Kent Jacobs

Geospatial • Data Science • Research


Skills & Expertise

  • Desktop GIS Software
    • ArcGIS
    • QGIS
    • GRASS
  • Programming & Scripting
    • R
    • Python
    • Bash
    • SQL
  • Database & Server
    • PostgreSQL/PostGIS
    • GeoServer, MapServer
    • ArcGIS Server, Oracle, ArcSDE
  • Operating Systems
    • Windows
    • Linux (Ubuntu, CentOS, RHEL)
  • Cloud Computing
    • Amazon Web Services
    • Microsoft Azure
  • Web Mapping
    • HTML, JS, CSS
    • Leaflet, Mapbox, OpenLayers
    • ArcGIS Online
  • Spatial Data & Standards
    • Open Geospatial Consortium standards (WMS, WFS, WMTS, etc.)
    • Esri FileGDB, Esri Shapefile
    • GeoJSON, GeoPackage, GeoTIFF
    • KML, SpatialLite
    • PostGIS, WKB, WKT
  • Development & Productivity
    • Microsoft Office, Google Drive
    • Git, GitHub, Docker
    • VirtualBox, Markdown


    Interested in working together to solve a geospatial problem? Feel free to contact me at any of the following below!


    QA of VGI: An Investigation into the Ottawa-Gatineau OSM Database


    Within the realm of Volunteered Geographic Information (VGI), reliability and quality of the geographic information continues to be a pressing concern. Many VGI projects do not have standard geospatial data quality assurance procedures and the reliability of such contributors remains in question. This study investigates the quality of VGI by analysing OpenStreetMap (OSM) data in Ottawa-Gatineau. First, a review of past publications into quality assessment of OSM data is examined. Next, a comparative analysis of OSM data is conducted relative to an authoritative dataset. The OSM historical information of map features and contributors is inspected to gain an understanding of how users are contributing to the database and their ability to do so accurately. Overall, OSM data in the context of Ottawa-Gatineau is comparable to or surpasses authoritative dataset quality and clustering contributors based on historical information can help identify tendencies within a contributor base.

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    OSM quality assessment using unsupervised machine learning methods


    The reliability and quality of volunteered geographic information (VGI) continue to be pressing concerns. Many VGI projects lack standard geospatial data quality assurance procedures, and the reliability of contributors remains in question. Traditional approaches rely on comparing VGI to an “authoritative” or “gold standard” dataset to assess quality. This study investigates VGI quality by analysing the OpenStreetMap (OSM) database in Ottawa-Gatineau, focusing on historical map features and contributor data to gain an understanding of how users are contributing to the database, and their ability to do so accurately. Unsupervised machine learning analyses expose a cluster of experienced contributors classified as “OSM validators/experts”, which are then further used to attribute data quality. They are identified through a combination of strong contribution loadings associated with the use and experience of advanced OSM editors, and weaker loadings associated with feature creation and frequency of contributions leading to further correction. Limitations are discussed with implications for future work.

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    Driving Behaviour Analytics for Monitoring Changes in Behaviour

    Carleton Data Science Seminar


    The existing methods of screening medically unfit older drivers in Canada (i.e., cognitive and physically impaired) needs to be improved by providing more evidence-based, objective measures of driving ability. As older drivers often rely on driving for independence (e.g., visit friends, grandchildren or social clubs), revoking their driver’s license can negatively impact their quality of life. By analyzing the driving history from sensor data on real- world driving, two methods were developed to monitor the changes in driving behaviour to detect a decline in driving ability. Our methods were developed from a dataset that included thousands of trips from 28 older drivers over a few recent years from the Candrive research study. The first method includes the development of total driving area and primary “mean” locations for the further proposal of a real-time GIS monitoring application. For the second method, a detection algorithm was created to track the proportion of unusual trips per month and provides an alert when a consistently high proportion of unusual trips were observed, which may indicate that the older driver is losing the sense of direction and have decline in memory. The methods in this study can improve the screening process for medically unfit older drivers and contribute to reducing healthcare costs and improve physician-patient relationship for older adults.

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    Public Sector

    LMI Explore

    LMI Explore Logo LMI Explore Screenshot

    Main Responsibilities

    • Aided development of an interactive map for the Labour Market Information (LMI) Explore platform using open-source technology.
    • Installed and configured Linux (Red Hat, CentOS) operating systems for the geospatial cloud environment.
    • Published Web Feature Service (WFS) and Web Map Service (WMS) layers using GeoServer and PostGIS needed for LMI Explore.
    • Developed a vector based map tile service based on OpenStreetMap data.
    • Helped lead the initiative to publish ESDC LMI (Wages and Outlooks) APIs to the Government of Canada API Store

    LMI Explore provides Canadians with a new approach to presenting Labour Market Information (LMI) on Job Bank. Employment and Social Development Canada is exploing with alternative ways to visualize LMI. Through an interactive location based map and dashboard experience, the LMI Explore tool provides users with an accessible and captivating experience to view LMI across Canada. By embracing a digital service delivery model that responds to user feedback enabled by adopting emerging technologies, the LMI Explore tool will help meet the LMI needs of Canadians using Job Bank.

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    National Road Network

    Routing Application

    National Road Network Routing Application


    A proof-of-concept that uses the National Road Network to build a point-to-point routing application using Dijkstra's Shortest Path Algorithm on top of GeoServer and PostgreSQL/PostGIS Docker containers.

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    Spatial Analytics & Indicators

    National Road Network Indicators Map - Since Revision National Road Network Indicators Map - Length Comparison


    A series of scripts relating to National Road Network (NRN) spatial analysis and analytics.

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    Service Canada Interactive Mapping Application (SCIMA)

    SCIMA Screenshot


    SCIMA is an interactive web map application developed with Mapbox JS to assist with the visualization of Service Canada Points of Service at a national level. Canada is home to 200 Scheduled Outreach and 300 permanent Service Canada Centres, plus additionial Passport Canada and Part-Time Service Canada Centres.

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    Personal Projects

    Ottawa Address Search


    Testing out pg_featureserv and pg_tileserv using City of Ottawa Open Data - Municipal Addresses.

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    R Script to download and extract Canada OSM data, specifically road networks suitable for vehicles.

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    Pygame Car


    A simple vehicle dodging game created with the Python package Pygame.

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