From: University of Idaho
Published September 28, 2004 10:13 AM

UI Fire Data Center to Provide One-stop, On-line Shopping for Fire Information

MOSCOW, Idaho - University of Idaho forestry researcher Greg Gollberg wants to create an online superstore, "a one-stop shopping center," for wildland fire research, data and tools.

The new Internet resource will use business principles to deliver information to wildland fire managers and scientists.

The UI work was highlighted during a fire science symposium sponsored by the College of Natural Resources to celebrate 25 years of research that have established its faculty as national leaders in the discipline.

With billions of dollars spent fighting fires and helping communities and landscapes recover afterward, Gollberg believes the investment makes sense.

"We want to create the eBay for wildland fire tools, the Google for wildland fire information, and the AOL for wildland fire communication," Gollberg said.

The UI project borrows information technology developed by major businesses and government agencies to help deliver the goods.

Gollberg manages the Fire Research and Management Exchange System or FRAMES. The software is being developed at UI in partnership with federal and state agencies. An advisory committee of researchers and managers will guide its long-term development.

His goal, Gollberg said, is to "provide fire managers with better access to the tools and other information resources that are critical to informed decision making and to give researchers a system that they can use to distribute information and tools, plus obtain feedback from managers and other tool users."

The tools might include publications, photos, geographical information, fire behavior data or other computerized information, Gollberg said. State agencies, the public and other customers could benefit as well.

"Basically we consider anything as a tool that a manager can use to do their job better," he said.

FRAMES could help forge a tighter link between fire management and fire research. "We think the technology can help bridge that relationship, and that it can help eliminate redundancy, reduce costs and promote increased productivity and efficiency as it has in business," Gollberg added.


For more information contact:
Greg Gollberg
UI FRAMES project manager
(208) 885-9756

Bill Loftus, Science writer
Educational Communications Office
College of Agricultural and Life Sciences
P.O. Box 442332
University of Idaho, Moscow, ID 83844
W: (208) 885-7694, Fax: (208) 885-9056, H: (208) 285-0124

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