[OSGeo-Discuss] Introduction - hi; gis based wychwood
work;pointers on how to enter "GIS" world?
nbarker at RSINC.COM
Mon Mar 13 12:58:59 EST 2006
From: M.Blackmore [mailto:mblackmore at oxlug.org]
Sent: Monday, March 13, 2006 5:20 PM
To: discuss at mail.osgeo.org
Subject: Re: [OSGeo-Discuss] Introduction - hi; gis based wychwood
work;pointers on how to enter "GIS" world?
On Mon, 2006-03-13 at 10:14 -0500, Frank Warmerdam wrote:
> M.Blackmore wrote:
> > So ... for a COMPLETE gis newbie ... where do I start?
<top post begging of forgiveness> Thanks for the suggestions thus far,
folks! The level of my ignorance is profound as I didn't understand most
of what Frank was saying, the terminology being utterly unfamiliar
(polygons? Wossat? A dead parrot?) but I could take some guesses...
So I'll try and rustle out a few books and such like. I can also play
with mapinfo of which they have data from people like Thames Water and
the County Council made available. Trouble is - and this is the trouble
with expensive proprietary software - the only licenced copy they've got
is on the director's PC so I have to fit in when he's not using the
machine, i.e. for an hour or so Friday morning when my 3yr old is in
Such restrictions (machine licences, not 3 year olds...) are amongst the
reason why, if the functionality can be created using open source, there
would be a lot of support for a move into OS, thus allowing widespread
Data source restrictions are of course another issue!
> Hopefully others will provide some good suggestions for materials. I
> would recommend "Web Mapping Illustrated" by Tyler Mitchell as a useful
> read. It reviews a variety of tools though it is by no means
> comprehensive. It should be especially useful for the portion of your
> project which would be presenting the mapping information on the web
> once collected.
> I think the biggest challenges for your work will be:
> o Getting appropriate background map data (imagery and vector) for
> context when you are trying to collect and display your old/new
> forest polygons.
> o Managing collaberative editing of the datasets by a variety of
> I couple items of interest with regard to collaberative editing.
> o MapBuilder: It is a client web mapping environment, but Cameron
> Shorter (one of the key players in the projects) wishes to use it
> for cooperative collection of bike routes in Australia. I imagine
> he can provide advice.
> o OpenStreetMap: Something similar for cooperative collection of
> streetmap data. Might be applicable to your work as well.
> For data, you might be able to harvest good imagery from Google maps.
> Otherwise it may get expensive.
> Ideally you would be able to use something like MapBuilder for web
> based collection of data, and keep the polygon data in a PostGIS
> database providing a good degree of managability.
> However, if that proves difficult to realize, you may have to fallback
> on more primitive approaches. Basically proividing background imagery
> and vector data for people to digitize polygon data on in a desktop
> GIS software like QGIS, GRASS, or OpenEV. Then re-integrate submitted
> datasets on the backend using scripts (perhaps Python scripts based on OGR).
> It gets much more challenging when folks want to submit changes to
> existing data, and when several people might have "the dataset" off
> in the field, working on different parts. This is a classic problem,
> and not one well addressed by "canned" open source solutions.
> With some trepadation I am cc:ing this back to the discuss list since
> though I'm sure it will expose my ignorance of lots of options.
> PS. I just read a book about a fellow hiking down the 2degree meridian
> in England, and some of the names are quite familiar. I can almost
> imagine your area from his descriptions in the book.
> Best regards,,
I have been noticing more and more communications on the GDAL, GeoServer, MapServer lists from the UK. Last year Steve Lime kindly interrupted his holiday in Edinburgh and we held an informal UK meeting (held at short notice, so attendance was limited). Certainly from this I learnt about the work at EDINA, and MIMAS.
Can I propose a UK meeting group, held in the London / Oxford areas? I know a lot of people in the UK who are using OSS GIS software, perhaps we could have a wiki page somewhere and add our names to it if we are interested.
Certainly this type of UK forum would enable people to come to a workshop and ask questions face to face, though this mailing list does an excellent job, the social interaction is useful.
In particular I would encourage you to come to the AGI conference in the UK, where Wyn Cudlip, myself, Gail Millin, Giulio Pagan, Jeremy Morley, Martin Daly (who's names I notice on this list) and others are speaking on Open Source GIS (http://www.agi.org.uk/pooled/articles/BF_EVENTART/view.asp?Q=BF_EVENTART_184699).
Sounds like an interesting project,
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