What is in these databases anyway?  Seeing the relationships between diverse and disparate data by Nathan Hemenway

Tuesday, November 15 at 3:40-4:35

OpenNRM Is a software system built on Postgres / PostGIS and provides a robust and flexible web-based collaborative management application to manage data resources in one place. The platform enforces consistency and accuracy in the capture of key information and ensures that quality information is available for timely analysis, decision-making and reporting. The high quality user interface, content management system, integrated web based Geographic Information System (GIS) and analytics make the system innovative and easy to use.  OpenNRM is flexible and can be reconfigured for use by different natural resource management programs including: ecosystem restoration, real time operations management, fish tracking, monitoring programs and more.

OpenNRM organizes and represents its various content types as nodes of an interconnect net or mesh. It builds associations between the nodes as edges. Content types illustrated here can be people, projects, spatial data sets, images, textual documents, maps, and others. The edges between these content types form a large association tree. Edges may indicate images on a map, documents supporting a project, people working on a project or document or data points on a map.


Due to underlying representation of content as graph nodes and the relations between them as edges we will illustrate Postgres techniques that are useful:

  • CTEs (Common Table Expressions)
  • Indexing
  • Histograms

About the Speaker

Nathan received his M.S. from the MIT Department of Architecture ‘s Center in Advanced Visual Studies where he researched computer models and methods of working with Geographic Information Systems, Computer Aided Drafting, and software systems. Nathan spent his early career in Boston working in software design and development with the successful team at Six Red Marbles. At SRM he focused his engineering skills on building successful commercial JAVA applications for the education industry. Later down the road Nathan joined the teams of DEEPBLU Studios and 34 North where he engineered 9 unique Sundance Online Film Festivals. These projects were a fascinating multi-media experience that showcased films and animations from all over the world. The project comprised of a significant content management and movie delivery solution architected on the Microsoft .NET platform which integrated several diverse forms of online media: streaming video, FLASH, XML and core Microsoft Platform technologies.

Today, as a co-founder of 34 North, Nathan has come full circle back to his roots of working in application development. As a diverse and multi lingual software engineer, Nathan wears many hats. From the deployment of servers built on Open Source paradigms (PostGIS, PostgreSQL) to database architect and front end designer. Nathan’s research interests include exploring methods for the visual display of multi-dimensional data, WEB 2.0, fine art and toying around with various sensor aware microprocessors and illustrating the results electronically.

Monday, September 12, 2016 - 15:30