Last month, we completed an article on the Story of COGS for Jon Murphy, which he published on the GoGeomatics web site. This led him to ask me to clarify the ‘myth of COGS’, which has taken up some of my time in March.

We interviewed Gary Gaul, Head of Maintenance at Lawrencetown and asked him about his recollections of student life in the 1980’s. This was followed by a gathering in Annapolis Royal. We invited Bill Power, Marlin Gould, Roger Mosher and David Colville to discuss their time at NSLSI when they were students. Subsequently, they became instructors in the various Computer Programming programs. Thirdly, I contact Val Thomas at Virginia Tech. She was a student at COGS in the late 1990’s.
The end result of these conversations has been a better understanding of the COGS reality. You can look forward to another GoGeomatics article in early April. While it tries to address the myth, it, in fact, offers more content for the story.

In attempts to reach out to graduates of COGS, this month I have been in contact with Karen Reinhardt, Harold Hunt, Daniel Munroe, Gwen MacNairn, Jeff Tracey, Bert Seely, Edward Wedler, as well as all of the instructors mentioned above.

Please keep passing on the word, and look out for my next contribution to GoGEomatics, on the ‘myth of COGS’.

David Colville has an interesting article posted in the NSCC ‘Innovations in Applied Research’ blog that showcases the opportunities, experiences and outcomes of applied research at NSCC. He explains in about 500 words or less how he arrived with a dual role of GIS Faculty and Research Scientist with the Applied Geomatics Research Group (AGRG) after enrolling in the Scientific Computer Programming (SCP) diploma program thirty years ago (1983). Continue Reading  Here…

1)     In 1982, Bill Matteson arrived from ESRI to teach all students and instructors in the SCP program the basics of PIOS and GRID in two weeks. Today, this is known as ‘block learning’.

2)     In 1983, Scott Morehouse and Dave Bishop returned to install the new GIS software, Arc/Info on the Prime minicomputers.

3)     In 1984, Alex Miller, ESRI Canada visited Lawrencetown and hired John Houweling, Eric Melanson and Dave Roscoe from the graduating SCP class.

4)     In 1986, Mark Harris was hired by ESRI, Redlands. According to Cathy Mueller, ESRI has hired xx COGS graduates since Mark. Mark is still with ESRI.

5)     In 1986, the Nova Scotia Land Survey Institute (NSLSI) was renamed the College of Geographic Sciences (COGS).

6)     In 1988 the graduating GIS class hosted a one week Summer Institute. Additional instructors were Michael Goodchild (University of Western Ontario) and Roger Tomlinson. Many Canadian Geographers attended – Peter Keller, Brian Klinkenburg, Brent Hall, Stephen Reader, Norman Drummond.

7)     In 1999, Bob Maher and David Colville developed a new Masters in Information Technology program at BIOTROP, IPB Bogor, Indonesia modeled after the COGS curriculum. Stephen Rawlinson and Valerie Thomas, COGS graduates, were hired as instructors.

8)     In 2000, Bob Maher returned to Nova Scotia and with David Colville, Tim Webster established the Applied Geomatics Research Group (AGRG). This led to joint the M.Sc in Applied Geomatics between Acadia University and NSCC in 2005. Koreen Millard was the first graduate. Roger Tomlinson was awarded an honorary doctorate at the same graduation ceremony in Wolfville.