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Thread: Found Arts

  1. #1
    Cyburbian Wannaplan?'s avatar
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    Found Arts

    How many planners have learned to:

    1) Use GIS without any academic or specialized training?

    2) Use imaging software like Photoshop to create plan graphics?

    3) Draft attractive planning documents in an unfamiliar word processing program like PageMaker or WordPerfect?

    4) Place newly scanned images into an unfamilar word processing program so thay are aligned and don't crowd the text?

    5) Develop other 21st Century skills to do better, more efficient work?

  2. #2
    Forums Administrator & Gallery Moderator NHPlanner's avatar
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    Re: Found Arts

    Originally posted by Alan
    How many planners have learned to:

    1) Use GIS without any academic or specialized training?
    Sort of. I took 2 advanced GIS courses at Ball State, which is an Intergraph Center for Excellence. I've learned ArcView on the fly.

    2) Use imaging software like Photoshop to create plan graphics?
    All the time.

    3) Draft attractive planning documents in an unfamiliar word processing program like PageMaker or WordPerfect?
    Not unfamiliar with either. I use WordPerfect for all my everyday word processing...I like it better than MS Word. I've been using PageMaker for about 8 years as well....learned on version 3, both PC and Mac.

    4) Place newly scanned images into an unfamilar word processing program so thay are aligned and don't crowd the text?
    Not hard when you've been using said programs for years. :p

    5) Develop other 21st Century skills to do better, more efficient work?
    Web development, e-mail, and god knows what else are integrated into my daily work.
    "Growth is inevitable and desirable, but destruction of community character is not. The question is not whether your part of the world is going to change. The question is how." -- Edward T. McMahon, The Conservation Fund

  3. #3
    Cyburbian Cardinal's avatar
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    I had a few GIS courses in grad school, so I can't say yest to that. On the other hand, I have learned to use everything from word processing software to spreadsheets to graphics suites without any formal training. When I arrived here in 1997 the previous director was using a 386 notebook with a DOS version of WordPerfect. We now have 1.5 computers per person, run the full Microsoft suite, ArcView 8, both Adobe and Corel graphics suites, Sonic Foundry video software, and a few other miscellaneous applications, have wireless broadband, and produce all media and reports in-house. Web design is the only technology application we outsource.

  4. #4
    Cyburbian Emeritus Chet's avatar
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    Re: Found Arts

    Originally posted by Alan
    How many planners have learned to:

    1) Use GIS without any academic or specialized training?
    I learned on ArcGIS 3.1 but havent had any formal training since then. We're on 8.3 now and our $8000 training gors to our other staff primarily.

    2) Use imaging software like Photoshop to create plan graphics?
    Yes, but I'm not very good.


    3) Draft attractive planning documents in an unfamiliar word processing program like PageMaker or WordPerfect?
    Yes. We have made a point to buy one copy of most publishing software programs. It makes it easier when dealing with umpteen consultants that each use different stuff.

    4) Place newly scanned images into an unfamilar word processing program so thay are aligned and don't crowd the text?
    Ditto #3.

    5) Develop other 21st Century skills to do better, more efficient work?
    Like trying to explain the purpose of metadata, or explain what ESRI's Spatial Data Engine is to our Common Council?

  5. #5
    Cyburbian Wannaplan?'s avatar
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    Re: Re: Found Arts

    Originally posted by Chet
    Like trying to explain the purpose of metadata, or explain what ESRI's Spatial Data Engine is to our Common Council?
    Ouch! No fun!

  6. #6
    Cyburbian Zoning Goddess's avatar
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    I work on a "need to know" basis. If it's something I need to do, I'll learn it. I'm spending too much time on the computer as it is, so I leave the graphics to the graphics folks, etc.

  7. #7
    Cyburbian Tom R's avatar
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    gis

    What I know of GIS I learned the hard (easy) way, I made mistakes and asked someone for help.
    WALSTIB

  8. #8
    Cyburbian michaelskis's avatar
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    New School.

