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46

To store the data, the first two alternatives to mention are PostGIS and SpatiaLite. SpatiaLite is a SQLite database with spatial capabilities which means it is file based, compact, and fast. PostGIS is spatial capabilities on a PostgreSQL database. That means it is very powerful with capacity to handle large data sets, complex queries in a efficient way. ...


37

Quantum GIS uDig OpenJump gvSIG TerraView Kosmos WhiteBox


26

Quantum GIS is easily the most mature, robust, and user-friendly. Cross-platform, too!


25

I would look at OSGeo.org for this. They maintain a collection of Open Source GIS packages and utilities. This includes: GRASS OSSIM Quantum GIS gvSIG In addition, there are many useful tools and libraries, such as GDAL, OGR, OpenLayers, etc.


18

I use Ubuntu 10.04 for several reasons: Open source tools command-line tools (e.g. ogr2ogr or pgsql2shp) are much more pleasant to run from almost any linux than from Windows. Not only is something like gnome-terminal a lot more usable than cmd.exe, but I find that being able to trivially run a few bash commands gives a nice productivity boost for one off ...


16

For a basic viewer, I've been playing with WxGIS Catalog, which does the basics nicely but could use some fleshing out for more complex use cases. There's also RasterCatalog for QGIS, but as the name states, its only for rasters. On OS X, try GISlook, but none of these look to handle the spatial database engines directly.


15

Nicklas has already pointed out the most popular open source packages. If you are interested in a closer coupling of desktop and server GIS, you might want to have a closer look at QGIS. Similar to the setup you described for ArcGIS, there is such a setup for QGIS: PostGIS for data storage QGIS Desktop to edit the data and create the map document QGIS ...


15

I disagree that there are only two options in the GIS industry on a number of levels. The first is that there are many other well established commercial GIS offerings other than ESRI SmallWorld, Bentley, AutoDesk, ERDAS, MapInfo, Integraph and Idrisi spring to mind without thinking too hard. You say they have a market share "well below" ESRI. ESRI ...


11

I am afraid I disagree with you. I think the ArcGIS help/forums/blogs/vids/etc give a great perspective on what you can achieve with the ArcGIS range of products. Your not limited to Python to manipulate your spatial data. You can still use VBA at 931 and 10 to access the ArcObjects library, or you could take it a step further and use .NET to do all sorts ...


11

ESRI's been around for a long time, and essentially helped invent the term "GIS". There are other big players, but they often come from a different angle (i.e. AutoCAD Map 3D, or Intergraph/Microstation). Increasingly all these different dominant players in the maps/drafting/design world are starting to overlap and come together, but they still hold their ...


9

Most of the major open-source GIS software is compatible in any of the big three (Windows, OS X, Linux). I'd start with trying some of the software out in whatever operating system you're already familiar with, GIS will provide enough challenges without you being flummoxed when navigating your filesystem. Compiling GIS software from source is a challenge on ...


8

Portable GIS is a very useful set of Open GIS Tools that can fit on a USB stick and used on other computers and very good for field work on a laptop. Great for beginners or students without the resources to purchase for commercial GIS products. Newly updated version 2 contains a self-contained installer, updated versions of all the constituent software ...


8

http://www.bostongis.com/?content_name=sqlserver2008r2_oracle11gr2_postgis15_compare#221


8

Bruce Bannerman has produced a Mind Map showing various Open Source Geospatial projects, with a summary of project features and links to project URLs at: http://wiki.osgeo.org/wiki/User:Bruce.bannerman


8

http://freegis.org/ - the oldest and perhaps most comprehensive directory of free GIS software and projects.


8

Please add to this answer as you find more! QGIS http://www.qgis.org Working with QGIS in a spatial data infrastructure of Jalisco in Mexico Quantum GIS and GRASS in Biogeographical Research in the Iberian Peninsula QGIS - an interesting instrument for forestry planning concepts at local and regional level QGIS in the governmental FOSSGIS stack of the ...


8

To answer the question: Why no industry standard product from any established software giants? The problem is you appear to be begging the question. There is an industry standard product from an established software giant. They're called ESRI and being founded in 1969 they easily predate Microsoft (1975), Google (1998), Oracle(1977), and Apple(1976). The ...


8

I'll start things off... Being a good google-first person, I did find that OpenGeo did record some of their 2013 FOSS4G-NA presentations. They are available on the OpenGeo conference blog, but only a few presentations are availabe.


7

High quality map production: it's possible with FOSS, but a bunch of extra work.


7

If you are just looking to get started with open source GIS then you probably don't need to worry about operating system. I can't think of any major programs that won't run on all the major operating systems. Once you get into advanced work then you might benefit from using a Linux distro but not while starting. So I'd recommend sticking with what you know ...


7

It is a very broad question. Cost Implementation Support Speed Limitations The bottom line is you get what you pay for. Oracle Spatial which can only be used with Oracle Enterprise Edition. One can use Oracle Locator, but has less of the native tools for GIS. Spatial also has GeoRaster which is an image format stored inside the database. The next ...


7

Personally I'd very much welcome functionality and ease of use of ArcGIS Network Analyst extension.


6

If you're interested in learning more about this area, the problem is named cartographic displacement, and its one aspect of cartographic generalization. A couple of articles discussing displacement and approaches for handling the problem: Bader, Matthias. 2001. Energy Minimization Methods for Feature Displacement in Map Generalization. Steiniger, S Tefan ...


6

GeoApt Data Browser looks quite promising, but I haven't yet managed to make it run on Windows. The big advantage over wxGIS Catalog for me would be that you can access the dataset's metadata. Update: As @dassouki mentioned above, there is also a new QGIS Browser which supports raster, vector and WMSS data. You can drag and drop layers to QGIS from there. ...


6

ogr2ogr has a "segmentize" option that appears to do what you need: GDAL ogr2ogr documentation From that page: -segmentize max_dist: (starting with GDAL 1.6.0) maximum distance between 2 nodes. Used to create intermediate pointsspatial query extents


6

If your data is stored in PostGIS, try using ST_SimplifyPreserveTopology.


6

Version 9.0 of GDAL/OGR added the -simplify option to the ogr2ogr command. The documentation indicates that it preserves topology. -simplify tolerance: (starting with GDAL 1.9.0) distance tolerance for simplification. This method will preserve topology, in particular for polygon geometries. Example usage: ogr2ogr outfile.shp infile.shp -simplify ...


5

SAGA GIS, System for Automated Geoscientic Analysis, is often under represented in floss GIS lists. SAGA developed from raster processing roots, and is thus very strong there, and grew into vector handling and analysis later. It is a mature tool.


5

The programming language R is focused on statistics, but has some good mapping capabilities. I wouldn't use it to design a poster-sized map, but it has several packages for handling GIS tasks. The best part is that you can crank out spatial statistics without needing to leave the program.



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