I'm trying to measure the distance between points to a coastline. I have a shapefile of the "High Seas" which I got from NOAA's website here.
I also have a list of points which represent buildings.
I've played with different solutions, but I think that GRASS's v.distance is the best solution. I've been able to get my data into GRASS and can plot the map.
The problem is that when I run the v.distance tool, I'm getting decimal degrees, but I really want either meters, miles, or kilometers.
So the v.distance function seems to be the best option.
However, I've been unable to get meters out of this data. In the help guide, for v.distance, I did find this sentence.
In lat-long locations v.distance gives distances (dist and to_along) in meters not in degrees calculated as geodesic distances on a sphere.
Its not exactly clear to me what this means. It sounds like I should set up the location with a EPSG code that uses lat long. I've used a handful to no avail. For example, I tried EPSG 3857, 3786, 4326, all to no avail.
As a side note, I did try QGIS's distance to hub that's part of the MMQGIS plugin. It appears that maps to the nearest centroid of a polygon. I'm trying to get the distance to the nearest pixel/border of a polygon. Or the nearest pixel/edge of a line.