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

Day 25:

Posted on June 28, 2013 by Scott Honda

Today I finished up my project report and power point presentation. I think I’m ready for tomorrow’s presentation! Well, I’m not to sure if i’ll ever be fully ready, but I think I’ll be okay. I still have some reviewing of the concepts and methods I used to complete my project. I need to review Principle component analysis, Pan Sharpening, and spectral index ratios. All are pretty complex ideas, at least for me, so hopefully I can understand them well enough for me to explain them tomorrow. We’ll be presenting tomorrow at Kualoa Ranch. Each of us will have 10 minutes to present, I think that’ll be perfect for what I have set up for my presentation.

Tomorrow will be the finale of the program. I’m relieved it’ll be over soon, but it’ll be bitter sweet as the time spent doing field work, processing data, and just being around was time well spent.

Anyway off to bed as I have a big day tomorrow!

Day 24:

Posted on June 27, 2013 by Scott Honda

Today was the last day in the field. Paul flew the Phantom over the area where we thought the offshore fishpond wall was. It was very difficult to judge just how far and high the Phantom Quad-Copter was flying at. Paul, Mike and I also took one last tour through the Ka’a’awa Valley. I’ll remember this place with fond memories.

Once we got back from the barn I began to process my data and started throwing my entire project together. I got a few processes done in Erdas, like my index ratios and my principle component analysis. I’m pretty happy with the results as the resulting images really highlighted the fishpond wall. I also began to write my final report, it was a rough start. For me it usually is as I try to gather my thoughts and explain my ideas in a logical manner.

Our team, group four, also had to cook today. We heated up some leftover lasagna and made a bunch of salad and fruit salad. Peter and Thomas also made some sort of soup. It was a pretty simple dinner.

Tomorrow will be the last day to put our projects together and begin our preparations for the presentations on Friday.

Day 23:

Posted on June 26, 2013 by Scott Honda

I flew the Phantom Quad-Copter today to try and gather some high resolution imagery of my study site. Unfortunately, 4 of the 5 flight’s imagery did not work in PhotoScan or Microsoft ICE. I believe it is probably due to the altitude at which I was flying at because the last flight I flew about 45 meters high and so far it’s images have been processing in PhotoScan. So, we’ll see what comes out of the final product which is an orthophoto and a possible DEM/DSM.

I also managed to collect more points where there was a high displacement of coral or reef off of the sandy/dead-coral floor. It was a fairly low tide so i could easily spot and walk out to the areas protruding out of the water.

Once I came back, I had a talk with Dr. Lipo about my project and he suggested I should focus on the fishpond wall out at sea. He gave me a master’s thesis on archaeology features near and around Kualoa Park. There was a substantial amount of history and findings in Kualoa Park, with some mention of the offshore wall. It turns out there is a fishpond wall offshore of Kualoa Prak and after some shifting through google it seems that there has not been much work done on that fish pond wall (at least from the resources on the web). So, I began to process the World View 2 imagery again so it’ll cover the fishpond wall as it is about 100 meters off shore. I think I’ll finally settle on this research topic, using remote sensed imagery and geographical information systems to map the offshore fishpond wall near Kualoa Park.

Day 22:

Posted on June 24, 2013 by Scott Honda

Brian and Dan, two people from the Mechanical Engineering Department at UH Manoa, came out today to help me gather some data using their side sonar. It was a pretty cool device. From what I gathered, talking to Brian and Dan it measures depth based on intensity and time. Unfortunately it was low tide so we were limited by the area we could go to, even with the low tide limitations we were still  able to cover a fair amount of ground on the motorized kayak. I’m excited to look at the data that was gathered!

I also got to meet Iris, who is the park manager at Kualoa Park. She and Ted helped set this all up for me and I greatly appreciate it. She set me up with a ride on a small sized sail boat to get all the way out to the channel. We got there in a few minutes, it was incredibly fun! On the sail boat I was able to get some GPS points of potential sites where fish would be located. Ikaika, the sailor/captain who took me out, told me a story how they once saw a 14 foot tiger shark. 14 feet! Iris also told me that Ulua also run threw the channel and that the channel was man made.

