Thursday, July 22, 2010

Easy access to spatial data soon

Thiruvananthapuram: Natural disasters, industrial accidents, environmental crises or terrorist attacks call for quick response from rescue services and security agencies. Similarly, planners, scientists, resource managers and infrastructure sector companies have to make speedy decisions to address development needs.

Much of the information needed to make sound decisions is based on detailed geographic information. The availability of accurate and current geospatial data is critical in the decision-making process. The absence of a common platform and a mechanism for sharing has proved to be a hurdle to the effective use of data in Kerala. But that is set to change.

Kerala is all set to be the third State in India to have a spatial data infrastructure in place, making it easy for users to share geospatial information generated by various agencies.

The Kerala Spatial Data Infrastructure (KSDI) is being set up on the Technopark campus here. The facility is based on a joint proposal by the Centre for Earth Science Studies (CESS), Kerala State Remote Sensing and Environment Centre, National Informatics Centre and Kerala State Council for Science, Technology and Environment. The contract for hardware, software and customisation will be awarded through bidding.

According to M. Samsuddin, project director on deputation from CESS, KSDI is proposed as a single window mechanism for providing access to the spatial data generated by various agencies in the State. It is visualised as a network of databases created by various agencies and a central database to be managed by KSDI.

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