PE&RS February 2015 - page 97

February 2015
This book courageously embraces an extremely difficult topic
at a point in time in which our collective perception of changes
in Earth’s climate shifts from a vague, unspecified threat to a
gradual realization of escalating effects. This impressive collection
of research works extends our awareness and knowledge on
how a rich panoply of tools offered by geospatial sciences and
technologies is being used for the study, quantification and
modeling of the effects of climactic change and disruption.
My expectations for a conventional volume however were
quicklydismissedas I startedexamining thebook.Afirst surprise
came as I realized that this text was the result of a compilation
of research work conveyed originally as oral presentations, and
then apparently transcribed. As stated in the preface, the book
itself originated from a series of high quality geospatial training
events organized by the Council of Scientific and Industrial
Research – National Institute of Science Communication and
Information Resources (CSIR-NISCAIR), New Delhi, India.
Clearly, some portions of the text constitute a verbatim
transcription, yet only the first, introductory chapter clearly
states that in a footnote. At times, what seems to have been the
result of uneven editorial refinement becomes an obstacle to the
reader, compounded with the occasional use of a peculiar blend
of conversational and technical/scientific English. As a result
of this, some authors engage in style that proceeds in a rather
colloquial fashion, which can be overly distracting (e.g. “See
mainly for GPS, the timing is the main important thing.”, page
241; “In GPS you have six orbits…”, page 241; “Whenever they
install a system, normally we go for improvement”, page 242).
Without expecting a uniformity of style for so many different
authors, the seventeen chapters in this book vary in both
format and clarity, the probable result of various degrees of
editorial intervention. In some cases little or no effort seemed
to have been put into helping the text rise above the level of
a mere transcription. For example, sometimes the text is not
formatted into headings and sub-headings to differentiate
sections; this results in run-on paragraphs (“Theme One:
Impact assessment…”, page
). Other times, a running list
of bulleted items is all that constitutes a section compounded
by notes or shorthand ( “Image: points, lines, and polygons
( website)”, page 252). Use of grammar and syntax is
sometimes sub-optimal, as exemplified by use of no articles
(e.g. “the fundamentals of geographical information system”,
), or abstruse constructions (e.g.: “Paradip comprises of
vegetation areas which is highly populated”, page 198.)
Another issue is that of inconsistencies in theuse of a commonly
accepted term such as
. In the book, it is sometimes written
in its expanded form as “Geographical”, and at other times
“Geographic”; both the singular and plural forms- “system”
and “systems” are also used. One author uses on the same
page two versions of the term (“Chapter 15 – Fundamentals
of Geographical Information System (GIS)…”, page 247; “…
Geographic Information System (GIS) technology…”, page 247).
Geospatial Technologies and Climate
Change, First Edition
Volume 10 in Geotechnologies and the
Janardhanan Sundaresan, K.M. Santosh,
Andrea Déri, Rob Roggema, and Ramesh Singh,
Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2014, xvi and 299
pp., black and white and color illustrations, diagrams, photos,
images, maps, index. Hardcover $129.00, ISBN 978-3-319-
01688-7. eBook $99.00, ISBN 978-3-319-01689-4 (eBook).
Reviewed by:
Demetrio P. Zourarakis, PhD, GISP,
CMS-RS, CMS-GIS/LIS, Remote Sensing/GIS Analyst,
Kentucky Division of Geographic Information
Errors in the text are quite rare (e.g. “…, because the study
area are undistributed by …”, page 96; “…. has a population
density of 324/km
”. page 189; IKNOS”, page 279). The
Acronyms section at the end is of great value and most chapters
provide the reader with an appreciable number of references,
with the exception of the first chapter, which presents the
reader with no references. For the most part, the figures are
adequate and serve their purpose. Some of them are blurred
and contain illegible information (e.g. Fig. 12.7; page 211),
clearly the result of low resolution images (e.g. Fig 13.12; page
232) – possibly from screenshots. Some figures show acronyms
that are not referenced in the text or on the glossary (page 62;
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