[GRASSLIST:9058] Re: ArcView vs GRASS
dylan.beaudette at gmail.com
Mon Nov 14 11:59:39 EST 2005
On Nov 14, 2005, at 4:30 AM, Thomas Adams wrote:
> Dear GRASS Community:
> This discussion is far too interesting to pass making some comments.
> First off, I could not agree more with most (if not all) comments. The
> price/performance comparison alone makes GRASS the easy winner and the
> user support is outrageously good. I work for aU.S. federal agency and
> admittedly the GRASS community is small by comparison to ESRI. That's
> an irony, of course, since GRASS was developed by the U.S. Army Corps
> of Engineers. What is also ironic is that there is a strong analogy
> between ESRI/GRASS and the MS-Windows/Intel versus Apple
> Macintosh/Linux world — but with an interesting twist. The reason many
> have identified for the groundswell of GIS users using ESRI software
> is ease of use with the GUI which purportedly is not available with
> GRASS. Some comments have shown this is not quite the case.
Interesting times indeed.
> The lack of cross-platform support with ESRI software is a huge issue
> with many and has caused significant problems in my agency due to the
> fact that our real-time operational environment is Linux; we would
> like to have GIS intimately intertwined with our operational
> environment at each workstation (having multiple monitors) but this
> really crowds the desktop space not to mention that one would have to
> use simultaneously a MS-Windows environment on one computer and Linux
> on the other — what a mess!! So, I have been gently pushing GRASS when
> the opportunity presents itself.
Here in the small Land, Air, and Water Resources Dept. of the
University of Ca in Davis I have been confronted with the same
problems. Many of my collegaues and I use Linux and MacOS, yet GIS in
integrated deeply into our research (soil science). I became a GRASS
user out of both curiosity AND neccessity. Fortunately, with every
ESRI-related mess that my collegues have to deal with, one more comes
and asks about GRASS. Thos last screen shots from Radim were quite
excellent, and I am looking forward to trying out the GRASS->QGIS
> For much of what we do at U.S. National Weather Service (NWS) River
> Forecast Centers involves handling large amounts of GIS data
> repetitively. This means that scripts must be used to handle the
> analysis of these data. It is quite easy in GRASS to write simple
> shell, Perl, or whatever scripts to handle the data analysis
> requirements we have.
> I should also add the importance of GRASS/QGIS interoperability and
> interoperability with R, gstat, GMT, etc. Combined, these make an
> incredibly powerful GIS environment that easily rivals the ESRI world.
> ESRI still holds the marketing edge with the perception of creating
> stunning maps, which captures the attention of end-users. Probably a
> stronger tie between GMT and GRASS would help.
Good point. As with GRASS, I made myself learn how to use GMT out of
neccessity: I needed high quality cartographic output. There have been
numerous efforts to integrate GRASS and GMT, including: shape2gmt,
r.out.gmt.py (David F.), r.out.gmt (Hamish and I), as well as 2 new
modules that are currently only on paper v.out.gmt (Hamish and I), and
possibly g.out.gmt (complete GMT script creation- Hamish and I).
I am enjoying this thread quite a bit. Perhaps it would be a good idea
to summarize the important points, and put it up somewhere. Maybe
adjusting the tone a bit so as not to be too abrasive, :) .
Soils and Biogeochemistry Graduate Group
University of California at Davis
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