Tuesday, 29 April 2014

Why you should attend Geo: The Big 5, Open Geospatial

There are only two weeks to go until the next Big 5 event Open Geospatial takes place in Northern Ireland 
and it’s definitely time to make a really clear case for why you should attend. I normally consider lists the epitome of lazy writing however in this case I can’t think of a better way to put it so here are 5 (or 6) reasons that we should be seeing you in Belfast on 13 May:

1. Whoever you are, wherever you are Open matters and is not going to go away
I have written about this before but time to restate it quickly. Open Geospatial impacts the whole industry; whether as a provider you are helping implement or competing with open source products or if as a user you are looking to utilise increasing amounts of open data (or as a data owner trying to open up your data). How the challenges and opportunities provided by open are tackled by the industry will have a huge impact in the future. A lack of standards, poor practices and a move back towards restriction could all have significant implications for the role of geospatial over the next 15 years. That is why it is important to get involved in the conversation now.

2. We’ve got a great programme of speakers
Following on from the above point we’ve got a great programme of speakers who will be tackling the pertinent issues in Open Geospatial. These range from high level industry insight and overview such as ‘open public data as a catalyst for innovation’ to more specific detail on topics like linked open data and the need for ‘geomaticians’. The day also includes a panel debate from some of our speakers allowing you to take part in the conversation.

3. Keep up to date with workshops
Need to convince your boss why you should be out of the office? How about a hands on intro to Ordnance Survey’s open data using QGIS or some open source apps from Esri? We know that workshops are always popular and are making sure we include more of them in the Big 5 event series.

4. Be part of a bigger response
This event is part of the wider Geo: The Big 5 series and the conversations that come out of it will be helping to inform the AGI's response to the issues of the day. The need for standards in open, the power and potential of opening up public data, enabling collaborative solutions to problems; these are issues where you can help us form our voice. Many of the discussions from Future Cities are coming up again as we draw up the programme and it is this chance for interlinked thinking that needs to be harnessed to push the value of geospatial forward.

5. Join the conversation (networking)
As always this is a great opportunity to meet with your peers, discuss the issues at hand and meet customers or look for new ones. Networking is a key part of any event and we have networking time afterwards. If you are coming from outside Northern Ireland this is a great opportunity to meet a new GI community.

6. Its only £49!
Finally, it is only £49 for members (including IRLOGI members in the spirit of cooperation), this is really very cheap for a one day conference especially one packed with two streams of great content and workshops making it ludicrously good value.

Also if you’re not from Northern Ireland it’s a great chance to come and see Belfast at the same time as learning something/doing some business. For more information on getting too and staying in a rather excellent city have a look at the logistics pack

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