[OSGeo-Discuss] packaging FOSS GIS for education

Helena Mitasova hmitaso at unity.ncsu.edu
Sat Mar 1 16:51:13 PST 2008

This is sort of follow up on discussion from October last year:

We would like to install OSGeo software stack at
several labs at NCSU (linux, Mac, Windows)
as well as provide it through Virtual Computing Lab
eventually to all universities in the UNC system.
To do it efficiently it would be great if I could
point our IT admins to a single site where they can
download everything.

Lorenzo Moretti's download page that includes GRASS,
QGIS, GDAL and number of additional libraries,
Mapserver, Thuban and Jump is a nice example for Mac

And there is another one for Mac from William Kyngesburye

Is the wiki below the best we currently have for Linux
and MS Windows?

or is there an ongoing effort following the objectives
stated here and discussed on this list?

Thanks a lot for an update (if anybody has been working on this),


>>> Cameron Shorter wrote:
>>>> Gavin, I think the time is ripe to consolidate upon this goal.  
>>>> I'd like to expand the goal a bit and then break it down into  
>>>> achievable steps.
>>>> *The goal:* Powerful, Simple, Used, Integrated, Open Source
>>>> Geospatial Applications
>>>> *Current status* We already have powerful applications, but we
>>>> still need geeks if you want to install and then use a full stack
>>>> of OSGeo software. Our applications are often easy to install by
>>>> themselves, but project release schedules are independent of each
>>>> other and it is hard to keep up with which versions of software
>>>> work with each other. Documentation and training material is
>>>> still in an early phase. This material needs to be cross project,
>>>> and matched to the software versions too.
>>>> *Key Steps* *Set up project version dependency table* A table
>>>> which lists for each project version, the other project versions
>>>> it depends upon. This dependency table can be used by UbuntuGIS,
>>>> DebianGIS, liveCD, a windows packager etc. For this we should be
>>>> able to tap into expertise from liveCD and linux distribution
>>>> communities. Once this dependency table exists, the onus on
>>>> maintaining it will become the responsibility of projects (and
>>>> become an entry criteria for OSGeo projects). For efficiency, it
>>>> would probably help to set a release timetable for snap shots of
>>>> the dependency list, which should be timed to link with with
>>>> other distributions.
>>>> *OSGeo Workshops & Tutorials* * I see an immediate opportunity to
>>>> present OSGeo Workshops at Geospatial Conferences. Agencies want
>>>> to learn about OSGeo, and workshops are a great advertising tool
>>>> for companies looking for OSGeo work. * Together we can
>>>> collectively build some quality documentation here, and we have
>>>> the resources (potential presenters) to develop the  
>>>> documentation. * These workshops require a stable set of
>>>> software, so should be able to seed the dependency table as well.
>>>> *Further documentation* Comprehensive documentation which has
>>>> already started in the education committee should be able to tap
>>>> into and get a boost from the workshops and tutorials. I'll let
>>>> others comment on the path this should take.
>>>> Gavin Fleming wrote:
>>>>> While Venka is on the topic of packaging FOSS GIS for Ubuntu,
>>>>> I'd like to put a niche request / challenge to the community.
>>>>> High schools in South Africa and elsewhere need a FOSS
>>>>> alternative to use and teach GIS, which is a compulsory part of
>>>>> the syllabus from this year. FOSS GIS at present is too
>>>>> inaccessible. My challenge is to have a packaged CD for Ubuntu
>>>>> to launch at FOSS4G2008 in Cape Town. This CD (or DVD) would
>>>>> have:
>>>>> -one-click installation for Linux, Windows or Mac. -Integrated
>>>>> software stack so teachers and learners have to launch a  
>>>>> minimal number of applications -Simplified and customised GUIs
>>>>> to lower the entry threshold. -for teachers to teach curriculum
>>>>> requirements of GIS -for teachers to use GIS to teach geography
>>>>> and other subjects -for learners to use for hands-on work - 
>>>>> Free, integrated global and local data package -excellent
>>>>> documentation -framework for local contributors to structure
>>>>> and contribute exercises, lessons, etc. -central website for
>>>>> resources -possible advanced options for network deployment,
>>>>> more sophisticated users, 'computer studies' learners (i.e.
>>>>> developers), school web map services, etc.
>>>>> Any takers?
>>>>> Gavin
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