Who is JBGeo? Well that would be me. I am Joe Bob Penor; a geospatial guy who has worked in the industry for over 20 years. I started my geospatial career while completing my wildlife biologist/management degree and in that process wound up using GIS and remote sensing technology to map vegetation and animal habitat. After receiving my BS, I taught various wildlife biology and intro GIS labs at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock. After working at the university I moved on to working on my masters degree and during that time I was presented with the opportunity to work for two great geospatial software companies… ESRI and the former ERDAS Inc. I wound up choosing ERDAS and worked for many years in the company in a variety of positions to include software trainer / education manager, remote sensing and GEOINT analyst, project manager and product evangelist for ERDAS and the multiple companies it morphed in and out of. I am currently looking for new opportunities in the geospatial industry but also pursuing other aspects of the industry that I have been involved with for so long; one of those being how I can learn more about how the technology is being utilized in various professions and bringing people and ideas together to better the user community and the industry as a whole.
A philosophy I have always had is that the “customer comes first”. No if’s, and’s or but’s. You have to tell it as it is, for if it weren’t for the customer and their satisfaction, I would not have a job or be able to make a living. If a solution existed in the market place and it wasn’t one of products produced by the company I worked for I would inform the customer. If the customer had issues with the software, I would work hard to get the issues fixed or find a workaround until a fix was implemented. One of the things I really enjoyed and loved doing while working for a software vendor company was learning and hearing from other companies, customers and general users on what they are doing with geospatial technology. Whether it was the manual grunt work of digitizing information into a GIS, conducting image analysis to determine optimal fertilizer placement on crops to terrestrial scanning of ancient buildings and historical sites. Each story has its own beginning and end and each story is different. Just because I no longer work for a vendor doesn’t mean I don’t enjoy visiting and talking to geospatial users; hearing their stories and learning from them.
Surely, I am not the only person who was interested in how people were using geospatial technology, so I created Everyday Geo. A site to share the stories of the user… that person that utilizes the technology to get the job done in order to pay the rent and put food on the plate. A place to come and learn what others out in the world are using geospatial technology for. What they like about the software they use, and more importantly the problems with the software that they had to work around. Also, what projects they really enjoyed working on and what they think about the current industry and where it is going.
Currently I live in the Commonwealth of Virginia outside of Washington DC with my wife and three children where I enjoy all the history of the area as well as hiking the mountains and many trails found in Virginia including the Appalachian Trail (AT). I served 17 years in the US Army Reserve as an Infantry Instructor (11BH). I am originally from the great State of Arkansas where the rest of my family resides. I also try to stay in regular contact with many of the geospatial users in the state. I enjoy meeting other users of geospatial technology and learning from them and if you think you want to share you story with me, feel free to send me and email as I would love to hear from you.