My career in Geographic Information Systems (GIS) began in a user environment that was far less friendly than the systems in use today. I remember displaying wellhead locations on the green monitor of a PRIME minicomputer at the New Jersey Geological Survey and, despite the cartographic limitations, I appreciated the power to visualize spatial data on a computer. Eventually the systems became more user-friendly and my experience since then has confirmed the utility of a GIS for data exploration and visualization. I worked in conservation GIS for the National Park Service and a non-profit land conservation organization in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, the Heritage Conservancy. I have also worked as an applications programmer for Geo InSight International, Inc. in Carpinteria, California as well as at the Southern California Wildfire Hazard Center on projects related to wildfire spread through chaparral. I am the designer and developer of HFire (Highly Optimized Tolerance Fire Spread Model), a spatially explicit wildfire prediction model. My research has been featured on CNN. I completed a M.A. in Physical Geography at the University of California, Santa Barbara.
Dr. David M. Theobald is a Scientist at the Natural Resource Ecology Laboratory at Colorado State University in Fort Collins, Colorado who has been working with GIS since the middle 1980s in the areas of planning, conservation GIS, and landscape ecology.