This Slashdot post talks about TIGR, the Tactical Ground Reporting System, which the US military developed for groupd troops in Iraq and Afghanistan. “Developed as much on the
ground in active warzones as in a lab, TIGR lets platoons access the
latest satellite and drone imagery in an easy-to-use map based
interface, as well as recording their experiences in the field and
accessing the reports of other troops.”

For more details, see the interview with the developers. Some fascinating quotes, including:

soldiers learn … the area that they’re
assigned. That is they learn the people. They learn the villages. They
learn the roads. And that knowledge that they gain over the course of a
deployment is often times lost. When those soldiers rotate back to the
United States and new soldiers come in and are assigned a territory,
then they come in without all of that knowledge. They used to come in
without all of that knowledge. And that was actually a very, very
dangerous period of time called the turnover of authority. And one
thing TIGR has done is that TIGR has made all of that information
available to the soldiers that are coming in new, as it were, to an
area, so that they’re acclimated and have good knowledge of the people
and the places and the roads and things of this sort when they arrive.

you’re just really looking for geospatially relevant information for
the mission at hand. If you’re going to take this route and you’re not
familiar with this route that you’re thinking of taking, you can look
and see how many attacks have taken place; what kind of attacks have
taken place; who’s been there before. So all of that information is at
your fingertips.

What a different application than Cyclopath! (And one that I personally would have qualms about working on, although I don’t see this as a simple case of ‘working on a military application’.) And yet the motivation for the approach is nearly identical. More evidence for the utility of a geowiki approach!

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16 Responses to “Talk about needing a Geowiki!”

  1. flexibak

    What a fantastic system. I can completely understand how hard it must have been for those troops to go in ‘blind folded’ as it were without any prior knowledge. This system should surely save lives and give the troops more confidence when entering new terriroty. Well done.

  2. Anonymous

    The US military is the best when it comes to war technology and tactics, when they go to war its really like watching video games

  3. Jay M

    I have actually discussed about this particular system in my earlier days of college! Admire it 😉

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