    For us to graduate, we had to "KNOW" GIS and all the other computer stuff.... Hell, we had to get IBM think pads from the university. Thank you NMU...

    But then again, some of us took old school drawing classes too.

    I once did a quick sketch of a plan using the drawing tools on Microsoft Word.
    Trusting a DC politician with your money is like trusting a hungry dog with a raw steak.

  9. #9
    Cyburbian jordanb's avatar
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    Re: Found Arts

    Originally posted by Alan
    How many planners have learned to:
    I'm not a planner but I'll give it a shot.

    1) Use GIS without any academic or specialized training?
    Well, I've been toying around with GRASS in my spare time. We got ArcView at work for the geocoding project but I've not used it much.

    2) Use imaging software like Photoshop to create plan graphics?
    If by "Photoshop" you mean "Gimp" then yes, getting better every day.

    3) Draft attractive planning documents in an unfamiliar word processing program like PageMaker or WordPerfect?
    I use LaTeX. It's a pain to learn, but it produces the best looking documents that I've ever seen, and #2 is GROFF, which is also hard to learn. That's actually funny because most of those word processors' engines are cheap imitations of TeX, in that they used TeX as a reference to write them (Word Perfect is by far the best though, I wouldn't be at all suprised if its "equation editor" is just a GUI frontend to TeX's mathematical typesetter).

    4) Place newly scanned images into an unfamilar word processing program so thay are aligned and don't crowd the text?
    I've not done much of that in LaTeX, but what I have done has come out nicely.

    5) Develop other 21st Century skills to do better, more efficient work?
    I've generally found that a good understanding of the fundementals of computing can pretty much give people what they need to pick up any aspect of it quickly. One of the biggest problems with computer training is that it almost never teaches the fundementals, it just teaches how to use a particular program's features.

  10. #10
    Member green lizard's avatar
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    How about:

    Speak in public.
    Not speak your mind when you want to.
    Not talk above your intended reader/listener.

    all good skills to learn.

    P.S. I remember COGO. And have forgotten things
    like UNIX and VI, and DBASE.....

  11. #11
    Cyburbian donk's avatar
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    I can learn and use just about any windows driven/based program in a few hours. i had a really good prof in university that taught us how to assess how programs work and to visualize what you want and make it so.

    I have taught myself basic GIS stuff (mapinfo, autocad map) but don't really care about projection or database management, that is what techs are for. I won a copy of ARCview for our office, but it is not on my machine so I have yet to use it.
    Too lazy to beat myself up for being to lazy to beat myself up for being too lazy to... well you get the point....

  12. #12
    Cyburbian Emeritus Chet's avatar
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    Originally posted by donk
    I have taught myself basic GIS stuff (mapinfo, autocad map) but don't really care about projection or database management, that is what techs are for
    I get the biggest kick out of our GIS people. They go to local user group meetings where we are collaborating on major regional projects / data sharing, and come back after lunch toally psyched about what they do for a living. A recent paraphrase: "O my gawd. You wont believe the data model that [we / they] are contracting for. Its soooo awesome. All cadastral and ownership information including parcel history back to 1884 will be there in multilevel datasets that are in a unique identifier history code! And we can serve it on the web with just a few java scripts...."

  13. #13
    Cyburbian Zoning Goddess's avatar
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    Originally posted by Chet
    I get the biggest kick out of our GIS people. A recent paraphrase: "O my gawd. You wont believe the data model that [we / they] are contracting for. Its soooo awesome. All cadastral and ownership information including parcel history back to 1884 will be there in multilevel datasets that are in a unique identifier history code! And we can serve it on the web with just a few java scripts...."
    Please tell me I'm not the only one whose eyes glaze over when they start talking like that...

  14. #14
    Cyburbian Emeritus Chet's avatar
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    Originally posted by Zoning Goddess
    Please tell me I'm not the only one whose eyes glaze over when they start talking like that...
    HEEE! I do to but as their boss, it makes me happy. The other day they were actually debating about the best way to serve up data sets. Made me go blank, but god love 'em. It's like garbage men. We need them too.

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