Astute Spruce

How I can help you

Map & Data Visualization

I specialize in leveraging and creating cutting-edge web mapping and data visualization technologies to make scientific data more accessible and informative. I create custom solutions to meet domain specific needs because generic solutions simply do not work well for complex scientific data.

I can help you understand and leverage these cutting-edge technologies and approaches to empower your stakeholders and amplify your impact.

  • I am an expert in Leaflet, a web-mapping library perfect for simpler projects. I created several open-source plugins for common components across projects.
  • I am an expert in Mapbox GL, an advanced web-mapping library with high performance for complex data. I created a library for making map images for offline documents, such as downloadable reports.
  • I created a lightweight image and vector map tile server used across several projects to save costs and maintenance headaches.
  • I developed a novel approach to encoding raster data to power real-time data exploration in the browser without requiring complex map-server technology.

Data Processing & Analysis

I am passionate about using my software development skills to help scientists and science-based organizations better use and interpret their data. I turn painfully slow and error-prone manual data processing into automated data pipelines, so that scientists can focus their scientific expertise on advancing scientific understanding.

I can help you identify and develop novel solutions for your data processing needs. Once we have created these, you will be more efficient and able to focus your expertise on advancing your science.

  • I developed a rule-based classification tool to help vegetation ecologists classify information from many thousands of field plots into ecologically-meaningful classes.
  • I created an intuitive rule-based classification tool to help bat ecologists leverage expert knowledge to overcome shortcomings in automatic classification tools. This allows them to focus their limited time on manual inspection of fewer, more problematic records. This approach allows ecologists to define rules independent of the underlying software.
  • When existing tools could not scale to larger volumes of data, seriously jeopardizing my clients' ability to meet their deadlines, I created a new data processing pipeline to efficiently process the most detailed data on rivers and streams in the U.S. This allowed us to leverage higher quality data and still meet critical deadlines.

Data Sharing

My professional career has been focused on making data more accessible. I help define and develop data sharing approaches to turn scientific data into broader impacts for a wide range of stakeholders.

I can help you compare between existing data sharing platforms, evaluate tradeoffs in data sharing and integration approaches, and identify solutions that will allow your organization to amplify the broader impact of your data.

  • I led the development team at the Conservation Biology Institute that created the largest and most functional conservation data sharing platform in the world: Data Basin.
  • I have successfully led multi-organization teams to define, pilot, and implement cross-organization data integration. These leverage the collective strengths, domain expertise, and data ownership of each organization to amplify the impacts of the data created and managed by each partner.
  • I led the data management and delivery of two region-wide ecological assessment projects, which involved several hundred individual deliverables. I developed data pipelines to standardize data format, structure, and documentation - which resulted in some of the highest quality deliverables for our clients compared to other contractors responsible for other regions.


Just need advice on how to approach a data visualization, processing, or sharing project? Need assistance leveraging the state of the art technologies to increase the impact of your organization? I am here to help.

Get in touch:

Astute Spruce, LLC
Brendan C. Ward
Owner | Lead software engineer
Phone: 541-250-9544
Oregon, USA