Is there any place one can find a list of ArcGIS alternative or near-alternative tools found in (any of) the open source softwares? I am not looking for software but individual tools found in the software.

I started my GIS career with ArcGIS. Today I am using more and more Open Source software such as QGIS, SAGA GIS, and R among others. I have spent hours and hours of time when finding different tools that do the same thing as those so conveniently found in ArcGIS (because you know what to look for). It would be very convenient and time saving to just check the alternative from a list than spend time googling and reading various manuals and doing trial and error at your desktop.

e.g., ArcMap: Spatial Analyst: Raster calculator - SAGA GIS: Grid Calculus: Grid Calculator

I see that there are several threads dealing with this, but they are regarding this with a smaller scope:

  1. Seeking open source alternative to ArcGIS Desktop's Integrate tool?
  2. GDAL (or other open-source) equivalent of Arc's Point To Raster Tool
  3. Are there open source alternatives to ArcCatalog?

I am looking after a comprehensive, "dictionary type" of list.

So is there a comprehensive list or a site regarding this, and if not, how could we get one? I think this would be very useful for a whole lot of people!

  • 3
    Urgh...was just about to answer =). Here is a link to a matrix which compares GIS software with various functionality. I found it very useful. This link is for the owner's blog which asks the same question.
    – Joseph
    Mar 23 '15 at 11:20
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    @PolyGeo This question is about tools, not software (or products), which is the case in the linked duplicate question.
    – reima
    Mar 23 '15 at 11:43
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    There are regularly questions on GIS.SE that are (essentially), "How can I do [ArcMap operation] in [not ArcMap software]?" and having a glossary/dictionary like this to refer to could be a huge help :)
    – Erica
    Mar 23 '15 at 14:24
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    Sorry, imho, even if this is not a duplicate, it is still much too broad to fit the format of this site as specified in our faq.
    – underdark
    Mar 23 '15 at 18:41
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    I agree with @underdark: A proper answer to this question would list literally thousands of tools and hundreds of web sites--and by the time it could be assembled it would have substantially changed. I'm not suggesting that would lack usefulness, but only that it's more than will fit our format or that we can successfully curate here.
    – whuber
    Mar 23 '15 at 19:58