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Idaho State University students and faculty team up to create Rock Walk internet app

Posted May 21, 2014

Students and a faculty member in an Idaho State University Civil Engineering Technology program teamed up with the ISU GIS Training and Research Center and ISU Facilities Services to create a mobile map of the ISU Centennial Rock Walk that is accessible on smart phones.

To access the rock walk on a smart phone or computer visit the following Idaho Museum of Natural History web link

The ISU Centennial Rock Walk, created in 2001, is comprised of rocks from all 44 Idaho counties that are matched with buildings on the ISU campus in their approximate geographic orientation within Idaho. Each county donated a rock for the rock walk. These rocks are mounted on standardized circular bases, which are placed at buildings across campus. Each rock has a plaque, with information about the rock and its place in Idaho history. Jeannie Vahsholtz

Now people strolling through campus can find out the information for each rock and their proximity to each rock by entering the Internet link above.

“Accessing the application can be fun and informative for campus visitors and those who work on campus,” said Keith Weber, ISU GIS director. “The students who created the site used real-time GIS (geographic information systems) collection techniques.”

The eight students were in an ISU College of Technology Engineering Technology Program class this spring taught by Jeannie Vahsholtz. The students also worked with Weber and Josh Scoffield, a draftsman for ISU Facilities Services, who has been working on an ISU GIS map.

“It was a great learning experience for the students, who were very excited about doing this project,” Vahsholtz said. “Their measurements are very accurate and they supplied details about each site. We invite the public and the ISU community to check the site out.”

When a user hits the icon for the rock they are interested in the website brings up the name of monument, who it was collected by, more information on the rock and photos of it. If the user’s smart phone GPS function is activated the program will also show the user’s location in relation to where the monuments are located on campus.