Moving at the Speed of Creativity by Wesley Fryer

21st Century Cartographers by David Jakes

These are my notes from Dave’s afternoon presentation at TechForum07 on Google Maps and Google Earth. David is THE MAN. I first heard him in November 2005 at Techforum when he presented on digital storytelling.

David’s main site:

David’s resource website for this session specifically:

– does the technology tool support a fundamental literacy?
– understanding place in geography is possibly more important now than ever before
– added value to working in this tool? I still see kids at the high school level coloring maps
– shouldn’t we be using this tool (Google Earth) to help students learn what they need to in an environment they like and are engaged in

first thing kids have to do on Google Earth: take 15 min to find your house!

– is technology framed within a proper pedagogy
– how do we know it works? (evaluation)

Some questions
– can every discipline be studied within a geographical context?
– how will you help students make meaning of visual data?
– how does this change teaching and learning?
– logistical and technical requirements

I do a lot of workshops on visual literacy
– if you look at the science component of the ACT, if you are able to interpret visually you can do very well on that aspect of the test

from your ear to your brain: that is the auditory nerve
– about 16,000 – 18,000 nerve connections
– optic nerve: 1,000,000 connections
– you have a dialup connection between your ear and your brain, you have a broadband connection from your eyes to your brain
– leverage the power of that connection

Example: Google Lit Trips
– how can this transform the studying of literature
– this is out of Google

photo of onboard GPS umbrella

Google Maps example of fires in southern California
– Had a twitter site to announce where there were available rooms in the area during the fires

good thing about google maps: online so it doesn’t require a local installation

David is showing the design tools within Google Maps
– you can put a placemark
– teachers can design lessons in Google Maps, and then export that as XML files
– as a design environment for kids
– Google Maps DOES require a login

Google Earth will give teachers a little more design capacity than Google Maps will

Google Mapss lets you share the maps you create, you can choose to make them PUBLIC
– then you can
– it also gives you a web address you can direct link from a wiki page or somewhere else

google maps
– maps
– street view
– maplets
– profile page

Maplets are chunks of content
– Google Community is building these together, adds more function
– example: elevation contours
– browse the directory to look for this
– distance measurement tool
– dig a hole through the earth is fun
– earth impact craters
– realtime earthquakes

all those maplets are like layers in Google Earth, but they are available to turn on and off in Google Maps
– maplets just function in Google Maps

KML = keyhole markup language
– KML file displays geographic content in an earth browser like Google Earth

here is the power: very easily we can create something / design something in Google Maps and then with one click, create a static KML file

Google Earth 4.2 is in beta, has some very nice features
– can actually type in “grand canyon” and find it
– still can’t type in “great wall of china” to find it immediately

seen Google Earth Mouse? designed to interact with Google Earth!

showing live cloud data layer in Google Earth

KMZ = a zipped KML file (compressed)
– can have an entire folder of placemarks
– inside the folder you can have multiple data elements
– can lay over USGS maps and lay those over Google Earth

now showing data from the library at David’s school
– looking at bandwidth graphs, 1 class in the library, peaked at 7 MB of traffic
– our school is now fiber based, have no problems with the bandwidth
– no bottleneck at our local switch

Google Earth 4.2 has Google Sky!

David created a slideshare of embed codes
– slideshare is the youtube of powerpoints

Storymapping – new initiative from the Center for Digital Storytelling (I love it!!!)

someone commented: My head is full… i am about to explode!

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On this day..







2 responses to “21st Century Cartographers by David Jakes”

  1. Karen Kliegman Avatar

    I am in the middle of a project I created that incorporates storymapping. I have a 4th grade class studying NY Native Americans and am collaborating with a teacher in South Carolina. We are using CommunityWalk maps ( and will have our students place geographic markers of the tribes they studied on the map. Those markers will have introductory podcasts and a link to their Voicethreads where they will present their research about their tribes. Students are doing their research in a wiki and then will synthesize their research into a presentation on Voicethread. We also have a teacher wiki – -for teachers to communicate and share ideas. I love the idea of storymapping and using another web 2.0 tool to add to my students’ understanding of how geography played such an important role in the lives of the people they are studying. It is the essential question of the unit and I am having them blog about it this week in our classroom blog –

  2. Carolyn Foote Avatar

    Thanks for the notes, Wes! I was really torn yesterday afternoon, so now I can feel “caught up” on the session I missed!