bill and James have both tweaked Twitter. James renews his passport and realizes that GeoWeb 2009 was 10 years ago. They discuss what Ron Lake meant to the community and during that time James clean up a 10 year old blog post and his blog software sends out a tweet that Jason Birch sees. That's some live podcasting right there. James shares his predictions for 2010 and Bill agrees they were mostly on point except for the Shapefile going away. Lastly they discuss Android 10, asking permission for location, incognito mode for Google Maps and what ethical responsibilities do companies have for location in ttheir apps.



Live from Spatial Networks HQ after hours, it is Bill and James talking about tweets, globes and photos. We start with some thoughts on what expectations users should have with projects, what developers of those projects should expect as well. Cesium is now on it's own and we're both excited to see what happens. James has a ton of history with Cesium so there is much there. Lastly Bill just got back from Ireland and took some pictures with his phone and was surprised as to what Google was able to do without him having to lift a finger.
GDAL: Beyond OGR

GDAL: Beyond OGR


James and BIll talk about GDAL and OGR. James can't pronounce it correctly but he knows how to use it. Bill talks about how much it has been part of his workflows in the past 15 years. There is even more that didn't make the podcast via Howard Butler ( GDAL Barn Raising Geodesy is a property of the data. When all our data came from paper maps, geodesy didn't matter as much except for the pocket protector crowd, but now that most of our positioning comes from space, geodesy buried in our data is an unavoidable topic. The open source stack of software based on GDAL and PROJ was deficient in the geodesy realm because PROJ was a cartographic transformation library (for making pretty maps!) rather than a geodetic library (for serious data management and engineering). Kristian Evers and Thomas Knudsen of Denmark SDFE (~ Denmark USGS) added the bits necessary to PROJ to allow it to act as a geodetic library as of the PROJ 5 release. The Barn Raising was needed to wire up those bits in PROJ 5 with the dictionaries that describe all of the transformations. This effort was three pieces – swapping out the GDALDATA and PROJLIB CSV files for a single, unified SQLite db, putting a OGC Well Known Text v2 engine in PROJ, wiring up GDAL, PROJ, libgeotiff, PostGIS, QGIS, and whoever else to use it all directly. The result of this effort is GDAL 3.0 and PROJ 6.1 Nyall Dawson has an excellent post describing how this effort improved QGIS by making the software work better, more simple, and more unified with the rest of the other projects. has the history of the efforts of who pushed in money and Even's progress reports as he did the development. refactor Even, myself, Mateusz, and Dan Baston at the OSGeo Community Sprint in Minneapolis refactored the website to be based on Sphinx like,,,, and many other ReadTheDocs-based efforts. A primary goal was to allow you to hit the front page and be able grep for a driver name right away. The docs were buried, and this was an effort to bubble them up, and make it easier for people to contribute to them. For example, there's now a PDF (900 pages!) and people can use Sphinx Intersphinx capability to link to GDAL documentation in their own projects. COG Driver Even just pushed an explicit Cloud Optimized GeoTIFF COG driver for GDAL that will be released in the next GDAL release that handles the writing side of COG. Your audience should know about COG.
FOSS4G-NA is over and there is much that excites the boys. Check out Coleman McCormick's review of the conference ( for details. Topics discussed were: Serverless Spatial ( Pelias Geocoder ( Cesium ( Mago3D ( Paul Ramsey (
A huge episode this month. We're not starting this podcast slowly, we dive right into spatial databases. Topics this episode include PostGIS, Spatial SQL, connecting to the database and how to get help. There is so much packed into this 60 minute episode, so please make sure you check out the links below.
So it starts when someone talks about what they wish for in podcasts and ends when you fire up Skype and start recording. James and Bill talk about why they started the podcast and what they use. A good intro into what Cageyjames & GeoBabbler will become.
Comments (1)

TJ Mitchell

Thanks for the shout out! The Geospatial Power Tools book re: GDAL

Aug 13th
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