All this data will be helpful in my project at the end. I can tie in the sonar, WV2 imagery, GPS points, GIS layers, and UAV imagery (which I’ll get tomorrow) to create a map or build some sort of model to find/locate/predict archaeological features and artifacts.

Day 21: Summer Fun

Posted on June 24, 2013 by Scott Honda

Today we had an entire day off! It was good and quite refreshing to not have to do field work, process data, and what-have-you. Now tomorrow everyone will be refreshed and energized.

What everyone ended up doing was traveling around the island to do some sight seeing. There were about four different vehicles and everyone left at different times and went to different places. I gladly went on the last van. It gave me some time to sleep in til 7 A.M.! I suggested to the people in my group we should go to Makapu’u Light house trail, it is one of my favorite hikes. It’s not too strenuous, it has beautiful views, and if you hike down a cliff side there are tide pools.

After the hike we all went to get some sushi at Kuru Kuru Sushi (another place that I love), but the wait was 25 minutes and we were in a hurry, so we went to Aloha Salads (another place that I love) instead. Afterwards we met up with the rest of the crew from our program in Waikiki. We mostly stayed around the Moana Surfrider Hotel, it was fun to play tourist again. Anyway by the time we ate dinner we were all tired and most of us just wanted to go home and get some sleep, so we did.

Day 20:

Posted on June 24, 2013 by Scott Honda

I got out into the field today to collect some data. I started off at the south end of Kualoa Park to locate an old fish-pond wall. It was quite easy to find as a part of it is still on the sand. All I had was a recreation grade Garmin GPS, but I still took points and ran a track along and around the wall. A large part of it was submerged so it was somewhat difficult to tell where the wall ended. When I overlayed the GPS track of the wall over the imagery, my lines were consistent with the World View 2 imagery. So it shows that the World View 2 imagery is capable (at least in this instance) of detecting underwater features. After the program is done I’d like to do a survey with a total station in that area. I’d be able to get a more accurate, more precise map of the wall and a favorable point cloud of the wall.

I then proceeded to do some snorkeling around the area to see if I could find fish where I thought they would be based off the pansharpened-pca-imagery. I did see some Weke (goatfish) and a bunch of other reef fish. The reef fish located mainly around coral heads. The Wekes I saw were in an open, sandy/dead coral area where reef was near-by. Unfortunately, other than the 3 Wekes and reef fish I did not see anything else. One thing that I did notice was that there was a lot of dead coral toward the east facing side of the park. It was quite saddening to see all that dead coral, I can only imagine how much life the dead coral used to harbor.


Day 19:

Posted on June 21, 2013 by Scott Honda

Today I processed the preliminary data. After a few attempts, I finally managed to make a classification of the reef area around Kualoa Ranch/Park and Ka’a’awa valley in Erdas. First I masked out the land so only the offshore area was in the image. Then I did a principle component analysis of that masked image. I took the first 4 bands as the standard diviation of the 4th band was around 20 and I felt anything below that would be useless. I ought to make some extra classifications using other combinations of bands 1 – 4. K-means classification was then used on the image over 15 iterations with 36 possible classes. I think it worked well. I ended up making 7 overall classes, Sand, Reef, Open Ocean, More Sand (than reef), More Reef (than sand), waves, and unclassified. It’d be good to do some sort of ground truthing on my classification, but I am not sure if I’d have time to do it, not to mention that I would need to take a Trimble out into the ocean. But overall I believe the classification matches pretty well after overlaying it on the original imagery.

After I finally managed to make my classifcation, I tried to do some interpolation of the the off shore LiDAR data to create a bathymetry layer. Arc must have failed to execute about 20 times! But now I think I fed Arc everything that it need to be happy and process my data! Hope that turns out well. Once this is done I want to try and combine the classification with the bathymetry to try to pin point archaeological artifacts and/or reef fish habitats.

Anyway, once this is done I’ll be ready to get back into the field and gather some data.

