I am currently researching for an appropriate GIS solution. My requirements are pretty simple:

  • Ability to create circles, symbols or diagrams with transparancy tied to their geographical location (For example showing units sold and total profit for each location)
  • Size of said symbols should be proportional with values within
  • They should be capable of displaying values and if possible location names
  • Most of these informations including coordinates are located in Excel Files
  • Possibility to automate this procedure every time or at least create semiautomated profiles

I found quite a few solutions such as ArcGIS and Maptitude but I am not certain if such software is required and if there isn't a simpler alternative.

I was also looking at qGIS but sadly I am quite new to GIS and such a form of data visualisation, so any guidance would be appriciated.

closed as too broad by PolyGeo, Brad Nesom, underdark Jul 8 '14 at 16:16

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  • 4
    Everything in your question are straight-forward, basic GIS operations. You certainly can do all of the above in QGIS, for example. May I suggest you begin by scanning the QGIS documentation – Micha Jul 8 '14 at 11:56
  • If you are looking for something to display on the web, please see my company's product demo at mapsjs.com/examples.html - all our JavaScript products are free and allow data overlaid on Bing, OSM, or raster data. There are both free and licensed versions of our server-side query and tile render product at mapdotnet.com – Russell at ISC Jul 8 '14 at 13:09
  • Hmm the idea is that this solution once found would be used only internaly and mostly for presentations. I look for automation because most users will be expected to feed in two excel sheets and obtain a map in the end. – Nyquist Jul 8 '14 at 13:13

I believe most GIS software that are available (such as ArcGIS, QGIS etc) can accomplish the tasks you described - adding features containing attributes along with labels describing additional information and automating various algorithms using either Model Builders or via scripting (such as Python).

Another major factor in deciding is cost - QGIS in particular is free compared to ArcGIS, although they do provide free trials which can last upto 2 months or so.

I can only really comment on QGIS as it is what I mainly use but hopefully others can provide more detailed explanations.

You could download a couple of GIS softwares and spend a day or two running and testing them, that way you can get a feel as to which software might be suitable for your project.

  • I might indeed need to test them down. I have narrowed the list down to ArcGIS, qGIS and Maptitude. I am still wondering how efficient the automation part of qGis is. It should be as easy as possible for the end-user to use the final implementation. – Nyquist Jul 8 '14 at 13:36

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