Flutterby™! : Some GIS/GPS Links

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Some GIS/GPS Links

2006-04-25 14:24:19.102435+00 by ebradway 3 comments

I've been exploring Google Earth a little more lately. I work with GIS tools on a daily basis and I'm impressed with the user interface. I'd have to say that for basic GIS data visualization, you'd be hard-pressed to find something better.

Here are some other tools I've come across that might be of interest to folks around Flutterby:

  • MagnaLox provides the GPS interface to GE that Dan seems to be desiring.
  • 3DEM gets used to stitch together DEMs because the ArcGIS 9 mosaic to raster tool is SLLLOOOWWWWW. 3DEM is also a handy viz tool - unfortunately it's Windows-only.
  • Open Source GIS is an obvious link to a list of OS-GIS tools.
  • GPSbabel - like ImageMagick, only for GPS data.
  • Proj.4 - same, but for projections.
  • GRASS - One of the oldest desktop GIS packages, originally developed by the military. Now freely available as open source.
  • MicroImages TNTmips - has a free version of their full suite that works with small data sets.
  • OpenGIS - Standards, we've got lots of standards...

This list is not exhaustive but provides a place to start playing. Feel free to add your favorites in comments.

[ related topics: Coyote Grits Maps and Mapping Free Software Work, productivity and environment User Interface Graphics Microsoft ]

comments in ascending chronological order (reverse):

#Comment Re: made: 2006-04-25 15:26:17.967659+00 by: mvandewettering

I've found O'Reilly's Mapping Hacks book to be quite fun, and points at many of the projects that you've already mentioned.

You can download all sorts of useful data from the USGS at http://seamless.usgs.gov.

I mucked around with Tiger Census data as well, which includes (admittedly, not the most accurate, but still useful) street data. I even compiled them into maps for my Garmin using cGPSmapper.

#Comment Re: made: 2006-04-25 15:41:18.319266+00 by: Dan Lyke

I've used Proj.4 in 3 different languages now (C, Perl and Python), as well as one or two command line conversions to check my work, and... yeah, it just works.

VTP is a toolchain that helps with registering imagery and placing features and such, with the eventual end of dropping out data that can be used in a 3d environment. There are provided viewers, or you can link to the libraries and add your own code for special purposes. Last time I played with it there was no texture or geometry paging (although it does a nice job with level of detail), but it's good for constrained data sets. And in a pinch, if you've got way more physical ram than, say, texture ram, you can just keep multiple scene trees around in memory yourself and switch between 'em.

GPSBabel is what I used for that bike ride in KML.

#Comment Re: made: 2006-04-25 17:55:13.132488+00 by: ebradway

That VTP page also serves as a great reference for datasources. The only thing missing is state and local data, which has to found through Googling. Some state and county level data is available through GIS Data Depot but you are better off just plugging "Tennessee GIS data" or "Hamilton County GIS Data" into Google. Try the county first, then the city.