GIS, BIM, surveying & spatial applications in Southern Africa
Issue 110, Nov/Dec 2019
This edition of PositionIT e-News is proudly brought to you by
Editor’s note: End of an era
by Pierre Potgieter, editor of PositionIT

EE Publishers, the publishers of PositionIT and three other industry magazines, will be closing its doors at the end of November 2019, after having served the industry for 27 years – the last fourteen years of which PositionIT has been part of its stable. The directors of the company have not taken this decision lightly, and attribute the company’s closure to a combination of falling advertising revenue and other market forces.

Having worked on PositionIT for six years, the last two of which I was the editor, it has been my great pleasure to be part of the geospatial industry with all its innovation, richness and potential to change the world, and to have worked with the many wonderful and interesting people and cutting-edge topics in this sector.

Highlights for PositionIT over the years have included hosting the first drone conference in Africa, bringing the industry together for annual thought-provoking conferences, and having covered in print and online the evolution of the industry through its various transformations. The magazine was an industry platform for discussion and collated a body of local industry knowledge, which we hope will continue to serve you as a useful archival reference in years to come.

As our loyal readers, we hope you enjoyed the journey with us, and that PositionIT has been valuable to you in your work and life. Being part of PositionIT has personally been an enriching experience and opportunity for me, and it would be remiss of me not to thank the great many industry professionals who have taken the time to patiently answer my questions for articles, and who have contributed to the magazine with their knowledge, articles, time and other forms of assistance over the years.

My own position and role at the magazine would not have been possible without the trust and guidance of Clare van Zwieten, who provided me with room to grow in this field and who entrusted me with the magazine when she left the company after being its only other editor. It has also been a pleasure to have worked with various team configurations at EE Publishers, and to have developed strong professional bonds with colleagues and to see younger team mates grow into professionals.

Magazines are a team effort at best, and our work would not have been possible without the guidance and experience of our editorial director Chris Yelland and sales director Irene Blythe. Nor would it have been possible without the hard work of bringing together the advertising headed by Vinia Phogole, and translating everything onto paper with our design teams which have included, over the years, Helen Hartzenberg, Elizabeth Lotz, our young stars Tshepiso Lino and Charlize Fourie, and most recently Yzelle van der Vyver.

I leave you with this thought: Geography is destiny, knowledge is power, and you as geospatial professional command both.
Message from the publisher
To our readers, customers, suppliers, staff and other stakeholders
by Chris Yelland and Irene Blythe, EE Publishers

It is with some sadness that I must advise that, after more than 25 years of business, EE Publishers will be closing at the end of November 2019. It is however heartening for us to remember past achievements – from the initial business as the Elektron Partnership started by Jack Yelland, which brought the SAIEE magazine Elektron to profitability and growth – to the merging of the Elektron business with that of Energize magazine to form EE Publishers.

In due course we acquired further titles, Vector and PositionIT, and the establishment of EngineerIT magazine to replace Elektron magazine, which reverted to the SAIEE. Highlights over the past 25 years included the winning of numerous Specialist Press Association Pica Awards for publishing excellence, and the close relationships established with numerous professional institutes and industry associations across the sectors served by EE Publishers.

We also ventured into staging major conferences and exhibitions, often partnering with relevant industry bodies – events such as Switchgear, Drives & Control; Intelligent Building Automation; GISSA Ukubuzana; SA Surveying + Geomatics Indaba; Geomatics Indaba; SA GeoTech; SA Energy Storage; and ICT Infrastructure. This was supplemented with the staging of numerous public seminars and debates on topical issues of public interest across the sectors served by EE Publishers, the most notable of which were the series of five energy and ICT seminars hosted in partnership with Nedbank in 2019.

Our annual industry leadership and customer breakfasts were legendary, and the highlight of many peoples’ event calendars. Guest speakers included Judge Albie Sachs, Adv. Vusi Pikoli, Prof. Jonathan Jansen, Bobby Godsell, JP Landman, Michael Power, Ferial Haffajee, Prof. Anton Harber, Mark Heywood, Dr. Harry Seftel, Martin Welz and Nik Rabinowitz.

A special thanks to the editors, writers, sales, production and administration staff for each of the four publications, EngineerIT, Energize, Vector and PositionIT, and our events management staff, for their dedicated service and the sterling work over many years. I would like to single out the leadership roles played by recent editors of PositionIT magazine, namely Pierre Potgieter and Clare van Zwieten, together with the associated sales, production, events and administration staff.

We take this opportunity to thank the many stakeholders of EE Publishers, including readers, customers, suppliers, professional institutes, industry associations and especially the staff for the wonderful journey we have had over the last 25 years. It has been a pleasure and an honour to be part of, and to serve, the energy, electricity, measurement, instrumentation, automation, lighting, ICT and geomatics sectors of South and southern Africa.
User conference explores benefits of integrated...

Esri South Africa's User Conference from 22 to 25 October this year celebrated the company's 30th anniversary of doing business in southern Africa, and under the theme "See what other's cant", focused on extracting insights from geospatial data....

Read more
ICT skills survey shows SA's 4IR gaps and opportunities

Wits University's Joburg Centre for Software Engineering in partnership with the Institute of Information Technology Professionals South Africa, have released their findings of a survey of skills trends...

Read more
Using maps to help eradicate HIV/Aids

Knowledge generated by communities is playing a vital role in informing HIV prevention and treatment programmes as health NGO Right to Care gears up to find innovative ways to reach UNAIDS 90-90-90 targets by 2020. These are ambitious treatment...

Read more
Building a national data repository for spatial planning

The Department of Rural Development and Land Reform aims to enhance the coordination and sharing of spatial data amongst the different spheres of government...

Read more
Upcoming events

Practical Geostatistics & Mineral Resource Estimation Workshop
25 to 29 November 2019

Led by Dr. Isobel Clark 2019, this course will be held in Johannesburg. The first three days of the course will cover practical aspects of geostatistics. Real projects and case studies will form part of the workshop. The workshop is aimed at professionals dealing with the estimation from or interpolation between samples collected on a spatial basis.

Oceanology International
17 to 19 March 2020 

Oceanology International 2020 will be held in the UK. New features, free interactive seminars and 500+ exhibitors will brings together businesses, academics and government. It is an event for those involved in exploring, monitoring, developing or protecting the world’s oceans, from seabed to surface and beyond.

Intro course to QGIS
12 to 14 February 2020

This is an introductory-level course for people new to GIS, new to FOSS GIS or are experienced in other GIS software and want to find out how to do their work in QGIS, this course is for you. The course will be taking place in Cape Town, with further courses scheduled for other parts of the country.

Geo Week 2020
22 to 26 March 2020, US

Geo Week is a multi-event collaboration, including participation from several geospatial events, held in Washington DC, US. The event brings together the International Lidar Mapping Forum, ASPRS, and MAPPS. Each event features its own programme.

More details in Events Diary
PositionIT. Anytime. Anywhere.