What is a Sustainable Business for Data?

A Panel Discussion

Where 2005
33 minutes, 15.4mb, recorded 2005-06-29
Schuyler Erle, Matt Gross, Marc Prioleau

Mapping information is becoming one of the most useful tools on the internet. However, the utility of that information is directly related to the quality of the data available, and the acquisition of that data is more challenging than many people realize.

In this discussion from Where 2.0, Simon St. Laurent of O'Reilly Media speaks with Robert Denaro of NAVTEQ, Schuyler Erle, an open source champion, Matt Gross of MapQuest, David Nevin from Tele Atlas and Marc Prioleau of Telcontar about spatial data collection. They discuss the differences between government-collected data, commercially available data and user-generated data. Some watchers argue that data is like hardware - the costs decrease over time while the features increase - and the important aspect of spatial data is not so much its source but what features it offers.

The panel addresses the various uses of mapping data, from educational to commercial uses, and the features required by various user groups. The speakers explore the increased use of this data in a mobile context, including handheld devices and onboard systems in vehicles. The focus of the discussion is more on the challenges faced by mapping services providers than on the user experience, although the panel members also share some of their predictions for the future of mapping services.


Simon St. Laurent is an XML-focused computer book author and editor living in Ithaca, NY. His books include XML: A Primer, XML Elements of Style, and Programming Web Services with XML-RPC. He is a contributing editor to XMLhack.com and an occasional contributor to XML.com.

Leading the North American Business and Government Solutions Business Unit, Robert Denaro uses his extensive background in the positioning, location and mapping industry to expand NAVTEQ's business in the GIS, Fleet, Enterprise and Government markets. He joined NAVTEQ from Rand McNally & Co. where he was Senior Vice President, General Manager of Global Business Solutions, responsible for a broad range of business-to-business applications and consumer technology products and services.

Prior to joining Rand McNally, Bob was Vice President and Director of Motorola's Consumer Telematics Products, a division he launched after five years heading the company's GPS business. The unit introduced the first integration of wireless data cellular phones, GPS, and real-time computation for the automotive industry.

Schuyler Erle is a free software developer and activist. His interests include digital cartography, wireless networking, intelligent search engines, and the Semantic Web. He is the lead developer of NoCatAuth, the leading open source wireless captive portal.

Matt Gross manages MapQuest mobile products, which include some of the fastest growing and most subscribed to consumer applications on any US carrier. Prior to managing mobile products, Matt was responsible for expanding the MapQuest Advantage software line to serve the LBS needs of over 1,400 business customers. Before joining MapQuest in 2002, Matt grew the performance management business of ActiveStrategy, Inc. and directed product development for the first commercially-available XML calendar service at eCal Inc. Outside work, Matt is active in several Philadelphia-based community development projects providing mental health and immigration services. He holds a B.A. in history from Swarthmore College and spent one year of study in Accra, Ghana.

David Nevin holds a BS in Management Information Systems from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in Troy, NY. He's worked for multiple high tech. start ups in engineering design, and spent 8 years at Autodesk directing channel and major account sales and marketing teams and was part of the Autodesk LBS Group since it's inception before moving to Tele Atlas 2.5 years ago, where he directs the Internet, Wireless and Telecom market segments.

Marc Prioleau joined Telcontar in 2005. He brings twenty years of technology marketing, with the last nine years in the location technology and internet search markets. Prior to Telcontar, Prioleau directed the high-growth consumer and enterprise markets for SiRF Technology, a leading provider of GPS-enabled location technology, contributing significantly to SiRF's successful IPO in 2004. Before SiRF, he was vice president of Business Development for Outride inc. (acquired by Google), responsible for commercializing Outride's advanced search technology with leading Internet search engines. Prioleau also held executive positions at Trimble Navigation where he led marketing for embedded GPS products in the automotive, timing, and mobile computing markets. Prioleau has a Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering/Materials Science from University of California, Davis and a Master's degree from Harvard Graduate School of Business.

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