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QGIS has the ability to display GeoRSS by following these steps:

  1. Click on "Add Vector Layer..." icon
  2. Make sure the Data Source is "File" and enter the GeoRSS URL with "/viscurl/" prefix on the GeoRSS (e.g. /vsicurl/

The problem I'm having is that the canvas is not updated when a new earthquake happens. I have to quit qgis, restart qgis, then load the GeoRSS in order to see any updates.

Anyone knows how to show GeoRSS in real time? I'd love to hear of any other FOSS solutions to this problem.

share|improve this question
hmm I can't even open the GeoRSS feed using the above method. – Nathan W May 30 '12 at 1:41
@Nathan, I was able to load it into master build by pasting the URL into the Dataset field under File, while adding a vector layer. – dakcarto May 30 '12 at 2:14
up vote 6 down vote accepted

Reloading a layer was recently discussed on the developers mailing list. From that discussion, the concise answer might be: not for a GeoRSS provider... yet.

The data provider for GeoRSS is probably QgsOgrProvider which does not appear to have the reloadData() method implemented. A search of the /src/providers directory turns up QgsWFSProvider and QgsWmsProvider as having the method. QgsWFSProvider appears to be the only provider with the reloadData() function for vector features (as referenced in the mailing list post by giohappy).

If you want to see new earthquakes, or parse changes over a time span, consider automating the download of the GeoRSS feed (and possibly the loading into a QGIS project file) using Python. Then, load the layers into underdark's excellent TimeManagerPlugin (additional blog posts). Other than that plugin, I don't know of another way to visualize temporal changes in QGIS, at this time.

share|improve this answer
I'll accept your answer. Now all I need to do is figure out how to automate the download of the GeoRSS feed. I'd greatly appreciate any tips on how to do that! – cgs_bob May 30 '12 at 4:11
@cgs_bob, I would post your request for tips regarding automating the GeoRSS feed download as a new question, as that will increase the likelihood of getting good help. – Get Spatial May 30 '12 at 8:59
@cgs_bob, Downloading a File from the Web « Python recipes « ActiveState Code and mechanize 0.2.5 : Python Package Index. Also system binaries like wget and curl do nicely in shell scripts (on Unix variants). – dakcarto May 30 '12 at 18:11

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