Safe Software to demonstrate effective Disaster Response

Safe Software to demonstrate effective Disaster Response

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Vancouver, Canada, August 14, 2007: Safe Software, makers of the FME spatial ETL (extract, transform, and load) platform, will discuss solutions to the critical challenges affecting in effective disaster response say after a hurricane, a tsunami, or other disaster occurs; during a presentation at URISA’s 2007 Annual Conference, to be held in Washington, DC, August 20-23.
“In the chaotic aftermath of a disaster, a GIS disaster response team must quickly integrate location-based data provided by multiple agencies, and make the results available to other teams and organizations,” said Dean Hintz, senior consultant and presenter from Safe Software. “The challenge facing responding organizations is that most of this data is not immediately usable with their GIS tools. The data may be in a variety of different map scales and coordinate systems, and it often spans a wide range of data structures, formats and standards – from vector to raster, from spatial to attribute only or text, and from open standards such as GML, WFS and WMS, to de-facto and proprietary standards” added Hintz.
During the response phase of a disaster, a GIS team may need to plan an effective strategy using basemap data in ESRI Shapefiles, engineering data in MicroStation, topological data in GML, and flood extent data in WFS. In order for a GIS system to use these diverse data sources, the data first needs to be translated into a common format or data structure. This will result in wasting critical time if the team is hand coding the required data transformations, or relying on tools that deal with only a limited number of formats.
Safe Software’s presentation will use a hypothetical disaster response scenario to show how spatial ETL tools provide important advantages over other approaches by rapidly integrating diverse source data into a common model. In addition, the presentation will demonstrate how this technology plays an important role in distributing data to response teams.
“These tools enable GIS teams to quickly integrate multiple data types, while preserving the meaning of the information during transformation of the data to a common model. What’s more, they can directly read from and write to multiple data stores, regardless of data structure or format. This significantly streamlines both receiving and distributing critical information, and ultimately helps disaster response teams save more lives,” says Drew Rifkin, Safe Software account manager and co-presenter with Hintz.