I won my grade-school geography bee in 5th grade and fell in love with geography. I never stopped loving it until the next year when my sister (in 5th grade) beat me (in 6th grade) in the geography bee in front of the whole school.
Over time my wounds healed, and I am now in the Masters of Geographic Information Systems program at the University of Minnesota.
I became interested in GIS while doing a project for an IT class during my undergrad. My group created a Google Maps/New FamilySearch/Flickr/Wikipedia mashup which put your family tree on a map by birth place, then added Flickr and Wikipedia links to the place they were born. We also added icons for cemeteries, and the nearest Family History Centers.
The tool we created wasn’t truly useful to a genealogist, but it was fun to play with
Today I am an MGIS student at the University of Minnesota and I work as a web developer for a genealogy technology company.
I am interested in many aspects of GIS, but I’m particularly interested in studying the use of spatiotemporal data. Data that changes over time presents fun challenges in deciding how to store, query and display it.
One potential application that I would like to work on is using GIS to facilitate genealogical research.