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    11 Cool Things About GIS Day (Besides Cake)

    November 19 is GIS Day when millions of people celebrate maps by (among other things) eating cake. And millions more people wonder, "what the heck is GIS Day?!" and "can I have a piece of cake?!" Here are some reasons you should get in on the festivities.

    1. Be Aware

    National Geographic

    GIS Day is part of Geography Awareness Week--a time to think about places, people, and interrelationships. GIS is a tool that makes it easier for people to understand our world and their place in it.

    2. Take a #GISDaySelfie

    OMG, I am going to eat so much cake. But first, let me take a selfie. Remember to tweet your #GISDaySelfie and include your location for max exposure.

    3. Break EsriGram

    Post all your fun GIS Day photos on Instragram on Wednesday and don’t forget to use #GISDay @esrigram. Let’s see if we can break Esrigram!

    4. Smell Around the World

    In Liberec, Czech Republic they have been known to celebrate GIS Day with a Map of Scents. Participants can get a whiff of animals and plants from around the world for a totally different take on “interactive maps.”

    5. Count Wallabies

    This year, Shaun Kolomeitz from Australia’s Department of National Parks will give a talk about how to develop population density models for wallabies using open source during the city’s GIS Day event at QUT Gardens Point Campus. Here you can also see demos of unmanned helicopters and 3D printers—plus be part of the Map App Hack.

    6. Sample the Geography of Food

    National Geographic

    National Geographic Society is talking about “The Future of Food” November 16 through 22 as part of their Geography Awareness Week celebrations. You can see a map of staple crops around the world, find out the global footprint of your meals, and read which foodie films are recommended by NatGeo staffers.

    7. See How Maps Solve Problems


    Thousands of universities around the world use GIS Day to show people how maps can help solve local problems such as voter redistricting, planning for emergencies, and urban issues like parks or road work.

    8. Hangout with Geogeeks All Day

    Imagem / Via Instagram: @imagemgeo

    Sometimes you just want to talk about polygon overlays without having to explain what they are.

    9. Clean Up Graffiti

    Graffiti Street By Chris Mitchell

    In Denmark, students are using GPS and ArcGIS Online maps to register graffiti in their neighborhoods. Then they use GIS tools to analyze their results and make a plan to cover up the graffiti.

    10. Love LA, Learn LA

    This year Los Angeles County will show you how 30 agencies (including universities, police, fire fighters, and governments) are using GIS technology. The LA County GIS Day event, held at the Kenneth Hahn Hall of Administration, will feature a managers’ session, training opportunities, a map gallery, plus GIS games and prizes.

    11. Get into Math & Science

    In San Antonio, the Alamo Area GIS Day attracts students who love math and science to encourage them toward GIS careers. The event introduces students to real-world GIS solutions from 40 different companies that use the technology every day.

    12. OK Fine, Eat Cake.

    And think about maps made out of frosting...

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