Quick Takes

By Adena Schutzberg

Autodesk Renames Tux MapGuide; "Geospatial Foundation" to Meet in Chicago
Today Autodesk is announcing the new name for code called "Tux" which was introduced at Autodesk University last fall as MapServer Enterprise. Feedback from various communities, customers and partners resulted in Autodesk selecting the name MapGuide Open Source for the open source version of the code, Autodesk MapGuide Studio 2007 for the authoring tool, and Autodesk MapGuide Enterprise 2007 for the company's productized version of the server software.

Online discussions are underway to find a new name for the MapServer Foundation, which is now seeking other open source geospatial projects to join the effort. Suggestions include the "Open Geospatial Foundation" and the "MapTools Foundation."

Members of the open source geospatial community are slated to meet in Chicago on February 4. To date several representatives of projects in addition to MapServer and MapGuide have planned to attend. A list of attendees will be posted to the MapServer Foundation website. The goal is to agree on topics, including a mission statement or short charter, a governance model for the foundation, a founding Board of Directors and an acceptable short list of foundation names. The complimentary travel/lodging offered by Autodesk for 25 attendees has been filled. Anyone who would like to make their way to Chicago for the meeting is welcome. Those unable to travel may participate via Internet Relay Chat #geofoundation at irc.freenode.net.

Developers have been downloading and "playing with" MapGuide Open Source since it was made available on November 28 of last year. Applications include traditional uses, as well as mashups with Google Maps and other technologies. One such site is SpokaneMaps.com.

Bass New Autodesk CEO
On Tuesday Autodesk announced that 14-year veteran chairwoman and CEO Carol Bartz will step down and be succeeded by current COO Carl Bass. Bass has been with the company for 10 years and from all accounts has been groomed for the position. Bass expects little change in the short term and will be leading the same slate of vice presidents with whom he currently works; he does not expect to name a new COO in the short term.

At the end of one investor day webcast a few years ago, before Bartz and Bass had removed their microphones, I believe I heard Bartz say something on the order of "you'll be doing this one day." Bartz is one of the most respected businesswomen in the world and once referred to herself as "the rose between two thorns" during a keynote at AEC Systems with Jim Meadlock of Intergraph and Keith Bentley of Bentley Systems. She'll hold a part time position as executive chairwoman, meeting with clients, developing emerging markets, and continuing government relations work.

Directions Magazine does not expect the change to impact the Infrastructure Solutions Division (ISD), currently headed by Vice President Chris Bradshaw.

USGS Internal Investigation: Selection of Denver "Open and Fair"
In a transmittal memo (pdf), acting USGS Director Patrick Leahy informed Secretary Mark Limbaugh that investigations by an internal committee into the process used by the USGS to select a location for the National Geospatial Technical Operations Center had a few flaws but overall were “open, fair and adequate." Flaws in communications, in particular, were acknowledged in the report (pdf). Limbaugh agreed with the report's recommendation to continue the move to Denver and restart the paused A-76 competition (which pits the USGS against the private sector).

Congressional representatives from Missouri were most vocal about their concerns that the September decision overlooked the hard numbers, which appeared to favor Rolla over Denver. Others have suggested that Denver was selected since it was likely to compete less favorably with private companies. The USGS maintains that Denver provided the best overall environment for the center. A second investigation from the Inspector General is still pending.

Published Friday, January 20th, 2006

Written by Adena Schutzberg

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