The Business of Geography

By Joe Francica

TerraSeer is a company engaged in the development of software and services that use spatial statistics to provide the support necessary to understand the correlation between geographically-referenced phenomena.I had the chance to speak with Nick Jacquez this week, President and Chief Executive Officer of TerraSeer about their approach to the challenges they face in promoting their services to businesses and government agencies."A lot of people don't know that it needs to be done," referring to spatial statistics."In geographic space, things tend to have a spatial autocorrelation.Traditional statistical techniques [as applied to geographic problems] are false."

One of TerraSeer's products "ChronoSeer" will enable geographers to visualize change detection, in time and space, using remotely sensed data and information."SpatialSeer" is a suite of statistical software to reveal spatial patterns often missed by standard statistical methods.Proprietary data structures have been created to run with their own statistics.However, each of their products provides access to commonly available GIS formats such as Shapefiles or MapInfo tables.

"Techniques don't care what the data are!" said Mr.Jacquez, "Our approach seeks to establish that 'where' and 'when' have an impact of the 'why' of events."

TerraSeer's exclusive R&D partner, BioMedware, a successful scientific software development firm, developed the TerraSeer Environmental Insight™ software.Much of TerraSeer's work has been conducted in the fields of epidemiology and boundary delineation of wildlife habitats.According to product literature, "BoundarySeer," identifies spatial patterns, then assesses the probability that those patterns occur by chance.

More information about TerraSeer can be found in a white paper that the company has authored, and in a special issue of the Journal of Geographical Systems edited by Geoffrey Jacquez, Andrew Marcus and Richard Aspinall, which is slated for a March release.The issue focuses on the use of spatially explicit analysis methods with remotely sensed data.

Published Wednesday, March 6th, 2002

Written by Joe Francica

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