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For Immediate Release: Nov. 10, 2003

Worldwide GIS Day Events Find Local Home at EMGI

Farmers Branch, Dallas, Texas-Celebrating and informing the public about GIS technologies, the Ellison Miles Geotechnology Institute and Applied Technological Services, Inc. (ATS), Inc. host an Open Exhibit Forum Nov. 19 from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on worldwide GIS Day. Geographic Information Systems, or GIS, offers exciting opportunities to planners, analysts or anyone who needs detailed mapping information. This three-dimensional tool turns a database of information into visual layers mapping a specific location. ATS, Inc., in Coppell, provides software, hardware and services for mapping/GIS, engineering and IT computing professionals.

Each year on the Wednesday of National Geographic Society’s Geography Awareness Week, National Geographic sponsors GIS Day in conjunction with local agencies or businesses that use this technology. Thousands of users of GIS technology around the world open their doors to schools, businesses and the general public on this day to showcase real-world applications of this exciting technology. ATS, Inc. and many area local government entities and academic institutions in the Dallas area, are working together to provide this combined event at the Ellison Miles Geotechnology Institute.

Brookhaven College recently started offering courses in GIS to meet growing needs for training in this technology. The EMGI has hand-held global positioning systems, GIS software and a mapping plotter to offer students, and now the public, a chance to see and use this technology. Diane Brownlee, director of the EMGI, said the public would see demonstrations of the system both in the field and in computer simulations. Representatives from the cities of Lewisville, Plano, Farmers Branch, Grapevine, Flower Mound, Carrollton and The Colony, as well as the Town of Addison, have already committed to attending the event.
A GIS is a computer-based mapping tool that takes information from a database about a location, such as streets, buildings, water features, and terrain, and turns it into visual layers. The ability to see geographic features on a map gives users a better understanding of a particular location, enabling them to make informed decisions about their communities. GIS is used throughout the world to solve problems related to the environment, health care, land use, business efficiency, education, and public safety. The power supply directed to homes, the patrol cars and fire trucks that keep neighborhoods safe, and the delivery trucks on the road all function more efficiently because of GIS.

Recently the public has seen how GIS technology can be used to aid homeland security initiatives, map the debris field following the Space Shuttle Columbia tragedy, and monitor the spread of Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS). From border patrol agents to doctors, and from federal agency employees to local city planners, people in professions all over the world are reaping the benefits of this technology.

GIS Day is a grassroots event and a reflection of the enthusiasm and commitment of individual GIS users everywhere.
This year marks GIS Day’s fifth anniversary, so join the celebration and become a part of this annual tradition. For event registration, support, and ideas or to find a GIS Day 2003 event near you, log on to To register, please send name, organization, city, phone and e-mail address by fax to ATS, Inc. at 972-745-3339 or by e-mail to Phone registration also is available at 972-745-3444 ext. 26. For information about the EMGI, contact 972-860-4630.

Brookhaven College is one of the seven colleges of the Dallas County Community College District. Educational opportunities are offered by the Dallas County Community College District without regard to race, color, age, national origin, religion, sex, disability or sexual orientation. Brookhaven College is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097 (telephone number 404-679-4501) to award the associate degree.


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Last Updated: Nov. 20, 2003