Day 18:

Posted on June 21, 2013 by Scott Honda

Today I attempted to get out into the field to see if I could find any artifacts. I stayed along the shore where I think people would fish or throw nets. After a few hours of searching through piles of rocks along the shore I found one interesting rock that looked like a fishing weight, two rocks that looked like there was cut holes, and another rock that was bright red. So I ended up taking the rocks and a GPS points where I found the rocks, then I headed back to Basecamp for some lunch. I was able to ask Dr. Lipo and Dr. Hunt about the rocks that I found. They said that the two rocks with the cut holes in them were just coral with worm holes. The bright red rock was a brick. The third rock though, was harder to dismiss as it looked like a weight, but it could also have been formed by natural erosion. After a taking a good look at it Dr. Hunt said that it was probably not an artifact and formed naturally. That was pretty much my day. I did learn that I really need to look into fishing methods, tools, and anything-else-that-can-point-me-to-the-right-direction a lot more.

Tomorrow I think I’ll look more into finding resources that can help me find what I’m trying to find. Also, to process the data that I need to figure out where I can pin point my search. It’ll be a busy day away from the field for me.

Anyway, Peter, Thomas, Michelle, and I cooked dinner for everyone tonight. I thought it came out pretty well for four non-chefs! We cooked spaghetti with 4 different types of sauce, garlic bread, and salad. I played pantry cook and chopped up most of the veggies while everyone else did the cooking. All the time spent watching the pantry cook and my last job finally paid off!

Day 17: Call me Honda, Seafarer

Posted on June 19, 2013 by Scott Honda

Thomas, Gordan, and I paddled up and down the shore for about 5 hours today. Gordan and Thomas were looking for changes in  conductivity to find where fresh water seeps are located off shore. As they collected data, which was just paddling up and down the shore, I looked for places where reef fish would be. Although I did not see any fish today, I’m not too worried because I saw a few places that I think fish would be and I also saw patches of coral. When I came upon those places I marked GPS points so I know where to come back later. One area had a lot of coral, but it was near chinaman’s hat so it may be outside of the research area. Another place had coral near the shore which was right at the boarder of our study area. I have to revisit that place. I also saw some areas that did not have coral but the reef had quite a bit of spatial relief from the sand and I think those are very good places to revisit also.

Overall, I think it was a good day. We were fighting the waves and got flipped out of our boats a few times (thus I may not be worthy of the title Seafarer). One of the flips I almost lost my GPS. It fell out of my pocket as we flipped, but luckly Thomas saw it floating around about a minute later! Everything else was good I managed to grab my glasses just as it fell off my face. But by the end of the day Thomas and I had (almost) no problem at dealing with the waves.

Tomorrow I think I’ll snorkel at the places where I marked and see what I can see.

Day 16: Eureka

Posted on June 19, 2013 by Scott Honda

All week I’ve been a little worried about coming up with my project idea, but today I’ve finally finalized my initial project idea. It is locating areas of ancient native Hawaiian fishing practices by using geographic information systems and remote sensing software. It is good to finally have a good sense as to what I will be doing in the upcoming days. I also think it’ll be a fun project overall to do. It will definitely be a good application of GIS and remote sensing in a non-conventional way (at least to me).

Tomorrow I’d like to work on putting together my data and start processing it, but I’m not sure as to what the plan is for the entire group. But I look forward to “ground truthing” my data to see if I can predict where I can find ancient Hawaiian fishing artifacts in reef areas. Nothing like snorkeling all day for research! That reminds me that I also have to try to find a snorkeling mask that can go over my glasses, I’m sure there is something out there on eBay or Amazon (not to promote them or anything).

Overall, I think my time here at Ka’a’awa Vally and Tradewinds Ranch had been a blast! I’m especially enjoying being able to talk with other students, assistants, and professors as it always leads to some really interesting conversations and ideas. I feel like by the end of this program we’ll accomplish about a semester’s worth of learning and course work.

About Scott Honda

Geography major at the University of Hawaii at Manoa, with a minor in Information and Computer Sciences. Interests is GIS theory, GIS development, and Remote Sensing applications. Is also the president of Geography Club at UH Manoa.