Startup to create automated map of Qatar

Qatar Navigator gets a QR 1.6 million grant to develop an automated map of the country

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By  Vineetha Menon Published  September 2, 2008

Qatar Navigator, a local startup company, has been awarded QR 1.6 million ($440,000) by Qatar’s Science and Technology Park (QSTP) to develop an automated map of the country.

Roads and landmarks will be surveyed and digitized with a video camera that can simultaneously capture images and GPS coordinates. Students from Qatar University will assist with the project, which is expected to be completed in the next five months.

Qatar Navigator aims to license its maps to satellite navigation companies and to motorists in the country.

“As Doha residents know it can be difficult to specify where a site is located and then find your way there. Another issue is the roads and buildings in Qatar change very quickly. By using the latest automated mapping technology, we think we can produce maps more accurately and more quickly,” said Hamad Al Kuwari, general manager of Qatar Navigator.

Financing was made possible under QSTP's Proof of Concept Fund, which provides grants for universities and SMBs in Qatar who demonstrate the technical and commercial viability of innovations.

'The POCF aims to help innovators to develop and demonstrate their technology. Qatar Navigator's project has the potential to quite literally put Qatar on the map. It marks another tangible step in the growth of Qatar's knowledge economy,' commented Paul Field, manager of the POCF.

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