Category Archives: Coursework

GIS404 Remote Sensing – Module 2 – Aerial Photography Basics & Visual Interpretation of Aerial Photography

Building off of the overview of remote sensing and history of aerial photograph provided in Module 1, we will now learn more about the types of and techniques for interpreting aerial photography. Modules 3 and 4 will continue to focus on the use of aerial photography but expand on the material covered in the first two modules.

The first slideshow (Lecture 2a: Aerial Photography basics) provides background on the types of aerial cameras, the different types of images they capture (oblique, vertical, stereo), the types of film used by traditional cameras, and understand how resolution (spatial, spectral, temporal) applies to aerial photography. This lecture (and Chapter 4) provides students the background material that form the foundation for understanding how to use aerial photos. The second slideshow (Lecture 2b: Aerial Photo Interpretation) goes into detail about the concepts, techniques, and application of visually interpreting aerial photos. Students will learn about the methods and techniques used to visually interpret aerial photos (i.e. recognition elements). These techniques form the basis for deriving geographic features and/or land use land cover types from aerial photos (which we will do in the next lab) and that are used in a wide variety of real world applications. This lecture (and Chapter 5) provide students an overview on the concepts and techniques of visual interpretation that will be applied in this week’s lab.

In the laboratory exercise, you will learn some basic principles of interpreting features found on aerial photographs. These principles range from concepts so basic that you might never have considered them, to quite obvious ideas, and finally some more advanced techniques.

Module 2 Topics

Topics covered in module 2, include:

1. Aerial Photography Basics

  • Types of Cameras
  • Types of Film
  • Types of Products

2. Basics of Visual (i.e. manual) Interpretation

  • Recognition Elements: 
    • shape, color, size, texture, pattern, shadow
    • Site and Association
  • Examples of Applications of Remote Sensing 
  • Forestry Interpretation Case Study
  • Sources for Aerial Photography

Module 2 Student Learning Outcomes

When you complete this module, you should be able to:

  • Recall the major types of aerial photos/cameras
  • Recall the types of films, resolution and products generally produced from aerial photos
  • Recall case study examples of the visual interpretation of aerial photos
  • Recall how to use various recognition elements to visually interpret aerial photographs

By the end of this lab, you should be able to:

  • Interpret the tone and texture of aerial photographs
  • Identify land features in an aerial photograph based on several visual attributes
  • Compare similar land features in true color and false color infrared (IR) photographs

Tanner Jessel Blog URL

Hello Diedra,

I am a new, first semester online GIS program student.

I had the same question as another new student that you answered August 29 concerning using a personal Google Account versus a UWF student Google Account.

If it is not required that I use the UWF student Google Account to host the blog, I think I would prefer to use my personal Google Account to host the blog; it is easier not to have to log out of my personal Google Account to log in to my Student UWF Google Account (Past experience is it’s not possible to use two Google Accounts at once within the same browser session).

The URL for my personal blog that I intend to use for the UWF online GIS program is:

(Please forgive the vainglorious branding, as I’m obviously a GIS data novice – call it wishful thinking).



Google Earth Module: Sandy Point Nat’l Wildlife Refuge

For a class assignment, I created a Google Earth map of Sandy Point National Wildlife Refuge.

Overview of Sandy Point NWR.

Printed output from Google Earth view of Sandy Point National Wildlife Refuge.

The actual file I submitted for grading is hosted online on my Google Site:

<>. (Really I should have uploaded it as a a KMZ).  There is more detail in the Google Earth File, but unfortunately, WordPress does not allow an embedded KML viewer, found at <> and discussed in detail by Google Earth Outreach.

However, it’s possible to embed a Google map on my Wordpress open notebook / portfolio.

For an interactive map on this site, allow an embedded map from “My Maps” on Google Maps Engine Lite (albeit with the limitation of 4 KML layers).

I really should include metadata, however for a short run down, I used the critical habitat boundary from the National Marine Fisheries Service to clip the GIS data for the Fish and Wildlife Service boundaries dataset (someone at FWS was lazy and just digitized a polygon around the water – the FWS is responsible for nesting habitat management to the waterline; NOAA/NMFS is responsible for the breeding habitat designated by the critical habitat designation). I also added the official FWS roads shapefile, because Google has incorrect information. In essence, all this data is official data, but the SPWNR boundary modified by me as described.  It should go without saying this is for educational purposes only, and official GIS data should be sought from the source (FWS, NMFS).

ArcGIS Online Atlas: Great Smoky Mountains N.P.

An online “Atlas of Great Smoky Mountains N.P.” I made for my final project in IS 590, GeoWeb technologies:
Environmental layers for Great Smoky Mountains National Park. Includes Environmental Protection Agency Level 4 Ecological Regions, 12 digit hydrologic unit watershed boundaries, temperature variances, trails, and forest threats (North Carolina only). Also includes waypoints for Appalachian balds (grassy areas at elevation)
There is an online map viewer where I added a DLIA logo:

Map image of DLIA demo map application, depicting Great Smoky Mountains National Park.

HUC 12 watershed boundaries and interface to add layers.

I’m interested in adding it to the DLIA site to provide something fun and interactive for site visitors to play around with.
If I can figure out how to host KML versions of the species distribution models, it could also be useful for Park Service personnel as a quick reference that also has limited GIS capability.  There are also applications for biodiversity science and cartographic education.

Presentation: Marketing Plan for NPS I&M Service Offerings

This presentation complements the  IS 553 Assignment 5 marketing plan for the National Park Service’s Inventory & Monitoring Program.

Presentation: Research Data Services Industry

This presentation complements IS 553 Assignment 2  profiling the research data services industry.  Includes some examples of research data output, and touches on challenges facing organizations seeking talent to manage and analyze research data.

INSC 553 Assignment 6: Issue Paper, Department of Interior Web Application Collaboration

IS 553 Assignment 6 is an “state of the art” comparison of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s use of Web 2.0 technologies, contrasted with the U.S. National Park Service’s implementation. Discusses Fish and Wildlife Service’s use of collaborative “Landscape Conservation Cooperatives,” online mapping technologies, inter-agency data distribution collaborations, and future directions including social media engagement and training opportunities, along with major challenges.

INSC 553 Assignment 5: Marketing Plan for NPS Inventory & Monitoring Program

IS 553 Assignment 5 is a marketing plan for service offerings promoting the U.S. National Park Service’s Inventory and Monitoring Program. Includes three service offerings with marketing messages tailored for specific target audiences, promotional activities, and measures of performance.

INSC 553 Assignment 4: Designing Service Offerings

IS 553 Assignment 4 a service offering and marketing plan for the U.S. National Park Service’s Inventory and Monitoring Program. Includes review of environmental factors and the following proposed service offerings:

  1. Engagement of Constituency
  2. Tools and Visualizations
  3. Enhanced Collaboration

Includes marketing message, performance metrics and measures of success for each service offering.

INSC 553 Assignment 3: Environmental Analysis of an Organization

IS 553 Assignment 3 is an environmental analysis of the U.S. National Park Service’s Inventory and Monitoring Program. Includes executive summary, Political, Economic, Sociocultural, and Technology Factors, and Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities and Threats analysis.