After working on maps and looking into GIS options I finally began working with Iceland and Skalanes data shape files in GIS. Through consultation with colleagues we were able to figure out that for now our best option for using GIS software is to use QGIS which is free and open source. Charlie helped bring all of the GIS files from Oli onto our computer and I was able to take the shape files and open them in QGIS after installing QGIS. Looking through all these files is kind of a complicated process because there are lots of them. There is also lots of different data that has been collected on different things. There are basic shape files of Iceland which are useful, but so far I have not found a vector file of Skalanes specifically. Right now I am just wading through the files, visualizing them and looking at their attribute tables. One issue I have run into is translation in several of the attribute tables. Google translate has not been very helpful or reliable in translating some words so I have tried several other sites but several words are still not recognized. The next step is really to just inventory and ask Oli where we should go with these.
Much of my time has also been spent focusing on Field Studies things such as reading Island on Fire and brainstorming. In the past months we have created calendars of what needs to be done and where while we are in country. I have brainstormed lots of curriculum related things for this program, but we will go more in depth into this in May and while on course. I am excited about all this though! GIS has been really fun and I am very excited about this new program. Island on Fire is a great base point for lots of cultural and natural history related lessons and activities.
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