Geospatial Semantics

Getting beyond data-centric solutions for search, mining, visualization and analytics

The market is saturated with data-centric approaches that are limited by their syntactic and schematic boundaries, and fall short of providing sufficient semantics (explicit meaning of concepts). System integration and interoperability suffers. Users are burdened with heavier workloads to interpret and make sense of data. What’s needed is a knowledge-centric approach that formally encodes structured knowledge about the subjects/objects we care about. Uniform, coherent semantic models address interoperability and integration challenges through improved, standardized interfaces and protocols. Knowledge-centric services can also be used to interpret and infer in support of users performing cognitive-heavy tasks.

Why geospatial semantics?

Semantic models help us better understand the meaning and significance of those subjects/objects described on the Web that we care about. Geospatial (and its dimensional partner, Time) place things in the all too familiar 4-dimensional context that we all understand. This enhances meaning, significance and relevance. Thus, geospatial-temporal and semantics go hand in hand in problem solving. Image Matters is a pioneer in defining exactly what this means in terms of technology solutions. Our latest knowledge-as-a-service (KaaS) platform reflects more than a decade of R&D innovation.

Image Matters chosen for NGA’s Map of the World, the foundation for intelligence integration

The National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency recently announced (Excerpts from NGA’s Media Room) the selection of five companies to deliver innovative solutions as part of a $2 million challenge to deliver basic or applied research, concept exploration and capability demonstration in challenge areas that accelerate and strengthen the agency’s Map of the World (MoW). NGA issued the challenge focusing on three areas that will help accelerate the MoW efforts and received 73 proposals. Image Matters won under challenge area #1, Employing Link Data Technology. Image Matters was selected for its proposed linked-data strategy addressing the integration of object-based-intelligence with foundation geospatial intelligence. This will enhance NGA’s capability to generate, curate, analyze and share structured Object-Based Intelligence (OBI) as linked data with originating information tracking.

“This award builds upon a decade of advanced research and development into innovative analysis techniques for Object-Based Intelligence,” said Harry Niedzwiadek, CEO of Image Matters. “Our efforts began with NGA’s $1M Innovations in Geospatial Intelligence Award (2005), through which we pursued a vastly improved solution to what former Director James Clapper referred to as the ‘volume, velocity, variety and veracity (4V) problem’, known commonly today as the ‘Big Data problem’. Following this pioneering work, and complementary extended research with DARPA and others, we set our sights on next generation object-based production and analysis tools and services. Accelerating Map of the World has great potential to dramatically enhance the effectiveness and productivity of analysts, in a far more seamless and integrated fashion than ever before.” The approach leveraged Image Matters’ latest ontology and services work.

Image Matters releases its Geospatial-Temporal Ontology

Image Matters announced the public release of its comprehensive Geospatial-Temporal Ontologies through its participation in OGC’s Interoperability Program. These ontologies have been formulated, tested and refined over the past decade through the course of many internal and collaborative research and development projects. They offer a proven candidate ontological foundation for the Geospatial-Semantic Web, which in turn will enable robust geospatial-semantic interoperability between different systems and domains of interest. Image Matters introduced this seminal work to the OGC community through the OGC Web Services initiative (OWS-10). Read more »

Image Matters also released ontologies for social activity (SocialML) and symbology, under OWS 11. Services provided under these initiatives include Semantic Mapping, Semantic Gazetteer and Semantic Mediation.

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