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California State University, Long Beach
CSULB Geospatial Research and Mapping (GRAM) Field Program
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Daily Blog for Avery Sandborn


Day 28: Still Going Strong…

Posted on July 9, 2012 by Avery Sandborn

Okay, so even though the program is officially over, I still feel compelled to keep up a blog!  Just wanted to say thank you to all the professors, grad assistants, and lecturers that helped to pull this program together. And thanks to Bryan and Kate for hanging out with me on the last day before I flew home! I miss everyone already and am grateful for the amazing experience!

Day 27: Obligation-Free!

Posted on July 7, 2012 by Avery Sandborn

Today was our final day of the REU!  All thirteen students presented their research at the poster session in the morning.  It was great seeing the culmination of everyone’s work, and seeing how everyone’s work intertwines.  You should definitely check out everyone else’s wiki pages for some awesome and unique projects!  The entire group had an awesome taco lunch together, and did our final data sharing so that everyone can access everyone’s data and findings as we part ways.  It feels really strange to not have anymore obligations, and not be sitting in the lab anymore!

I packed my presentation into a poster tube so I could take it back to Maryland, but couldn’t resist holding it like a flute.  Back to real life… time to prepare my audition music for next semester!

Day 26: I thought I was done with the poster last night, but little did I know…

Posted on July 7, 2012 by Avery Sandborn

“Sitting in the computer lab, 4am before the final paper was due; cursing the world, ’cause I didn’t start sooner, and seeing the rest of the class there too…”

Okay maybe it wasn’t 4am, but we were definitely all sitting in that computer lab working on our posters all day.  Making a scientific poster is more difficult than it seems, but luckily I’ve had experience making them before.  I finished right at 4pm and added my poster content to the wiki page, which can be found here!  Spent the night with some great friends!

Day 25: Spiderman to the Rescue!

Posted on July 6, 2012 by Avery Sandborn

Woke up rather late today… but I had the most productive afternoon and evening, so it all balanced out!

I went to lab after lunch and started to digitize the field boundaries and archaeological features that are visible on the imagery.  My line features look like Spiderman’s tangled web, but if you look closely, you can tell that each line overlays on top of a boundary or track.  The line attributes are a separate layer from the map, so it is extremely easy to compare this layer with other maps.

After dinner, I took a much needed nap and then powered through my work.  A couple friends and I ended up working past midnight, but we accomplished a ton.  I’m glad that I have a complete draft of the poster and will be able to use our last day to edit the poster, prepare for my presentation, and identify possible research questions that can be derived from this project.

Day 24: The Night Ended with a Bang

Posted on July 5, 2012 by Avery Sandborn

After sleeping in for the first time in weeks, I felt recharged and eager for data analysis.  Only one problem: today was our day off!  So I played around with some data, and then quickly tossed it aside to go hang out at Dr. Wechsler’s house for a 4th of July BBQ.  The afternoon grapefruit war was most entertaining, and the food was delicious.  Later that day, we headed over to Huntington Beach and watched as fireworks were being shot all around the city.  A great Independence Day indeed.

Day 23: Tracing Boundaries

Posted on July 4, 2012 by Avery Sandborn

While my brain may have turned to mush, today was a very productive lab day at the Beach.  I arrived at lab at 9am and immediately started to georeference and subset any last-minute maps I had discovered.  I then began to analyze the agricultural field patterns near the quarry.  In some images, you can see tons of geometric areas outlined by roads, ditches, or fences, but what I want to know, is how long these areas have been bounded.  After talking with Dr. Lipo, I decided that the best way to approach the data analysis would be to create my own boundary layer and overlay it on all of the maps to see if there is any correlation throughout the years.  I’m eager to see what this analysis shows, and am excited to come up with more questions that my deliverable can answer!

Day 22: Strange Eating Habits

Posted on July 2, 2012 by Avery Sandborn

I completely slept through my alarm this morning (no thanks to jet-lag), so I fed myself leftover M&Ms from the flight for breakfast.  I spent the rest of the day in the lab at CSULB getting to the heart of my data analysis.  I created subsets of my georeferenced maps and imagery so that comparing data in ArcMap can be easily manipulated.  I also found a few more maps, one of which is directly applicable to my research (click here for the blog the map is from).  From my layered map deliverable, I can hopefully identify irrigation ditches and field boundaries that are easier to see from remote sensing instruments than from the ground.

Since Dr. Wechsler was only in Kauai during week 2, and Dr. Lipo in week 3, it was a little difficult to keep a narrow focus on our projects.  But today, Team Archaeology was finally all together again, so we had a group meeting in the afternoon.  We chatted about our project updates, and our plans for our final week.  After I finish processing my data in Erdas and ArcMap, I can really begin to hone in on the archaeological aspects of the data.  Using the time-series map and remote sensing imagery, I can determine whether certain archaeological features are prehistoric or not.

Our team meeting lasted through our assigned dinner time at the school diner, so we had to find elsewhere to eat.  We solved this problem by going out for dinner and a movie!  I haven’t had chicken nuggets for three weeks, and was experiencing some separation anxiety.  I decided to cure it by eating at one of my favorite restaurants, Chick-fil-A!

Day 21: Goodbye Kauai

Posted on July 2, 2012 by Avery Sandborn

Goodbye Kauai, I’ll miss you.

Day 20: Sunrise to Sunset

Posted on July 2, 2012 by Avery Sandborn

I woke up early, early in the morning to watch my first ever sunrise!  What better place to see it than Kauai?  Five of us went back to Shipwreck Beach at 5:30am to admire the sky, and then we hopped in a blue ocean absent of tourists.  It was nice swimming in the ocean, but I ended up accidentally going body surfing, and have a few skinned knees to prove it.  We ate a delicious breakfast at a small diner in a nearby town, and then headed back to the house.

In the afternoon, the entire group went to Poipu Beach for one last Hawaiian BBQ.  The sun was too hot for my taste, but a monk seal came to visit and spent all day roasting in the sun.  I spent my last sunset and night hanging out with some great friends on the beach!  Definitely going to carry these memories with me wherever I go!

Day 19: Round Trip

Posted on June 30, 2012 by Avery Sandborn

For our last field day in Kauai, my team spent the morning whispering in the NTBG Library.  I georeferenced a few more maps for my deliverable.  After we ate lunch at the gazebo that overlooked the gardens, we joined up with the hydrology team for a sunny afternoon at Shipwreck Beach.  We ended our day where we started, at the NTBG center for one last lecture in Kauai.  Dr. Terry Hunt spoke about the archaeology and ecology of the polynesian islands.

About Avery Sandborn

I am a rising senior at the University of Maryland-College Park. I am a double-degree candidate in Geographic Information Sciences and Flute Performance. Go Terps!